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holiday travel gift ideas

Holiday Gift Ideas for Travelers

Spending the last month out of the country and the fact that it's currently 70 degrees outside has completely screwed up my internal calendar.  I am in complete disbelief that Thanksgiving is only 48 hours away and that Christmas is just around the corner!  Luckily, it's not too late to start my holiday shopping and hopefully there will be some great sales to make it even more … [Read More]

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sunset las penitas nicaragua the girl and globe

Waves, Sunsets, and Turtles in Las Peñitas Nicaragua

Sure, Nicaragua is a country full of friendly people, low prices, and lots to do but there is one problem: it's HOT.  Unless you head into the mountains (which, eventually, I did), there is nothing even remotely comfortable about the weather.  Luckily, the … [Read More]

Mountain View at Bellavista

Bellavista and Back to Quito

This morning, I woke up to the sound of birds sweetly singing in the Bellavista cloud forest.  I had overslept and missed the guided birdwatching in the morning.  Though I was a little disappointed, I knew I needed the sleep before our hike today.  Last night, … [Read More]

Panecillo and the Virgin Mary


I awoke well rested and was pleasantly surprised to find out that I felt great; I was worried I might be affected by altitude sickness.  I dressed and went downstairs, where my host mother had prepared a breakfast of yogurt, rolls, and the freshest, sweetest … [Read More]

Overlooking a town and the Atlas Mountains from my "private" kasbah

How to Avoid Tourist Traps

For the longest time, I thought the best way to have an authentically local experience was to avoid touristy cities.  I've gone out of my way to visit places like Telouet in Morocco or Laguna Lachua in Guatemala and absolutely, I escaped all throngs of … [Read More]