breakfast in bondi - top 5 cafes

Bondi Beach is world renown for great surf and a vibrant social scene. It also has a wide range of excellent casual restaurants where you can get locally sourced, fresh, and delicious meals. So to help you narrow down the list of choices, here are what I consider the five best places to grab breakfast […]

Trompe-l'oeil (optical illusion) art works in Nice, France

Located in the heart of the French Riviera, Nice has a lot going for it. Warm, sunny summers; short, mild winters; two world-class art galleries; great food; and a friendly, welcoming atmosphere. Tens of thousands of tourists come each year, but most don’t even notice that some of the most impressive works of art are […]

bondi to coogee coastal walk

The Bondi to Coogee coastal walk is an easily accessible and not too strenuous way to get up close to some of the spectacular coastline in Sydney’s eastern suburbs. The walk hugs the coast for 3 1/2 miles and consists of a gently rolling path with occasional stairs. On sunny days, it provides spectacular photo […]

top travel apps - Google Translate

When traveling in non-English speaking countries and Australia the Google Translate app is my lifeline. In fact, it’s probably the most valuable travel app I’ve got on my smartphone. And the great thing about this free translation tool is that it’s being continually updated by some of the best developers in the business. Which means […]

Photo by Victor Garcia

Overview If you’re looking for cool places to visit in Madrid, you’re in luck. The city is teeming with world-class museums, beautiful architecture, great restaurants, and vibrant public places. This short guide is intended to highlight some of the better known, lesser known, and over-rated attractions in town. Off the Tourist Track Plaza de Oriente […]

Wicklow countryside

View out over County Wicklow, Ireland. Despite being just south of Dublin, which is experiencing a huge internet-fueled building boom, much of Wicklow remains undeveloped. Small towns and patchwork fields bounded by hand-built rock walls line the coast. Inland, wild scrubland prevails, with soft bracken and hearty gorse covering the gently rolling hills.

Survival tips for long bus trips

You might be asking yourself, “Why would anyone need survival tips for long bus trips?” Aren’t long distance bus trips inherently exciting for the solo traveler? Getting all the way from Point A to Point B at a fraction of the cost of flying. Being at eye level with the landscape. Kicking back and soaking […]

Musee des Beaux-Arts

The Musee des Beaux-Arts is one of the smaller art museums in Nice, but it’s one of my favorites. Because it’s somewhat isolated and competes with the world-famous Chagall and Matisse museums, it’s never crowded. That’s everyone else’s loss as far as I’m concerned. What they’re missing is a number of truly beautiful works of art, some […]

Grgur Ninski Statue, Split, Croatia

Twenty-eight foot tall bronze statue of Grgur Ninski (Gregory of Nin) located in Split, Croatia. The statue was originally erected in 1929 within Split’s Diocletian’s Palace, but was moved in the mid-1950s to its current spot just outside the Old Town’s Golden Gate. The statue was created by Croatia’s most famous sculpture, Ivan Meštrović. Other […]

Canal at the Souk Madinat Jumeirah, Dubai

Canal and classically inspired buildings in the Souk Madinat Jumeirah, located just south of the landmark Burj Al Arab Jumeirah hotel. This relatively new souk is designed to look like a traditional Arabian market. In it you’ll find an eclectic mix of quirky shops, art galleries, antique stores, and high-end clothing boutiques. There are also […]

Sacre Coeur, Paris

Sacre Coeur Basilica (Basilica of the Sacred Heart) in the northern suburbs of Paris. Completed in 1914, it’s the second most visited monument in town, with 10 million visitors a year. Only Notre Dame Cathedral had more last year (12 million). With Notre Dame closed for repair following the disastrous April 2019 fire that gutted […]

Best places to sunbathe and swim in Nice

With summer upon us, it seemed like a good time to put together this insider’s guide to the 4 best places to sunbathe and swim in Nice. It contains current and detailed information about my favorite places to cool off and mellow out during the warmer months. As a city spread out along the Mediterranean, […]

Photo by Francisco Cornellana Castells

What is Into the Wild about? Into the Wild is one of those books that speaks to people on a lot of levels, depending on who they are and where they are in life. But one way to view it is as one man’s attempt to figure out how to live the richest, fullest life […]

Pre-departure checklist

Before leaving on any major trip, I always run through a pre-departure checklist that I’ve put together over the nearly 25 years I’ve been traveling. Some of the items on the list are fairly obvious, but I include them anyway on the assumption that nothing is too obvious to be overlooked. I learned this the […]

Miniature Statue of Liberty

Replica of the Statue of Liberty in Nice, France on the promenade behind the Nice Opera House. Erected in 2014, this miniature work commemorates the renovation of the Quai des Etats Unis. The quay, itself, is named after the United States (Etats Unis in French). The quay honors the role America played in helping France […]

travel safely and travel mindfully

The following tips should help you travel safely and travel mindfully when traveling alone. They include issues that you’ll likely have to deal with. Some of them are fairly obvious, like watching out for pickpockets in crowded areas. Others are more subtle, like avoiding putting your bags in the trunk of a taxi if possible. […]

Budapest skyline

Budapest skyline, showing Buda Castle on the western side of the Danube. The current castle and palace complex was constructed in the 18th century and is now home to the Budapest History Museum and the Hungarian National Gallery. Pedestrians coming from the Pest side of the river can get to the Castle by crossing the […]

Irish town

AirBnB is very popular, widespread, and fairly reasonably priced in Ireland. As a result, you’ll find that most towns currently offer a wide variety of rental options to tourists. The first part of this post lets you know what to expect in a typical Irish AirBnB and gives you some advice on what to bring […]

Beaux-arts clock, Musee d'Orsay, Paris

Massive beaux-arts clock hanging inside the Musee d’Orsay in Paris, France. The clock dates to around 1898 and originally overlooked the passenger platforms when the building was used as a train station. When the space was converted into one of Paris’ best art museums in the mid-1980s, the clock was incorporated into the new layout. […]

Greatest television remote ever

Greatest hotel television remote ever. Seven buttons. No fuss. It doesn’t balance your checkbook, turn on your washing machine, or tell you where to go to get sushi at 3 a.m. It simply turns on and off your television and let’s you choose the channel and volume you want.

Irish stew

Although most people planning to go out to dinner wouldn’t select an Irish pub as a destination, there are some mouthwatering Irish dishes that you mightn’t be aware of. And there are also some that you should probably avoid, even though they’re surprisingly popular. The following are 9 delicious dishes and 3 gross ones that […]

Maybe this is what travel gives you—or gives you back, in most cases—that childlike sense of wonder, and with it a kid-style openness where you want to finger-paint with anyone and everyone who shows up. Maybe it’s because people are in such an open state, on the road ready to absorb all the experiences and […]

Desolote beauty in Iceland

Stunning views along a desolate highway in northwestern Iceland. Although the country stretches as far as195 miles north to south and 300 miles east to west, it has a population of only 360,000 people. As a result, there are vast stretches of uninhabited, treeless, barren land between towns. Great for taking panoramic pictures, not so […]

Dominical Bus, Costa Rica

I leave the land of underwater farts A couple of years ago I spent six days in the Manuel Antonio/Quepos area of Costa Rica. And let me tell you, when people in Hell feel a chill, they go to Manuel Antonio/Quepos to warm up. It’s not just blazing hot there, it’s humid like you’ve never […]

Gozo Gossiping statue, Victoria, Malta

Gozo Gossiping sculpture by Gozo native artist Joe Xuereb. Carved from large limestone blocks and standing nearly 6 feet tall, this playful statue is described by Xuereb as representing: . . . figures chattering and whispering, a local characteristic that takes place especially when we meet outdoors. It currently stands near the center of Villa […]