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Category Archives: Travel
A sponsored video post.
Some of you may have noticed my enthusiasm and love for all things Japan.
I don’t know what it is – but it’s a country I could keep visiting again and again because it’s so different from my reality here in North America. I was so lucky to visit for the first time in 2013 and then again in 2016. The people are so incredibly kind and as a solo traveler, I always felt safe.
I have covered Tokyo and Kyoto so far, but I am super intrigued about Okinawa – a region with a cluster of 150 islands just south of Japan’s mainland. It’s perfect for a relaxing beach vacation because of Okinawa’s tropical climate, white sandy beaches and crystal blue water. It’s also a great place to go diving, snorkeling, and fishing.
Okinawa Island is also known for having the longest living people in the world. The local diet features handmade soba noodles, fresh seafood, vegetables and rice. It’s a great place to rest, reset and recharge, while immersing yourself in authentic Japanese culture without all the tourist traps.
‘Life, by Okinawa’ is a series of three videos that feature what this beautiful region has to offer and how it can benefit the physical and mental wellbeing for those who visit.
If you’re planning a trip to Japan in the near future, consider tacking on a beach vacation for a relaxing getaway in Okinawa, especially after a whirlwind visit to Tokyo. Flying time from Tokyo is only 3 hours direct.
To learn more visit Be Okinawa online
I know the winter can seem long, even living in Portland. The days can be cloudy, rainy with only small bursts of sun. People say that your first winter here is the hardest and they aren’t kidding. I haven’t had to deal with a full season of winter in almost three years so I’ve been in for a rude awakening.
Paul went crazy buying jeans when we first moved here because he only owned shorts when we moved here. I just finally got caught up and order pants and sweaters to replace my year-round Cali wardrobe of sundresses. I’m definitely craving warmth and sunshine right now to break up all this grey.
If you’re feeling just blegh about the weather, here are a couple of my favourite warm weather getaway ideas that I would suggest to get your summer fix! (more…)
2017 is just around the corner and I’m already planning all the traveling I want to do next year! It’s never too early to start dreaming of your ultimate travel wish list, and I find it easier to look at the whole year at once in a big picture.
Now, I know budget, time, and planning are the biggest travel constraints – so I thought I would put together a few tips to help you plan your best year of travel:
1) Where Do You Want To Go?
Make a list of your top 5 of places you want to go right now, in your lifetime. They could be a mix of big places or small places – just let your dreams run wild and put your goals on paper. It’s good to narrow down your destinations.
2) What Can You Afford?
Can you afford one big blowout trip on your travel wish list? Or would you prefer to hit 2-3 more affordable destinations next year? Set a budget and see how much you can squeeze out of it. Divide the amount you need by 12 and start putting that monthly amount away for your travel fund.
3) Time of Year
Research the best time of year to visit your destination and figure out when the shoulder season is. Summer is usually the busiest, but springtime, before schools let out, can be a more affordable time to travel. Don’t be afraid to call a couple hotels you are considering and ask them when they offer their most affordable rates.
Take some time to research the weather and look at flight prices. Once you’ve decided the best time to visit – request that vacation time off and start planning!
4) Get Pinning
I don’t know about you, but Pinterest is a visual search engine and a great place for me to bookmark anything trip-related. As you work towards your travel goals, don’t be afraid to start a Pinterest board for each destination today and start collecting ideas of sights to see, foods to try and cool hotels to research.
5) Look for Seat Sales
Once you know where you’re going and when – keep an eye out for seat sales and travel deals for your destination. It helps to know far in advance what you’re looking for as seat sales can start as early as 6 months out. Set a price alert with Kayak.com – they have an algorithm, which will predict whether a flight price will get cheaper or more expensive.
6) Maximize Your Credit Card + Start Collecting Points
Are you using a credit card that lets you collect points to use towards flights? Since flying is usually one of the most expensive parts of traveling, I definitely urge you to research a credit card that can help you bring down the cost of your trip.
So what’s on my travel wish list this year?
We just bought a house, so I’m planning on doing more domestic vs. international travel as we deal with closing costs, upgrades and purchasing furniture. I would love to finally visit New Orleans and try all the amazing food in this eclectic city.
I’m planning on visiting Toronto for a month at the end of the summer – just to spend quality time with friends and family. We are also considering a ski trip to Aspen or Telluride, Colorado near the end of the year to get some time up on the mountain.
Looking for the best of both worlds? Dunkin’ Donuts® at Home Bakery Series® coffee has a rich and delicious flavor with bakery-fresh taste that you can enjoy at home. Brew yourself a cup as you contemplate your travel plans! It’s the perfect companion to travel research at home.
Check out Dunkin’ Donuts® at Home new Bakery Series® coffee at your local grocery store and try one of their new six fully baked flavored coffees. Trying a new coffee and planning an adventure in a new city is the perfect way to spend an afternoon
What’s on your travel wish list for 2017? Share your answer with me in the comments!
I travel a lot. So I swear by a handful of travel apps.
There was one year where I was physically away from my apartment for almost 12 weeks – traveling. Whether you’re a travel pro or just someone who takes the occasional trip, you want to make sure you have the BEST time possible.
Whenever I travel, I like to live like a local and avoid anything super touristy. I have a couple apps that I swear by when I’m visiting a new destination. It’s always fun surprising Paul, my friends and my family with a really cool spot. They’re always asking – how did you find this place?
So here are my essential iPhone travel apps that will take your trip from good to great! (more…)
Well, it’s my first fall/winter in Portland, Oregon since we moved here and it was one of the most rainiest Octobers on record! I’m really trying to make the most of the weather and created a little round-up of things to do in Portland when it rains.
I’m also open to suggestions as there are A LOT of rainy days to fill here. If you’re visiting Portland and looking for things to do when it isn’t raining – do make sure to check out my Travel Guide to Portland, Oregon for more trip ideas.
Here are a couple Portland rainy day activities to add to your list: (more…)