Looking to plan a transformative travel experience of your own? After traveling to more than 30 countries on six continents, I’ve put together resources on planning and packing.
Meaningful travel experiences don’t have to be expensive, and transformative travel often means going it alone, so I’ve also included my specific tips for budget travel and solo travel.
Got a specific place in mind? Check out my trip itineraries below, or visit the Destinations page for more information about other countries and regions.
Excuse me while I gush, but South African wine is to die for! I wish America would figure this out and stock more if it in regular stores. If you’re looking for a classic South African wine to try, the Pinotage (a red) is a great place to start.
There are three main wine regions around Cape Town: Stellensbosch, Paarl, and Franschhoek. Given the nature of wine tasting, it’s probably best to join a wine tour rather than try to drive yourself to full enjoy the experience. I highly recommend the tour company Wine Flies.
We had a fun mixed group of couples, friends, students and solo travelers from the UK, US, Japan and Brazil. By the end of the day the group had become close (admittedly in large part due to our shared making fun of, and later annoyance at, one group member, who proceeded to get drunk at the first winery and remain so all day), we even met up later that evening for drinks. On the one-day tour, we visited five wineries, which represented a wide range of styles and sizes. (more…)
No trip is complete without at least one adventure activity. Whether you’re a thrill seeker or a worry wart, abseiling down Cape Town’s Table Mountain is one of the best choices you can make!
Abseil Africa runs abseils at the top of Table Mountain every day, weather permitting. If you’ve never been abseiling or rappelling before, the idea of doing so off the top of a 3,500-foot mountain may seem terrifying, but there is really nothing else like it. Truth be told, I can’t think of a better place in the world to do it. Talk about spectacular views!
Believe it or not, until last October I had never been anywhere in New England before. Yes, I am one of those ridiculous people who has been to more countries than states. I also had not seen a typical all-American fall in very long time, having lived in Florida and Australia for the past few years.
So I was very excited to do a road trip through one of the world’s premier “fall foliage” destinations.
In one week I drove through 11 states — six of which I had never been to before! When I go, I go big. As a New England newbie, I learned a lot from my experience and gathered a few tips on how to make sure you have a perfect fall getaway in New England. (more…)
The first time I traveled alone, I spent part of my time on a backpacker bus in New Zealand. As far as solo travel, that’s about as easy as it gets — a) it’s New Zealand, and b) you’re “alone” on a bus full of other travelers, that takes you from point A to point B to point C, so you really don’t have to worry about much.
And yet, time and again I met other women who were shocked that I was traveling alone.
“I could never do that,” they would say. “You’re so brave.”
At the same time, those women were gutsier than they even realized, because there are plenty of women back home who would say the same thing about traveling abroad at all, whether with another woman, or even a man or group. In short, it takes a gutsy woman to travel abroad, alone or otherwise, and we think more courageous women out there should take the leap! Travel. Take a gap year. Volunteer. Teach. Get out there.
Los Angeles was admittedly never at the top of my travel bucket list, but when the opportunity arose to travel to LAX, I knew I couldn’t miss the chance to explore a new place.
California, and Los Angeles in particular, is known to be pretty expensive. But you’d be surprised how much you can do for free! In three days (two nights) of “fun” time, I spent probably a little more than $200. That amount could easily be less if I had not rented a car (or had someone to split the cost with).
So how do you do Los Angeles on the cheap? Here’s the breakdown. (more…)
It’s kind of amazing the amount of things you can do for free in Los Angeles — a lot more than you’d expect. In fact, most of the most famous things to see and do in the area are actually free! So put away those wallets and follow me in on a little journey into the budget traveler’s wonderland that exists in this warm, sunny southern California hotspot.
Join a Live Audience
I had never seen a live show before, so seeing a taping was one of the only things I really wanted to do when I was in LA. (more…)