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Overnight in Montréal: A Travel Friend Meet-Up

Overnight in Montréal: A Travel Friend Meet-Up

When friends invite you to travel across the border for a one night adventure—you take it! My friends Chelsea and Dayle headed to Montréal, CA last summer for a friend’s wedding. They offered to bring me along for an adventure of my own.

I couldn't pass up the chance! I decided to meet up with an old friend whom I met in my travels. It was an opportunity to catch up with her and see more of Montréal after visiting in summer 2017.

11 Things To Do In Cape Town, South Africa

11 Things To Do In Cape Town, South Africa

Cape Town is the oldest city in South Africa. There is a ton of history and culture to explore and lots of adventures that will give you some epic coastal city views.

In this post, I share 11 highlights or things I experienced in Cape Town and the nearby areas. Perhaps this will inspire you to visit or revisit to see and do some of the things I did!

 Exploring Windhoek and Partying With Queer Namibians

Exploring Windhoek and Partying With Queer Namibians

Who knew Namibia had a queer scene? When I planned my trip to Namibia, I never expected to meet Namibian queer folk—and party with them! But that's exactly what happened through my couchsurf host in Windhoek, Namibia's capital city.

I stayed with Naville, a friend of a friend in the couchsurf community, while in Windhoek. Naville lives close to the city center. So it was super easy to access and explore shops, restaurants, sights, and bars from his place!

In this post, I share everything I squeezed into 1 full day and night in Windhoek. This included ethically shopping African souvenirs from local tribes and learning about local LGBT rights over ciders at a bar.

Despite limited time, I ended up making some great memories and even greater friends!Who knew Namibia had a queer scene? When I planned my trip to Namibia, I never expected to meet Namibian queer folk—and party with them! But that's exactly what happened through my couchsurf host in Windhoek, Namibia's capital city.

I stayed with Naville, a friend of a friend in the couchsurf community, while in Windhoek. Naville lives close to the city center. So it was super easy to access and explore shops, restaurants, sights, and bars from his place!

In this post, I share everything I squeezed into 1 full day and night in Windhoek. This included ethically shopping African souvenirs from local tribes and learning about local LGBT rights over ciders at a bar.

Despite limited time, I ended up making some great memories and even greater friends!

Cemetery Tour in New Orleans: The City of the Dead

Cemetery Tour in New Orleans: The City of the Dead

The summer is officially over, the leaves are starting to fall, and all my favorite kitschy Halloween stuff is showing up in stores. This is, hands down, my favorite time of year to be in the United States.

In New Orleans this past summer, I went on a free cemetery tour and a free ghost tour where I learned historical and present day tales of the dead and other spooky happenings. What I learned easily qualifies New Orleans as one of the creepiest cities in the country!

With October only a few days away, I am excited to finally share the chilling history of New Orleans in two installments. In this post, I share what I learned from my tour of the city's oldest cemetery.

10 Must Do's in New York City for First-Time Visitors

10 Must Do's in New York City for First-Time Visitors

I'm taking a break this week from my New Orleans posts to share a bit about my home city!

While Jono was visiting me for 5 weeks this past summer, I took him on a tour of New York City. Although we did not get to do everything we wanted to, what we did do represents a really good outline of "must-do's" for first-time visitors to the Big Apple.

Lists like these have been done before. But what mine includes is a lot of insider tips you won't get elsewhere.

I discuss some of the most typical experiences you should try to have while in New York with tidbits on the best way to do it. These are experiences only a life-long New Yorker comes to know how to navigate—but now you'll know it, too!

Why July is the Worst Time to Visit New Orleans

Why July is the Worst Time to Visit New Orleans

I think I picked the worst month to visit New Orleans: The month of July.

When I booked my trip there, I did not realize that July is when many iconic experiences of the Crescent City completely stop for the month. Crawfish season is over, second line parades do not pick up again until August, and many more activities cannot be fully enjoyed as a result of the heat and excessive rain.

Despite these downfalls, I still had an awesome time in NOLA.

12 Foods You Must Try in New Orleans

12 Foods You Must Try in New Orleans

At the end of 5 days in New Orleans, I felt like I had gained 100 lbs because of all of the eating we did. I regret nothing!

New Orleans is considered Americas "food city." There is literally something for everyone including some serious cultural eating you cannot get anywhere else. Yes, I'm talking about the Crescent City's famous Cajun and Creole influences.

In this post, I give a short review of all the traditional foods you cannot miss and the best places to order them. You'll also learn about the current BBQ craze and up-and-coming Vietnamese trend. Catch them both before they go out of style!

The Brassy Jazz Sounds of New Orleans

The Brassy Jazz Sounds of New Orleans

The music culture is one of the main reasons I decided to take Jono to New Orleans this summer.

Trumpets, tubas, and trombones lead the culture of this Louisiana town. It's where parades of brass instruments blare down the streets at the start of a new day and jazz processions commonly mark the end of a life.

From a famous, 20-year old brass band recognized by the Grammy's to simple street performing artists, I saw the Crescent City bring strutting jazz, indie funk, hip-hop attitude and old school swing together under one melodic genre that is uniquely New Orleans.

5 Neighborhoods of New Orleans: View From the Streets

5 Neighborhoods of New Orleans: View From the Streets

This is an introduction to New Orleans from the perspective I saw it: From the streets!

Aptly named the Big Easy, I comfortably explored the majority of downtown New Orleans by foot and street car last month. Jono and I were staying in an Airbnb that put us right at the cross section of several different neighborhoods within walking distance of the famous and lively French Quarter district.

Historic black culture, hurricane damage, enormous mansions, blaring brass instruments, drunken tourists and beignets—each of these characteristics define at least one of five neighborhoods in New Orleans.

Snapshots From My Trip to New Orleans and the Florida Keys

Snapshots From My Trip to New Orleans and the Florida Keys

This is going to be a quick post. I've run out of time to write something more extensive this week because I just returned from my trip to New Orleans and the Florida Keys!

I had an awesome time exploring these two parts of the USA with Jono who has been visiting me from New Zealand this summer. We spent 5 nights in New Orleans and 7 nights in Southern Florida. These places were vastly different from each other and incredible in their own separate ways.

Instead of going into a deep post this week, I've decided to share with you a few of my favorite photos from these two places. I think these photos best capture both locations in their individual glory.

The Parthenon: A Slice of Ancient Greece in Nashville, Tennessee

The Parthenon: A Slice of Ancient Greece in Nashville, Tennessee

The USA continues to surprise me with its natural beauty, innovative architecture, and multiculturalism. The Parthenon and its surrounding park in Nashville, Tennessee are perfect examples of all three of these.

The Parthenon is a replica of ancient Greek ruins still found in Athens today.

But you don't have to fly all the way across the Atlantic to see what remains of it! Head to Music City in the USA and make a detour to Centennial Park to find a replica of the construction as it would have appeared over 2400 years ago.

9 Must-Do's for Music Lovers Visiting Nashville, Tennessee

9 Must-Do's for Music Lovers Visiting Nashville, Tennessee

Nashville is "Music City" for more reasons than its famous country roots. I mistakenly assumed country music was all Nashville had to offer when, in fact, Nashville has historically been and still is the city of a diversity of musical tastes.

In this post, I describe a variety of musical options available for exploration when visiting Nashville, Tennessee including several I had the chance to check out with my friends.

From hipster jams and punk rock to honky tonks and symphonies—these are the must-do's for music-loving tourists.

3 Surprisingly Awesome Things About Nashville

3 Surprisingly Awesome Things About Nashville

I went to Nashville in late April for my friend Dasha's 30th birthday! There was 7 of us altogether and we had a stellar time exploring this southern city and the surrounding area.

But before I dive into our adventures in great detail, I want to share with you what I found most unexpected about Nashville. Nashville is known for a lot of things. Its excellent live music, its delectable food, and its ancient Greek architecture are a few of its most prominent attractions.

What I didn't expect was a dance party on a street corner, architecture to rival other cities, and a stereotypical country theme that is unafraid to laugh at itself.

Why Ubud Was Not for This Solo Traveler

Why Ubud Was Not for This Solo Traveler

Deviating the norm is all about remaining true to your authentic self. This means constantly looking within to identify which path or direction you'd like to take on your journey. Solo travel is the best kind of travel for becoming an expert at tuning into your own needs and desires. When you allow those innermost needs and wants to lead you, you evade the guidance of some prescribed norm or the expectations of others.

As a solo traveler, I feel out a new place by looking within and deciding on my own time when it's right to move on to a new destination. I quickly felt out of place when I arrived in Ubud. I wasn't connecting to it in the way I had thought I would—and that's okay! Not every place we go will be a good fit. I came to appreciate many aspects of Ubud during my stay. However, there were two prominent features that were missing for me: a body of water and mountains. I realized these features are truly the bread and butter to my happiness as a solo traveler. Now was the time to embrace it.

How to see Singapore on a layover (Part 1 of 2): The airport to the city

How to see Singapore on a layover (Part 1 of 2): The airport to the city

Singapore is a city state and Southeast Asian island country next to Malaysia. And it’s small. At only 278 square miles (719 sq km), Singapore is an easy city to see during a long layover between flights. I flew into Singapore Changi airport at about 6AM from Auckland, New Zealand. My next flight was not until 9PM. This was more than enough time to see a bit of Singapore city.

The only problem was I had not done any research before my arrival! Was there public transportation? Could I leave my baggage at the airport? Where in the city should I go first? Find out how I got around and where I ended up in the first part of this post!

The perfect date on a budget in Sydney

The perfect date on a budget in Sydney

The first stop on my road trip from Melbourne to Cairns was Sydney. I had half a day to spare and was able to enjoy a few of the city's highlights without a dollar spent. Roojin, a Canadian girl I had met at a couchsurf meetup in Berlin, was my tour guide for the day. We decided to hit some of the quintessential parts of Sydney within walking distance of the Harbour.

As we stared in awe at the Opera House architecture, strolled through the royal gardens, and took in the exhibition at the gallery, we realized the day we were having would make a perfect date! So here it is, the perfect plan for a date while visiting Sydney on a budget.