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Take The Stress Out of Travel & Enjoy Your Next Getaway
Girls Getaway to Rome
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Best Beach Getaways - Daytime TV Show

beach getaways         

Looking for the best beach getaways this summer?  From islands to hidden gems,  The Getaway Girl shares her top picks for great beach destinations. To view, click on image above.   

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Girlfriend Getaway to Vegas

Meredith Garcia submitted these photos of her fabulous Girls Getaway to Vegas. 
She writes: 
"These photos were from my Bachelorette/Birthday weekend in Vegas where nine of us enjoyed a Girls Getaway weekend entitled 'Still Got It.'  We stayed at the Venitian Hotel & slept a mere five hours in three days & hopped from pool parties to nightclubs all weekend.   It was an amazing weekend full of good friends & NO drama (which is sometimes hard with so many girls).  It was exactly what a Girls Getaway Bachelorette Party should be & I am forever grateful for my amazing girlfriends who made it an unforgettable trip."

Win Free Stuff Returns

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It's back!  By popular demand....the Girls Getaway Guide's Win Free Stuff!  That's right, everyone loves to Win Free Stuff, and the Girls Getaway Guide helps ladies win free stuff that will make their next Girlfriend Getaway even better.

This Spring, we have three prizes:
1) Sex and the City Hotspots Tour From On Location Tours
2) A "" Personalized Novel
3) Costa Rican Adventure Excursion

All you have to do to enter to win is visit Girls Getaway Guide website and fill out the form.  Someone is going to win these great may as well be you!

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Take The Stress Out of Travel & Enjoy Your Next Getaway  

Sometimes just thinking about your next vacation is stressful....where to go, when to book, taking care of things at home before you leave.  Almost makes you want to nix the  entire vacation.  Whether your next excursion is a weekend away or a two-week retreat, studies show that 'getting away' helps reduce stress levels and provides you with down time to re-focus and re-energize.  So what are some ways you can avoid stressing out before and during your next trip?

1.  Embrace the Uncertainty. Unplanned things will happen to you while you travel, so it is best to embrace the uncertainty versus worry about it.  You cannot control if your flight will be delayed, you get stuck in traffic, your luggage is lost, or you forget something.  Allowing your mind to be open to uncertainty can actually help you cope.  Plus, sometimes the uncertainty can make things fun....if you let it.

2. Plan Ahead. The best places always book quickly, so make as many reservations in advance as you can for hotel, restaurants, spa, show tickets, cultural attractions and other activities. The more reservations you can make ahead of time, the more organized your trip will be.

3. Pack Smart. You can save yourself a lot of stress by packing appropriately. Check the weather forecast and make a list of all the things you may need to bring with you.  Pack at least the day before you leave, to avoid the stress of being rushed. Packing items that layer is always best, and (for ladies especially) stay within the same color scheme to lessen the amount of items you pack.  Keep things you may need while traveling in your carry-on bag, but pack the rest of your items in your checked luggage to reduce your chances of getting held up at security points.

4. Dress For Comfort. While friends on beachpeople used to dress up for travel, we now know how important it is to dress for comfort when on the go. Be sure you wear (or bring) comfortable shoes. Also, be sure to pack clothes that you can comfortably move in and don't mind wearing all day.  Plan to accessorize in order to dress up an outfit for easy day-to-night fashion modifications.  

5. Take Care Of Your Body.  Get plenty of sleep before and during your trip, take vitamins, and have some stress relievers on hand to decrease your chances of getting sick from the stress of travel and the germs re-circulated in the airplane. Eat small meals throughout the day versus only a few large ones, and drink plenty of water to stay hydrated.  Remember to stretch your legs frequently to keep circulation active.

For more travel tips and ideas, visit Girls Getaway Guide.

Sometimes you need to really getaway to re-assess priorities in life.  I was fortunate enough to do this recently with a 12-day Mother/Daughter Girls Getaway to Italy.  We visited Rome, Florence, Venice, Milan and Como.  Below is Part I of the Italy Girls Getaway series that features our first stop: Roma!     

Girls Getaway to Rome
After a Mother/Daughter joint Girls Getaway to Colorado in 2010, we (my mom and I) started planning our Italy trip with Donna (my mom's college roommate) and her daughter, Katie.  After two years of planning and trying to coordinate schedules, we set the dates for a multi-city tour of Italy.  First stop...Rome.  

colesseumWe landed in Rome around 10 AM and made our way to our hotel, Silva Torlonia, via taxi.  After a quick nap and visit with Donna and Katie, we boarded the metro en route to The Colosseum, which is one of the seven wonders of the world.  Our best investment was a Roma Pass, which is a three-day pass for 20 Euro and is good for unlimited use of buses, trams and the metro.  Plus, it includes free admission to several museums (including The Colosseum) and allows you to get to the front of the line.  Legend has it that as long as the Colosseum stands, Rome will stand; and when Rome falls, so will the world.  So we were thrilled to see the Colosseum standing in all of its glory at 500 feet wide and 161 feet high.  Construction on The Colosseum, which is an enormous amphitheater, was started by Emperor Vespasian and inaugurated by Titus in the year 80 A.D.   It has 80 entrances that would filter its more than 50,000 attendees into the building who were seated according to class.  It even has a VIP section for political and religious dignitaries.  Once inside we were able to see the wooden platform that the gladiators fought on, along with the labyrinth maze that was underneath the platform where they housed tigers, prisoners, and other show participants.

After our Colosseum tour, we took a brief walk up the hill to the Oppio Caffe that overlooks The Colosseum.  We lucked out with a window seat (we would have sat outside but it was lightly raining) and all got the Appetizer Buffet for 10 Euro (all you can eat one time visit to buffet plus one cocktail/wine).  

After, we made our way to the beautiful Trevi treviFountain, which is the largest Baroque fountain in the city (85' high & 65' wide) and most would say the most beautiful in the world.  According to legend, visitors who throw a coin into the fountain are assured they will return to Rome.  An estimated 3,000 Euro are thrown into the fountain each day.  A few blocks away from the fountain, we found the Spanish Steps, which is a monumental staircase (and widest in Europe) of 138 steps built in 1717.  After hiking to the top of the steps, we caught a cab back to our hotel.  

The priority for our second day in Rome was to see the Vatican, which includes St Peter's Basilica, the Vatican Museums and the Sistine Chapel.  A country itself, residence of the Pope and home base for the Catholic Church, the Vatican draws hundreds of thousands of people every year.  First, we visited the Egyptian Museum with rare artifacts from ancient Egypt, egyptincluding a very well-preserved mummy.  There is so much to see in the museums...I could write a book!
Next stop: Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel Ceiling.  In 1508, Pope Julius II commissioned Michelangelo to fresco the 12,000 square feet of the Sistine Chapel's ceiling.  The job took four years, and the artist spent most of that time painting the 343 frescoes on his back on a scaffold.  The various sections of the ceilings represents the Book of Genesis, which depicts the creation of man until the birth of Jesus.  In the center of the room, you will see the famous depiction of God ceilinggiving life to Adam.  Other sections depict Noah Stories, Adam & Eve Stories and The Creation.  After learning of a special exit from the chapel, we made our way to the overwhelming St. Peter's Basilica, which was completed in 1626,  where we stood in awe of the world of Catholicism.  With Renaissance artwork and craftsmanship, we well as the history of a milenia of popes, one cannot spend time in this space without feeling a sense of worship, history and grandeur.  It is a huge building that makes you feel like a dwarf inside.  

We walked through the Piazza San Pietro, the vatican squaresite where the Pope appears every Sunday at 11AM at the window of The Vatican Palace, as well as special commemorations, masses and beautification ceremonies.  It was completed in 1667 after 11 years of work; it can hold 400,000 people and is decorated with more than 140 statues of saints and martyrs.  The Piazza is even more awe-inspiring in person.    

After hours at the Vatican City, we walked to the Pantheon a vast dome constructed to honor all pagan gods and measures 141 feet high by 141 feet wide.  It was the largest ever designed until the 20th century and the best preserved and continually used building of imperial Rome.  It serves as one of the city's important burial places for Raphael, as well as two of Italy's 19-century kings.  After we gazed inside (and above at the top of) the Pantheon, we walked across the plaza to enjoy some gelato al fresco.  We all sat back and wondered if life could get any better....ancient Rome, gelato, some vino and great friends.  Ahhh...
After the gelato, we were ready to walk again.....this limoncellotime our target was the popular Piazza Navona.  On the way, we found a wonderful store with limoncello, pasta, olive oil and more.  Javi was kind enough to treat us to several rounds of limoncello shots, and we hated to leave the store empty handed, so we bought some limoncello.  Located at the heart of the historic center, Piazza Navona is considered by many to be the City's most glorious piazza (plaza) that showcases the baroque age at its best.  Inside the piazza, you will find tons of artists, beautiful fountains, street performers and visitors enjoying gelato.  Lining the pedestrian-only piazza are gorgeous flowers, cafes, restaurants, churches and boutiques.  

From Piazza Navona, we meandered through boutique-lined, brick streets (and shopped leather stores and streetvintage boutiques) until we arrived at the Tevere River that runs through Rome.  From the river, we walked south on Via Giulia, a popular street lined with regal palaces and still home to Rome's most popular families.  At the end of Via Giulia, we arrived at our friend Ace's "home away from home" as she has been living in Rome for two weeks.  After some limoncello, great conversation, photos from the penthouse balconies and seeing Ace's Go Go Girls, we walked to Palazzo Spada for another incredible Italian meal.  

First stop on day #3 agenda, was to return to Piazza portraitNavona so Leonardo could sketch my portrait.  We had admired his work the day before but did not have time to get the portrait done.  He is an amazing artist, and I was thrilled with the end result.  From the Piazza, we walked a few blocks away (knowing the best food would be off the beaten path) to Bar del Fico.  We were told they only had lasagna as the kitchen was closed. It made our choice very easy, yet we were all thrilled at the Broccoli Lasagna that was some of the best we have ever had.  

Our next destination were the old Roman ruins (Centro fabricstoreArcheological); however, we found some great shopping along the way.  First, I found an incredible pair of Italian boots at Autentic by Simone.  Then, we found Italy's largest fabric store, Fratelli Bassetti Tessuti where Massimo (aka Fred) help us select the perfect fabric for Katie to design and make her very own wedding was so much fun and an experience none of us will ever forget.  We were thrilled we could be a part of that with her.  

After the shopping spree, we finally arrived at Centro Archeological, which was ancient Rome's 'Times Square.'  We were there at the perfect time of day, as the sun was setting we walked in the footsteps of Julius Caesar, Mark Anthony and St. Paul.  This area was the civic core of the city with highlights including the arches of Titus, Constantine and Severus.  Amazing!  
funny faces
After soaking in the statuesque history, we walked to Via del Corso, which is a popular shopping street.  We window shopped our way to a side street where we found a lovely Italian restaurant.  We toasted another wonderful Italian day and took a cab back to our hotel.  As we said goodbye to Roma, we reminisced about our incredible journey back in time to visit the history and wonder of the Roman empire.  Definitely a Girls Getaway like no other.  Next stop: Florence!
Thanks for reading! Wishing you safe travels!    

Casey Wohl, The Getaway Girl® &
Author of the Girls Getaway Guide series