Italy

Venice in a Day

Venice

This was my first trip to Venice and frankly I had low expectations after I told many I was going in June.  I got the “Oh it’s going to be so crowded and hot” comment over and over.  Not fond of crowds, I was apprehensive.  I spent 2.5 days in Venice with my friend Page, and I found myself pleasantly surprised by its rundown charm.  I’m glad I visited the city before it sinks! Continue reading “Venice in a Day”

Slovenia

Top Things to Do In and Around Lake Bled

Top Things to Do In and Around Lake Bled

Lake Bled is Slovenia’s leading mountain resort and deserves at minimum a day trip visit from Ljubljana.  Nature lover and hikers, however, would enjoy at least a three day stay if not longer.  A whole day can be spent just around the area and many side trip excursions are sublime.  If visiting Slovenia, this area should not be missed! Continue reading “Top Things to Do In and Around Lake Bled”

Slovenia

Things to Do In and Around Ljubljana, Slovenia

Things to Do In and Around Ljubljana

Ljubljana, Slovenia’s capital with a population of 270,000, seems smaller than its actual size.  Its central walking zone is compact and nearby the Ljubljanica River that bisects the city.  Many bridges cross the river while cafes line its banks.

We were only in Ljubljana for a half-day, and it definitely deserves a whole one or more.  But we were able to see several of the sights on our short walking tour before we relaxed at a riverside café. Continue reading “Things to Do In and Around Ljubljana, Slovenia”

Croatia

Top Things to Do in Motovun, Croatia

In and Around Motovun

Motovun is an Istrian hill town home to just over 500 locals and dramatically located 1,000 feet above vineyards and forest.  Parking is located atop the steep, twisty road, though to reach Old Town, visitors must take a steep 10-minute walk uphill. Continue reading “Top Things to Do in Motovun, Croatia”

Croatia

Top Things to Do in Bale, Croatia

Bale and the Surrounding Area

Our nine-day tour with Mt. Travel Sobek began this morning at 9am.  We met our wonderful guides, Stasa who speaks five languages and loves to travel and Domen who holds an MA in Ethnology and Cultural anthropology and is also an adventurer.

Our group included two sets of friends (including me and Page), four couples and representative from Mt. Travel Sobek’s California office.  Four of the group were meeting us later due to flight delays and other plans.  As such, nine of us loaded into our two vans with our guides who drove us three hours in the rain past agricultural fields and through mountains to Bale in Istria, Croatia.  Istria, located in the northwest corner of Croatia is known for its olive oil, wine and truffles.  We are looking forward to our hiking and culinary tour! Continue reading “Top Things to Do in Bale, Croatia”

Croatia

36 Hours in Zagreb, Croatia

36 Hours in Zagreb

After a nightmare powder test on my Tailwind supplement which tested positive for an explosive, I finally boarded the plane and eventually made it to Zagreb, Croatia via Munich and an Über ride for 110 Kunas (much cheaper than a taxi) uneventfully.

Zagreb is the capital city of Croatia and is home to one out of every six Croatians with a population of 790,000.  Zagreb is the result of a merger in 1850 of two medieval towns, Gradec and Kaptol as Croatia struggled under control of several foreign powers including Budapest, Vienna, Berlin and Belgrade. Continue reading “36 Hours in Zagreb, Croatia”

Colorado, The Rockies

Top Things to Do in Buena Vista

My tennis peeps and I took a weekend getaway from Denver to Buena Vista.  We mixed up our time between outdoor activities and relaxation.  Here are some top things to do in Buena Vista, Continue reading “Top Things to Do in Buena Vista”

Guatemala

Top Things to Do in Antigua

Where to Stay

During my time in Antigua, I stayed Hotel Mesón del Valle on the South side of town which is a bit quieter.  Hotel Meson del Valle is one of twelves hotels operated by Antigua Hotel Solutions.  I didn’t know this at the time of booking, but think it is good to know if hotels rooms are booked during peak times like Easter. Continue reading “Top Things to Do in Antigua”

Guatemala

World’s Largest Easter Celebration

Antigua’s Easter Celebration

I went to Antigua, Guatemala for a volunteer trip that took place just before Easter.  After learning Antigua holds the largest Easter celebration in the world which commemorates the Passion, the Crucifix and the Resurrection of Jesus, I extended my trip five days in order to see the elaborate carpets and processions.

The festivities come from an Andalusian tradition brought over by the Spanish missionaries in the 16th Century.  While processions take place every Sunday of lent, the majority of the activities take place from Palm Sunday to Easter Sunday during Semana Santa (Holy Week). Continue reading “World’s Largest Easter Celebration”

Guatemala

Building a Bottle School in Los Potrerillos, Guatemala (Day 3)

The Bottle School in Los Potrerillos

Our final day at the school was really long, but wonderful. On the second day, not as many people were there and of the kids who were there the girls were more interested in tying bottles while the boys were more interested in kicking the soccer ball.  Continue reading “Building a Bottle School in Los Potrerillos, Guatemala (Day 3)”