6 Day Road Trip in California – Los Angeles > San Francisco > Yosemite and Back

This road trip was an introduction to California for me. I had just moved to Los Angeles from Seoul, South Korea and wanted to see as much of the state as possible before starting my 9 to 5. In early August, we drove up on Route 1 along the coast and it was gorgeous. Of course, it takes a lot longer than a direct route to San Francisco, but so worth it if you have the time. We stayed with friends in Oakland for three nights, which cut down on a major cost of visiting San Francisco, before heading toward Yosemite. Even in August, temperatures were low everywhere we went and I was wearing every warm layer I had with me the whole time.

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Exploring Art in Hanoi, Vietnam

I made art a priority in Hanoi, and I am so glad I did. The city is full of inspiring and illuminating work, all housed in dynamic creative spaces. Here is a roundup of three unique art spaces in Hanoi that can offer a deeper perspective of the city during your visit. I highly suggest you check them out, because there is no greater view into the soul of a culture than through its creatives.

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Your New Favorite Podcast

If you love podcasts, or even if you don’t, this is definitely worth getting addicted to. The hosts, Corinne Fisher and Krystyna Hutchinson, talk to you like your experienced feminist friends would about issues women face in their romantic lives and beyond. As an anti slut-shaming podcast, they speak frankly about sex, answer listeners’ questions, and have a discussion with different guests each week.
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Songkran – To Hide or Not To Hide From Thai New Year

We were in Laos for the first half of April 2016. When we mentioned to people we’d met that we’d be traveling to Thailand next, many murmured that we would be there just in time for Thai New Year. They mentioned the celebrations involved spraying water, and that they would be centered in Chiang Mai, our destination for the dates of the festival. We didn’t think much of it. What follows here is a day by day account of the surreal events that occurred upon our arrival in Thailand.

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Busan, South Korea: The Greatest Hits

I wasn’t expecting to fall so quickly in love with Busan. I traveled throughout South Korea as much as possible during my time there – I went to the beach in Sokcho, spent a long weekend in Jeju, ate Chinese street food in Incheon – the list goes on. Visiting each of these places was a great new experience, but only Busan had this rich feel of traditional Korean culture mixing easily with modern ways of life. After almost a year in Korea, I felt like I was experiencing it for the first time.

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9 Days in Cambodia

During our winter break from teaching in South Korea (Dec. 25, 2015 – Jan. 2, 2016), my friend and I took this well earned nine-day trip to Cambodia. It was incredible. Of course we wished we had a few more days, and we regret not paying our respects at the killing fields, but nine days was enough to see many different places and feel like we got to know the country. We split our time between Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, and Koh Rong, which was a good mix of city, history, and beach. Cambodia is one of, if not the, lowest priced countries in SE Asia, based on my experience, and one of my favorite countries I’ve visited!

You can find our itinerary below. For more info, see this post.
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Claudia in Sweden

Claudia Towne Hirtenfelder has been traveling since 2004, with her first international trip being an exchange program to Switzerland for six weeks. She has since traveled to over 20 countries and has lived in Korea and Sweden. Claudia has a Master’s in Social Studies of Gender from Lund University as well as second Masters from the University of Johannesburg in Tourism and Management.

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Astrid in Uganda

Hi, my name is Astrid Haas. I was born and raised in South Africa, but spent 8 years living in Europe (Austria and Germany) after studying Hotel Management. My husband, Chris, and I decided to leave Europe, as we didn’t want to live there for the rest of our lives and decided rather to travel through Africa. Through our Africa trip, we ended up in Uganda and we are now managing one of the most successful lodges here. We’ve been working here for the past 20 months and we plan to be here for the next few years. Although no longer up to date, we did keep a blog of our 10-month trip through southern and eastern Africa: www.rabbitsviewofafrica.com.

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Cambodia: Phnom Penh, Ta Prohm, Pants, and Paradise 

Aren’t we all searching for inner peace? Cambodia seemed like a great place to find some, and from the moment I arrived, taking my first tuk-tuk ride through the thick, sage-scented heat, I knew I wouldn’t be let down. Each day was filled with exotic, low-priced delights and wonders I’d never experienced before: a manicure in the market in Phnom Penh; the crumbling Ta Prohm temple in Siem Reap; open-air beach bungalows serving curry on the edge of the jungle; warm, clear, turquoise water dotted with brightly colored fishing boats waiting to take me to places I’d only ever dreamed of every freezing Wisconsin winter. But it wasn’t only the incredible beauty and tropical luxury that helped me dig up that laid-back vibe deep within me — it was also the bit of ugliness that we found along the way that helped me find what I was looking for. Speaking of which, it all started with the pants.
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