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Italian Experiences with Rick Steves

It’s been more than Rick Steves has led one of our Rick Steves’ Europe Tours, but you’d never know it. His enthusiasm, energy, stamina, knowledge, and love of Europe seems only to have increased with those passing years.  Along with 28 happy tour members, my guide colleague Ben Cameron and I (we’re Rick’s assistants on… Continue reading Italian Experiences with Rick Steves

Architecture · Art · Culture · Entertainment · Europe · Family-friendly · France · History · Tourist · Travel Planning · Travel Tips & Skills

Summer Nights in Beaune

France. Burgundy. Beaune.  Any one of these place names might conjour thoughts of remarkable wines, pungent cheeses, or exquisite meals—and rightly so. But in the last few years, Beaune has been luring visitors to linger after their decadent dinners and explore the town with its Animations Nocturnes (Evening Animations). Beaune is a picture of bustling… Continue reading Summer Nights in Beaune

Adventure · Architecture · Austria · Destinations · Entertainment · Europe · Family-friendly · Hiking · History · The Great Outdoors · Travel Styles

Conquering Fears and Storming a Castle in Austria

My friend Julie once experimented with “The Year of Trying New Things.” Whenever she encountered something she hadn’t tried  or didn’t want to try before (activities, food, routes, ways of thinking), rather than say no to it, she opted to try it…just for kicks. When Rick and I are faced with the choice of doing… Continue reading Conquering Fears and Storming a Castle in Austria

Architecture · Art · Culture · Destinations · Education · Entertainment · Europe · France · History · Politics · Travel Philosophy · Travel Tips & Skills

Remembering Nice

Earlier this year, my travels brought me to Nice. Since my first visit there 15 years ago, I have been under its delightful spell. And now, like so many, I am deeply saddened by the horrific act of terror inflicted on so many in this Riviera city on the 14th of July. And also like… Continue reading Remembering Nice

Adventure · Education · Entertainment · Germany · Logistics · packing · Planes · Religion · Travel Philosophy · Travel Planning · Travel Tips & Skills

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Germany

Confession time: I’m a last-minute packer, sometimes finishing up just hours before a flight. Fortunately, I pack so often that I’ve got my incomprehensible-to-most system down pat. On most trips, procrastination serves as stimulus to “get ‘er done.” Rare is it that something needed is forgotten at home. I get to the airport with sufficient… Continue reading A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Germany

Adventure · Americas · Caribbean · Cruises · Entertainment · The Great Outdoors · Tourist · Travel Tips & Skills

12 Hours in San Juan, Puerto Rico Part 1: Welcome to the Jungle

Sunscreen: check. Bathing suit: check. Eager-beaver attitude: check. Our first port was calling our name, and I, for one, was ready to hit the beach and take in a year’s supply of Vitamin D in the form of Caribbean afternoon sunshine. As we packed our day bags with our necessary gear, a husky Italian voice… Continue reading 12 Hours in San Juan, Puerto Rico Part 1: Welcome to the Jungle

Adventure · Americas · Entertainment · Food · Travel Philosophy · Travel Tips & Skills · USA

Disneyland Haters: Maybe You’re Just Doing It Wrong

Have you ever met someone who’s repulsed by just the thought of going to Disneyland? “How can you stand it? The lines are ridiculous! It’s so fake! It’s too expensive! It’s so commercial! It’s so lame! Have you seen the kind of people that go there? They’re total Disney freaks!” As much as I love… Continue reading Disneyland Haters: Maybe You’re Just Doing It Wrong