Sunday, August 28th, 2016

Backpacking Southeast Asia vs. Backpacking Central America

You’re ready to take the plunge — you want to start backpacking, possibly long-term, in a cheap part of the world. So, where is it going to be? We already know Europe will eat up too much cash! Southeast Asia and Central America are two of the most popular destinations for backpackers. I’ve traveled extensively in both […]

Five Years Since the Shipwreck That Changed My Life

Every March 28, I’m reminded of the night when the boat went down. Falling asleep on a bench and woke up with a jerk at 2:00 AM, scrambling on the floor before a crew member came in and said, “Everybody, get your lifejackets on.” The night I cried and panicked on the same bench, holding on to a […]

The Ultimate Girls’ Getaway to Koh Lanta, Thailand

“What’s your favorite place?” I asked get that question at least once a day and often several times. It’s not an easy question to answer, as most travelers can attest. Our lists are long and we can’t pick one place above all. …or can we? Yes, it’s true — I actually have a favorite place in […]

How to Arrive in Bangkok

The first time I landed in Bangkok back in 2010, I did everything wrong. I was so excited, I didn’t get myself close to the schedule before I arrived. Even though I was arriving close to midnight, I slept on the final flight there. I gave my guesthouse address written in Thai to my driver, but […]

Sri Lanka From Above: Climbing Sigirya

France has the Eiffel Tower. Egypt has the pyramids. China has the Great Wall. Three different countries, but they have something in common: there is a monument that epitomizes or even defines the country to outsiders. And even though the Eiffel Tower doesn’t represent all of France, it’s one of the first things that come to mind when […]

Colombo: Learning to Love an Unlovable City

Sri Lanka might be full of fascinating places to visit, but Colombo isn’t often listed as one of them. It’s not a city like Phnom Penh and Delhi that gets a lot of flack but redeems itself with its cultural and historical sites. Colombo is the kind of city that people urge you to skip, saying that there’s nothing there. […]

Strolling Through Galle, Sri Lanka

My time in Galle was far too short — but it was more than enough for me to declare it my favorite place in Sri Lanka. Galle is a Dutch colonial town on Sri Lanka’s southwest coast anchored by a World Heritage-listed fort. The architecture gives it a feeling like nowhere else in the country. What […]

Sri Lanka, What Took Me So Long?

If you’re a very longtime reader, you might remember this very early post, which I wrote back in 2010 just before leaving on my six-month trip to Southeast Asia that unexpectedly turned into four years and counting around the world. (What a baby blogger I was back then!) I had been dreaming of visiting Sri […]

The UNESCO Hunt: 72-81

   While it’s been more than a year since I made it my goal to visit 101 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, things slowed way down in Asia and North America over the winter. Don’t get me wrong — there are sites in Asia and North America, but it’s not as heavy a concentration as in Europe, […]

Hong Kong: The Best Experiences

I knew I’d love Hong Kong, but I had no idea I’d be rapturously in love with the city by the end of my time there! Hong Kong is endlessly fascinating — it’s impossible to get bored here. Here are some of my favorite experiences in Hong Kong. Chowing Down on a Hello Hong Kong Food […]