Julia Dimon

Where to be seen in Miami

Strolling along palm-tree lined Ocean Drive, against a backdrop of pastel-coloured Art Deco buildings, I feel like I’m part of a postcard. This is South Beach, a celebrity playground of restaurants, bars, salsa clubs and Miami vices; home to luxury lifestyles, reality-TV tattoo shops and the world...

Tuesday, May 19, 2009, 6:30 AM

Concerts, festivals and tomato fights

With summer vacation quickly approaching, many soon-to-be travellers are weighing their holiday options. While a sun and surf destination may be alluring, consider the following cultural festivals before booking that all-inclusive. Check out this list of cool, quirky festivals taking place around...

Wednesday, May 13, 2009, 5:46 AM

Budget-friendly destinations

These days, many travellers are shying away from spending money on elaborate trips. But travel doesn’t have to be a luxury only the rich can afford — many destinations around the world offer incredibly good value. For the traveller who’s big on adventure but short on cash, here are my top picks for...

Wednesday, May 6, 2009, 4:35 AM

Yoga atop the Canadian Rockies

There’s nothing quite like doing “tree pose” at 9,000 feet. But there I was, balancing in this classic yoga position while taking in a panoramic view of the snow-capped Canadian Rockies.This certainly isn’t your average yoga studio. This is heli-yoga, a tourist activity that combines the meditative...

Wednesday, April 29, 2009, 6:51 AM

A selection of spiritual journeys

From the tops of Machu Picchu, to the rose-red rock of Petra’s canyon-like Siq, to the divinely-inspired churches of northern Ethiopia, there are plenty of places on earth that inspire. If you’re looking for a holiday with a spiritual element, here are a few suggestions:Korean retreatLive like a...

Wednesday, April 22, 2009, 3:54 AM

Feats for the fierce and fearless

If you’re an adrenaline junkie looking for heart-stopping, jaw-dropping thrills and spills, check out these daring activities offered around the world: Zambezi SwingThe Zambezi Swing, in the quaint town of Livingstone, Zambia, offers up an extreme activity similar to bungee jumping. Adventurers are...

Wednesday, April 15, 2009, 6:42 AM

Seeking remedies at the Mercado de Sonora

Double, double, toil and trouble. Where does one go to see fire burn and caldron bubble? One good bet is the Mercado de Sonora, a sprawling outdoor shopping area in the heart of Mexico City that’s the Walmart of the witch world.It’s a maze of alleyways stacked with hundreds of stalls, located on...

Wednesday, April 8, 2009, 3:49 AM

Dancing up a storm

Jamaica is a musical country, an auditory mecca of sound and soul. While this jewel of the Caribbean may be world famous for her Bob Marley beats, a trip there proves Jamaican music isn’t confined to reggae alone.Dancehall music, loosely defined as high-energy rap with a Reggaeton rhythm, is...

Wednesday, April 1, 2009, 2:27 AM

Training with the pros in Thailand

Home to dozens of Thai boxing schools that cater to both local and farang (foreigner), it’s no wonder that Chang Mai is a mecca for Muay Thai.Muay Thai, Thailand’s national sport, combines the principles of boxing and kickboxing, working both the body and the mind. It’s a popular martial art that’s...

Thursday, April 10, 2008, 1:58 AM

Paying to get locked up in Latvia

Physical and psychological torment might not sound like an amusing tourist activity, but here at the Karosta prison, in a creepy little town outside Latvia’s capital city, people pay to be treated like inmates. I find myself in this former military prison (used as recently as 1997) trying to...

Thursday, April 3, 2008, 1:53 AM

Yukon’s cannibalistic cocktail

julia dimon/for metro TorontoJulia Dimon and her Word Travels co-host Robin Esrock, right, pose with the Sourtoe Captain in Dawson City, Yukon. The captain is holding a salt-preserved, severed human toe, which is served up in a shot of whisky. Those who drink it gain entry into the Sourtoe Cocktail...

Wednesday, March 26, 2008, 2:28 AM

Park reminds tourists of the past

Grütas Park in Lithuania is an open-air museumJulia Dimon/For Metro TorontoGrütas Park, an unusual tourist attraction outside the Lithuanian capital, is a collection of Stalin-era statues, bronze busts and communist propaganda.You won’t find Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck or Goofy here. Stalin World, a....

Wednesday, March 19, 2008, 4:09 AM

Learning history at a mall in Dubai

julia dimon/for metro torontoWith more than 40 malls in Dubai, there is only one themed mall dedicated to the 14th-century Arabic traveller Ibn Battuta. Here, you can learn about the historical and scientific achievements of the Islamic world while you shop.With what seems like an endless supply of...

Wednesday, March 12, 2008, 3:31 AM

Respect native peoples’ wishes

julia dimon/for metro torontoThis Mursi woman is holding up warthog tusks, which are typically used for the necklace of a favourite ox and are not traditionally worn by women.One of the best-known tribes in Southern Ethiopia, the Mursi have become a cultural symbol of the Lower Omo Valley. Images...

Wednesday, March 5, 2008, 2:04 AM

Beautifying in Colombia’s famous mud

Volcan Del Totumo boasts medicinal usesJust outside Colombia’s Cartagena, tourists soak up the mud’s medicinal properties at Volcan Del Totumo.Caked in mud, I feel like a swamp monster. Here I am, just 40 minutes outside Cartagena at Volcan Del Totumo, slopping around in gooey grey clay.At first,...

Wednesday, February 27, 2008, 2:19 AM

Perfect blend of trend, tradition

Sharing girl talk with young women in Jordanjulia dimon/for metro torontoIn a popular hangout in Amman, a group of young Jordanian women share cross-cultural girl talk with Julia Dimon.Trolling the streets, looking for cool young Jordanians to interview for my column on happening spots in Jordan I...

Wednesday, February 20, 2008, 2:53 AM

Going to the jungle to eat worms

Delicacy is prized by Warao people of Venezuelajulia dimon/for metro torontoHot and sweaty in the jungles of Venezuela’s Orinoco Delta, Julia Dimon eats a Moriche worm, a squirming local delicacy.I’ve eaten a lot of strange things in my travel career. I’ve sampled boiled dog in Laos, sucked back...

Wednesday, February 13, 2008, 2:06 AM

One of the girls

julia dimon/for metro torontoAbove, Mursi women think our Julia Dimon is a big chicken for not wanting her own lip plate.In a tiny village in southern Ethiopia, somewhere in the Lower Omo Valley’s Mago National Park, a group of Mursi women prepare for a day of visitors. Though they’re cattle...

Wednesday, February 6, 2008, 1:54 AM

Bolivia’s wrestling wonders

Indigenous women become role models via kitsch sportphotos by julia dimon/for metro torontoWrestling Cholitas is a popular form of entertainment that takes place every Sunday outside of La Paz.It’s quite common to see cholitas in the streets of La Paz. They’re easy to identify with their long...

Tuesday, January 29, 2008, 3:33 PM

Behind-the-scenes tales and trials

I blinked and it was over — 13 weeks spent filming on the road, through 12 countries, across six continents. Now that I’m home, traveling around the-world filming Word Travels feels like a surreal experience. I almost have to pinch myself and ask, “Did that whirlwind tour really happen?”During the...

Thursday, January 24, 2008, 12:55 AM