13 Things to do in Bansko, Bulgaria in Winter (That Aren’t Snow Sports)

13 things to do in Bansko, Bulgaria in winter that aren't snow sports!I don’t really ski. Or snowboard. I did when I was a kid, and remember it being kinda fun. But even then I never remember loving it so much that I was willing to make 3.5+ hours long trek each way with my dad from Fremont to Lake Tahoe. That’s what ya gotta do if you wanna find snow in California, anyway.

And staying in Tahoe is expensive so we often did day trips, which meant super early mornings and a looooot of time in the car.

Then we had to rent everything, and wait in line at the chair lift (and don’t try and tell me that getting on and off is not the most nerve racking thing ever), and because we didn’t go often there was always a learning curve during which I’d fall a lot and stare down a giant hill and wonder how EXACTLY I was supposed to get down that thing in one piece on 2 toothpicks of plastic strapped to my wobbly feet.

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How to Spend One Day in Hamburg

How to spend one day in Hamburg, Germany, including Miniatur Wunderland, St. Michael's Church, the Elbphilharmonie, and Christmas Markets!

Have you ended up with one day in Hamburg and just aren’t sure what to do???

Well, let me do the hard work and plan the best day for you! You can just relax, follow this list, and see exactly what Hamburg has to offer. (Which is a lot!)

I’ve spent a total of 4.5 months in Hamburg so far (1.5 in the spring and 3 in the fall) so I’ve gotten around to exploring the city quite a bit. And, I had some help – I made friends with some locals and expats who showed me some insider spots, as well!

Here’s how I’d recommend spending one day in Hamburg:

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How to Spend One Day on the Island of Sylt, Germany

How to spend one day on the island of Sylt in Germany - things to do, how to get there, and what to see!

Sylt is a place I would’ve NEVER heard about had it not been for my German friend. Sylt is known as the place that wealthy people vacation, but our peasant selves just did a day trip from Hamburg. It was def a mission as it was about 3 hours each way by train! But I have to say, it was definitely worth it.

Thatched roof and brick house on the island of Sylt, Germany
[An example of one of the super cute houses on Sylt] 
It was such a pretty place! We brought our own bikes on the train, but you can totally rent bikes there, too (which I would highly recommend since the bike paths are wonderful, and what’s better than biking by the sea?)

On the west side of Sylt, you can take advantage of the more rugged North Sea and do activities like surfing and kitesurfing. On the east side, you can enjoy calmer waves in the Wadden Sea. There are also plenty of beaches for dogs if you’ve got a pup along with you. And in the summer, since it’s so far north, it never gets completely dark at night!

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The Truth Behind the Photos #1

The Truth Behind the Photos
[The Northern Lights were not at all what I had expected – read on for the truth behind my experience]
I thought it would be super fun to pick some pretty/epic looking (or just lame but maybe I have good stories ok??) travel photos and tell you the honest truth behind what was actually happening behind the scenes.

Because we all know that with Instagram and all those other social media platforms that are full of lies, it can be kinda disheartening sometimes.

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Should You Bike the 17-Mile Drive or Stay Home?

The Lone Cypress on the 17-Mile Drive in Monterey, California - Should You Bike the 17-Mile Drive?
[The Lone Cypress Tree, which suspiciously doesn’t look THAT lonely with another tree right next to it]
Updated September 2019

The 17-Mile Drive is located in the very pretty (and very rich) area of California called Pebble Beach. It stretches between the towns of Pacific Grove and Carmel, and is close to the larger town of Monterey. And, of course, has lots of beautiful coastal views!

Most people drive it, but what is it like to bike? Here’s what you need to know!

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Why I Regret My Visit to Upper Antelope Canyon

Why I regret my visit to Upper Antelope Canyon in Page, Arizona and wish I went to Lower Antelope Canyon or Antelope Canyon X instead.
[This is how I pictured Upper Antelope Canyon – quiet, serene, stunningly gorgeous]
Upper Antelope Canyon was absolutely beautiful – I’d even argue breathtaking. Like I literally had to remind myself to breathe again because I was too busy staring at the gorgeous canyon walls, mouth agape, which let in a horde of flies causing me to choke on my own spit.

And Rattlesnake Canyon – we added this onto our tour before going to Upper Antelope – was amazing! I liked Rattlesnake Canyon so much more than Antelope. I’ll go more into why below.

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Sometimes, Travel is a Total Shit Fest

Sometimes, Travel is a Total Shit Fest
[Beaver Falls really is beautiful, though]
Okay, so I wouldn’t describe my recent trip to Arizona a shit fest per say, but. There were definitely some hiccups. And hiccups that I couldn’t just scare away ya know.

So, to start off, getting to and from AZ was A MISSION. Just LET ME TELL YOU.

So, we left at like 2PM meaning we drove almost all damn night and didn’t arrive until 3:30AM.

SO FUN RIGHT.

Lots of gas station stops and some casual peeing-on-the-side-of-the-road stuff too. Because we gotta keep it classy AF up in here.

And then we slept in the parking lot of Horseshoe Bend until sunrise. Ok well – a little after because we were so so damn sleepy.

* I do want to take a moment to acknowledge the native land we explored during this trip – that of the Hopi, Diné (Navajo), Southern Paiute, Ute, Hualapai, and Havasupai people. If I am incorrect please let me know! I am learning and want to acknowledge land properly and be as respectful as possible. If you’d like to see what native land you’re exploring or live on, click here.

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