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[Congaree National Park, June 2, 2018] As the week of Memorial Day drew to a close and my conference wound down, it was time to head to Augusta, GA for the post-conference adventures I had planned. Augusta is the second-largest metropolitan area in Georgia, but it is overshadowed by Savannah, GA in popularity. You only hear about Augusta once a year in April when it hosts the Masters golf tournament. Therefore, I… Read More

[Orlando, FL – May 29, 2018] From hidden gems to tourist traps in one day – that is the life of a travel blogger. If you read my previous post, you know that I spent a magical morning exploring under-rated Winter Park, FL. Travelers who wish to experience a different side of Central Florida can find a respite from amusement park crowds in this gorgeous community just 20 minutes North of Orlando…. Read More

[Winter Park, FL – May 28/29, 2018] A work conference the week of Memorial Day brought me to Orlando, FL – amusement park capital of the world. The conference started on Tuesday afternoon, May 29th and ended on Friday morning, June 1. This schedule left me some free time before and after to explore. I decided to travel on Monday afternoon to avoid having to take a red-eye (overnight) flight, which meant… Read More

[May 25, 2018] The Kilauea eruption on the Big Island of Hawaii is in its third week. The majority of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is closed, and many people are worried about safety if they go. In this blog post, I will share why I think it’s still safe to go, provide resources for those who need to research on their own, and share my favorite activities on the island. Should You… Read More

[Channels Islands National Park – Anacapa Island, March 29, 2018]¬† The five islands that make up Channel Islands national park sit just off the coast of Ventura, CA. They had been on my list for a long time, but their proximity meant that I prioritized other national parks before them. With a four-day weekend for Easter looming with no solid travel plans, I thought it was the perfect opportunity to explore my… Read More

One of the most useful things I picked up from Rick Steve’s Italy guidebook was how valuable museum passes are. Museum passes are also sometimes known as “city cards”, e.g. the Firenze card for Florence. They give you either free or reduced-price entry at a pre-determined list of museums for a specified amount of time (usually two or three days). The list of museums is extensive and usually includes all the must-sees,… Read More

If you came here from my post on 3 reasons to use a guidebook, thanks for reading! And if you just got here and are wondering why you should even use a guidebook in the first place, read this first. I am somewhat of a guidebook novice myself, having started using them only in the past couple of years. I hope to expand this section with future trips. I’ll go over how… Read More

I just finished planning an 8-day national park excursion in Washington state in July. Planning trips is not everyone’s favorite activity, but I love it. I like learning about my destination and figuring out what I want to see and how to organize it. I guess it soothes my type A tendencies. You might be surprised to learn that in this information age, I find guidebooks an amazing resource. But I didn’t… Read More

[Miami, FL, Sat, Dec 30, 2017] No longer a hidden gem, Vizcaya Museum and Gardens is still a good place to go if you’d like escape the hustle and bustle (and seemingly endless construction zones) of Miami. Vizcaya is the former winter residence of industrialist James Deering. It was built between 1914 and 1922 and was inspired by 18th-century Italian villas. The garden on the south side is also European-inspired. Deering passed… Read More

[Biscayne National Park, FL, Dec 29, 2017] Although the Everglades get all the glory, Florida actually has two other national parks – Dry Tortugas, which I wrote about earlier, and Biscayne National Park. Visiting Biscayne can be a little difficult because 95% of the park is on water.¬†This means that the best way to experience it is on a boat. Map courtesy of the National Park Service Biscayne National Park is just… Read More