travel stories

Palcoyo Mountain

Palcoyo Mountain: A Hidden Gem Near Cusco to See Now

A man stood with a llama. Or maybe an alpaca. I’m still struggling to differentiate the two.

He wore a multicolored poncho. Rainbow-colored lines — likely made from llama fur — ran horizontally across his midsection and vertically across his arms.

A pink cap, also lined with various shapes and patterns, sat on his head.

He stood there, posing for pictures for the tourists that trickled by. He and his two llamas smiled graciously in each photo, proud to show off their heritage.

Arequipa in Peru: How to Travel in The White City

I stepped out of the airport after landing in Arequipa in Peru. I breathed in; the cool air filled my nostrils like standing in front of an air conditioner.

The air was thin and noticeably so. With each breath, my lungs only filled to about 80%. I gasped like Spongebob in Sandy’s Dome.

Laguna de Salinas: A Peru Salt Desert You Need to See Now

The van careened around the sharp turn on the bumpy dirt road, the wheels tracing the edge like a five-year-old trying to stay in the lines. I glanced out the window to my left and quickly looked forward again.

If you used this ride as the sole example, you’d have no idea that buses of people visit Laguna de Salinas every day. But, it’s what lies at the end of this terrifying ride that made the cleanup of my underpants well worth it.

Observations From a Train in Vietnam

Is that a foot? I think to myself.

I’m not a trained podiatrist or anything, but it did look like a foot.

It poked out from underneath the bench opposite me. Long toenails threatened to cut a nearby backpack open if they came in contact with it.

I nudged my girlfriend, Kaitlyn, and my friend Donovan and pointed to the floor at the rogue body part.

They both grimaced. The corners of their lips furled, their noses lifted, and their eyes squinted in disgust.

“Is that a f—ckin’ foot?” Donovan asked.

Travel Fatigue and How to Avoid It

It sounds ridiculous, right? Travel fatigue? I can already hear many people groaning and saying, “Oh, cry me a river. I’d love to travel as much as you get to!”

And, I don’t necessarily disagree. Full-time travelers are fortunate.

But that doesn’t mean there aren’t negative aspects to this lifestyle. There are pros and cons to everything in life, and travel is no different.

The beautiful Peace Pagoda in Pokhara Nepal

Travel After Dark Chronicles: So They Call It the Peace Pagoda?

“I think we need to go this way,” I said as I pointed down a narrow street that ran parallel with the river.

We had been walking for about 45 minutes, unsure if we were still headed in the correct direction or if we were going to continue wandering aimlessly around this section of Pokhara.

We set out with the intention to hike to the Peace Pagoda. But if you can’t even find the start of the trail, how successful are you really going to be at navigating your way to the end?

Vietnam

Why I Will Return to Vietnam

Vietnam is my favorite country on this planet. I’ve mentioned this repeatedly in past posts. That’s why I was so shocked when I read Nomadic Matt’s post about why he’d never return to Vietnam. The swindling, overcharging, and mistreatment left a bad taste in his mouth.

Admittedly, he’s since adjusted and strongly encourages people to visit Vietnam. It’s always great to keep an open mind to things, even if you had a bad experience the first time.

Yet, his post was still an intriguing read to me. As I read, I tried to square the Vietnam he experienced with the one I experienced when I visited in 2017—a full 10 years after him.

Pokhara is a beautiful city, but getting food poisoning isn't so beautiful

Travel After Dark: Food Poisoning in Pokhara

“Man, this dhal bhat is delicious!” my girlfriend, Kaitlyn, said as she ate a large helping.

We were sitting in a small, local restaurant in Pokhara, Nepal, that had been recommended to us by a random man we met while we were in Vietnam.

I address him as a “random man” because we didn’t even take the time to get his name. But not getting someone’s name is no reason to turn down their restaurant recommendation.

Roadrunner: A Film About Anthony Bourdain

Roll the Credits: Thoughts on Roadrunner and Anthony Bourdain

One moment from Roadrunner: A Film About Anthony Bourdain stood out more than any other. Maybe it stood out for you, too. And it wasn’t a moment I want to remember.

Bourdain is in Hong Kong, speaking to a pair of Iranian refugees at dinner. Tony opens up by asking, “What is your hope?”

The man pauses briefly before saying, “To be honest, I—um—I’m not a big fan of hope.” But before he could finish, Tony interrupts him. He and the camera crew wanted to reposition to get a better shot.

I cringed at the moment.