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Ken Brooks

Stories by Ken

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Valley offers wealth of winter activities

There are times when we get itchy feet and want to do something. We often drive down to the Valley for some event or other pursuit. And we have family living in Scottsdale and visit with them including two grandchildren, ages 11 and 13.

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Visiting the big trees

Ever since I can remember I have had a special place in my heart for the very big trees.

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Choices aplenty for adventure vacations

Each one of us has different expectations in what we desire in a vacation.

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Plenty of summer travel time left

More and more people are traveling these days, and that means more people are visiting U.S. theme parks.

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Vacation suggestions for late summer and fall

It’s hard to believe, but we are already into summer.

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Plan for train travel in future

Train travel is gaining ridership in North America. Why? It is comfortable, relaxing and in some cases rather inexpensive.

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Cruising the East Coast and Canada

For several years, Norma and I have wanted to cruise the east coast and into the Canadian Maritime Provinces.

Travel to explore

There are a growing number of travelers who are fed up with the crowds that are visiting the more popular destinations and so they turn to seeking destinations where fewer are going.

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Kid-Friendly Vacations

The family vacation has become an American ritual — one that has been around as long as I can remember. In this article we will discuss vacations that the entire family will enjoy regardless of age.

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Adventure travel

Some of us that travel are not satisfied with a stay-put vacation. Many want to rent a room at a hotel perhaps on a beach and sit, sun and relax for a week or two.

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New York City — for shopping, sightseeing and theatre

If you have not traveled to New York City at least once in your life, it’s time to do so. No other city offers the excitement, shopping opportunities, sightseeing and live theatre as does New York City.

Exploring our National Parks

Are you getting an itch to get in your automobile to take a trip? About this time of year we find ourselves a little tired of the cold weather and begin thinking about a trip this spring. Why not consider exploring some of our great national parks?

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America's Top Driving Vacations

We love our cars and we love taking car trips. That’s part of the American spirit.

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Take a feel good vacation at a spa

Spas have been available to folks for many years. You may not have tried one, but wondered what they were really like.

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Touring Eastern Europe and Dracula’s castle

Is this the year you are considering travel to Europe? The tour companies are telling us early bookings suggest a busy travel year in Europe.

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around the world in 30 days!

Travel the globe in one vacation

Have you ever thought of going around-the — world in one vacation? I have several times and it leaves you with a strong sense of completion.

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Spring break getaways

Spring break can be an ideal time for families to get away and do some bonding.

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Boutique and smaller ship cruises

If you are one of those persons who remember how the ships and cruising was in the ’70s and ’80s, I may have some good news for you.

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Touring Nevada

Nevada offers visitors a wide range of experiences: from exciting gaming at resort hotels and casinos to snow in the mountain areas. There are memorable dining opportunities, recreation and world-class entertainment.

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Favorite vacations for Americans, Part 2

How about Colorado? Beyond the state’s celebrated ski slopes you will find world-class hiking, mountain biking and fishing.

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Favorite vacations for Americans

We like to travel! Oh boy, do we! Our vacation budget often determines how far we can travel, how we travel and where we can afford.

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Vacations to go!

Since we are already in a new year, some readers are already beginning to plan a vacation for spring and summer.

Travel News for 2013

I thought it might be helpful to impart some travel industry news that may help you in planning travel in 2013.

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A Perfect Trip – Part I

For a trip that had so many pieces – the one I have just come home from – was about as perfect as it could be.

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Islands to enjoy during winter travels

Mass tourism can turn a lovely island paradise into a tourist trap.

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The live entertainment capital of the world

If somebody asked you, “What is the entertainment capital of the world?” — you would probably answer Las Vegas or New York City.

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A DudeRanch Vacation

Tired of the usual vacations you have recently taken?

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Let’s play golf!

Many consider Arizona to be the golfing capital of the West.

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Exploring Central America

When considering travel destinations, many of us rarely consider Central America as a vacation area. Probably more Americans have traveled to Costa Rica, but that’s about it for most.

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A cruise for all age groups

For several years we have wanted to take the family on a cruise again. Three years ago we chose Alaska with Holland America Line.

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Exploring Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula

Even with the drug wars going on in Mexico the last few years, Mexico remains the second most favored foreign country to visit by U.S. tourists after Canada.

Some favorite destinations

I have been writing travel articles for more than seven years and almost every day someone asks me about my favorite vacation destinations.

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Touring the Old West

We often talk about touring the East Coast, New England, the Old South, but we sometimes forget how much there is to see and do in our Old West. So let’s get into what there is to see and do in the Old West.

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Tips on picking a cruise itinerary and ship

Cruise line ads promise all the best things in life if you take one of their ships for a cruise.

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Touring the Old South

Probably one of the more interesting regions in the United States is the so-called old south. Here, you will find much history as well as delicious food served in various types of restaurants.

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One-week travel adventures for fall

Some of us only get two- or three-week vacations each year.

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Christmas Travel

Christmas and New Year’s are a long way off, but if this is a time when you choose to travel, you should start making arrangements now.

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Repositioning cruises

Twice each year, major cruise lines reposition some of their ships. You have lines that position ships from Caribbean service to Alaska for the summer period and then reposition them back to the Caribbean for winter service.

Driving through the Canadian Rockies

For many years I have wanted to re-visit the Canadian Rockies. I had been there twice in the past, each time traveling by train from Vancouver. The train ride itself is wonderful moving through the beautiful Rockies in the luxury of the Canadian, which has today been completely renovated.

A diary of an Alaska cruise

It has been a few years since our last cruise to Alaska and we decided this was the year to once again cruise the northlands. We flew to Vancouver the day before our cruise departure.

An Oasis in The Desert

The history of Palm Springs is varied. More than 2,000 years ago, Palm Springs’ first residents were the ancestors of today’s Cahuilla bands. The Agua Caliente existed as peaceful hunters and gatherers, living off the land.

Hawaii is for everyone

There are few destinations that are suited for almost every traveler. Hawaii is one of them. It has almost everything you could want — good weather, tropical scenery and fine hotels and resorts. The Hawaiian Islands are an archipelago of eight major islands, and numerous atolls. The island group was once known as the Sandwich Islands.

A Santa Barbara break

A few days ago we returned from a week in Santa Barbara, Calif. It is located 90 miles north of Los Angeles.

Let’s ride the train

There was a time when trains traveled the length and breadth of the United States. These were the likes of Superchief, Broadway Limited, 20th Century Limited, Sunset Limited, North Coast Limited, California Zephyr, City of Los Angeles, Daylight and so many more. The hey-day for American trains was from 1945 through 1960. This was a period when American railroads put into service new and streamlined lightweight equipment. The trains were the finest on rails.

Let’s ride the train

There was a time when trains traveled the length and breadth of the United States. These were the likes of Superchief, Broadway Limited, 20th Century Limited, Sunset Limited, North Coast Limited, California Zephyr, City of Los Angeles, Daylight and so many more. The hey-day for American trains was from 1945 through 1960. This was a period when American railroads put into service new and streamlined lightweight equipment. The trains were the finest on rails.

More great vacation ideas for summer

If you are thinking of a vacation that would require transatlantic air, think again. You may decide to spend time on this side of the pond instead this summer. Airfares have gone up as much as 22 percent over the same time last year. The Olympics will be in London between July 27 to August 12 and some transatlantic fares have already jumped to $3,000 during this time. The reason airfares have jumped for summer is the high fuel prices airlines must pay to keep their planes in the air coupled with a two and three percent reduction in scheduled flights. Most flights to almost anywhere are running quite full.

Fun in New Mexico and Colorado

A very interesting automobile trip from Payson would be driving to Albuquerque and Santa Fe, N.M. and on to Durango, Colo. You’ll see beautiful scenery as well as partake in some fun, especially in Durango. Get on I-40 heading east and first go to Albuquerque. This is a good day’s drive and there are many places to bed down for the night.

Summer family travel suggestions

When you are in the planning stages of your vacation, sit down with everyone and figure out what kind of vacation each person wants. Selecting a vacation that suits everyone isn’t easy, but if you let the whole family make suggestions as to their wishes, perhaps it will be easier in the long run to experience. Teens are probably the most difficult to please. If you want to relax on the beach, your teen wants to hang out in an arcade. Teens just don’t want to sit in a nice spot for several days.

Scenic Road Trips

Were you inspired to hit the road by the big Rim Country Classic Auto Club Beeline Cruise-In April 28 or maybe the Cannonball Phoenix Spree May 5? Maybe the Rim Country Corvette Club show May 12 will urge you to get that motor running. With summer just around the corner, the open road beckons. First, have the car thoroughly checked out by a professional mechanic to make sure all is well. Probably the best time to travel is late spring or early fall when the roads are less crowded and the weather milder. Where to go? That’s up to you, but keep in mind you want fairly good roads so you won’t beat up your car. Today, we’ll suggest a few interesting and scenic road trips for your consideration.

The Emerald Isle of Ireland

Many Americans have relatives that came from Ireland. I think much of the American dialect came to the United States and Canada from Ireland. It is perched on the northwest tip of Europe across from Wales and England. Ireland is the land of myths and legends. Its landscape is loaded with labyrinthine caves and crystal clear waterways, and at some locations, lunar-like landscapes. The coastal beauty is a legend in itself with shorelines trimmed by golden sands and rocky outcrops. Inland, the lakelands and rural areas are equally as varied as they are tranquil.

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