Shovel bum or history buff, if exploring the past is a big part of travel's allure for you, here's how to save while doing it, from hamming it up in the stocks at Colonial Williamsburg to treading (& even digging up) the stones of ancient ruins.

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History front and center as San Juan celebrates its 500th anniversary

DiscoverPuertoRico.com   El Viejo San Juan is the core of one of the Americas' oldest still existing cities, and this year Puerto Rico has been marking the 500th anniversary of its founding in 1521 by Juan Ponce de León (of Florida Fountain of Youth fame). Its strategic location made it the first stop of many merchant and military ships traveling from Spain to the rest of the empire's colonies, so it's packed not just with the requisite cobblestone streets, plazas and charming Spanish colonial…

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Historical sites in the city of Madrid's very first UNESCO World Heritage Site

José Balido   Congratulations are in order! UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization) has just this summer honored Spain's capital city with its first World Heritage Site designation, elevating Madrid to the ranks of destinations with districts or monuments worth preserving for future generations (the larger Madrid community surrounding the capital already had UNESCO sites, including the royal complexes of El Escorial and Aranjuez, which make marvelous day…

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