DisabledTravelers.com Travel Blog » Accessible Travel /1/blog Interesting information, reviews, and pictures in the world of accessible travel... Tue, 30 Oct 2012 01:47:16 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.3 Welcome to 2012! A Last Look at Disabled Travel News Before the New Year /1/blog/2011/12/30/welcome-to-2012-a-last-look-at-disabled-travel-news-before-the-new-year/ /1/blog/2011/12/30/welcome-to-2012-a-last-look-at-disabled-travel-news-before-the-new-year/#comments Fri, 30 Dec 2011 14:13:15 +0000 /1/blog/?p=1119 Sunset

Photo by: renjithmc (Stock Exchange)

Hello, and thanks for joining us at Disabled Travelers!

By the time you read this, it will be Friday, December 30th: only a tiny ways from the new year.

And what a year it has been! Throughout 2011,

I like to think we made the Disabled Travelers blog more fun and exciting than ever before; it certainly has been a blast to write, all the way through.

So now, as we look forward to a great new year, I hope you have love and optimism in your heart – for your own future and for the future of disabled travel.

After all, we’ve discovered a lot of good news and wonderful progress in our time together.

And here’s a little bit more before we bid adieu to 2011 …

TSA Launches Helpline for Disabled and Special Needs Travelers: Just when you were wondering if the Transportation Security Administration would ever quite come around to the world the rest of us live in, a real breakthrough: TSA is launching a hotline that disabled travelers and their travel companions can use to get direct, immediate, live assistance with their travel concerns, at any time of the day or night. Those who call in advance (72 hours is the recommended timeframe) will be able to obtain checkpoint support from TSA staff at their airport of choice, arranged by the agency. Great work!

Disabled Musicians from South Korea, Taiwan to Hold Joint Concert: A great example of international harmony with an accessible twist: blind singers from Taiwan’s Eden Social Welfare Foundation will join with disabled performers from South Korea’s Beautiful Mind Music Academy in a cooperative event. It will be the first overseas performance for the South Korean institution, which was established to cultivate the skills of young musicians with disabilities. Many of the star performers are blind or have serious developmental disabilities – and the music they make is beautiful. What a story!

DOT Marks 25 Years of Equal Access for Travelers: It’s amazing to imagine it’s only been 25 years – but, yes, the Air Carrier Access Act just turned 25 earlier this month. The Act, as many disabled travelers may be aware, provides for equal access by all passengers on airlines, regardless of disability status. In truth, the government and airline industry have worked together to do some astounding work in this time, developing whole fleets of accessible airplanes with most aircraft expected to conform to even higher standards as the new generation of planes starts to see service. Although things aren’t perfect, the Air Carrier Access Act was a great move – and we hope it will lead to the higher standards in airport terminals and check-in kiosks the Department of Transportation is considering.

I hope you’ve enjoyed your time with Disabled Travelers as much as I have. Cheers!


/1/blog/2011/12/30/welcome-to-2012-a-last-look-at-disabled-travel-news-before-the-new-year/feed/ 0
Disabled Travelers’ “Christmas Eve Eve”: Looking Back on a Great Year /1/blog/2011/12/23/disabled-travelers-christmas-eve-eve-looking-back-on-a-great-year/ /1/blog/2011/12/23/disabled-travelers-christmas-eve-eve-looking-back-on-a-great-year/#comments Fri, 23 Dec 2011 07:05:57 +0000 /1/blog/?p=1116 A huge Christmas tree!

A huge Christmas tree!
Photo by: Christa Richert

Hello and welcome to Disabled Travelers!

If you’ve been a long-time fan of the blog, you know that I usually spend New Year on a little journey: this year will see me in Tampa and Daytona Beach, two of my favorite places.

So, rather than wait ‘til the New Year, I like to take this chance to reflect on the blog and where it’s been over the last twelve months.

A bit ago, we talked about the future of the Disabled Travelers blog, so check that out if you want to get involved in 2012!

For now, here’s where we’ve been …

Some of Our Top Posts from 2011

How to Get Good Travel Advice Online: With the accessible travel community growing fast, I wanted to do a bit more to show my friends on the blog how to hunt up other great disabled travel resources. That was the spirit behind this post, which distills the wisdom of my experience as an intrepid web-crawler seeking out the best in travel. That’s not all, though, as we also chatted a bit about the best forums to get travel advice, putting you on the trail of some great general purpose travel boards, as well as several with a disabled travel twist. Valuable stuff here for you and your travel companions.

Disabled Travelers’ Best Places to Retire: France and Italy: Visit this post and check out the “best places to retire” tag along the side and you’ll find one of our longest-running sets of 2011. Many disabled travelers are reaching that wonderful age when they can leave work behind, and this series was inspired by some real-life questions I got on the topic of retiring abroad. You’ll find our best off-shore picks for retirement, with information on life issues like currency exchange and citizenship — and, of course, facts on the local accessibility standards.

More Good News for Paraplegic Travelers: New “eLegs” Validates Predictions: I love being able to give good news in the accessible travel world, and the eLegs prosthetic is one of the best things to happen in a long time. This experimental technology follows closely on the ReWalk, a similar set of “bionic legs” (or upright walking technology) that may enable wheelchair users to get up and walk. eLegs, a similar device, is designed by Ekso Bionics and go beyond rehabilitation purposes: it’s aimed at consumers. That means we just may see it put to use for travel purposes sometime in the future.

Disabled Travelers Visits China: A sprawling five-part series under the “Accessible Travel in China” tag, these posts aim to demystify the accessible travel secrets of the far east. With a compelling history and an intriguing future, this vast land has a lot to offer. Of course, finding the right disabled hotel or accessible tour operator can be difficult, so we’ve broken down the information in categories for your benefit: tour operators, Beijing, Shanghai, a big resource list, and a summary of all our findings.

/1/blog/2011/12/23/disabled-travelers-christmas-eve-eve-looking-back-on-a-great-year/feed/ 0
Disabled Travelers’ Last Call for Holiday Travel Tips! /1/blog/2011/12/16/disabled-travelers-last-call-for-holiday-travel-tips/ /1/blog/2011/12/16/disabled-travelers-last-call-for-holiday-travel-tips/#comments Fri, 16 Dec 2011 07:05:48 +0000 /1/blog/?p=1107 Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree, New York

Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree, New York
Photo by: David Lat (Stock Exchange)

Welcome back to Disabled Travelers!

As you know, we update every Friday, so our next time seeing you will be on the 23rd — “Christmas Eve eve!”

It’ll be a little late to make travel plans by then, and even folks who are getting ready to go visiting for New Years will be cutting it pretty close.

So here are a few last thoughts, ideas, and tips before you head out to whatever wonders the holidays have in store.


This Year Will be Better Than Last: While we still recommend all of the pointers in our recent holiday travel tips post, there’s just no question that this year will see easier travel conditions than last year. Winter 2010 was full of record blizzards, sudden snow storms, and see-sawing conditions all over the country; by comparison, this year has been pretty simple and straightforward. Be prepared, but also breathe a little sigh of relief.

You Don’t Have to Go Far to Enjoy: Naturally, many folks will be traveling to see family or friends over the holiday. If you’ve been bit by the travel bug, though, remember that you don’t have to go very far for terrific holiday sights. That may seem strange coming from Disabled Travelers, the #1 site for accessible travel news. But bear in mind that fantastic light displays and events are everywhere, even in your neck of the woods.

To find excellent holiday displays near you, visit Christmas Light Finder.

You Can Turn a Local Trip into an Adventure: Even if you’re not going far, you can transform a quick neighborhood trip into something great by looking for new, accessible ways to enjoy the holiday sights. For example, a piece featured in the Lewisville Leader website out of Plano, Texas tells a tale of a different way to see Christmas lights: from above in a private helicopter tour! What a great way to start a new tradition.

Likewise, those who live on the riverside will likely get to enjoy accessible river cruises this year. Just be sure to drop the tour operator a quick note to clarify any mobility issues or assistance that you may need. Getting onto the same page early is the fastest and easiest way to prevent misunderstandings and ensure a smooth, memorable journey.

Weather Can Change Fast, so Watch Out: It might be a little too late to snatch some of the annual holiday deals, but you still have to get where you’re going. Even if you’ve had great luck with a friendly, accessible airline, transportation to and from the airport, and all else that you need, the weather can change fast. In a weird way, the fact that it’s been (relatively!) mild makes me fear the worst. Stick near reliable sources like The Weather Channel for news from your destination. Winter weather systems emerge suddenly!

By the time we meet next, Santa will be packing up his sleigh. Happy holidays once again from Disabled Travelers, and we wish you the very best holiday travel experiences! I look forward to visiting with you again soon.


/1/blog/2011/12/16/disabled-travelers-last-call-for-holiday-travel-tips/feed/ 0
Best Christmas Travel Destinations? The Internet Weighs In /1/blog/2011/12/02/best-christmas-travel-destinations-the-internet-weighs-in/ /1/blog/2011/12/02/best-christmas-travel-destinations-the-internet-weighs-in/#comments Fri, 02 Dec 2011 07:05:20 +0000 /1/blog/?p=1099 Christmas tree

Christmas tree
Photo by: Uros Kotnick (Stock Exchange)

Welcome back to Disabled Travelers! Now that we’ve all had the chance to recover from another delicious Thanksgiving, it’s time to turn attention to the biggest and craziest travel event of the year: Christmas season. Although many folks will have a traditional holiday with family, there are also some great opportunities to go abroad. That leads to a big ol’ dust-up every year over which destinations and deals are best. Disabled Travelers will sort out the hype and give pointers for those bitten by the travel bug this December.

Global Grasshopper has a list of 10 Alternative Christmas Holidays and all of them sound really amazing. Note that this is not a list specific to accessible travel, but after reading it, I noticed that many of the places on Global Grasshopper’s short list have been covered here on Disabled Travelers; so if any of these catch your fancy, use the search function on the side of our blog to find out more. The top destination? Finland, one of Santa’s favorite haunts! The rest includes New York, Edinburgh, Sydney, and other hot spots.

Frommer’s is one of the most trusted names in travel, so even though this holiday travel article is from back in 2010, I just can’t pass it up. There are some selections here I’m not afraid to say I never would have thought of, such as Tunisia and Hanoi. Just a few of them go a bit further afield of accessibility than I’d normally like, but remember that Asia is also home to a growing number of handicapped-friendly tour operators who can help disabled travelers and their travel companions enjoy the ancient and exotic sights.

For tried and trusted travel spots around the U.S., nothing beats this: Top 10 Destinations for Holiday Lights. New York holds the top spot, naturally, but you might be surprised by some of the other high-rankers throughout the States: Newport Beach, CA, Denver, CO, and even good old Chicago, IL share the top five. Interested in Chicago? Don’t forget about our multi-part series over in the archives. In fact, I even spent a New over in New York City that you can read about for some trip planning tips!

As we get closer to the New Year, it gets tricky to avoid complications and get where you need to go. Start thinking ahead now and you can get the edge to make this the smoothest winter travel season yet! Disabled Travelers will be there to help you every stop along the way, so be sure to keep visiting us. We post in all seasons, 52 weeks out of the year, each and every Friday. Hope to see you next week, when we’ll be looking at the latest disabled travel news and showcasing more about the best travel spots and deals.

And remember: if you’ve got a travel tip, send it to me below!

Happy holidays,


/1/blog/2011/12/02/best-christmas-travel-destinations-the-internet-weighs-in/feed/ 0
Disabled Travelers Holiday Travel Tips 2011 /1/blog/2011/11/18/disabled-travelers-holiday-travel-tips-2011/ /1/blog/2011/11/18/disabled-travelers-holiday-travel-tips-2011/#comments Fri, 18 Nov 2011 07:05:28 +0000 /1/blog/?p=1092 East coast of Sardinia in winter

East coast of Sardinia in winter
Photo by: Patrizio Martorana (Stock Exchange)

Hello, fellow disabled travelers, and welcome back to the blog that’s all for you!

In today’s visit, we’re going to review some of the highlights of the wild winter weather series from way back in December, 2010.

If you’ll recall, many places throughout the United States were breaking records with incredible lows, unexpected flurries, and storms that seemed to go on and on.

Things sure look better now, right?

Well, there are still a lot of good tips for disabled travelers and their traveling companions from back in the archive.

So let’s take them out of “cold storage” and do a little review!

Surviving the Holiday Rush: Will you be flying this winter? There are always a couple of challenges when it comes to getting exactly what you want from an airline, no matter what your needs are. Check out this post before you book your flight, and get some ideas on making make sure the skies stay friendly. Tips for picking the right airline, navigating the terminal, and having an enjoyable time once you’re on board.

Wild Winter Weather Tips: Just because there are no major storms out there yet doesn’t mean that a few couldn’t pop up between now and New Years. Winter weather can come out of nowhere, and it wreaks havoc on travel plans like few other things can, so be sure to take a gander at this post if you’re headed to northern climes where snow is frequent. You’ll even get a few pointers on saving travel plans that get disrupted.

Dealing with “Enhanced Screening”: The Transportation Security Administration hasn’t been in the news much lately, which is a relief for disabled travelers and our non-disabled friends alike. But that doesn’t mean that screening has gone away, so if you use a medical device or take medications regularly, browse this post to make things easier. With a bit of prior preparation, you can make the likelihood of issues that much less.

It sure is a relief to know that, so far, this isn’t shaping up to be one of those winters that will go down in the history books. But stay tuned to Disabled Travelers, because we’re doing our best to make this holiday season — and every holiday season — as easy as it can be for our disabled readers. Got a tip or a gripe? Let your fingers do the talking and tell me about it in the comment section below. I love hearing from you!

Wishing you a safe and happy Thanksgiving and beyond,


/1/blog/2011/11/18/disabled-travelers-holiday-travel-tips-2011/feed/ 0
October 2011 Disabled Travel News, Part 2: More on Travel for the Deaf and Visually Impaired /1/blog/2011/10/21/october-2011-disabled-travel-news-part-2-more-on-travel-for-the-deaf-and-visually-impaired/ /1/blog/2011/10/21/october-2011-disabled-travel-news-part-2-more-on-travel-for-the-deaf-and-visually-impaired/#comments Fri, 21 Oct 2011 07:05:26 +0000 /1/blog/?p=1076 Sea lions in the Galapagos.

Sea lions in the Galapagos.
Photo by: hollyrereid (Stock Exchange)

Welcome one and all to the Disabled Travelers blog!

Last week we unveiled some exciting news when it became known Disabled Travelers was mentioned on no less a web destination than the travel section of The Today Show.

Today, we’re continuing our news coverage for the month with some new information and resources on travel for those with visual and hearing impairments.

We have some brand new resources, fresh off the internet and straight to your door – so let’s chat about them.

Adventures in Vision: A moving memoir by a Stanford professor in Feminist Studies who invites us into her world as she “loses sight and finds vision.” The full title of this volume is “Traveling Blind: Adventures in Vision With a Guide Dog by My Side.” While not devoted to travel exclusively, it’s such a gripping account that I wanted to include it as soon as we talked about (and with) blind travelers again. From the website, you can watch or listen to an author interview. As you’d expect, the book is available in accessible formats, which includes accessible PDF, digital audiobook, and Braille. You can listen to audio excerpts on the same page with the accessible version information.

Traveleyes International: Recently featured in the UK’s Guardian according to its front page, Traveleyes is a premier provider of “sensory experience holidays” that cater to the needs of travelers with visual impairments. Their 2011 catalogue includes Italy, China, Malta, Iceland, Turkey, Australia, India, Vietnam, and even a Caribbean cruise. Disabled travelers who choose Traveleyes can expect assistance from beginning to end. The company distinguishes itself as a business with a visually impaired founder, so you can be sure that your needs and expectations are well understood by everyone on the team. Sighted travelers are welcome to join in the fun at a discounted price. Register here.

Deaf Globetrotters: I’ve commented before on how so many deaf travelers seem to really love cruises, and from a tour operator like Deaf Globetrotters, you can enjoy “paradise cruises” to Alaska, Hawaii, the Galapagos Islands (!!!) and many more. But that’s really only the beginning for a tour operator that truly pushes the envelope on the growing world of deaf travel. If you’re interested in visiting Turkey for the upcoming Deaf Olympics in 2013, Deaf Globetrotters is your source for that trip, too! Even if you’re not up for a fantastic deaf-friendly adventure right now, you should still stop by the website for one of the best travel photo galleries I’ve seen on any disabled travel site.

At Disabled Travelers, we strive never to leave anyone out – everyone enjoys a travel adventure. So, I sincerely hope these links will help you bring your travel aspirations to life. Look for more coverage in deaf-friendly and visually impaired travel as we move into what I hope will be a phenomenal 2012 for a blog I love to write. Thanks for visiting and doing your part to make this website special for travelers just like you.


/1/blog/2011/10/21/october-2011-disabled-travel-news-part-2-more-on-travel-for-the-deaf-and-visually-impaired/feed/ 0
From the Mailbag: Disabled Access in Daytona Beach, Florida /1/blog/2011/09/30/from-the-mailbag-disabled-access-in-daytona-beach-florida/ /1/blog/2011/09/30/from-the-mailbag-disabled-access-in-daytona-beach-florida/#comments Fri, 30 Sep 2011 09:44:57 +0000 /1/blog/?p=1064 Daytona Beach

Daytona Beach
Photo by: Roberto V. (Stock Exchange)

Hello and welcome to all our friends out there on the internet, and new wanderers who might be visiting us from Google!

Today’s Disabled Travelers blog will see us jet off to Florida’s “Fun Coast” for one of the biggest tourist draws outside Disney: Daytona Beach.

As many of you already know, I myself am a life-long resident of Florida, and lately I’ve been eyeing the Daytona area as my next home base.

Well, there’s a lot of fun to be had in the Sunshine State, and I’ve covered a lot of it in previous posts; but Daytona is completely new to me, so let’s see what we can find up there!

To my delight, it’s not hard to find a bunch of different access guides, disabled hotel lists and other resources attached to many of the more general Daytona Beach guides you may see out on the web. One of the better ones is Accessible Daytona Beach, operated and edited by self-proclaimed active paraplegic Steve Deal. The site features long pages and full business listings in areas such as transportation, care service and equipment, beach access, disabled hotels, activities, and – yes – Steve’s favorite restaurants. You can’t go wrong with Steve’s combo of exceptional cuisine and accessible venues!

One of the most beloved attractions in Daytona is, of course, the Daytona International Speedway. The official website provides information on accessibility, disabled parking, and transportation assistance at and around the track. Also check out the Track Tours page. Availability for these “all access” and VIP fan tours is limited since they’re so popular, but once you do, you’re sure to have a great time! Don’t forget that the Daytona area is serviced by its own international airport. You can get a look at the terminal map, facilities, and route map from the official site.

With 23 miles of beaches and a hospitality industry that plays host to 8 million visitors every year, there are dozens and dozens of great hotels to choose from around Daytona. This includes disabled hotels at a variety of price points. For a great general selection, try out the Daytona Beach disabled hotel listings from LetsBookHotel.com. This offers up 42 disabled hotel listings with spectacular features like, in many cases, accessible VIP suites, pools, and much, much more. These are definitely world class accommodations, and there are plenty to choose from to match your specific needs.

Daytona is looking like a truly welcoming place. Who can resist a beachside extravaganza of great activities that also has ample accessible features? That’s all for our first look, but I hope to poke deeper into this intriguing little haven sometime in the next few weeks. In the meantime, don’t hesitate to share your favorite disabled travel finds, tips, or questions with me by leaving a comment below. See you next Friday!


/1/blog/2011/09/30/from-the-mailbag-disabled-access-in-daytona-beach-florida/feed/ 1
Disabled Travelers’ Best Forums to Get Travel Advice /1/blog/2011/09/23/disabled-travelers-best-forums-to-get-travel-advice/ /1/blog/2011/09/23/disabled-travelers-best-forums-to-get-travel-advice/#comments Fri, 23 Sep 2011 07:05:45 +0000 /1/blog/?p=1060 Beautiful and accessible! Who could ask for more?

Beautiful and accessible! Who could ask for more?
Photo by: Robert Linder (Stock Exchange)

Howdy, travelers!

Last week on the Disabled Travelers blog, we talked about some good guidelines for getting the very best travel views and information when you check out an internet forum.

Now, we’ll be looking at some of the best discussion boards for disabled travelers to visit for all your travel needs.

There are great travel communities all around the Web, of course, but these stand out as credible, friendly, and super-valuable for the kind of meticulous trip planning so many disabled travelers are experts in.

Have a favorite forum not listed here? Leave me a comment and let us know about it!

TripAdvisor: TripAdvisor is a review site for hotels (including disabled hotels), vacation rentals, and flights. Yes, they are selling something; ad space and affiliate agreements drive the site. On the other hand, it is one of the biggest travel sites in the world – if not the biggest – and the destination-based forums are perfect for getting all the answers you need from folks that have been where you’re headed. There’s even a Traveling With Disabilities forum where you can find some real gems, including a user-generated Accessibility Checklist for Hotel Accommodations.

Cruise Critic: Disabled travelers love cruises, and why not? It’s like floating on a luxury hotel on the water, and there are great solo and group activities; not to mention terrific shore excursions, fun events and shows, and much more. But to get the most out of your voyage, you have to have accessible cruise features. Many cruise lines have a stellar reputation for service to disabled travelers, but not all; and what better way to know before you go but to head to Cruise Critic? The site is well aware of the disabled traveler community, with many reviews that pertain to mobility, sightedness, and other issues; and there’s a Disabled Cruise Travel board, too.

Apparelyzed: Apparelyzed is a site for spinal cord injury survivors, and it’s become known around the Disabled Travelers blog for being the source of some of the best travelogues out there on the web, including great previews of accessible attractions and disabled hotels. Of our selections today, it’s the only one that focuses exclusively on disabled folks and their carers. Don’t be wary, though; anyone respectful of the community is welcome in the Apparelyzed forums, and for our purposes? You’ll be wanting to check out the Travel Tips & Wheelchair Accessible Holiday Destinations forum.

Now, that’s not all of the great forums out there – I’m sure there’s many, many more. But I think you’ll find even hardcore travel buffs can spend weeks shooting the breeze at these three sites and always find something new to learn. If you’re planning a trip, head on over to each one and get to know some folks. You’ll be surprised what you find out, and how much better a great trip can be when you plan ahead and make the most of it.

That’s it for this week, but pop by next Friday for more Disabled Travelers! Cheers!


/1/blog/2011/09/23/disabled-travelers-best-forums-to-get-travel-advice/feed/ 0
Disabled Travelers in the Middle East: Wheelchair Accessible Dubai /1/blog/2011/09/02/disabled-travelers-in-the-middle-east-wheelchair-accessible-dubai/ /1/blog/2011/09/02/disabled-travelers-in-the-middle-east-wheelchair-accessible-dubai/#comments Fri, 02 Sep 2011 07:05:31 +0000 /1/blog/?p=1046 Sunset in Dubai

Sunset in Dubai
Photo by: Sususmu Suda (Stock Exchange

Welcome back to Disabled Travelers!

As promised, today we’ll be taking a closer look at wheelchair travel in Dubai, one of the biggest tourist capitals in the entire Middle East.

If you were here last time, you saw how we got the ball rolling with a Dubai travelogue from Apparelyzed that turned out to be a great introduction to the city.

Now we build on the fun with a little more information on disabled hotels, accessible attractions, and other points of interest for disabled travelers and their traveling companions.

One of the first things to know about Dubai is that it goes out of its way to greet international guests. Dubai International Airport has a stellar reputation for world class service and even has two luxury hotel locations on site. There is a huge amount of information on the website, all available in English, and the airport is only ten minutes from the city center – a huge difference compared to places like Heathrow and Gatwick! That said, I wasn’t able to find any specific information for disabled travelers on the site. The Map of DIA Terminal 1 omits any mention of accessible toilets or other amenities. Be sure to get in touch with your airline to discuss any assistance you may need.

AbilityTrip’s Accessible Dubai overview sheds some light on DIA (which does, it seem, have accessible bathrooms) and also gives some valuable pointers on the overall situation in the city. Large-sized taxis and taxi-minivans are prevalent, which allow safe storage of wheelchairs during rides. There’s also some insights on offer about disabled hotels, accessible attractions, and wheelchair rental, all provided by real travelers. Looking for more sources for high quality medical supplies? Click to Rolli-Mobil, a German company that operates extensively in Dubai and throughout the UAE.

Hotels are an important part of Dubai’s international image. Although not every hotel is accessible, disabled hotels are very common, and properties work hard to maintain a modern flair that caters to globetrotting guests. Visit Time Out Dubai’s disabled hotel listings and TripAdvisor’s wheelchair accessible Dubai vacation rentals. There are a lot of options, and English is widely spoken in the Dubai hospitality industry, so it’s easier than usual to make an informed decision on the right accommodations for you.

Roll On Travel is a wheelchair-friendly disabled tour operator that focuses on Thailand. No word on whether they’ll be visiting Dubai again soon, but as you can see from their great photos of Dubai from 2008, they’ve been around – and it looks like it was a doozy of a trip! This is a very high resolution gallery, so it might take a while to load, but it is worth it. There are also some photos from one of their signature Thailand trips.

That’s our Dubai coverage for now. Visit next week to see our first look at Spain!


/1/blog/2011/09/02/disabled-travelers-in-the-middle-east-wheelchair-accessible-dubai/feed/ 0
Disabled Travelers’ First Look: Accessible Spain and Dubai in Our Future! /1/blog/2011/08/26/disabled-travelers-first-look-accessible-spain-and-dubai-in-our-future/ /1/blog/2011/08/26/disabled-travelers-first-look-accessible-spain-and-dubai-in-our-future/#comments Fri, 26 Aug 2011 07:05:10 +0000 /1/blog/?p=1042 The Burj al-Arab in Dubai; world’s tallest building

The Burj al-Arab in Dubai; world’s tallest building
Photo by: barunpatro (Stock Exchange)

Welcome back to Disabled Travelers!

Between writing posts, I’m planning another journey that I can’t wait to tell you all about.

Thanks to some unexpected circumstances involving my old college roommates and my continuing quest to finish a master’s degree, I find myself with a need to practice my Arabic; and that means coming up with a trip that can combine business and (accessible) pleasure.

But where to? The deliberations are over, and my traveling companions and I will be heading to Spain and then on to Dubai, in the UAE … never before seen on the Disabled Travelers blog!

Now, this is my first trip to the Middle East (or, in fact, the “anything” East … my plan to drop by Japan was abruptly canceled) so I wasn’t sure what to expect. But Dubai, one of the major city-states of the United Arab Emirates, is probably the best place out there for a starter trip to the region. It welcomes millions of global tourists every year thanks to its welcoming attitude and ultra-modern sights, including man-made islands and the Burj al-Arab, currently the world’s tallest skyscraper. Likewise, the number of disabled hotels and the accessibility situation in general seems to be the best in the Middle East!

Taking a quick look around, I discovered this discussion over at Apparelyzed, the number one community on the internet for maintaining an active lifestyle after spinal cord injury: Wheelchair Accessible Holiday in Dubai. If you scroll down a bit, you’ll actually discover a fairly comprehensive guide to accessible attractions, transportation, and disabled hotels! Most hotels are 100% accessible, as are many of the top attractions. The only major complaint I’ve uncovered so far is the lack of dropped curbs and curb cutaways in some areas. While this is nothing to sneeze at, it seems like the bulk of the news is good, even with an unfinished mass transit system.

Now, this is a really long way to go in just one hop, so my friends and I decided that we would stop off in Spain first. No word yet on whether we’ll be checking out Madrid, Barcelona, or somewhere else completely. But as I figure it out, Disabled Travelers readers will learn along with me. Over the next couple of weeks, I’ll be researching fun destinations all around Spain, and digging deeper into Dubai. Hope you’ll join us again, this time next week and every week, as Disabled Travelers goes the distance in accessible travel around the world! Thanks for reading, and see you again soon!


/1/blog/2011/08/26/disabled-travelers-first-look-accessible-spain-and-dubai-in-our-future/feed/ 0