OK, so I really just wanted to type the last day of the year in the subject line, I confess.  Enjoy a round-up of travel tips and goodies in preparation for 2008!

**  Well, you could be ringing in the New Year at the Possum Drop in Clay’s Corner, Brasstown, North Carolina.  Keeping it small-town, there’s good eats even if it’s No Country for Cold Men, or explore the byways of Tennessee’s Appalachia

**  Even fewer currencies in your European wallet;  New Year’s brings the Euro to Malta and Cyprus.

**  On the hunt for new hotels to try? There’s Bangkok’s top 10 quirky hotels, the top 10 hostels in South America, even fabulous overwater bungalows.

**  In the Oldie-but-Goodie Department, the Baedeker Guides are back and Rolf Potts plays Jurassic Tennis in Paris.

**  Experiment with your transport;  Web 2.0 guru Jeremiah Owyang explores a Japanese bullet train on video, or slow down with winter kayaking in the Florida Everglades, or go rad at the Dubai X-Games.

**  Coffee drinkers can get hopped up in Chicago and pub fans can drink like Dickens in London.

**  When I posted about the tiny Middle Eastern country of Bahrain recently, I also mentioned Oman as an alternative to over-hyped Dubai.  Nice to see that a writer from the UK’s Times Online did go chasing shadows in Oman, following the footsteps of explorer Wilfred Thesiger.

**  Finally, a pause in New Orleans. The good news is that the Katrina diaspora helped to spread Cajun cooking across the U.S. (to be correct, it’s really Creole cooking since much of Cajun Country in Louisiana was spared, as my Twitter friend Shawn pointed out.)  As experienced and written by the San Antonio Express-News travel editor, there’s still a lot of work to be done but the rewards of helping are great.

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I'm a writer and speaker specializing in tourism, travel and social media. NHRA drag racing fan. Co-founder of Tourism Currents. U.S. Navy veteran. Caffeinated.