The Grenadines Safer sailing in numbers


As a 10-year veteran of sailing Chesapeake Bay and some other amazing waters around the globe, it’s hard to name a favorite spot. But the Tobago Cays rank right up there.

The Tobago Cays are an area with a 1,400-acre sand-bottom lagoon of crystal clear turquoise water, surrounded by four uninhabited islands and the 2 1/2-mile-long Horseshoe Reef. It’s in the island-chain nation of St. Vincent and the Grenadines in the Eastern Caribbean, midway between St. Vincent and Grenada. The easiest way to visit the cays is to use St. Lucia as a home base. There you’ll find the best charter options, a convenient international airport and a lot of cool things to check out if you want to extend your vacation.

My photographer and I chartered a sailboat through an outfitter that offers a wide range of boats, from small 36-footers (if you just want to have a romantic getaway) to large catamarans (if you want to bring family or friends). It also offers a new flotilla option that gives you the privacy of your own sailboat as well

If pregnant travelers do their research there no need to eclipse a babymoon


Of the many trends invented by the travel industry to pry dollars from our wallets — hello, staycation! — one of the most popular in recent years has been the “babymoon.”

Unlike a honeymoon, which, of course, happens just after the wedding, a babymoon occurs shortly before the big event. The theory is that a little person is about to thwart such previously known luxuries as sleep and travel, so why not treat that mama-to-be to a little getaway while a little getaway can still be had?

Voila — babymoon!

I thought little of the concept until an obstetrician recently told me that he dissuades travel during pregnancy, especially to less-developed countries. (Though an all-inclusive resort in Mexico or the Dominican Republic doesn’t quite count as the Third World, they still can be home to less developed health care.)

That doctor admitted that research does not support his opinion but said most forms of travel just aren’t worth the risk associated with being away from your doctor or being exposed

Travel deals include Christmas in Poland


Here are some of the more interesting deals, websites and other travel tidbits that came across our desk recently:

•MIR Corp.’s Christmas Traditions of Poland is priced from $3,395 per person double occupancy for the Dec. 18-25 small-group tour. Among the highlights: making pirogi with your own chef, experiencing the traditional Christmas Eve vigil and dinner with a local family, meeting artists who make hand-blown Christmas ornaments and taking a torch-lit sleigh ride. 800-424-7289,

•The Preferred Hotel Group is having a Winter Sale that promises savings of up to 30 percent or a free night at more than 100 hotels and resorts in 26 countries. Blackout dates may apply, and stays must be completed by Feb. 11, with the exception of properties in the Americas, which have a date of March 31.

•If you’re interested in exploring the Creole Nature Trail All-American Road in Southwest Louisiana, you can download brochures on wildlife, wildflowers, and fishing and seafood at

•The Royal India package from Indus Travels is priced