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Articles written by Dimitra Lavrakas

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 By Dimitra Lavrakas    Travel    August 1, 2021 

Traveling on British trains is just better

The English have always been keen to train travel, particularly during the days when they had private compartments and different classes. The Brits do love their classes. Today, while the trains are...

 
 By Dimitra Lavrakas    Local    July 1, 2021

Pickleball brings seniors together for fun and fitness

Aging surely has its challenges and one is keeping up your physical health as your body slowly deteriorates. Add an injury or major operation and the road to recovery may be too hard to meet ...

 

Celebrate America, celebrate democracy

It was no time to celebrate in large crowds the past two years, so Independence Day celebrations across the state were canceled. But they're back now. In Utqiagvik (formerly Barrow), the midnight sun...

 

Go on and soak your bones this summer

I hopped on my bike and pedaled to the hot springs toward downtown Tenakee Springs, only to be stopped by the sight of a couple frozen in fear, their faces blanched pale. "Luna (a neighbor's dog) is...

 

Confusion, bad snacks and shrieking cats

OK, so I haven't lived in Alaska since 2012, and we decided to return when real estate prices tripled in Gloucester, Massachusetts, and the streets of my mother's beloved working-class fishing...

 

Go fish! Sink your hook into senior savings

Alaska doesn't have a state lottery – but you could win the jackpot in one of our salmon or halibut fishing derbies. These fishing tournaments offer big fish winners cash and other prizes. Just...

 

Storm New England's Hammond castle

Come the time when we are able to travel freely, consider skipping Disneyland to visit a real castle on Cape Ann, just an hour north of Boston. Rising on the shore of Gloucester, Massachusetts, the...

 

Winter doesn't have to mean confinement

Cabin fever came early this year for sure. With a vaccine coming available within the next couple of months, once we can go outside with some safety it'll be like the gift of an early spring....

 

Travel conditions remain in turmoil 

I keep on thinking of that line from the old Laurel and Hardy routine, "Well, that's a fine kettle of fish you've gotten us in." Indeed, thanks to the coronavirus it is a trying time for a travel...

 

Coming through the Canada border is still not a sure thing

While a Mi'kmaq friend has crossed into Canada to access his reserve in Eskasoni, Nova Scotia, Canada, it has been difficult for a member of the Skagway Traditional Council. The council is a...

 

Year-round cabins across the state await you

Gone are the big cruise ships from our waters. And although the small cruisers of last month's column have had some COVID cases, but sanitized and are back on the Inside Passage, we still find...

 

There's still time for summer adventures

Here it is at the end of the summer and travel and tourism are still at a standstill, adding to statewide unemployment and stalled revenue for large and small businesses across the state. This...

 

Steals and deals around Alaska

With the state opening up somewhat there is hope for travel. Many lodges and inns are closed this year while nearby accommodations are open – and offering some deals. The Glacier Bay Lodge is closed...

 

Travel options remain iffy for now

When I contacted Scott McMurren, who has published the Alaska Travelgram each week since 1999, for his take on tourism at this strange moment in time, he wrote, "Not sure how much insight I can...

 
 By Dimitra Lavrakas    Travel    May 1, 2020

These movies, books take you traveling

Well now, here we are. The Canadian Border is still closed and there's the difficulty of traveling to other locations where officials continue to uphold social distancing and stay-at-home advisories....

 

Restrictions are a disappointment for vacationers

Well this is a conundrum for a travel writer - travel restrictions. I have said this before and I will say it again: you live in one of the most beautiful places in the world, one that millions of...

 

The birds are coming! The birds are coming!

Let's face it, the coronavirus has changed travel plans all over the planet. Where does a nervous Alaskan go to have fun and adventures? Your own back yard. Millions of tourists flock to The Last Fron...

 

Memorials continue to fascinate enthusiasts

It may seem macabre, but visiting graveyards is a time-honored activity. Other than our relatives, cemeteries can reveal the lives of famous people and the many who left the world they departed a...

 

Trip a bust? Change it up, quickly

I once heard a story about an American couple, who traveled on a long-awaited vacation trip to India - they landed in Kolkata (once called Calcutta), took a taxi to the Hilton and never came out...

 

Stop over in a very cool country

If you're a "Game of Thrones" fan, Iceland calls to you. While you can do a self-guided tour of film locations, those all-too-familiar-to-Alaskans Gray Line buses will also take you there. Season two...

 

Alzheimer's chorus brings together music and the mind

Those with dementia find their world diminished, but they don't know that. It is their caretakers and loved ones who see the change and long for the time when they were present. It is a hard...

 

Traveling safely in an uncertain world

We live in troubling times and that's an understatement. The world reels with refugees: In the Middle East and North Africa there are 2.74 million; Africa has 4.41 million; in Europe, 4.39 million; and Asia and the Pacific, 3.83 million, according...

 

Rejoice Alaskans! Jet lag is strong eastbound, but returning is a dream

Alaskans travel for pleasure and often for the necessity of seeing far-flung family, and so jet lag is our constant companion. But a recent study from the Sleep Cycle Institute in Gothenburg, Sweden, looked at more than 1.5 million nights’ worth...

 

Accessible and overlooked Belgium

Coming in the year of the 100th anniversary of World War I, the "War to End All Wars," it is only fitting to consider a trip to this often overlooked European country. For those of us of a certain age...

 

Alaska Airlines upgrades, expands terminal in Seattle

In mid-July Alaska Airlines announced completion of the first phase of the Sea-Tac’s North Satellite Modernization Project. As part of the $658.3 million project, the Port and Alaska Airlines unveiled eight new gates, expanded locally-based...

 

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