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Winter in Finland by Rail (Video)

Exploring places more these days via video. I didn’t expect that I would be doing a video of my rail journey in Finland, but the scenery was so nice and the train was simply one of  the best I have taken anywhere in the world. So I hope you enjoy one of my first video efforts that is fully edited, with music and everything. Thanks.

Exciting Hong Kong

Hong Kong is such an oddity. Now part of China, it still has a strong Western feel after being run for decades by the British. More interestingly is that China appears not to be quickly assimilating it to be more like mainland China. It is huge, robust, modern, exciting and fun. And you should check it out and see what you think for yourself.

Finland via Instagram

Finland has quickly become one of my favorite destinations… even in winter! I was stupefied at how much I loved it there in February. Now admittedly, I was lucky on the weather since it was just below freezing for my trip, but given a few extra layers of clothing, I could have handled it even colder than that. Hope you enjoy some of my photos from there!

The Surprise that is Uruguay

South America is one of my favorite continents (and I am headed back there in just a few short weeks). But while countries like Brazil, Argentina and Chile get most of the attention, the tiny country of Uruguay is one of my favorites down there. Part of the appeal is that it really is a slightly undiscovered location. So come check out some of the reasons to visit.

Traveling with a Cell Phone, Finally

Its been a long time coming, but I am finally traveling with a cell phone. Since I started my travels in late 2008, I have been unconnected with the world, at least in terms of having a smart phone. There are so many benefits, now that I am back in the world of technology. Using Google Maps to find places. The camera’s ability to take great photos, not only for my blog, but also for Instagram and other apps. Being able to watch movies on it. And the screen, o’ my the amazing screen. I’m sold… and back in the 21st century, finally.

Special Roman Tours, Walking Style

I love Rome. It is one of those iconic tourist destinations that everyone should take an extended period of time to enjoy. Too many times, people just come in for a day or two, but to truly appreciate it, I think you need to spend 4-5 days walking around to see what this city of history has to offer. There are so many things to see in Rome that it deserves your time, your attention… and bring your camera and appetite.

Movies that Make You Want to Get Up and Go

Nothing gets me more inspired to get up and travel better than an excellent movie. There is something about watching a couple hours of pure inspiration that makes me want to get up and go more than perhaps any other bit of inspiration, even a good travel book. A well made movie can not only give you the visual reasons to head of somewhere, but almost lets you feel the warmth of the Sun and smell the food and feel how it would be to stay there for a while. What are you favorite movies that inspired you to travel?

Ireland for 2013 Anyone?

I have only been one time, but with TBEX coming up in Ireland in 2013, I am certain to be heading back there yet again. In fact, since I am going to base out of London for the near future, I think I am going to roll over to Ireland more than a few times in the next year. Great beer, good hotels, golf and more golf, amazing scenery, and the wonderful Irish hospitality to enjoy. What’s not to love? Take me to Ireland!

Celebrate Seattle Giveaway

During 2012, in honor of 5 years of our NVR lifestyle, we decided to give our home-base a lot of air time. Let’s just say we’ve been celebrating Seattle in a big way. Now, as the year draws to a close, we want to share Seattle with you.

We’re giving away a 2-night stay in Seattle.

Pura Vida Costa Rica

Life is good. Costa Rica has proven to be every bit as wonderful as we remember, and we’re heading back to marriage equality in Washington State. Double win!

Costa Brava in Photos

There are few areas of the world that I love more than Costa Brava. Its the part of Spain north of Barcelona, all the way up to the French border. While the mountains in the region are spectacular, I particularly love the small fishing villages on the coast. They are some of the places that I just can sit and rest and relax in for day after day. Here are some of my photos from a recent trip.

Headed Back to Los Angeles Soon

And the question for me is what to do when I get there. My folks moved to just outside LA a few years back, so that is where I do my Christmas holidays these days. But I am not from there and don’t really have any friends there, so I asked around to my blogging friends to come up with a good list of things to do there (frankly, just to get away from my family a little bit, no offense). They can up with ten fun options.

Consider Namibia a Possible New Hot-Spot

There are few places in the world that I recommend more highly than Namibia. It has a lot more to see and do than you would think, especially because South Africa and Botswana get all the tourist attention in this area of the world. From great safaris to the unrivaled dunes of the desert, this is a location that deserves far more attention on the traveler’s agenda than it currently gets, for sure.

Over Shanghai

Zooming to Shanghai via high-speed train – 200 mph, yo! – we were buzzing from our hutong experience in BeijingContinue reading →

Happy in the Hutong

The smartest thing we did in Beijing was getting out of our posh hotel and moving into a traditional residential area. Sure, the fancy hotel had us about as close as we could be to the major tourist attractions, but it certainly didn’t give us an accurate feel for how the city pulses and moves.

Snap Judgement – 24 Hours in Beijing

Before landing in Beijing, China, we decided that – once on the ground – we’d pay close attention to our first impressions. Unfiltered first impressions.

There’s Something About Maui

Aloha!

As I write this, our time on Maui isn’t quite over, and we’ve already snapped hundreds of pictures. It’s overwhelming to sit here clicking through them all because it’s a reminder of how incomprehensibly magnificent and diverse this island is. Such a small place yet so much to see, do and experience.

Pure travel porn.

The Ultimate Train Challenge is Ready for… You!!

This is the announcement that I have been ready to make for months now. The Ultimate Train Challenge was one of my travel highlights in 2011. Lisbon to Saigon — 15,000 miles — all on trains. From the response and encouragement from people during and after that journey, I decided to open it up for anyone else to participate. So, come read about the amazing things you can win by participating, the great sponsors, the fun parties, and the challenge of a lifetime. Thanks!

Up for an African Safari Adventure

Its been way, way too long since I went to Africa. 2009 to be exact. I have promised myself that 2013 will be the year that I get back there and explore. There are so many reasons I can’t wait to get back there, but the animals are right up at the top of the list. They are the most unique creatures you will run into anywhere on the planet and well worth your time and money, just to see them. It is awe inspiring to be in their presence.

The Beauty of Seville in Photos

The first time I got a chance to see Seville, I knew I was going to love it. I have developed a love affair with Spain this year, and Seville is simply one of those cities that I adored from the moment I laid eyes on it. The beauty of the place is plain to see — and the food is fantastic also. Close to Madrid, it should be on the list of anyone that visits Spain.

Time for Some Beach Bars in Europe?

I’ve been in Europe for most of this year and I’m finding that the places have been liking the most are near the coast. There is something about being near the water that just seems to keep me calm and cool, in spite of some of the scorching heat. But let’s face it, one of the other reasons I love coastal spots is that is where the best bars are located. Here are five of my favorites in Europe.

Washington DC Keep it classy!

I really liked Washington DC. I mean, what is there NOT to like? The place is OOZING with history. But by the end of our road trip, I just felt this gaping hole without Shaun. These were places we said we would explore together – just like Chicago. We were looking forward to being museum nuts together. We were going to take silly pictures in front of monuments together.

Awesome Adventures – The Olympics

Last year, we decided to – from time to time – highlight some of our most spectacular past journeys under an “Awesome Adventures” heading. To qualify, the journey has to be the best of the best. There aren’t many.

So far, we’ve only gotten around to sharing details from our visit to Antarctica and our quest to see the Northern Lights. Today, in honor of our All American month and the London Olympics, there’s a new Awesome Adventure to share. Continue reading →

A Perfect (Food!) Day in Portland

It’s time for us to give Seattle a little air and, instead, do a some rambling on-and-on about our second favorite city. Portland, Oregon.

We used to live there, so this bit of Portland love is long overdue.

Don’t Be Trashy

When we were in Dubrovnik, Croatia – which we’ve waxed rhapsodic about multiple times here – there is one thing that really bothered us.

See, we’re not totally biased.

Photo Wrap Up of USA Road Trip

No better time than the beginning of our “All American” month AND the week of July 4th to do a photo wrap up of our three week USA road trip across Nevada, Arizona, Utah and Colorado.

How to Be a Happy Camper

Visit Happy Camper | Posted by The NVR Guys Permalink

During this road trip, we’ve lucked out – so far – with top-notch campsites. While we’re not doing any backcountry camping this time around (that will come later in the summer), We’ve snagged some fantastic car camping sites that have been almost as ideal. Continue reading →

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