24 Hours in a City of Contrasts: Baku, Azerbaijan

Introduction and Food for Thought The Lonely Planet guide to Baku put it the best, “Azerbaijan’s capital Baku (or Bakı in Azeri) is the architectural love child of Paris and Dubai…albeit with plenty of Soviet genes floating half-hidden in the background.” The secular Sunni Islamic country has seen Medieval times with the Shirvanshah dynasty (an…

Vinegar, Noodles and Banks: PingYao Ancient City, Shanxi, China

In August I ventured to PingYao Ancient City located in the Shanxi Province of China. PingYao has one of, if not the only, best preserved walled cities from the Ming/Qin Dynasties. It is also where China’s banking system first began. It is also home to the best and most fully preserved Ming Dynasty government centers/…

24 Hours in Bruges, Belgium and Hotel Van Cleef

Hello, Finally catching up on some blogging after slacking for a couple of months. Over Martin Luther King Day three-day weekend, I ventured back to Belgium to explore the country’s famed and relatively untouched medieval gothic cities. Over the three day weekend I visited both Bruges and Ghent. Bruges stole my heart, it is beautiful,…

Weekend in Warsaw, Poland

[Weekend Trip Series] In August I spent a quick weekend in Warsaw, Poland. Although my desire had been to visit Krakow as my first introduction to Poland and its history, I ended up in Warsaw which was just as fine. Most of Warsaw is reconstructed as the city was essentially obliterated during WWII. However, the…

Tikal and Guatemala City, Guatemala

Hi There! Two weekends ago I visited Guatemala. The main goal was to check out the beautiful Mayan ruins of Tikal in the rain forests of Northeastern Guatemala near the border of Belize. We did end up having some time though to briefly explore Guatemala City as well. Over all it was a great trip….

Muscat, Oman

Oman In May I had the chance to visit Oman, a country on the Southeast corner of the Arabian Peninsula. Oman is enchantingly mysterious, rooted in its heritage and traditions, proud of its culture yet inviting to everyone. I really enjoyed Oman and together with Jordan, it is one of my favorite countries in the Middle…

Weekend in Valparaiso and Santiago, Chile

[Weekend Trip Series] A few weekends ago I ventured off to Chile. Chile is a long narrow country in South America, home to famous wines, a desert and of course Patagonia (shared with Argentina). Like many of its neighbors, Chile was not immune to dictatorship in the 20th century and itself saw some turbulent times…

Luang Prabang, Loas: Mystical and Welcoming

Sabaidee (Hello in Laos)! Apologies for the long delay in getting this particular post up. The longest portion of my Asia Trip Spring 2018 was 5 days 4 nights in Laos. By now I have visited every Southeast Asian country, on this trip I visited my last two which were Brunei and Laos. It would…

Baltic Weekend in Riga, Latvia and Vilnius, Lithuania

[Weekend Trip Series] Over the 3-day President’s Day Weekend I ventured off to 2/3 Baltic States. I spent just shy of 24 hours in Riga, Latvia, and shy of 18 hours in Vilnius Lithuania. I knew next to nothing about the Baltic states or any of its cities and cultures and was quite excited I…

24 Hours in Rome, Italy/ Vatican City

[Weekend Trip Series] After my quick stay in Budapest, Hungary over Labor Day Weekend, my friend and I returned to our European gateway city of Rome to do some exploring in our last span of time. Because it was the two of us and we were short on time we decided to take a taxi…

Weekend in Lucerne (Luzern), Switzerland

[Weekend Trip Series] Over Memorial Day weekend my friends and I took advantage of the three-day weekend and ventured off to somewhere in Europe. We ended up in Lucerne (Luzern), Switzerland, a short 1 hour train ride south of Zurich on the beautiful lake Luzern. (The featured image on this post if of the Reuss…

Thanksgiving Weekend at German Christmas Markets

[Weekend Trip Series] For Thanksgiving break 2016 my friend and I ventured out to Germany for the Christmas Markets. We specifically opted for Nuremberg, which plays host to one of the most famous Christmas Markets and on the Friday of Thanksgiving break was the opening night of the Christmas Market, with a special opening ceremony. We…