Majestic natural vistas at Zion National Park are just one of the many surrounding Kanab and Southern Utah. (c) GTH & Nathan DePetris

GTH editors and writers look back at our travels and journeys this past year to reminisce, reflect and choose our top ten destinations and experiences. While it’s true that 2012 was our first year in publication, there was no shortage of great travel adventures. Some our top picks have already been featured on GTH and others will be published soon in the coming months. Here are our top ten, in no particular order:

  • Egypt Nile cruise:  The treasures of ancient Egypt are without equal, and sailing down the majestic Nile river to see ancient wonders, temples, and pyramids is as iconic as it gets. We were fortunate enough to cruise in style aboard Uniworld’s River Tosca, arguably the best ship on the Nile.
  • Spring in Rio De Janeiro and Iguassu Falls: It’s said that Eleanor Roosevelt exclaimed “poor, poor Niagra” on her first sight of Iguassu Falls. We combined this natural wonder of Brazil with its body beautiful beaches in Rio, a wonder all their own, during our stay at Orient Express Hotels for the first South American IGLTA convention.
  • The Great Pyramid at Giza, Egypt, is the last remaining wonder of the ancient world intact. (c) GTH & Nathan DePetris

    Shreveport’s top foodie spots: Serious culinary treats and some of the best food in Shreveport can be found in Louisiana’s other side.

  • Turkish Airlines CIP Lounge, Istanbul: Istanbul airport may not be a destination to most, but with Turkish Airlines lavish CIP Lounge offerings, it should be. See how this oasis of relaxation and culinary temptations scored GTH’s Best Airline Lounge Award 2012.
  • Southern Utah’s Kane County: Whether recreating western film history at a cowboy bbq cookout or visiting breathtaking panoramic vistas at one of a handful of national parks, Southern Utah is best experienced from Kanab.
  • Andean adventure in Peru: After attending the 29th annual Global Convention of the International Gay and Lesbian Travel Association in Brazil, our editors trekked through Peru’s top sights visiting Cuzco, Lima, and Machu Picchu. Peruse our Inca Sampler itinerary for ideal trip ideas.
  • Peruvian weavers sell their goods at the Moray in Peru// (c) GTH & Nathan DePetris

    Baja eco adventure getaway in Loreto: This is unspoiled Baja like it was meant to be: UNESCO World Heritage islands and rich colonial heritage where life marches at a slower pace. The new Villa Del Palmar Loreto resort offers luxurious all-suite accommodations, in harmony with its natural surroundings, built responsibly from the ground up.

  • We left our hearts in San Francisco: Safeguarding our gay history and the touching stories of gays and lesbians who lived in The City, San Francisco’s GLBT History Museum touched our hearts and souls.


(and because 10 just isn’t enough, here are few bonus items)

  • Straight woman goes down: Award-winning travel and adventure writer Stacey Wittig shares her hilarious escapades on a women’s only retreat roaring down white waters of the Grand Canyon…. Keep an eye out for this side-splitting tale of adventure in the first few weeks of the year.
  • Marriott Stellaris Resort, San Juan, Puerto Rico: Celebrating Thanksgiving and the holidays in Puerto Rico’s warm fall climate was divine this year thanks to our home-away-from-home: the Marriott Stellaris Resort and Casino. This hip property has reinvented itself and offers trendy nightlife in its lobby bar and exquisite cuisine at La Vista Latin Grill where culinary creations are whipped up in an elegant yet unpretentious atmosphere.
  • Cyclists cross the Tatara Ohashi Bridge, one of several engineering marvels spanning the length of the Shimanami Kaido bike route. (c) GTH & Nathan DePetris

    Biking Japan’s overseas highway, the Shimanami Kaido: Editor-in-Chief Nathan DePetris had the honor of visiting four of Japan’s prefectures and biking through two of them. The idyllic route passes over several bridges crossing the Seto Inland Sea, a scrolling panoramic feast for the eyes and senses.

Many of the travel experiences and products featured in this article were partially or fully hosted by the destinations or companies that offer those products.  Our opinions, however, are our own, and we were not paid to express any bias for or against any product or destination.