Friday, July 31st, 2015

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 […]

The Revelation of Hong Kong

Whenever I travel, I try to fit in. I’m quiet. I observe. I try to speak as much of the local language as I can. I even dress like the locals. I try to fit in seamlessly with the tapestry before me. I love doing this, and having an ethnically ambiguous look is certainly an […]

SOTM Tour: Month Nine of Twelve

I’m writing this post from the sunny town of Jacksonville, Florida, as I reflect on the previous month’s travels. During this month, I found two new cities to love deeply — Hong Kong in New Orleans, I made a very happy return to the US, and I explored some truly interesting places — oh, and had […]

Brunei: Perplexing, Infuriating, Unforgettable

The expat community of Brunei was recently rattled by the sudden deportation of one of their own. Most expats in Brunei either work in the oil industry or are teachers. One could make the argument that oil workers or English teachers are a dime a dozen here. This man was neither. He held arguably the […]

Is it Safe to Travel in Thailand During the Bangkok Protests?

UPDATE (23 May 2014) — As Thailand has declared martial law and a national curfew has been imposed, the situation has escalated from where it was during the protests. For current updates from an on-the-ground source in Bangkok, check this page. Good luck and stay safe. Over the past few months, I’ve been asked whether […]