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Leyla Giray
Leyla Giray Alyanak is a former journalist and foreign correspondent who has worked in international development worldwide. Her website, Women on the Road, empowers women to travel independently, as does her recently published ebook, Women on the Road: The essential guide to baby boomer travel. At 43 she made a major decision to reinvent herself and travel the world solo for six months. She was gone more than three years, and found time to get lost in a Mozambican minefield, paddle her way out of a flood in the Philippines, and get stampeded by an elephant cow in Nigeria. Born in Paris and raised in Spain and Canada, she now lives in the French countryside near Geneva and can also be found on Facebook and Twitter.

Entries by Leyla Giray

9 Popular (Mis)Conceptions About Istanbul

(5) Comments | Posted May 22, 2013 | 12:57 PM

You can love it or hate it but Istanbul probably won't leave you indifferent.

It's one of the most visited cities on earth and there are nearly as many opinions about it as there are visitors. It has been called everything: exotic, historic, unsafe (a claim buttressed by the death...

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Should Women Travel Solo?

(43) Comments | Posted February 18, 2013 | 8:58 AM

As a woman who has spent the better part of 40 years traveling solo, I find the story of Sarai Sierra's murder devastating and grieve for her family. But the media outcry that followed it is sensationalist and in some instances shameful.

Sarai, in case you've been off the grid,...

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Can You Be Too Old To Travel?

(32) Comments | Posted January 28, 2013 | 6:00 AM

A 32-year-old friend recently asked me whether he was too old for extended travel, the kind you measure in months rather than days. "Backpacking is for kids, isn't it? I'll blow my career track! I don't think I could handle the hostel thing, groups of strangers and noise and all...

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How Women Can Avoid Holiday Hotel Crime

(1) Comments | Posted December 28, 2012 | 6:00 AM

Safety shouldn't be the first thing we think about when getting ready for the holidays -- but these days we often can't avoid it.

What with hackers compromising door locks and databases and -- as happened to me last week -- wall safes coming off their hinges, how can you...

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10 Reasons 2013 Is The Time To Visit Albania

(12) Comments | Posted December 27, 2012 | 6:00 AM

Isolated for decades under a dictatorship that was harsh even by Communist standards, Albania opened up in the 1990s and has since been hustling to catch up to the rest of Europe. On a recent visit, many locals complained that their country might be catching up too fast. For travelers...

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