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Greetings fellow travelers and welcome to this week’s Carnival of Cities. I’m happy to be your host as we jet around the world following tales of tapioca, tumbling and taxidermy. Intrigued? Read on . . .

New York City, NY, USA: Sascha Zuger from Travel Savvy Mom scoops a great hotel package, describes her run-in with Sesame Street’s Gordon and highlights the Kids’ Night on Broadway offer in her post Broadway, Baby!

Rome, Italy: speaking of perfect hotels, Mara at Mother of All Trips has identified a real winner for young families near the Coliseum in her post Mondays Are for Dreaming: Hotel Lancelot.

Naples, Italy: Karen Landes is blogging at WhyGo Italy on the shades of life on display when slicing Naples in two in the post Spaccanapoli: Naples’ Historic Main Street.

Washington, DC, USA: Jon at The DC Traveler gives us a peek at the folks folding themselves in half and risking their lives nightly for our enjoyment when he goes Backstage at Cirque du Soleil KOOZA.

San Francisco, CA, USA: DFernandez takes us along on a twisty insider tour of his favorite tourist spots in The (Crooked) Road Not Taken at You’re So City.

London, UK: Caitlin at Roaming Tales is serving up top tips for London’s East End — not the least of which is where you may spot folk-dancing squirrels selling high-end clothes . . . Check out her post A Stroll through London’s Quirky East End for directions, or simply let your badger on a leash lead the way!

Prescott, AZ, USA: Granny J takes in an impressive number of public scupltures in Prescott’s Heroic Bronzes at Walking Prescott.

Dublin, Ireland: A detail on the airport wall caught the eye of Fin Keegan in the post Bitter in the End.

Dresden, Germany: You’d have to be blind to miss the detail on the tiled wall called the Procession of Princes in my post Saturday Photo Friday #4 here at Less Than a Shoestring.

Bangkok, Thailand: The news about hundreds of air passengers stranded as rebels seize the airport putting your Thai travel plans on hold? Conan Stevens serves up a perspective on the impact of the foreign spender in Is Thailand Safe to Travel in Now?

Shanghai, China: Our benevolent leader Sheila Scarborough gives us the scoop on a bubble tea chain discovered in China which has a branch in — no joke — Albuquerque in the post Stop into China’s rbt for Tea and Juice Drinks at the Family Travellogue.

Mexico City, Mexico: Gilocafe has a video to share from their visit to Teotihuacan Pyramids: Mexico City, Mexico.

Kanyakumari, India: Maneesh of Admirable India shares his photos from two museum visits in the post Trip to Kanyakumari: Chapter 2: Wandering Monk Exhibition, Kanyakumari and Government Museum, Kanyakumari: Part 1.

Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic: Jason Sarracini of Trip Quips gives a quick resort tip for a stay on the island.

That concludes this week’s Carnival — the next Carnival of Cities will be hosted by the friendly folks at UpTake. Submit your (one, non-spammy) blog post about any aspect of ONE city to the next edition before next Tuesday using the carnival submission form. If you like these posts, try browsing the extensive Carnival of Cities archives.

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If you’re new to Less Than a Shoestring, please take some time and have a poke around! I welcome your questions and comments on the site. This blog shows that travel can indeed be both pleasurable and frugal. Because I live in Europe, you’ll find loads of information on European no-budget travel — but in keeping with This Just In’s post and for your ease, I’ve put together below a collection of my U.S. tips and bargains.

Once a month, the Travel on a Shoestring Carnival turns its focus to the Americas. You’ll find lots of great tips from around the blogosphere collected in the following posts:

Every Friday, the blog features a travel freebie. Some timeless classics for U.S. staycationers and backyard travelers:

Not free, but cheap activities include:

For those traveling a bit further afield, take a look at the posts:

If you’ll be driving to your destination, you’ll want to read:

Before flying, from the wild and wooly world of U.S. airline travel:

Changes U.S. travelers and visitors should know about:

See the no-budget traveler take on the New York Times’ “Frugal Traveler” in the posts:

If you like what you see, subscribe to the RSS feed and have the latest no-budget travel tips delivered to you! It takes just a second to set up, ensuring you never miss a single post.

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Carnival of Cities logoWelcome travelers!  I’m happy to be hosting the Carnival of Cities this week.  If you’re a regular reader of this blog, you should appreciate the variety of locations included in this weekly carnival; if you’re a follower of the carnival, welcome to my blog on no-budget travel and feel free to poke around!

Now, without further ado . . .

If planning a weekend trip to Canada, you’ll want to stop by Go Green Travel Green‘s post Vancouver in 2 (Eco-Friendly) Days at Go Green Travel Green.

Heading south to California with Fido? Nancy Brown presents Upscale and Affordable Dog-Friendly Lodging in Mendocino County posted at What a Trip, saying, “Welcome to my new website! Less Than a Shoestring readers will appreciate the budget minded and dog friendly Fort Bragg recommendations, as well as the insider tip on a FREE off leash dog beach in Mendocino County.”

Another California destination — Half Moon Bay, to be exact — is presented by the baglady in Expensive cars are unnecessary for a good time – The Baglady’s 1st Anniversary Trip posted at xynny.

Looking for a cheap hotel in Chicago?  You can’t believe everything you read on the internet says Neil in B.Y.O.F. posted at Your Mileage May Vary, saying, “Some shoestrings are stringier than others…”

Hopping the Atlantic to Europe, I’ve got a post on what to see on a quick layover in Berlin in my post Two Hours in . . . Berlin Hauptbahnhof, Part II here at Less Than a Shoestring.

A train ride eastward brings us to Caitlin Fitzsimmons’ Photo Friday: Jewish Krakow posted at Roaming Tales, saying, “The Jewish quarter in Krakow still persists but it’s a shadow of its pre-World War II self. The Jewish Cemetery is a poignant reminder of what’s lost.”

Down on the Mediterranean, Jason Green presents The other side of Croatia – Pula « Europe a la Carte Blog posted at Europe A La Carte Blog, saying, “The Croatian city of Pula has beautiful beaches, a Roman arena and excellent seafood.”

Flying on to the subcontinent, AdmirableIndia.com presents Lalbagh Botanical Garden, Bangalore: Part 1: Ancient Watch Tower and Organic Cultivation posted at AdmirableIndia.com.

Closing ceremonies this week in Beijing make Wendy’s post on City Icons: Beijing China at Escape From New York the fitting end to this carnival edition! 

Thanks for visiting and submitting!  You can easily get in on the next edition of Carnival of Cities by using the handy-dandy carnival submission form.  See you next week at the newly rebranded Family Travel Logue!

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Welcome to the sixth Travel on a Shoestring Carnival for South America, Africa, and the Middle East. Here you’ll find South American, African, and Middle Eastern (and Antarctic!) travel tips for those without a lot of money to spend.

Photographic inspiration this week thanks to Heather Bays and the kind folks at Intelligent Travel. You can read about Heather’s setup for the “perfect shot” in her hostel at Global Eye: Cordoba, Argentina.

Chris Christensen of the Amateur Traveler interviews a round-the-world cyclist on the most hospitable country that he has visited in (surprise?) Iran by Bike.

Nomadic Matt explains how a frugal lifestyle and travel ethic easily finance an unusual amount of travel in his post How I do it, part 2. Also a good read is his post on Keeping Yourself Motivated to Travel.

Joel Widzer has provocative ideas — such as (no joke) following natural disasters — to save you money on travel in his post Insider’s Guide: Contrarian Travel Tactics at “Where Next?”:The Away.com Travel Blog.

Greg Laden encourages you to neither give nor request travel souvenirs in his post Vicarious Travelers and the Poison in the Gift at Greg Laden’s Blog.

If you buy that, then perhaps a read of Flyaway Cafe‘s Mary Jo Manzanares‘ post Create a Travel Journal on the Go is in order. She writes, “You can save on expensive souvenirs by making your own travel journal as you go.”

Steve James covers the most common amateur packing mistakes in What NOT To Bring Backpacking: 10 Things To Leave At Home, a guest post at nomad4ever.

Last but not least, if company’s coming, lay out fresh towels, scrub the toilet and read Tip Diva‘s post on Top Ten Tips – Being A Courteous Host posted at Tip Diva.

Thanks for reading along. If you’d like to see your post on budget travel in South America, Africa or the Middle East in this carnival, submit using the online form found here. Encourage your favorite regional bloggers to submit posts for next month! Our next carnival will be posted Saturday, when we return to Europe. You can submit your posts through Wednesday for that carnival here.

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To my fellow travelers:

Friday marked the 200th post on Less Than a Shoestring. The blog is just one month shy of her first birthday, and in that same month we should reach 100,000 visitors. Right now, everything seems to be coming up 8s — July saw the climb to over 88,000 readers and 800 comments. In that vein, we’re aiming for big changes, to be unveiled 8/8/08 . . . so stay tuned, and have your air sickness bags at the ready, just in case!

(On a related note, if you are a regular reader, will be traveling soon and plan to blog about it, send me a message with your (pen)name, blog URL, short itinerary including dates, and bio, and I will get back to you with more details.)

Most importantly, thanks to everyone for reading and for what you’ve done to help spread the message that no-budget travel is not about deprivation. Keep linking, recommending, social bookmarking and commenting away! As always, I love hearing from readers, so feel free to contact me personally with concerns, suggestions or ideas; you can find the email address in the “Contact” tab above.

Since my last rundown, Backpackers.com named Less Than a Shoestring a “Travel Blog Top Pick,” PC2Paper honored us with Travel Blog of the Week, and the folks behind the Facebook presence of Hostelling International USA included us in their list of Ten Great Travel Blogs.

Pam of Nerd’s Eye View, blogging about travel at BlogHer, has kindly referred to U.S. to Require Online Registration for Visa-Free Travelers in her post More in the American War on Tourism and Will I EVER Feel Sorry for Any U.S. Airline? in her post Pity Poor Airlines. The first post was also mentioned at New York Traveler.

It’s not too late to enjoy Travel Events in 2008 Tips from the T-List reminded its readers.

Baring My Budget: Malta was singled out in The Roundup at the Digerati Life and Value For Your Life after its appearance in the Festival of Frugality; it also featured in the Carnival of Money Stories #51, the Money Hacker’s Carnival #5, and the Europe Travel Blog Carnival.

Baring My Budget: Madrid and Barcelona was found in the Carnival of Cities, the Carnival of Travel Guide, the Carnival of Europe, and Destinations Carnival #2.

WiseBread’s article “Europe Reborn as a Budget Destination?” linked to three posts in the Baring My Budget series: Hamburg, Venice, and London. Venice was also included in the Carnival of Money Stories and London in the Carnival of Financial Goals.

No-Budget Tips for Venice and Mestre was selected for the Amazing World Blog Carnival and the Carnival of Doing It Differently. London Tips from the Ground was highlighted by the crew at EuroCheapo. More No-Budget Tips for Stockholm and Nyköping made the rounds at the Europe Travel Blog Carnival, the Carnival of Cities, and the Carnival of Tips.

From my visit to the largest travel show in the world came two posts of ITB Impressions: Beer Tourism was the editor’s pick in the Carnival of 20-Something Finances, also appearing in the Carnival of Living Cheaply; Send your Teddy Bear on Vacation was published in the All for Women Blogging Carnival and the Life Lessons of a Military Wife Carnival.

Timeless Friday Freebies are also popular. WiFi in Europe’s Capital Cities was featured at Vagabond Traveller; U.S. State Tourist Information and Highway Maps in the Money Hacks Carnival; City Guide Podcasts at EuroCheapo; U.S. National Parks Passes at the Outdoor Adventure Carnival, Georgia Blog Carnival, and Carnival of Everything Finance; Seattle Wooden Boat Rides at the Festival of Frugality; and U.S. TV Tickets at The Ironic Mullet.

Other blogs have been kind enough to send their readers over to that week’s Travel on a Shoestring Carnival: Thrifty Mommy and Americas #3, Money Smart Life and Americas #4; Tip Diva and Americas #5; Europe String and Europe #3; and the massive SUPERCARNIVAL #1, also seen at New York Traveler, Tip Diva, and Cheapest Destinations.

Posts on the airline everyone loves to hate have been picked up around the blogosphere. WARNING: RyanAir Online Check-in has been discussed at This Just In, Europe Traveler @ Stripes Blog, Student Scrooge and Oz Traveller. Why I Love/Hate RyanAir was spotted at Tight-fisted Miser, EuroCheapo, and the Festival of Frugality. More Trickery: RyanAir Travel Insurance made it into the Carnival of Tips and the Carnival of Food and Travel. Wednesday Transportation Update got a thumbs up for its RyanAir fees coverage from Euro Cheapo.

Some of the blog’s core posts have also seen good traffic. Travel in your Own Backyard was at Small Actions to Change the World Carnival, the Carnival of Living Cheaply, and A Carnival of Environmental Issues. The Art of Being a Gracious Houseguest was featured in the Carnival of Financial Planning, the Life Lessons of a Military Wife Carnival, the Carnival of Family Life, the Mom’s Blogging Carnival, the For Women Blogging Carnival, the Carnival of Tips, the Carnival of Australia Bloggers, the Carnival of Travelers, and the Festival of Frugality, with special mention from Tight-fisted Miser. Budget Eats was included in Plonkee’s 21 Resources for Budget Travel and given a shout out at Vietnam Travel Notes. Reducing Accommodation Costs appeared in the I Want to Change my Family Tree Carnival, Solid Recommendations for Travel Beauty Products in the Bits of Beauty Carnival, Bargaining Tips for Market Shoppers in the Carnival of Tips, and Smart Uses for your Camera (Phone) in the Geek is Sexy Carnival. Random Travel Tips #3 was cited for its usefulness by Euro Cheapo.

Finally, though the post has now expired, Claim your Refund for Foreign Credit Card Transactions was included in the Carnival of Everything Finance and the Carnival of Debt-Free Living.

If you’ve made it this far, you’re a dedicated reader and I thank you!  Have you already added the Less Than a Shoestring feed to your daily reads? With the click of a button, the latest no-budget news, advice and daily blather is delivered immediately via your host of choice! It really is that simple. Use the link above, at the top of the blog, or in the sidebar to subscribe.

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Welcome to the sixth Travel on a Shoestring Carnival for Asia, Oz. Here you’ll find Asian, Australian, New Zealand and Oceania travel tips for those without a lot of money to spend.

Photographic inspiration this week from Nancie McKinnon, another fabulous image courtesy of Intelligent Travel’s Global Eye. You can read more about Nancie’s stay in a South Korean Buddhist temple here.

Intelligent Travel‘s got quite a few recent posts worth a gander:

If you are heading to the Olympics (or just flying into Beijing anytime soon), David Feng of CNReviews has written a great post to familiarize you with your transportation options called Beijing Capital International Airport Express(way) Guide (PEK). His extensive guide to getting around the city by underground avec color map can be found at Beijing Subway Guide: Map, Stations and Colors.

Beijing is the latest city to join the bicycle-rental trend — if you’re not afraid of traffic and thousands of other bicyclists, try Donald Morrison‘s Beijing on Two Wheels, posted at IHT Globespotters Blog.

Also at IHT, Joyce Hor-Chung Lau has just the thing for a sunny Hong Kong day in her post It’s Hong Kong beach season!

If it’s rather Australia you’re headed for, Vera Lang advises saving money and enjoying nature in her post Bushwalking in South Australia posted at Travel Trip Vacation. “South Australia offers amazing diversity and breathtaking beauty in every direction … and it does not come cheaper than walking.”

Onward to India, Anand Giridharadas of the IHT Globespotters Blog presents his advice on How to Behave Like a Local in Mumbai. My favorite tip, especially for business travelers, is his #9:

To save time and whiz through a meeting, specify in advance that coffee-tea service not be done. To extend the meeting for hours, on the other hand, keep asking for tea and coffee at regular intervals. If you really want to create an awkward situation, wait until everyone is about to leave the meeting and then call for tea and coffee and some “snacks,” which usually will mean something fried and time-consuming.

Maneesh at AdmirableIndia.com presents Bangalore to Mysore on Bike: Day 1: Part 2: Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary, Brindavan gardens and Krishnarajasagara or KRS dam.

You’ll find other advice on traveling in Karnataka in J‘s posts on Chikmagalur, Srirangapatna and his Trip to Dharmasthala, Kukke Subrahmanya and Mangalore.

Wrapping up this week, nomad4ever Chris drags his broken motorscooter across an “unspoiled” Indonesian island near Bali in Around Lombok in 4 days – if you are insane enough.

Thanks to everyone for participating. Submit your blog article (or encourage your favorite travel bloggers to submit) to the next edition of Travel on a Shoestring: Asia, Oz using the carnival submission form. Next week this time we travel to South America, Africa, the Middle East, and Antartica. You can still submit your posts to that carnival till Wednesday.

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Welcome to the sixth Travel on a Shoestring Carnival for the Americas. Here you’ll find North American, Central American and Caribbean travel tips for those without a lot of money to spend.

Photographic inspiration this week comes from Ralph Grunewald via Intelligent Travel’s Global Eye feature. You can read the details of his photo from the Milwaukee Art Museum in Wisconsin here.

Kicking us off this week is Alistair Wearmouth at Away.com Family Travel Blog, giving us a rundown of his Top 10 Budget Vacations for Families.

Elizabeth helps you curb your hunger for under $2 in The Cheapest Lunch in Washington, DC posted at Go Green Travel Green.

Stephanie keeps costs down vacationing in the area around Asheville in her post Fun and Frugal in Western North Carolina at Stop the Ride!

If it’s a trip to the Mouse you’re after, Karyn has useful information on visiting Orlando, Florida on the Cheap at All About Orlando. She writes, “With the economy the way it is many visitors planning trips to Orlando are looking for discounts or other ways to save money. Here are some of the best ways to see Orlando and save a few bucks in the process.”

Ashley Thompson of Intelligent Travel gives readers the lowdown on one of the most interesting cities in Kansas in There’s No Place Like Lawrence.

When in Texas, Sheila Scarborough of Perceptive Travel Blog outlines a delightful, free and “funky” museum in Houston in her post Baby, You Can Drive My (Art) Car.

If it’s Northern California you’re headed to, check out Weekend Sherpa‘s regularly updated advice on what’s cheap, free and on.

If NYC is on the agenda, you’ll want to read these sites:

  • Getting a cab from the airport to the city and vice versa just got a lot cheaper with Hitchsters.

Mother of seven Jeana Mitchell shares tips on traveling cheaply with a brood in the post 20 Money Saving Tips For Traveling with a Large Group at Family Hack.

Hilary Green‘s post Best Road Trip Cars at Cars for Girls outlines the average cost of an 800-mile road trip in eight of the season’s newest models.

And if you decide you can’t afford to drive away after all, Tip Diva presents Top Ten Tips – Taking A Staycation posted at Tip Diva, saying, “With gas prices and travel costs rising, many people opt just to stay home on their vacation time – hence, a ‘staycation.’ But being at home, or close to it, can make it seem like less of a break. Here are ways to ignore the fact that you’re home and enjoy your time off.”

If you inherit some money, don’t spend it on airfare! You might just afford your own private island (some are far cheaper than you can imagine). Read more in Neelakantha‘s post 10 Beautiful Private Islands for Sale (That You Could Actually Afford) at International Listings Blog.

Nick presents Honduras wants Sustainable Tourism industry posted at EcoFuss Green News, saying, “Honduras is a cheap Central American destination, and new eco-friendly development could make it an attractive destination.”

Finally, if you’re looking for inspiration to stop resting on your laurels and start experiencing life under your own steam, look no further than Couple Quit Jobs, Sold Possessions To Bicycle Around The World For A Year…Find Adventure And Freedom posted at The Life Less Traveled. “In 2006, James and Sarah Welle sold all of their possessions and left their comfortable jobs at Microsoft to bicycle around the world. During their year-long adventure, the pair encountered interesting people, delicious food, new found athletic prowess and the realization of how close at hand freedom and the choice to shake up your daily life truly are. Read about how they decided to bicycle around the world for a year…and how you can, too!”

Thanks to everyone for participating. Submit your blog article (or encourage your favorite travel bloggers to submit) to the next edition of Travel on a Shoestring: Americas using the carnival submission form. Next week this time we travel to Asia, Australia, New Zealand and Oceania. You can still submit your posts to that carnival till Wednesday.

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