All posts tagged: budget vacations

Travel: Coastal Towns In Italy

You know, I think I’ll just let the photos do the talking – because if you are planning a trip to Italy in the Summer, plan with coastal towns in mind – as Rome, Florence and inner cities are always too hot and too crowded. And yes, so are the beaches, but the subtle breeze and the cooling effect of the water makes an Italian vacation the most memorable. For example: On another note – I’ve always imagined renting out an entire Villa overlooking some body of water in Italy and just exist for a few weeks, while allowing my creativity to shape another novel {featured image source}

hawaii bound: destination wedding

I can’t believe it’s time for my trip to Hawaii to see my good friend marry the man of her dreams. I’m excited for her and most of all excited for the fact, I get to share this wonderful occasion with her. This doesn’t mean, I will not blog for a week, it just means, I will blog mostly about travel, food and photography. Have a great weekend everybody and I will see you right here on Monday 🙂    

day 13 – travel journal – paris france

There is no way on earth I would pass up Paris, no matter what other destinations I have included in my annual trip to Europe. This year, while the TGV pulled into Gare de Lyon from Cannes at a little after 9p.m. I noticed it had been raining in the city of romance. I didn’t care, the rain is always refreshing in Paris and I have actually been in the city every month out of the year and every single time it had rained. It usually bothered me, but I’ve come to accept it and now even embrace it. Paris isn’t Paris without rain. We hopped on the RER (urban rail network train) from Gare de Lyon to our Hotel in Charles de Gaulle Etoile (between VIIIe and XVIIe arrondissements) and within a five minute walk, landed in front of our quaint hotel with minimal frills and turned in for the night. I usually sleep with the windows open, normally for fresh air, but in the case of Paris, just so I could hear the …

day 8 to 12 – travel journal – french riviera et all

The most amazing thing about Europe is the fact, everything is connected by train, so there is no need to stress about driving nor flying. One can simply book a point to point ticket or by a Railpass (Outside of Europe Residance only) and arrange to get from any number of destinations within Europe. The beauty of having a Railpass is that the passholder can travel on the TER train – which connects all the beach town along the French Riviera by an intrecit timetable and train schedule.  So, basically in the morning you could be in Cannes and within half an hour to an hour you could be in Antinbes, Nice, Monte Carlo, Menton (depending on the stops the train makes). So, of course we did just that, hopped on the TER everyday and ended up in different parts of the French Riviera. Our stops, on this trip were to St. Tropez, Antibes, Monte Carlo (for the hubby man), VillaFranche Sur Mer and Nice.  Now, although every town is almost the same in that …

shifting gears to travel

By the beginning of April I am planning my next trip to (mostly) Europe. However, as we know it, the wedding got in the way 😉  But after taking a few days to recover I am now  mentally prepared to plan a trip. The problem is there are too many places I want to visit this year and not enough time to accomplish my goal, so while I click my way through the internet for ideas, I can’t help but include some of my favorite staircases around Europe from here to inspire me to make a choice:  

artichoke heaven in rome, italy

Outside of the norm of playing tourist in Rome, yup in Rome, Italy, I get to eat the best artichoke salads and appetizers. It’s not like the U.S. when most times the vegetable is served pickled from a Jar or a can. Here they actually take the time to steam it just right, clean it perfectly and serve it my favorite style, a little bit of REAL olive oil and the best of the best Parmesan cheese. I couldn’t stop eating them at every meal and to think for years I opted for Insalata Caprese (tomato and buffalo cheese salad)

romantic vacation recommend: isle of capri, italy

Most of my previous travels are to the main cities or towns within a country in Europe. But a few years back, when I ventured towards the Southern tip of Italy (the booth) I decided to take a ferry to the island of Capri. I must admit I wasn’t disappointed with the choice, even though the ferry schedule a bit unreliable and the frequency less than desirable, the trip was well worth it. The way it works is, after disembarking the ferry from Napoli, you have to take a taxi or a bus up to the top ( Alta Capri). This is where the main town square is and most of the civilization on the island. I did get a bit sick because of the altitude or maybe because of my fear of heights, but every where I looked there was the most beautiful view anyone can imagine. We stayed 3 nights 4 days and because the best way to see a place is by walking. We walked one entire day around the island, actually …

a villa in tuscany – vacation paradise

Between the condo renovation, work hiccups and other matters of family and home, I actually needed a break from the norm today by focusing on my vacation plans for the Fall. Although I love Paris and will consider spending every vacation day there, every single year, I have opted for  a trip to Italy this year because I needed material for my second novel. This time, I am considering  a villa stay in Tuscany just to “veg out”  and get inspired to at least draft the outline for the novel, if not more.  Since that is my plan, I  turned to my favorite site here which I used to use during my travel planning days, to get information about villa rentals abroad. The problem is, most villas house 3 or more vacationers and only a handful are available for just 2 guests. But through my persistance,  I found one villa just perfect for my needs. The problem now is I have to do alot of convincing to hopefully book the villa for our Tuscany portion of the …