Travel Afar (+ a giveaway)

Blizzards, hail storms and bone-chilling temperatures have marked the start of 2013 and while there's plenty to enjoy in Paris at this time of year, the attendant sniffles and coughs quickly put a damper on fun. In times like these we must skew our attention elsewhere - toward planning. Because there's no greater salve for winter doldrums than the promise of a getaway.

In our case, we've got our sights set on a return to Amsterdam to visit friends who, after years of expat life, are steeling themselves for their next adventure; a first trip to Florence; a long weekend in Marseille; a short sojourn in the Dordogne for a wedding; a jaunt around Spain or Portugal (end of July/August - which is better?!); and our long overdue honeymoon in Thailand (potentially) at the tail end of 2013. Sadly, this means there may not be an opportunity for me to return to the States this year but I'm hoping to sneak in a week by autumn.

As exciting as these prospects are, planning them properly - that is, ensuring our itinerary will yield the best possible experience - entails considerable research. Fortunately, AFAR Magazine's integrated online community puts travel tips and recommendations all in one place to facilitate the process. I've become an AFAR ambassador because I've found so much value in the locals and travel writers who have collectively traveled the world and shared their highlights from the road. The magazine itself is equally as rich in storytelling and does a terrific job of sparking wanderlust.

If you aren't familiar with the magazine, now is your chance! I have a year subscription to give away to 1 lucky reader.

//AFAR Magazine Giveaway

To win a year subscription to the print edition of AFAR Magazine, tell me:

1// where you're thinking of going in 2013 (domestic or international)
2// where you would go if money were no object and why

Extra entry:
Follow AFAR on Twitter (@AFARMedia) and leave another comment below telling me you did.

**You have until next Wednesday, February 20th to enter at which point I will select one winner at random (winner must have a U.S. mailing address!)**
[Update]: Congratulations to Katy Bryce who is planning a trip to Baja, Mexico this year! I'll be in touch about your magazine subscriptions. Thanks for playing, everyone!

I can't wait to read which destinations you'll choose!

{Watercolor illustrations courtesy of Jessie Kanelos Weiner for Lost In Cheeseland. Don't miss her feature on Franco File Friday!}

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