• Weinachsmarket = German Christmas Market
    DESTINATIONS

    German Christmas Markets

    Last year we visited the Christmas markets in Belgium and the Netherlands. While there, we were told that we needed to visit Germany if we really wanted to see Christmas markets. Well, challenge accepted. This year we traveled to Europe over the holidays and would like to tell you what we learned about German Christmas markets. Timing Each town/city has its own dates and times for its markets. Generally speaking, they all open around the end of November and close around Christmas time. It seems like the majority close on December 23 or 24. Since we were arriving on the 23rd, we had to plan out our schedule to make…

  • Buildings in Bucharest
    DESTINATIONS

    Exploring Bucharest, Romania

    Bucharest (not to be confused with Budapest), Romania, is the bustling capital city of Romania. Once known as the “Paris of the East,” it has known some good times. Sadly, with the U.S.S.R. and a powerful dictator, it has also known some bad times. When the Iron Curtain fell, the good times started to slowly come back. Now is a great time to visit this beautiful city. This post discusses some tips for exploring Bucharest. Exploring Bucharest – Getting There The Henri Coanda International airport, also known as Otapeni or OTP, is a ways out of town. B did a lot of research into how to get to the downtown…

  • Tikal ruins
    DESTINATIONS

    Ancient American Cultures

    B asked me a while ago why I love to travel. I had several reasons: so many beautiful places to see, foods to eat, experiences to have, etc. Among the other reasons, one stood out that I have never really thought about before. I told B that a great benefit of travel is that I get to see the things I learned about in school. We all know that if you actually experience something, it means a lot more to you than if you just read about it. By traveling to a place and seeing it in real life, it is harder to forget about it once you leave. I…

  • DESTINATIONS

    24 hours in Riga, Latvia

    I often leave a place with a wish that I had more time there and an internal promise to return someday. Riga, Latvia is one of those places. We spent just 24 hours there and it was not near enough time. But sadly, 24 hours in Riga, Latvia was all we had before heading to Estonia. If you ever find yourself in the same situation, do not hesitate to make the most of your 24 hours and enjoy the hell out of this European city. Below are my tips for making the most out of 24 hours in Riga, Latvia. Prepare yourself for a ridiculous amount of cuteness We had…

  • Taking in a waterfall
    DESTINATIONS

    Costa Rica Package Deal

    In June of 2011, B and I went on our first international adventure together. For the inaugural journey, we went with a Costa Rica package deal we had found on Travelzoo. These packages are a great way to go if you want a hybrid vacation where some of your itinerary is put together by the pros, but you are free to explore on your own. Read on to learn the details of our particular package, but also to help you know what is possible if you go with a package deal. Tip #1: If you haven’t signed up for the Top 20 email on travelzoo.com, go ahead and take care…

  • Kotor Montenegro Church
    DESTINATIONS

    5 Montenegro Must-Sees

    On a recent visit to the Balkan Peninsula, B and I found ourselves spending one full day in beautiful Montenegro. This country is blessed with sweeping mountains, azure seasides and historic medieval towns. It is simply wonderful. Here are the five Montenegro must-sees that we visited and recommend for anyone lucky enough to travel to this Balkan gem. Five Montenegro Must-Sees Transportation Prior to visiting this less-traveled area of the world, we did some research into transportation options. I’ll give it to you straight: the options weren’t great. Unlike other parts of Europe, public transportation is old and a little sparse. To hit the five places we wanted to go,…

  • Reenactor soldiers at Gettsyburg
    DESTINATIONS

    5 places in DC to visit away from the Mall

    Washington DC has a lot of great attractions. I have visited several times over the last few years and have never run out things to see and do. However, during my last trip to DC, I ventured off the Capitol Mall for a few stops. Here are five places in DC to visit away from the Mall. Pentagon 9-11 Memorial The Pentagon is the largest administrative office in the world. As we took a nighttime Monument tour, our guide told us it has its own police and fire force and two postal zip codes. Seriously big. I’ve driven past the Pentagon before but never went in the gates. I actually…

  • Sunrise at Borobudur.
    DESTINATIONS

    Thirteen Day Itinerary in Bali, Indonesia

    A trip to Bali was just the birthday present S needed to celebrate her big day. Luckily, she invited B and me along to Indonesia and together we explored Bali and threw in a little Java for good measure. This post will discuss our 13-day Bali Itinerary. Day 1: Arrival in Denpasar Airport When we exited the plane after a series of looong flights, we were warmly welcomed to the island of Bali in Indonesia. I say warmly, but I should really say swelteringly, because Bali is H-O-T. We would spend the next 13 days red faced and covered in sweat. We were most excited to visit the town of…

  • DESTINATIONS

    European Christmas 2017 [Travelogue]

    For 2017, we opted to try out a European Christmas instead of our usual celebrations. B and I joined together with four more people to take on The Continent during the holiday season. We’ve discussed the importance of keeping a travel journal, so we wanted to show you an example of what one could look like. The following is my travelogue (admittedly, with some stream of consciousness ramblings) from our 2017 European Christmas vacation. Boise, Idaho  Dad picked up B, M, G and me and drove us to the airport for our Christmas vacation in Europe. We flew first to Seattle, where they were having some sort of problem as planes…

  • Hiking South Mountain Arizona
    DESTINATIONS

    Phoenix, Arizona Weekend Winter Fun

    I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I was heading to Arizona to celebrate my birthday. I love traveling to Arizona during the winter months. Even when the temperatures drop below what the locals prefer (as they did on my trip), they are far preferable to what Idaho has to offer during February and there is so much fun to be had in and around Phoenix. I should probably mention that winter is Phoenix’s busy season. While the rest of the country is hunkered down under snow and cold, snowbirds and tourists are living it up under the Arizona sun. So while winter can be a lovely time to…