Elvis Presley Birthplace Honors the King

Elvis Presley birthplace

The Elvis Presley Birthplace in Tupelo, Miss., has a pretty good slogan on its website that reads, in part, “We all know about the mansion called Graceland. We all know how it ended. This is how it began.” As an Elvis fan, long-ago part-time employee at Graceland and full-time Memphis resident, I know about the story of the king of rock ‘n’ roll. I traveled an hour and a half south of Memphis to Tupelo to learn more about how the story began.

Continue reading

Madison Hotel: Memphis Boutique Luxury


Madison Hotel

Sleeping in until 10 only to wake to a beautiful view of the Mississippi River isn’t an everyday experience. Getting to casually enjoy my cup of Keurig coffee with that view before going down for a swim in a historic hotel’s basement lap pool is also a rarity, especially for a family traveler. But on this overnight getaway to the Madison Hotel in Downtown Memphis without our son, it was an accurate picture of my morning. And this one-hour snapshot of the Madison Hotel doesn’t capture the full picture of what makes this property so unique – and relaxing.

Continue reading

30 First Dates: Romance and Travel Collide

30 First Dates

People travel for different reasons. But as for Erin Crawford, she has a list and a deadline to meet. Today marks the launch of my wife’s debut novel, 30 First Dates. The book is a romantic comedy that includes a lot of travel-related scenes and adventures. Some of the scenes are pulled from our previous travel experiences: an apartment in the Latin Quarter in Paris, a B&B in Sonoma, treks up the Eiffel Tower and across the Brooklyn Bridge.

Continue reading

Travel Resolutions for 2015

travel resolutions

Do you have any dream destinations or travel resolutions that have gone unfulfilled? It’s never too late to set travel goals and work on making them happen. I’m not a big believer in “bucket lists,” but I do love the idea of people creating lists of things/experiences/places and actually making them happen. Some people create lists of tasks to accomplish before a certain age, say 35 things before turning 35, for example.

Continue reading

London Experiences: My Do-Over List

London experiences

This list of must-do London experiences is my “do-over list” because I’ve been to London three times through the years and feel I’ve experienced a lot of the highlights of this world-class city. I mean, I proposed to my wife of now 15 years on the banks of the River Thames in London. In sports terms I’d call that my London walk off. The thing is that came on my first day ever in London way back in 1998. Needless to say, I’ve had some great experiences in London since then, many of which I would put on any must-do London experiences list. But I have plenty of what-if moments. Here are a few.

Continue reading

Learning From Travel Mistakes in 2014

travel mistakes

Everyone has their stories to tell — good and bad — when looking back at the year that was. For Trips By Lance, 2014 was a year of many ups and downs, great trips and even better trips. But there were plenty of travel mistakes made, and they all provided learning opportunities for the future. I don’t believe in regrets for lost opportunities or remorse for past actions, so to speak, but I do believe it is possible to learn from travel mistakes in 2014.

Continue reading

Gifts for Family Travelers

gifts for family travelers

It’s Christmas season and that means it’s gift time. And with the big day less than a week away if you’re still looking for ideas for presents, you might be in trouble. Well, unless you’re a guy, or at least a typical guy. If that’s the case, you’ve still got a few days before you even realize it’s Christmas and that you have a significant other and three kids who would appreciate opening a gift on Christmas morning. These gifts for family travelers aren’t really the type one “opens,” per se, but they might be appreciated more than the latest gadget.

Continue reading

Shopping Road Trips to Ikea

Shopping road trip

The proposed Ikea Memphis store (Image Courtesy of Ikea)

Big news happened in my hometown of Memphis, Tenn., when the improbable announcement was made this week that the Swedish-based retailer Ikea will open in the city. I’m not much of a shopper, but as I sit at my Ikea desk next to my Ikea bookshelf with an Ikea lamp lighting my home office, I’m very familiar with making shopping road trips to Ikea.

Continue reading

US Travel Values in 2015

US travel values

Macon, Ga., Third Street Park (Photo Courtesy of Macon-Bibb County Convention and Visitors Bureau)

On the lookout for a good travel value? There are plenty of good deals in travel in the United States, and this list of U.S. travel values in 2015 has plenty of options. Many of these cities are off the radar, while others are near major destinations. The Best Value City index highlighting 50 undiscovered U.S. cities was compiled by trivago.com, and is based on a combination of consumer ratings and average hotel prices. If you’re looking for a value in travel in the U.S. then read on.

Continue reading

Practical Gifts for Guys

The Gift of Stanleyness

This post is sponsored by Stanley Brand, but the enjoyment of these three products and their practical use for me is 100 percent authentic.

Creating a Christmas list is one of my biggest challenges every year. I don’t desire or need much. Travel is a big part of who I am, and I’ve tried asking for airline gift certificates before. I have received cash for travel, and in theory that’s nice. I’m a practical person and practical gifts are enjoyed the most. And as a frequent road tripper and sometimes outdoors adventurer one of my biggest needs is a reliable travel coffee mug. So when the opportunity to review a Stanley travel coffee mug, along with a couple of other beverage products came up, I jumped at the opportunity to review these practical gifts for guys and road trippers from Stanley.

Continue reading