Fresh off the press and some classics

Travel Blog

Long layover in Hong Kong

If you ever have a long layover in Hong Kong and are wondering if it is worth visting the city, do it! It doesn’t matter if you have a 12, 8, or even just 6 hour layover in Hong Kong, it can likely be a cool experience for you. Anything less than that would be difficult, but not impossible. Recently ... Read More »

Travel video: Backpacking in Colombia

travel video colombia

Over the holiday break between 2018-2019 I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to visit Panamá and Colombia. It was my second time in Central/South America as I had previously visited Ecuador for 10 days, spent a brief few days in Costa Rica, and lived in the Caribbean in Puerto Rico for about a year. This trip to Colombia ... Read More »

San Inazio Festival Boise Basque Idaho

San Inazio festival Boise Idaho

This year I had the opportunity to attend the San Inazio festival in Boise, Idaho. San Inazio is an annual festival celebrating the Basque culture and it is hosted by the Basque diaspora in Idaho. The San Inazio festival takes place each July and attracts thousands of visitors both from the old country and USA. There are multiple events each ... Read More »

35 Things to do in Lafayette Louisiana

roble en Lafayette con catedral

Things to do in Lafayette Louisiana Lafayette is a bustling city in southwest Louisiana.  It has been described as a little-big town because of its unique contrast of city life and local Cajun traditions.  It has been nicknamed “Cajun country,” “boomtown,” and “the Cajun heartland,” and it is known worldwide for its specialty foods and spices.  If you ever get the ... Read More »

A walk around Lake Martin

Lake Martin Breaux Bridge (Louisiana) (Picture gallery below) Lake Martin is a place that I have included both in my things to do in Louisiana and things to do in Lafayette.  Lake Martin is a swamp-lake located in Breaux Bridge, just a short drive from downtown Lafayette.  If I am not mistaken, the Lake was originally formed hundreds of years ... Read More »

A Louisiana Crawfish Boil

Inside a Louisiana Style Crawfish Boil Crawfishin’ it’s a Cajun thing The Cajun people have made a name for themselves in recent years. For a long time, Louisiana, thanks to Cajun and other creole cuisines, has developed its reputation for being home to some of the most flavorful food in America. Chefs from all around come to south Louisiana to ... Read More »

Megabus Review – How to use Megabus USA

A Megabus Review If you are living, working, or will soon travel between the U.S., United Kingdom, or Canada, then MegaBus can be a good resource for you.  Especially if you are a budget traveler and do a bit of planning to get tickets at an early bird price. Traditionally, Americans have always been somewhat budget shy when it comes ... Read More »

Little India New York City

bengali food in new york city

New York is a city well-known for its glamour, grandiose streets, and rapid pace of life. However, once one gets past the constant bustle of the city, you start to notice other things that make New York unique. Outside of its attractions and endless events, one can find some of the most ethnically diverse neighborhoods that are compiled of the various ... Read More »

RyanAir Review

RyanAir Review

A RyanAir Review Can you really get 5€ flights with RyanAir? When I tell people how I have found such cheap flights in Europe, I have often been met with skepticism and disbelief as we are so used to paying out the big bucks for a flight. Besides, you usually get what you pay for right? After all, isn’t a ... Read More »

Things to do in Catalina Island California

Avalon Harbor Catalina Island

Catalina Island is part of the group of islands just off the coast of Los Angeles called the Channels. Catalina is a famed weekend getaway from LA as the ferry to the island takes only about 1 hour. Originally home to the Tongva people, the island was colonized by the Spanish, then passed ownership multiple times before becoming part of ... Read More »

Things to do in Burlington Vermont

Stuff to do in Burlington Vermont Vermont is a quiet state tucked away in the historic New England region of the United States.  People who visit Burlington will be surprised to find it is filled with beautiful scenery and landscape.  Vermont has some mountains and great hiking venues, and it makes the perfect destination for a person looking to see ... Read More »

Long Beach Bayou Festival California

The Long Beach Bayou Festival just completed its 32nd annual event paying celebrating the Louisiana Cajun culture with music, food, and the ‘laissez les bons temps rouler’ attitude. Learn more about the Cajun way of life here: http://www.backpackingdiplomacy.com/3… Being from Louisiana, I was quite surprised to learn about a Cajun festival in Long Beach. Even more interesting was that it ... Read More »

Ethnic neighborhoods in NYC

Greenpoint to Manhattan view

Diversity. It’s a word that lots of cities claim, but few actually achieve. There are definitely plenty of cosmopolitan cities, but none seem to capture the essence of the world in a city like New York City. As Jovanotti put it in his song New York for Life, “There’s no place where you can find a piece of every place, ... Read More »

Where to see alligators in Louisiana?

Gator xing alligator crossing sign

Want to see an alligator in Louisiana? Perhaps even hold a baby alligator? Louisiana alligators are an integral part of the ecosystem and frankly Louisiana just wouldn’t be the same without them. When planning your visit to Louisiana seeing an alligator is one of the top things to do! Where is the best place to find one? It depends. It depends ... Read More »

Lafayette Holi Festival

Lafayette Holi Festival 2018 Dhol drum

Holi Lafayette has become one of the most anticipated annual events. In preparation for Holi festival 2018, here’s a tribute video to the Lafayette Holi in Louisiana. Are you prepared to party this spring? In the last few years the adoption of Holi in America has become increasingly widespread. While there are many imitations, few festivals seem to capture the ... Read More »

Ecuador travel tips and advice

Overlooking Quito Ecuador

Recently, completing my article of things to do in Ecuador in 10 days. I thought it would be helpful to add some travel tips and advice for Ecuador as well. Ecuador was my first visit to South America; hopefully the first of many. I’ve been to other LATAM areas such as Mexico, Costa Rica, and lived in on the Caribbean ... Read More »

10 Days in Ecuador itinerary

Puente de Cuyabeno Amazon

Interested in visiting Ecuador, but not sure if 10 days is worth it? I asked myself the same question. Last year I was in transition between jobs and was looking for a new destination to visit. I had not been to South America before and wanted to experience it, especially after spending time traveling in Puerto Rico and backpacking through ... Read More »

Things to do in LA this weekend List

Overlooking downtown Los Angeles from Los Feliz

Los Angeles is an expansive Southern Californian city known for its weather, coastal access, and scenic surrounding terrain. With so much land, there are a lot of things to do in Los Angeles and options for people with different interests. I’ve always been an advocate of getting to know the city you live or visit, which often includes lesser known ... Read More »

Living in Los Angeles without a car

Hollywood sign

Is it even possible to not have a car in LA? So, I relocated to LA from NYC in February to pursue a new opportunity. I didn’t really know what to expect. I’d only been to California once before and ended up with a broken leg. Everyone warned me, moving to Los Angeles without a car is impossible. “You HAVE ... Read More »

New Video: Backpacking in Ecuador

In 2017, I was able to take a short trip to Ecuador. Though brief, the experience was very enriching. I was able to visit 2 of the 3 major regions of the country and see several cities along the way. It was my first time in South America although since then, I have been able to visit Colombia as well. ... Read More »

New York City on Crutches

I’ve spent a lot of my adult years trying to be appreciative for what I have rather than what I do not. Admittedly, this isn’t always an easy task, especially in a world that constantly preaches more. Though life seems to throw things in your direction ever once in a while just to make sure you are holding true to ... Read More »

Street art: Is there a purpose? Plus Mission District

How influential is street art to society? Whenever I visit any new city, I usually look for that one neighborhood that has a unique character to it. It might not be the most visited nor the most recommended of any particular place, but it almost always has a story to tell. A story that might not be verbal. A story ... Read More »

New Video: Traveling in Quebec

My most recent travels have been to Quebec Canada and San Francisco. I’m starting to put up some posts about both now, but am still working on those from Quebec. This video traces my trip with clips from many of the places that I visited including: Montréal, Québec, Canada Québec City, Québec, Canada Hautes-Gorges-de-la-Rivière-Malbaie Saint-Joseph-de-la-Rive (Les Éboulements), Québec, Canada La ... Read More »

Street Art in Montreal Canada

The Artistic Scene in Montreal It has been a few years since I first visited Montreal. Both times have been brief, but enjoyable. Also, I think it has helped that I have visited twice during the summer months as I am not sure that I would fare so well in the winter. The last time I visited, I was interested ... Read More »

My 20 favorite language quotes

Language quotes touching history

And why I like them. In line with my week of posts on the celebration of languages leading up to International Mother Tongue Day, I wanted to make a post about some of my favorite quotes on languages. Some of these quotes have been inspirational over the years in giving me reason and purpose to language learning itself, whereas others ... Read More »

The Importance of localizing your speech

Roman aqueducts in Barcelona

Language learning is a curious personal journey through the mind of each individual speaker who you interact with along the way. There is a funny thing about the importance of changing your way of speaking not only in different situations, but for different people who you speak with. This is something that I’ve found to be necessary in effective communication and ... Read More »

5 Tips to Overcome Language ADD

multiple language books language add

Few things are more daunting to me than having an unquenchable fascination with the world’s languages. It can be a bit overwhelming at times when you have a desire to know them all. I guess what I’m speaking about is a bit of a polyglot problem, or at least this aspiring polyglot’s problem, but it is a real one none ... Read More »

What got me so interested in learning languages

Catania Sicily

I don’t think that I ever actually shared what got me so interested in languages on my blog or why I ever started in the first place. One might guess that it comes from my interests in culture or travel, and those would both be correct, but those aren’t the whole truth. Just a part of it. In the interest ... Read More »

How to ask someone where they are from, nicely

With the title of this article, you might think, well why don’t you just ask them where they are from? Of course this would be the easiest and most direct route, but in my experience it isn’t always the most diplomatic. In fact, it can sometimes be a source of insecurity and alienation, more than you may realize. When I ... Read More »

Is Puerto Rico Safe to Travel In?

The Safety Question of La Isla del Encanto Is Puerto Rico really as dangerous as they say? Dwelling in the topics of safety and travel are not typically terms that I like to associate with one another. In fact, they are typically things that I like to disassociate with one another. However, even I will admit, there is a safety ... Read More »

I almost died in Puerto Rico

But it was totally worth it… Not to over-dramatize things here, but I did have a close call with my end while hiking in the backwoods of Puerto Rico. Now don’t misunderstand me, I am alive and well and live to tell the tale. Even though I had a briefly contracted a mosquito born illness while on the island, the ... Read More »

Fall in Prospect Park New York City

Here are some pictures that I took in Prospect Park in late November when the leaves were changing colors. Prospect Park is one of the best places to relax in NYC! It’s like the Central Park for Brooklyn.     Have a good day! Read More »

The Act of Giving

Last night I saw a unique random act of kindness. Something you don’t see to often in the big city, or maybe it’s just that you don’t notice them as much. It isn’t that people aren’t kind, but rather that they are often too busy with their own lives to see what’s going on around them. Also, I find that the ... Read More »

Travel tips for Puerto Rico

waterfall in puerto rico

Helpful Tips for Traveling in Puerto Rico   1.) Plan out your accommodation beforehand One of the most frustrating things about Puerto Rico is the lack of accommodation, or affordable accommodation, for backpackers. Thousands of tourists visit San Juan annually  and stay in the fancy beach front hotels, or one of the other numerous resorts around the island. However, if ... Read More »

Why Everyone Should Visit New York City

New York’s Energy From My Perspective There has always been something alluring to me about New York City. New York City is not such an easy city to define though. I’ve explored the great Istanbul, walked the streets of the eternal city of Rome, and sat in the cool sand under the most beautiful night sky in the Moroccan Sahara. ... Read More »

The Taino Indians of Puerto Rico

Taino rocks

The Original Boricuas I have been wanting to write an article explaining a side or founding block of Puerto Rican culture that few outside of the island know about. It is a legacy that goes back several hundred years before the arrival of the Europeans and the creation of the so say “new world”. It is a root that has ... Read More »

Street art walking tour in Bushwick

Exploring Bushwick’s Street Art Since I first moved to New York in July, I have been doing my best to explore each of the neighborhoods of New York City. I’ve seen a lot of the ‘international’ neighborhoods, as well as a few others, but have been recently trying to visit a few of the ones closer to where I live. ... Read More »

The Golden Rule of Travel

Rainbow in Puerto Rico

I remember very specifically one time when I was walking around on the streets of Croatia with a British friend that I had met. He had done a fair amount more of traveling than I had at the time. Although our opinions differed in some ways, I remember us talking a lot about why everyone should travel. I think in ... Read More »

Stuff to do in Puerto Rico

When I lived in Puerto Rico, I was always amazed at how little people did on the island. So many people visit the island annually, but completely miss out on what the island has to offer. Puerto Rico might be a strange place, but if offers a dynamic and unique list of things to do. I didn’t do absolutely everything ... Read More »

The Best of Puerto Rico in Photos

Tank on the beach of Culebra

Photo Journey through Puerto Rico I’ve finally reviewed and gone over most of my pictures from Puerto Rico. I’ve concluded with these as being my favorites. These pictures were taken in many places around the island from San Juan to the islands to the rain forests. I have tried to include variety in this so that you can see some ... Read More »

Having a Smart Phone for 1 year, my thoughts

My Thoughts After Having a Smart Phone for 1 Year About a year ago, I finally caved in and tried out the smart phone world. For long before that, I adamantly opposed smart phones and many of these ‘technological conveniences’ as I only saw the negative in them. The negative effects that they have on social situations I mean. I ... Read More »

Why I Walk

Why I Love Walking “Just take the taxi” she said, “it’s only a 5 minute ride.” “Exactly,” I replied. “That’s why I’ll walk.” No matter which country I visit in the world, I am always drawn to the most primitive of exploration methods: walking. I’ve found no way better to get to know a city, a country, or a people ... Read More »

Laundromat Thankfulness

Life lesson: Being Grateful The other day I went to drop off my laundry at a local laundromat. The lady greeted me with her usual big smile took my things and weighed them and proceeded to make the receipt with the computer. Drifting away momentarily, I imagined that if I were asked to describe her, I don’t think that I ... Read More »

Graffiti in Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico’s street art scene I think that few people really ever enjoy the street art scene in Puerto Rico. San Juan in of itself, has some great works by some very renown artists. One of the things that I noticed a lot was there are many works that are attempting to beautify areas of the city that are otherwise ... Read More »

Tips for Getting Around Puerto Rico

Driving in Puerto Rico and the Various Alternatives Should you? Transportation in Puerto Rico and Tips for Getting Around the Island I recently spent 8 months living in Puerto Rico. I know that a lot of Americans, and other foreigners, would ask lots of questions about getting around Puerto Rico via public transportation and/or driving around the island, riding a ... Read More »