Globetrotting Challenge Travel Race: 10 Days, 10 Countries, 10 Challenges

Globetrotting Challenge 2017 travel race Turkey to Tuscany

Later this month is the start of the first annual Globetrotting Challenge, a travel race that will have two top travel blogging couples racing from Turkey to Tuscany. And Laurence and I are one of those two couples! The travel race will have us racing overland across 10 countries in 10 days while competing against another couple in 10 challenges along the way. All of this will be recorded live via social media so that followers will be able to follow along on all our travel adventures, struggles, triumphs, and embarrassing mishaps along the way. Want to find out more? Keep reading and we’ll give you the lowdown on the Globetrotting Challenge and even tell you how you can get involved! This initial idea for the Globetrotting Challenge was born back in June 2016, as we were catching up with Dave and Deb of ThePlanetD at the Travel Influencers Summit Read the Rest…

A Guide to Visiting the Spanish Pyrenees of Catalonia: A Lesser Known Region of Spain

Sant Joan Les Fonts things to do in the Spanish Pyrenees in Catalonia Spain

A lot of people visit Barcelona and Costa Brava every year; however, many fewer people visit the Spanish Pyrenees of Catalonia. This lesser known region of Spain offers a perfect place to escape from the often crowded coast, whether you visit it in conjunction with the more popular spots or dedicate an entire trip to this region. Here in the Spanish Pyrenees you’ll find several ski resorts, a network of hiking trails and cycling paths, extinct volcanoes, hearty Catalan food, medieval towns, and rich cultural attractions. The Spanish Pyrenees of Catalonia is a great region for those wanting to get out and explore nature, enjoy the peaceful rural countryside, or hideout in the mountains. On the other hand it also offers a plethora of outdoor activities, museums, festivals, hot air balloon rides, and a seemingly infinite amount of quaint Romanesque churches. This guide will cover how to get to the Read the Rest…

Ski Holidays for Non-Skiers: 25 Things to Do at a Ski Resort if you Don’t Ski

Ski Holidays for Non-Skiers Things to Do at a Ski Resort if you Don't Ski

Ski holidays for non-skiers? Sure, there are lots of things to do at a ski resort if you don’t ski. I personally don’t ski but have spent time at a number of ski resorts and winter holiday destinations around the world. I know I am not alone, and wanted to share some tips on how to enjoy a ski holiday as a non-skier. Often there is at least one member of a family, couple, or group that doesn’t ski but that doesn’t mean they have to just sit in the hotel room when everyone else wants to ski. There are a lot of fun winter snow activities that don’t involve skiing or snowboarding such as sledding, snow tubing, ice fishing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, and sleigh rides. There are also tons of other fun winter activities that non-skiers can seek out from exploring Christmas markets to relaxing in a thermal bath. One Read the Rest…

FIG Clothing: Women’s Travel Clothing Review

FIG Clothing travel clothing clothes review

Finding travel clothing that is both comfortable and stylish can be difficult, and this last year I found both of these qualities in FIG Clothing. FIG Clothing is a Canadian company that specializes in clothing for active women that is appropriate for travel and outdoor activities but is at the same time also stylish, versatile, and comfortable. I was a FIG Clothing ambassador in 2016, mostly sharing photos of me wearing FIG Clothing during my travels on my social media channels. I was not asked to write a blog post as part of my ambassadorship but decided to do so as I really love their clothing as well as the brand and people behind the company. I’ll share some information about FIG Clothing, where you can find their clothing, my thoughts about the clothing I’ve worn, and lots of photos of me wearing the pieces that have traveled around the Read the Rest…

Royal Edinburgh Ticket: How to Save Money on Edinburgh’s Royal Attractions

Holyrood Palace Royal Edinburgh Ticket

The Royal Edinburgh Ticket is a great way to save money when visiting the top royal attractions in Edinburgh Scotland! The ticket covers all three of our favorite royal sites in Edinburgh: the mighty and historic Edinburgh Castle, Holyrood Palace (official Scottish residence of the royal family), and Royal Yacht Britannia (royal yacht used by the royal family from 1954 to 1997). Not only are these the three most important royal attractions in Edinburgh, they are three of the most popular and visited attractions in the city. If you want to visit all three during your trip to Edinburgh, you can save up to 25% by using the Royal Edinburgh Ticket versus buying each entrance ticket separately. The ticket also includes unlimited hop-on hop-off bus transportation around the city for 48 hours! We’ll tell you how to purchase and collect the pass, what it covers, how to calculate your cost Read the Rest…

How to Book Apartments Online: 24 Websites Like Airbnb

websites like AirBnB alternatives booking apartments vacation rentals online

Looking for websites like Airbnb? Here is our guide to booking apartments online that provides a list of over 20 websites where you can search and book apartments and vacation rentals online. Getting a great place to stay is key to a good travel experience and if you are looking beyond hotels and hostels, renting an apartment, a house, or a private room can be a great alternative. Staying at an apartment versus a hotel can be great way to save money, have more autonomy, and connect with the local people. Most of these apartment booking websites also allow you to list your own property so that you can earn money while you travel or rent out a spare room or second home. Airbnb may be the best known vacation rental website, but there are a lot of Airbnb alternatives out there, and many have been on the scene for a Read the Rest…

Finding Historic Route 66 in Albuquerque New Mexico

public mural Route 66 in Albuquerque New Mexico highlights

Finding historic Route 66 in Albuquerque New Mexico is easy if you know where to look. Route 66 officially ran through Albuquerque from 1926 to 1985, and today Albuquerque is home to the longest urban stretch of Route 66 in the country at 18 miles. Route 66 played an integral role in Albuquerque’s growth and development in the early to mid 1900’s and today you can still find Route 66 era businesses, diners, motels, architecture, signs, and vibes in New Mexico’s largest city. You can still sleep in a classic Route 66 era motor court motel, eat a burger at a Route 66 era diner, and see some of the neon signs that have been burning bright on Central Avenue for decades. Albuquerque is a great place to “get your kicks” and we’ll provide a brief history of Route 66 in Albuquerque, share information on how to find and drive Read the Rest…

Our Wedding in Venice: A Photo Essay

wedding in Venice wedding day Jessica Norah Laurence Norah

A photo essay of our wedding in Venice. Two years ago today, Laurence and I got engaged at Point Reyes National Seashore in California next to a giant elephant seal. At that time, I was working full-time as a clinical psychologist and living in the San Francisco Bay area. A lot has changed since that time. I don’t share a lot of personal posts but I’ve been asked several times to share some photos of our wedding in Venice on the blog, and have always meant to do so but never got around to doing it. So I thought I would do it today on our engagement anniversary. It also gave me a good excuse to go back through our wedding photos. If you don’t enjoy wedding photos, this is your time to escape, otherwise, enjoy! As some of you know, Laurence and I actually had our legal wedding at Read the Rest…

Comprehensive Guide to the Top Harry Potter Sites in Edinburgh Scotland

Royal Mile Harry Potter sites in Edinburgh Scotland J.K. Rowling

Edinburgh has a deep connection with the wizardly world of Harry Potter and there are several Harry Potter sites in Edinburgh that fans can visit. Most notably, it was the home of J.K. Rowling when she wrote the majority of the Harry Potter books. Rowling has acknowledged her connection to the city stating that “…Edinburgh is very much home for me and is the place where Harry evolved over seven books and many, many hours of writing in its cafés.” Want to sit and sip coffee in the same café that J.K. Rowling wrote the Harry Potter books? See turreted buildings that may have been the inspiration for Hogwarts? See graves and streets that may have influenced the names of Harry Potter characters? Drink a pint of butterbeer in a local pub? We’ll provide all you need to know to find these places on your own or visit them on a Read the Rest…

Visiting Wentworth Woodhouse: The Largest Private House in England

visit Wentworth Woodhouse tour Palladian east front

Wentworth Woodhouse is the largest private home in the United Kingdom and it has the longest façade of any country home in Europe; however, very few people have ever heard of this spectacular English house! Starting as a modest Jacobean house in the 17th century, it would be rebuilt and expanded to enormous proportions by a series of aristocratic families. The house would become the seat of the Earls Fitzwilliam who would rise to be one of the wealthiest families in England due to profits from the coal industry. At one time, over 1,000 staff members would be employed to run and look after the 300+ room house and the vast estate. However, a series of scandals, inheritance fights, untimely deaths, and the nationalization of coal would soon lead to both the end of the Earl Fitzwilliam line and the shuttering of this great house. This grand Yorkshire house was closed to Read the Rest…

One Week Sri Lanka Itinerary for Couples: Luxury, Wildlife, & Tea

1 week Sri Lanka itinerary for couples romantic honeymoon

We wanted to share a one week Sri Lanka itinerary that we think is perfect for couples, which focuses on wildlife, romance, luxury, and tea. Specifically it includes staying at the top luxury resort in Sri Lanka, soaking up the beautiful scenery of Sri Lanka’s hilly Tea Country, exploring ancient sites, admiring waterfalls, staying in a luxury tented camp, and searching for leopards on safari. We were in Sri Lanka last summer speaking at a conference and afterwards we decided to head off on our own on a short trip around Sri Lanka. Laurence had already been to Sri Lanka twice so wasn’t interested in many of the main tourist spots and I wanted a short luxury trip that focused on tea and leopards. We checked out a number of tour companies and found Jetwing Eco Holidays who helps plan and execute customized and tailor-made trips. We’ll share a one week Read the Rest…

Edmonton City Guide: 20 Things to do in Edmonton Alberta

sunset spots things to do in Edmonton Alberta Yeg guide

After our recent trip to Western Canada, we wanted to share a list of some of the top things to do in Edmonton Alberta. As Alberta’s capital city, there are loads of things to do in the city from skiing and biking to visiting farmers’ markets and perusing art galleries. During our time in the capital, we did a Segway tour in Canada’s largest urban park, went to a hockey game, visited an art museum, searched for street art, rode a roller coaster in North America’s largest shopping mall, appreciated plants in a glass pyramid, and ate our way around the city’s growing food scene. We also made a day trip to nearby Elk Island National Park for some great wildlife spotting! We’ll share our tips for visiting the city and our list of the top things to do in Edmonton Alberta based on our recent experience. Basic Information on Read the Rest…

Afternoon Tea in Albuquerque New Mexico at St. James Tearoom

St. James Tea Room afternoon tea in Albuquerque New Mexico

Let’s face it, you’ve probably never thought of having afternoon tea in Albuquerque New Mexico. So you might be surprised that one of my favorite places for afternoon tea, St. James Tearoom, is located in Albuquerque. Albuquerque is home to lots of wonderful things like the breathtaking Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, a rich and diverse culture, tasty chiles, a booming craft beer scene, and interesting art, but it isn’t really associated with images of folks partaking in afternoon tea. I have been to St. James Tearoom twice, once back in 2010 and again in 2016, and can say that even after having afternoon tea in locations around the world, this is still one of my favorites. We’ll share a bit about St. James Tearoom, how you can make your own reservation, what you can expect during your tea time, and the details of our own afternoon tea experience in Albuquerque. Basic Read the Rest…

5 Day Isle of Skye and Scottish Highlands Itinerary

Glencoe Isle of Skye and Scottish Highlands itinerary trip Scotland

In August, I had my very first look at the beautiful Scottish Highlands and the Isle of Skye! Spectacular landscapes, castles, mysterious lochs, waterfalls, tasty seafood dinners, and Highland coos are a few of the many treasured memories associated with our Scottish Highlands itinerary. The Highlands make up the northwestern part of Scotland, and designate a primarily historical divide with the Lowlands area where there were once much larger cultural and language divides. Although a huge land area, the Highlands and the northern islands of Scotland are sparsely populated, primarily rural, rugged, and full of biodiversity. This area is perfect for those looking for natural beauty and an escape from cities. We did this first trip to the Highlands and Isle of Skye with Edinburgh-based small tour operator Rabbie’s Travel, and we’ll share our own trip experiences and lots of photos on that tour! We’ll also provide a general Scottish Read the Rest…

Tips for Buying and Using the Oyster Card in London

London Oyster Card

London is one of the top travel destinations in the world, but navigating this large city can be overwhelming for a first time visitor. Using an Oyster card, a credit card sized transport smartcard, is an easy way to save time and money if you are planning to use public transportation in London. An Oyster card can be used on just about every form of transport within London including public bus, tram, and rail services within the city. Our goal is help you decide if an Oyster card is a good fit for you and to help you effectively use your card on public transportation in London. First we’ll cover the main types of Oyster cards that are available, how to choose the best one, and how to buy an Oyster card. Then we’ll talk about where you can use them, how to use them for travel, how to recharge Read the Rest…