MS. BROWN IN TOWN: When the Travel and Adventure Show sailed into Long Beach last month -- not literally, of course, because loading up all of those booths and people onto various seafaring vessels would not have been advisable -- many planet-trotters made a date to see Samantha Brown, who has been hosting various travel shows for the better part of this millennium. We were fortunate to have a quick chat with the travelista, during which she gave us a few of her social media and find-good-tips suggestions, as well as those Golden State spots she's especially sweet on.
HELLO, PESCADERO: The ocean-close village, which is located just about halfway between Santa Cruz and Half Moon Bay, is a favorite of the travel host. "I really fell in love with it," says Ms. Brown. "It's a small, country town with fantastic access to everything that I think makes California great. New Yorkers will never admit it but we do have California-envy." She laughed and continued. "So Pescadero, you're just a short trip...from Butano State Park, which has redwoods. And then you can go to the Año Nuevo State Park, and right now it is the mating season for elephat seals." It's a pick we love, since few places on the planet can boast easy access to both our world's largest ocean and our tallest trees. Done and done.
ON SOCIAL MEDIA: Ms. Brown has made a name not only on television but on Twitter as well, where she shares suggestions with her several thousand followers. "I know most of your viewers will have a Twitter account, and I think people don't realize they can use it to better their travel experiences, and one way I use it is that I always follow the airline that I'm traveling on... If you're flying on Delta, you just follow Delta." She then described how people who tweet their airline directly during a weather crisis -- say, like the mondo storms of 2011 -- have an excellent shot of getting rebooked in a jiffy. It's good advice; figure that your tweet asking for help will be seen by many, and many in the same situation. "It's not just a tip," she says, "but it is a must now." She also recommends following companies that offer travel deals via Facebook; Ms. Brown's tip is Chase Sapphire, who just ran a Lake Tahoe getaway deal at the Resort at Squaw Creek last week.
And now, because she's always particularly sweet on California, we revisit Sam Brown's top 5 Los Angeles faves from the Travel Channel.