Fresh off the press and some classics

Travel Blog

Storming the Beaches: A Normandy Review

A Normandy Review in Pictures Looking back at time spent on the beaches of Normandy As I approached the edge of the cliff overlooking the English Channel, I could hardly help but notice the pristine beauty of Normandy, France (Normandie in French).  While my mind drifted from beauty to chaos, I could nearly imagine the tragedy of death and war, which littered the ... Read More »

Respecting Culture when you Travel

How to make it happen One of my greatest adventures in traveling is cultural immersion.  I usually take it a step further than most would consider normal, but I am alright with that.  Most would say that it is too difficult when you are traveling to adhere to all cultures.  This notion is true to a certain extent, but I ... Read More »

Andy, ¿Dondé has estado? What’s this BigBlogExchange Business?

Excuses, Excuses and the Big Blog Exchange (Explanation of the BigBlogExchange Included below) Hey all, I know I haven’t been at my usually 2-3 articles per week, but I have an excuse or at least a few of them.  I apologize for being slightly MIA (missing in action) on my blog, but I am doing my best to produce articles ... Read More »

A Photo Essay of the Balkan War

The Lasting Effects of the Yugoslavian Civil War A story in picture form If you got a chance to read my article Tales from the Balkans, I tried to give an overview of what the Balkans are really like these days.  A once unified yet presently strongly disunited people torn by politics, religion, and ethnicity.  The Balkans is home to ... Read More »

Language Learning Reviews: Livemocha and Duolingo

Language Learning Program Reviews A match made in polyglot heaven? UPDATE: This article was written several years ago before Rosetta Stone purchased LiveMocha. My opinions of LiveMocha are no longer good. I’d recommend only using DuoLingo, which is a great free language learning software for several European languages. LiveMocha used to be a great tool and resource, but has been ... Read More »

4 Places to Visit in Belgium

4 Cities in Belgium A Guest Post by Travel Infographics Belgium is a very complex country. In the north you have the Flemish (or Dutch depends who’s asking) speaking population of Flanders. In the south you have the French-speaking population of Wallonia. Belgium is a bit of an underdog when it comes to places to visit it has the culinary ... Read More »

Liebster Award Recipient and Versatile Blogger Award

The Liebster Award Many great things are happening here at BackpackingDiplomacy.com.  Outside of writing for my loyal followers and meeting amazing travel bloggers from around the world, I was recently recognized by two separate bloggers for the Liebster Award, and by one for the Versatile Blogger Award.  Thanks to Renee(Travelwithrenee – @reneestravels) and Chris and Heather (Tourist Guide Central – @touristguidec), I was afforded the ... Read More »

How to maintain your professional network when you travel

Keeping in touch with your network There comes a time in every traveler’s life, when they must decide between going back to a stable and steady life, or continuing on a path of adventure: the nomadic lifestyle.  Few will choose the latter, and most will move on to other things in life.  In another article I argued the point, why ... Read More »

Mardi Gras 2013

New Orleans and Lafayette Mardi Gras 2013 A few highlights in photo form Over the years Mardi Gras has become an increasingly famous celebration for all.  Louisiana, particularly New Orleans, has become famous for its annual Mardi Gras.  Mardi Gras is a festive celebration of partying, beads, floats, and more.  If you wish to read more on Mardi Gras, please ... Read More »

When you have overstayed your host’s welcome

Overstaying your welcome Knowing when it’s time to leave  Staying with people while traveling is a great way to experience local culture on a personal level.  A person gets to experience what everyday life is like for people in the area and can be shown some of the better things in town by those who know it best.  Furthermore, staying with ... Read More »

Unique world languages

Interesting World Languages A few unique world languages to share Languages are what drive our world.  Many believe that the art of communication goes hand-in-hand with man’s development.  As we have improved our communication, we have improved our world, to an extent at least.  From the very first grunts to sophisticated debates and public forums, languages have evolved in a ... Read More »

Best Breakfast in Lafayette La Louisiana

Breakfast in Lafayette La The best in Cajun Breakfast from Lafayette Louisiana Personally, I am a huge fan of breakfast food.  Breakfast is not only the most important and nutritious meal of the day; it is also the most delicious, depending on where you go of course.  There are many great breakfast places in Lafayette La.  They are all known ... Read More »

How you can support fellow Travel bloggers

Helping fellow Travel Bloggers How we can build community  The internet started not too long ago as a unilateral system of static webpages and read-only content.  There was no such thing as interactions, especially not through comments nor social media.  The best that you could do was to email someone and hope for a reply.  Blogging has revolutionized the internet ... Read More »

What Traveling Teaches You

Things you Learn when Traveling Traveling teaches us many things.  In fact, traveling changes us in many ways.  We are always challenged by the life experiences that we have, regardless of whether those experiences are at home are abroad.  Life tests us, pushes us, and eventually we find out who we are and where we stand. For those who listen, ... Read More »

When to start learning another language?

About those Languages I write a lot about language learning and different world languages.  Although, I do not know many well, I thoroughly enjoy studying, comparing, and learning new words in another language.  The very construction of language as a form of communication interests me.  I have written multiple articles on ways to learn a langauge, practice a language and ... Read More »

Armenian Orthodox Church in Baton Rouge

A Christmas Service with Armenians International at home: Article 1 Not long ago I wrote an article titled, “How to be international without leaving home.” My intent with writing that article, was to give an introduction to this series.  I am going to begin writing articles, when applicable, about international events close to my home.  To show people how they ... Read More »

Interesting World Documentaries

World Documentaries Online A few good films that will make you think I don’t spend too much time watching TV anymore.  In fact, I don’t think that I will have a TV when I eventually move to a new residence.  If I do watch TV, I will usually spend my time watching History, Discovery, Comedy, Nat Geo, the Travel Channel, ... Read More »

The Louisiana King Cake

The King Cake Tradition The Louisiana King Cake and the legacy it leaves This past Sunday I went to a French King Cake celebration with some friends.  At the celebration we shared both a French King Cake and a Louisiana King Cake in accordance with tradition.  After eating both cakes, I thought that it’d be a good idea to share ... Read More »

All About Mardi Gras

Guide to Mardi Gras A quick practical guide to Mardi Gras from a local A brief history of Mardi Gras Mardi Gras is a festival with deep tradition.  Tracing its oldest roots from European masquerade parties, Mardi Gras has crossed the sea and established itself in Louisiana.  The first Mardi Gras of the United States actually took place in Mobile, ... Read More »

Things to do in Baton Rouge

 What to do in Baton Rouge A few highlights from the capital city of Louisiana Louisiana is known for its colorful personality and overall happy lifestyle.  Louisiana’s capital city, Baton Rouge, is located in the south-central part of the State and does its best to uphold this lifestyle.  Baton Rouge is actually not known for being the most exciting city ... Read More »

Fun Things to do in Detroit

A Quick List of Touristy Things to do in Detroit Mi With a few that aren’t so touristy Detroit Hotspots If you have some time, I think that you’d enjoy my article on: Is Detroit that bad?  In addition I have a photo essay of some pictures that I took while in Detroit. Detroit is a unique America city because of ... Read More »

Cultural Immersion

Peruvian Market

How to immerse yourself in a culture The best way to get to know something is to become it One of the biggest goals of mine when traveling is cultural immersion.  Cultural immersion is a huge topic to me because I believe it to be the only way to truly experience another country.  When I travel, I spend almost all ... Read More »

Which language should you learn?

What language should you learn? Some food for thought on choosing a language Deciding which language you should learn requires a bit of thought.  The thought process for choosing a language will vary somewhat depending on the person, goals, and linguistic background.  There are currently between 6,000-7,400 languages in the world, which is down significantly from pre-colonial numbers.  Experts believe that ... Read More »

Why Robert Frost took the road less traveled

An Personal Analysis of the Road not Taken What do his words really mean to me? “The two roads diverged in a wood, and I, I took the one less traveled by and that has made all the difference.” – Robert Frost (The road not taken) After reading this poem a few times, it is right for one to wonder ... Read More »

Parish Brewery Review

Parish Brewing Company A local Louisiana brewery – Free Beer Tasting and Tours on Saturday The other day I found out about a local micro-brewery just outside of Lafayette, Louisiana.  Skeptical at first, I believed nothing so unique could be established just minutes from where I live. I should be so lucky. Fortunately, I found out about Parish Brewery through ... Read More »

5 Point Diplomacy: Leaving a good impression

How to leave a favorable impression with internationals There is a new buzz phrase associated with diplomacy.  The phrase is not completely synonymous with the idea of new diplomacy, but it is close.  The phrase is soft diplomacy.  Soft diplomacy refers to the notion that you relate to people on a personal level and learn differences among one another through ... Read More »

Reasons to travel without a Smart Phone

Going ‘old school’ when traveling It wasn’t too long ago that people had to carry currencies around for all the countries that the intended to visit.  They had maps, phone numbers, phrase books, boarding passes, and anything else that was absolutely essential to life.  The idea of all of those things coming together through a computer was but a figment ... Read More »

Turkey in Pictures

Photos of Turkey A little bit over a year ago, I was traversing Turkey.  I learned a great deal from traveling through Turkey and I will always remember my time there.  Turkey is an amazing country with a beautiful landscape and an even more colorful history.  Turkey is a perfect blend of European and Islamic cultures with noticeable influences from ... Read More »

An exclusive interview with Savannah Grace

Savannah Grace The girl who grew her boobs in China 1.)    Give us a brief bit about yourself (I.e. family, where you are from, etc.) My name is Savannah Grace, born and raised in North Vancouver, Canada. I’m the youngest and probably least adventurous member of a very adventurous family. By the age of 7 they’d already dragged me through ... Read More »

Symbols of Louisiana

Famous Symbols of Louisiana Louisiana is characterized in many ways by its uniqueness as a state.   This is true because of its cultural heritage, foods, and insatiable lust for passing a good time.  In addition to these attributes, Louisiana is well-defined by several symbols that are unmistakably connected with the State.  Below is a list of some famous symbols of Louisiana. Crawfish – Crawfish ... Read More »

13 Travel Resolutions for 2013

Travel Resolutions for the New Year It is that time of year again.   As we reflect over this past year’s events.  We’ve seen trials; we’ve seen tribulations.  We’ve been tested. We’ve experienced, and we’ve grown.  We are thankful for the holiday time that we spent with family and friends.  We anxiously awaited our ever impending Mayan induced zombie apocalypse.  Now, ... Read More »

A life lesson from a Bengali Boy

A Boy in Bengal The other day I was talking with a good friend of mine and he told me a story that I’d like to share.  We were discussing difficult life decisions and he gave me a bit of wisdom that I won’t soon forget.  A life lesson from the road. There was once a young boy in Bengal. ... Read More »

Comedians: A force for soft diplomacy?

Can comedians help with diplomacy? The other day one of my friends showed me a video of an Iranian-American comedian who was making light of several issues regarding Middle-Eastern foreign policy.  Since then, I have been considering the topic of soft diplomacy and how a comedian could be a force in diplomatic matters. There are many different diplomatic approaches.  Over ... Read More »

The Duty of a Traveler

A traveler’s duty Often, we as travelers find ourselves indulging in the many pleasures of life on the road.  We get to see some of the most amazing things that the world has to offer.  We get to meet wonderful people from every corner of Earth; and all the while, we have a good time doing it.  In traveling though, ... Read More »

An Afternoon in Abita

Abita Springs, Louisiana When one is asked to think of a place that exemplifies community while carrying a status of a true southern Louisiana establishment, few towns fit the description like Abita Springs.  Abita Springs is located just outside of Covington, Louisiana on the north shore of Lake Pontchartrain.  Abita Springs is not a large city, but rather a small ... Read More »

Comparing nuns to muslim women (Photos)

Nuns and Muslim Women: Is there a difference? With the rise of religious tension heating up around the world, one begins to wonder which of these tensions are justified and which ones aren’t.  Seemingly, the latest trend has been a contrast between ‘Muslim‘ people and the Western world.  Much like Christianity, Islam is one of the largest 3 religions in ... Read More »

How to be international without leaving home

Being international at home This is an introduction of an upcoming series that I’ll have regarding how to fulfill your passion for travel without ever leaving home.  It is easy for people who are constantly able to travel to forget what it’s like not to be traveling.  However, there are many people out there who have the traveling soul, but ... Read More »

Words and Phrases you should know in every Language

Best words to know in a language: The Big 5 In traveling, few things are more cherished by me than the preservation of culture.  I believe that as travelers, we have a responsibility with the places that we visit to respect them and their culture.  In exchange for our respect, we are shown the world. Language learning is not natural to everyone. ... Read More »

Louisiana words you won’t be able to spell, even after visiting

Louisiana words Louisiana has a very colorful history.  Many people don’t know that Louisiana’s history is still closely relevant today.  You might notice it purely in the culture.  Or perhaps, in the cities; however, if nothing else, you will most definitely notice its history by the names you see when you visit Louisiana.  Many cities, towns, rivers, lakes, and even ... Read More »

Great Small Towns in Louisiana for Photography

Small Towns in Louisiana Louisiana is truly one of the more unique states in the United States.  I say that, not because I am from the state, but because I have seen what many of the others have to offer.  Granted, each state has something unique about it, and there are some really beautiful places around America.  Because of Louisiana’s ... Read More »

Morocco Photos

Morocco Photos  Some pictures of Morocco This past summer, I was afforded the opportunity to spend some time in Morocco.  Before going to Morocco, I had never been to continental Africa.  I had only been to a few places, which were predominately Muslim such as Bosnia and Turkey.  I didn’t really know what to expect when I visited Morocco, but ... Read More »

3 International Marketing Blunders You Shouldn’t Forget

International Marketing Blunders As our world becomes more and more globalized, it seems that the need for businesses to expand, localize, and broaden their horizons is forever changing.  Nowadays, businesses need to be aware of the impact that their products are making around the world as well as how they are received by locals.  International marketing is where many of ... Read More »

25 Lessons I’ve Learned by 25

What I’ve Learned from the Road This article is about what I’ve learned from being on the road and traveling parts of the world. 1.) Never pass up an opportunity to do something new.  You might not get a second chance.  You really never know what you can learn from one experience no matter how small or insignificant it may seem. ... Read More »

The many faces of the Louisiana Fleur-de-Lis

The Louisiana Fleur-de-Lis Although the fleur-de-lis has been symbolic in France and Italy for centuries, the symbol has become undertaken a much deeper and cultural meaning with the state of Louisiana.  Over the years the fleur-de-lis has been cited for having religious, status, and even  personal meanings. Today, the fleur-de-lis is an iconic symbol of Louisiana taking many forms.  Businesses, ... Read More »