Travelogue: Make a Door stop
American Tourist: Door County, Wis.
What is it: Door County, the thumb on mitten-shaped Wisconsin, beckons work-weary, overheated visitors to its cool, breezy villages by the hundreds every summer. For some, it’s a romantic retreat offering upscale accommodations, dining and shopping; for others, it’s a family-friendly destination replete with free and moderately priced outdoor recreation, music, museums, theater and restaurants. For all, the Door County peninsula offers miles of Green Bay rocky shoreline to the west and the sandy shores of Lake Michigan to the east.
Where to stay: During the summer, much of the lodging is booked by the week, and many places fill up the year before; most do not accept pets. Reserve as early as possible. Camping is available in Potawatomi and Peninsula state parks, as well as at several private campgrounds. Peninsula Park is popular for its size, beauty and proximity to both Green Bay and many Fish Creek activities. However, plan on crowds and fairly small, open campsites. Search online, or during your first visit, for campgrounds with more space and less commotion.
What to do: Many visitors spend unstructured days relaxing at public beaches and parks, following signs along county roads from one gallery to the next or scheduling a day of water sports, golf, fishing, hiking or biking. Dress is casual everywhere, and it’s easy to stop along any route for a satisfying meal or take-along snack on your own schedule. Others keep the driving to a minimum, pick a favorite locale and spend the entire day within a few square miles. Sturgeon Bay, Egg Harbor, Fish Creek, Ephraim and Sister Bay are a few highlight destinations.
Sources/more information: State Journal-Register; www.wisconline.com; www.doorcounty.com; www.doorcountynavigator.com
Good to Know
When airlines this year started charging extra for third bags (and then first bags), there wasn’t an exception made for military personnel. That’s changing, however, thanks to the efforts of veterans groups. One problem the group highlighted was that the extra fees affected soldiers who were returning with gear from a combat zone, oftentimes being charged $300 for their equipment. Several airlines have decided to drop the fees for active-duty military, including AirTran, Southwest, American, Alaska and more. If you’re in the military, check with the airline on their rules.
Roald Dahl Day
Are you a fan of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory”? How about “James and the Giant Peach”? Then mark Sept. 13 on your calendar – it’s Roald Dahl Day. The main Dahl activities are in his homeland of England, but there are events scheduled all over the world. For more information, check out these Web sites:
- Osaka's Momofuku Ando Instant Ramen Museum offers an instant noodle workshop, where you can cook up (and keep) handmade instant noodles. (Wikitravel.org)
- Of course you know that London's Wimbledon district figures in the history of tennis, but did you know it also contains a museum that depicts the history of windmills? (Wikitravel.org)
Travel Tip: Language barriers
There are several ways to cope with travel in countries where English is not spoken:
- Just smile a lot and use gestures. It is amazing how far this can take you; many people are extremely tolerant.
- Try simple English: Keep sentences short. Use the present tense. Use single words and hand gestures to convey meaning.
- Try any other languages you speak. Older Chinese often speak Russian, some Turks and Arabs speak good French or German, and so on.
- Learn some of the language. At the very least, know how to say "thank you" and how to find a bathroom.
- Nearly anywhere, if you stay in touristy areas and pay for a good hotel, enough of the staff will speak English to make your trip painless. It may not be as cheap or as interesting as it could be, but it will be easy.
- Nearly anywhere, you can hire an English-speaking guide and translator -- especially if you take care of it beforehand. (Wikitravel)
Talk Like a Local: German
- Guten Morgen (GOO-ten MOR-gen)
- Guten Abend (GOO-ten AH-bent)
- Schönen Abend noch (Shur-nen AH-bent nokh)
Good night (to sleep)
- Gute Nacht (GOO-tuh nakht)
GateHouse News Service