When looking for a laptop bag, the search ends in two places – slightly manly or the generic brand everyone buys. If you’re in the market for something a little special, look no further than Orla Kiely’s line for Apple. Continue reading
Sure, there are rain forests, jungles and volcanoes but having been to Costa Rica before, I was craving a relaxing beach-only vacation of sun, surf and activities. Continue reading
I was lucky enough to meet and travel for a month with a very special person while backpacking, Liz (also known as Marge because her often messy hair looks like Marge Simpson – you couldn’t tell that from this photo unfortunately).
Liz inspires me for many reasons, but the reason for this post is her two-year teaching experience in the country of Bhutan, which most people haven’t even heard of let alone move to. A small Himalayan country nestled between Tibet and India, Bhutan is unique to every other country in the world for one main reason – rather than focusing on Gross Domestic Product, they base their country decisions on Gross National Happiness (and they’ve been doing this since the 70′s!). Please watch these two amazing videos to get inspired about the philosophy that surrounds the happiest country in the world. Go to Liz’s blog she kept while living there for more information teachingingbhutan.blogspot.com
From Lima, Bogota is only a 3 hour flight and I couldn’t think of a more perfect last two weeks of a 4 month backpacking adventure (along with my friend Juan, who I met in NY, but is from Bogota). It’s no lie that Colombia has a bad rep, but it has really taken steps forward in the last few years and most backpackers highly recommend going. So I went. Continue reading
If you want one of the most culturally rich experiences ever, go to Lake Titicaca. The secret mission: Stay on Christina’s Floating Island in Uros, called Qhantati. Make a reservation by emailing her daughter Mirabel (email@example.com) or call: 951472355 or 951695121 (must speak Spanish). 165 soles person (as of August 1, 2011) includes roundtrip boat transport with direct pick-up/drop-off from the bus station by Mirabel’s boyfriend Habraham, breakfast lunch and dinner, one overnight stay in a cabin for 2, and activities such as fishing and dressing up in their traditional outfits. Continue reading
After two days in Lima, we’re off to Cusco, the jump-off point to the infamous Machu Picchu. After an easy one hour flight, some sleep and massive amounts of Coco Tea (the local remedy to altitude sickness, but totally illegal to bring back to the states which thank god my brother told me because I was loading them in my suitcase in mass quantities) we explore the beautiful city. Cusco is absolutely gorgeous, located in a valley surrounded by pueblo covered mountains, sun-drenched views, and has a great restaurant, shopping and party scene. Definitely see Plaza de Armas and take a walk up to the San Blas district for lunch to see the narrow steep streets, colonial houses built with walls of Incan stone and numerous art workshops.
I flew from Managua, Nicaragua to Lima, Peru where I have my first visitor, my brother David. We spent two full weeks there and the next few posts outline my recommendations for the trip. When he told me he wanted to meet me, I said “pick a country” and this was his choice, so here we are. Fitting an addition from home into my well-trained backpacker mode would be interesting. I arrive a day before my brother and the freezing temperatures (and gloomy Lima skies) were definitely an adjustment to the sweaty heat and sun of Central America. After 3 months of “roughing it” I decide to treat myself to a thorough wash of all my clothes and my first mani/pedi of the trip (and was somehow convinced of a color “muy fuerte” i.e. latina bright fuchsia). Continue reading