Laura Bly

Want to know how to travel in style, just like the pros? We check in with frequent fliers to find out how often they fly, their favorite destinations and what they never leave home without.

Name: Laura Bly

Occupation:  Travel reporter/blogger/photographer

Hometown: Madison, Wis.

Residence: Washington, DC


Twitter: @laurably 

Facebook: LaurasBly 

Pinterest: Laura Bly (Still figuring it out, though I have repinned several of Johnny Jet’s picks :)

Bio: I started my travel journalism career in the prehistoric Ink Era and was an early digital adapter, launching a syndicated online travel column in 1995. I was a fellow in the Knight Digital Media Center’s Multimedia Reporting and Convergence Workshop at UC-Berkeley, and am a previous winner of SATW’s Lowell Thomas Travel Journalist of the Year award.

How often do you fly: Not often enough!

How many countries have you visited?  About 80

How many continents have you been to:  All seven

Favorite American city:  San Francisco

Favorite international city:  Cape Town

Least favorite country:  None

Favorite World Heritage Site: Main square in Esfahan, Iran

Favorite airline:  The old Midwest Express.

Favorite aircraft type:  The ultralight I took over Victoria Falls

Aisle or window: Window

Favorite airport lounge: I should be so lucky…

Favorite U.S. airport:  Washington Reagan National

Favorite international airport: Paro, Bhutan

Favorite hotel:  Khem Villas, Ranthambhore National Park, India

Favorite cruise line:  Windstar

Favorite island:  Iceland

Favorite fancy restaurant:  For the ambiance and knock-your-socks off view, Sierra Mar at Big Sur’s Post Ranch Inn

Favorite hole in the wall:  Hole in the Wall, a barbecue/fish shack reachable only by boat on Roatan, Honduras.

Favorite food: Lobster rolls, preferably on the water in Maine

Favorite travel movie(s): Out of Africa, The Sheltering Sky, Lost in America

Favorite travel show(s): The Amazing Race

Favorite travel book(s): The God of Small Things, The Royal Road to Romance

Five things you bring on a plane:  Black pashmina, noise-cancelling headphones, inflatable pillow, iPhone and charger

What do you always seem to forget:  Enough pens

Favorite travel iPhone app(s): As an avid iPhoneagrapher and Instagramer, I’m addicted to photo apps that let me transform pedestrian travel snaps into (I like to think so, anyway) art. Current faves: Snapseed, Dynamic Light, Big Lens

Most embarrassing/worst travel moment: Stepping on an algae-covered rock to get a better shot of a kayaker in Ilulissat, Greenland – and promptly falling on my elbow, shattering it like a teacup. The good news: The local hospital was only a few yards away, where I spent a narcotics-laced night watching icebergs march past my window.

What’s your dream destination: The next place I haven’t been.

Favorite travel website(s) – besides, of course!:  Priceline, for the unbeatable deals on name-your-own-price hotels.

Best travel tip: Be curious – and humble.

Johnny Jet

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