Choosing your Valley of the Kings tombs

It seemed completely right that we visited both The Valley of the Kings and The Valley of the Queens on the day of the dead. We saved it for our last day in Luxor—anticipating that exploring the tombs would be un-toppable. And I have to say, our assumption held right. On the list of things…

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The Local’s Guide to San Francisco

I was lucky enough to grow up in the Bay Area, so it’s with a bit of bias that I say that San Francisco is the jewel in the Golden State’s crown. It combines all the best things about the state in one trip to California. Nature, food, art, nightlife…there are always things to do…

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Visiting the Ancient Temples in Luxor, Egypt

The sun beat down from a nearly white sky. The air was dry, the ground hot. The only shade to be found was in the ruins—colonnades with swollen pillars, towering statues of crossed-armed rulers, thick walls laden with the deep carvings of ancient kings and queens. This is Luxor, straddling the banks of the Nile,…

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Why You Have to Visit Abu Simbel

Our visit to Abu Simbel kicked off like this: staggering out of the van and staring at what appeared to be a giant pile of dirt. Maybe it was because of the harsh morning sun. Or the fact that we’d been traveling since 4am, coasting on 3 hours of sleep from the night before. It…

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Planning a visit to the Egyptian Museum

I learned the phrase, “an embarrassment of riches” in a college poetry class, but I never fully understood it until we walked into the Egyptian museum. Many museums around the world have Egyptian pieces or play host to Egyptian exhibits, temporary or permanent. Having one stone sarcophagus, one golden mummy mask, one ancient chair can…

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How to Spend a Few Days in Cairo

Cairo is often in the American news for all the wrong reasons, but there’s more than a few reasons to dedicate a portion of your Egypt trip to Cairo. First of all, it’s huge—the largest city not just in the Middle East and Arab world, but on the continent of Africa. Nicknamed, “The City of…

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Celebrating Halloween in Scotland

With its wild moors, haunted castles, heavy mists, and ancient stone circles, Scotland has always felt thrillingly spooky to me. I’m a Scorpio born the day before Halloween, so it’s little wonder that this windswept country haunts my imagination. When Tim and I visited Scotland two years ago, we timed our visit to coincide with…

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5 Things to Do in Stockholm in Summertime

Country 25: Sweden | This post is part of my 30×30 series. Read more here!   There are plenty of things to see in Stockholm, Sweden: but the first happens before you arrive. Flying into Arlanda gives you a fantastic view over the city. It’s clear why you were right to visit Stockholm before you even…

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Visiting the Baldi Hot Springs in Costa Rica

Tourist hawkers along La Fortuna’s main street will try pushing a huge number of activities on you. You can four-wheel up volcanic slopes. Zipline through the tree canopy. Rappel down waterfalls. Get soaked on a white water raft. Spy on vipers, toucans, and monkeys on a hike. Take a horseback ride through the rainforest. There’s…

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Visiting the Jardim Botânico in Rio de Janeiro

Country 19: Brazil | This post is part of my 30×30 series. Read more here! Rio de Janeiro is perhaps the most awesome city I have ever visited, with heavy emphasis on the awe. It is the very definition of urban jungle, with plenty of concrete and plenty more greenery. But tucked between the beaches and…

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