Category Archives: Travel Hacks/ Tips and Stories

“Some roads aren’t meant to be traveled alone”



After reading through a lot of travel sites and talking to other travelers, I’ve heard a lot about the advantages of traveling solo. You build independence, more freedom and so forth. Personally I’ve had a really good friend that I’ve traveled with most of the time and with out him it’s still fun, but it’s just not the same. I’m sure we all know how that is.

It’s fun traveling with others, but my one friend, is the perfect traveling companion. We both are up at the crack of dawn, ready to check out some new town, or go on some new hike, no grumbling about wanting to sleep in or about not liking the food somewhere. We’re both flexible and love adventure even if it’s a new place, or something we wouldn’t normally do. We always look back and have a good laugh about the crazy times, i.e getting lost and accidentally walking down the back alleys in Barcelona in the not so good part of town (thank God he’s 6’5 Croatian), snorkeling and the time we found an octopus that put up a really good fight and almost took the diving knife out of his hand, or the time I ran our borrowed car off a dirt road into a dumpster.. and many more! Bottom line is, there is definitely something to be said for traveling with a good friend as well.

After thinking of all those good times, it really struck a cord with me after I read this memorial to Blue, the dog of the owner of Saddleback leather. For any travelers, or dog owners out there, make sure to check it out.

Now I want to go out and get a dog

Staying fit while traveling

Working out while traveling

— Some great info from Arnold on staying fit while traveling that I found on CNN.

“I walk in and my only rule is to keep moving, for a pump and cardio at the same time. Rest as little as possible. After an hour, you will feel fantastic and your muscles won’t know what hit them.”

“Someone on Reddit asked what it was like for me to train in hotel gyms or other unfamiliar gyms on the road,” Schwarzenegger posted. “The answer is: just like it is for you. There is no waiting to train until you have perfect circumstances. I improvise with whatever is available.

“The point isn’t the machines or the exercises,” he wrote. “The point is that you can create a workout for your goals anywhere. Even if you just use a chair for dips, a table for rows and the floor for pushups.”


Packing light – one bag one world

Packing light

Here’s another great article I recently ran across. Thanks to my Mom for finding it!! This guy has some great info on packing light. Check out the full article at

He mentions that he uses the Black Diamond Sonar Pack, and I looked into it, and really like it. I found a cool review for it here I would say after traveling with my Oakley bag that I love the smaller bags. I would also say one of the key things to look for in any backpack for travel, is a full access zip panel like the one mentioned that gives you access to almost the whole main compartment. Nothing worse then needing something at the bottom of your bag if it’s a top loading only bag.

For the whole packing light movement, make sure to check out  which also has some great resources.

Also here’s a link to a previous post of a youtube video for a guy that uses only one bag for a 6 month trip to Europe

Packing light for women

Great info for packing light for women. I can completely vouch that it’s the best way to go.  Personally I’ve traveled to Europe, starting when I was 21. I still remember the first time when I was a total noob, it was a 2 month trip, and I took two full suitcases and a backpack.  6 years later I now go with one smaller backpack that I can carry everywhere I go without checking any luggage. I can definitely say that not lugging a bunch of bags makes traveling way easier and more fun, plus it opens up more opportunities for spontaneous activities since you never really have to worry about what to do with all the bags.

Travel tip for Italy

Travel tip for Italy. Don’t leave your wallet on the table in front of you! I did that for a second and a gypsy stopped by my table to sell me flowers by stuffing them in my face.. Only for me to realize later that my wallet was gone, never to be seen again. Moral of the story? Dont stop to smell the roses in Italy!

Submitted by : Gypsied


Knowroaming – Knowroaming is supposed to take the guess work and trouble out of traveling with a smartphone and having to deal with roaming charges. I’m sure we have all heard the horror stories of roaming charges such as the $10,000.00 in charges as reported in the WSJ. Well I haven’t tried it yet, but I was thinking about buying an unlocked gold iPhone5s, and I have a feeling that this may be one of the 1st apps I’ll add.

The 3-Minute Guide to Appreciating Ireland

The 3-Minute Guide to Appreciating Ireland

A friend of mine related this incident and with her permission I relate it to you. Molly, I’m withholding her surname, swears that after Ireland she will never again take another bus tour—cheap package deal or not. Molly writes like she talks, without punctuation, stringing together as many thoughts and details as possible before needing to take a breath. She writes: “ My husband Phil and I had never been to Ireland so the offer seemed the perfect opportunity to finally visit the ancestral land of my fathers, and mothers, and the rest of the inauspicious Murphy clan ushered out by the Brits in the 19th century for complaining about starvation and that no one seemed to care. Backs against the water’s edge, British bayonets before them, the Murphys landed in America along with migratory hordes of other micks who there also starved and lived in hovels somewhere in the bowels of lower Manhattan where they did more fighting than working and more writing ditties about the old sod and their plights as exports to be sung in revolution by stubborn stalks who remained to fight on.“ “Our driver and guide, Jimmy Ryan, genial and redfaced, while the wittiest person I’ve ever met was also the most intolerant of any ethnicity other than Irish. We left Dublin at about 6am on a foggy Monday with Jimmy calling out seat numbers for each passenger which in the end made the group from Texas who had announced themselves as “crazy drinking southern Celts” happy to find they were all together in the front seats close to Jimmy but leaving my husband and I and our Italian surname feeling a bit singled out to be seated with an older Jewish couple which Jimmy obviously deemed appropriate since we were all from New York, in his mind a seething bastion of Italian Mafioso and Hebrew bankers all out to get the micks.” “All this, however, was not the crux of my dissatisfaction. That stemmed from incidents which occurred over and over again during the entire trip that seemed only to bother me and oddly our Jewish co-travelers involving abbreviated stops along the way at Irish pubs the single purpose of which seemed to be how much Guinness Jimmy and his favorites could consume in the fifteen minutes we were given amid hails of bawdy laughter and cackling which effectively drowned out local storytellers seated on low stools who did not seem to care whether they were heard or not or whether their pub was merely a pit stop for ‘If this is Tuesday it must be Killarney’ flash tours. “ “That disappointment lingers like sour milk once swallowed then discovered bad. My advice to travelers is this: when going to Ireland take a chance, rent a car and drive the narrow byways on the wrong side of the road which is what you have to do if you are truly interested in the real Ireland told in the context of stale smoke and beer and Jamisons spilled and not yet wiped and yes, even the obnoxious cackling of ancestors who know or care as much about their real roots as their Aunt Nellies. When you do this be sure you sit and listen attentively from dawn to dusk to the endless stream of prose unpunctuated into sound bites by tour buses leaping herky jerky from one Guinness to the next otherwise you’ll never find the Murphys or anyone else you might be seeking not to mention the real soul of Ireland as revealed each day and night in stories told in its pubs.” Thank you Molly for allowing me to publish this.

Submitted by: Saffron Flynn

Trip of the day – Phoksundo Lake

Phoksundo Lake

Phoksundo Lake – The other day I was eating at Sherpa House in Golden CO with my favorite Nepalese girl in the world.. and she pointed out a poster with this place on the wall.  This lake is located in the Shey Phoksundo National Park, in the district of Dolpo which is the largest district in Nepal. Phoksundo Lake is not only beautiful but also happens to be the deepest lake in Nepal and is classified as an oligotrophic lake (click here for the definition of Oligotrophic). If you’re interested in seeing more of the Dolpo area you can check out the movie “Himalaya” over at netflix.

Best travel backpack in the world?

Berghaus Jalan II


Oakley Backpack

What is the best travel backpack in the world in your opinion for traveling? I just read this article talking about the Berghaus Jalan II at . Personally I just came back from a month in Spain where all I used was an old medium sized Oakley bag and it worked pretty good. The main thing I loved about it, is that it doesn’t have a frame so it’s easy to fold up and squish into the overhead compartment in planes.. speaking of that, on this last trip I didn’t have to check my bag once, and it was by far the best experience I’ve had travel wise, not having to wait or wonder if my bag was going to show up in the baggage claim. My friend took a larger bag and did have to check his, so technically I guess I did have to wait, but even he said after watching me just breeze through all the gates and terminals and no waiting that he would go that route next time as well if he could manage to pack light enough.

So if you happen to have a favorite bag or know of a better one that you have your eye on be sure and let me know!