If you want to experience all the eye-widening intellectual havoc of culture shock, with none of the physical discomfort, visit Japan. A trip here delivers plenty of topsy-turvy difference, from the food to the etiquette to the way residents shop and consume—but in an atmosphere that’s hyper-civilized. Everything in Japan is spotlessly clean. The cuisine is exquisite (and not just the sushi; they do everything well). Crime is pretty much unheard of. Personal interactions can be baffling, but the Japanese are ultimately friendly and eager to show you their country. Their culture seems like our own in many ways, but beneath the surface you’ll realize it’s very, very different—in ways that are a joy to discover.
The itinerary here is one we typically use for clients on their first trip to Japan. It includes the main highlights, but it’s also infinitely adaptable, and there are plenty of add-ons not shown here. Use it as an inspiration and foundation for your own trip. As always, our advisors are happy to help you plan your exploration!
As Florida and the Caribbean recover from the one-two punch of Hurricanes Irma and Maria, we want to keep our members up to date on the status of our many hotel partners. The list below represents the latest reports we have received, but information is subject to change. If you have questions about a specific property, please get in touch.
We will keep updating this post as news continues to come in.
Fall: The time of year when we remember that “culture” can mean more than swatting bugs at an outdoor concert or sitting through yet another superhero reboot (although: Wonder Woman? Not bad!). Yes, autumn means art, and our calendars are already filling up with exhibitions, gallery shows and opportunities to glimpse rarely seen masterpieces. Here are a few of the highlights we’re looking forward to in six cultural capitals (and our recommendations of where to stay for each).
Were the Northern Lights jealous of the solar eclipse? After all the hoopla generated by this summer’s celestial syzygy, the aurora borealis made a rare appearance in the contiguous United States earlier this month, showing its stuff in places like New York’s Catskill Mountains, rural Illinois, even as far south as Arkansas. The cause was an abnormally large solar flare, which may not happen again for many years.
Missed it? Fear not—we’ve selected the best places to see the lights around the world (although, as with all natural wonders, aurora sightings are never guaranteed).
Here’s a little secret: The best time of year to travel to Europe is...right now! September (and even early October) still has beautiful weather, but crowds are fewer and prices generally lower. And now that the tourists have gone home from the major destinations, the locals come back out to enjoy festivals, harvests and cultural events. Here are six places to consider a trip this fall:
One of our top recommendation for a quick dose of Vitamin D is always the Riviera Maya: An easy hour or so’s drive from Cancún, which has nonstop flights from just about every major airport, its string of resorts has something to suit every type of traveler. Here’s our rundown of the best options.
Red carpets unfurl, beautiful people appear and lights flash. Film festivals aren’t just celebrity parades and previews for the next big hit, they’re celebrations of culture and beautifully crafted storytelling—and well, they’re also awesome opportunities to hop on a flight and spend time in a new city. But, plan ahead—hotels are booked solid by film studios and celebrity personal assistants far in advance—and you don’t want to get there when the credits are rolling. Here are Skylark’s picks for where to stay for the world’s top film festivals.
When the air gets crisp and the leaves start to turn, point your bow towards Nantucket. Why visit the Little Grey Lady in the fall? The weather on the island during September and October is on the pleasant side of perfect—and because school’s started and the crowds have gone home, the beach is close to being all yours.
Pumpkin-spice lattes. College football. Fall foliage trips—ahh autumn's overrated glories. But hold on there. Before you start grumbling about backed-up Berkshire lanes and overpriced, doily and crumbly scone-stuffed Vermont B&B’s, we've got news: There are plenty of other places to see the kaleidoscopic colors of fall—and those places just happen to have activities beyond peeping at leaves. Here are a few of our favorite autumn alternatives.
September 1 is a day every travel agent has circled on their calendars. That’s because it’s the day deposits are usually due for holiday bookings—and the day that many people change their minds and cancel their plans. That means a whole lot of space opens up tomorrow. This year, why not give yourself an early Christmas gift and book your holiday vacation far in advance. It saves you an enormous amount of money and grief—and you can actually get what you want.