The Great Wall of China

Last fall marked my first trip to mainland China, and as the Great Wall was at the top of our bucket list, we headed to Beijing to see the sights and visit one of the most spectacular man-made structures in the world. From our home base in Beijing, we hired the wonderful John Yellowcar to drive us out to the Mutianyu section of the Great Wall. We chose Mutianyu after much Trip Advisor research, as this was the section of the wall with a chair lift up and a toboggan ride down (the cheesy tourist in me loved the idea of the toboggan ride, and it proved to be incredibly fun). Mutianyu is also not as crowded as some of the other sections, such as Badaling. We were able to hike along the wall for several hours, enjoying the view from each of the watchtowers along our route. Read More ›

Portugal in Winter

In 2012, my closest friends and I decided to go all out for our 30th birthdays. Spread out around the world, we were obliged to choose a central destination, with the added stipulation that none of us had been there before—a tall order when your group consists of seven passionate travelers! After back-and-forth emails and Skype sessions, we agreed to Portugal, a beautiful country offering an array of experiences in one. We explored a bustling city, hiked through lush green forests, and waded into the ocean. Read More ›

Scenes from Paris

Summer strolls on quiet side streets abounded for our family this past summer, when we spent the month of August exploring one of our most loved cities – Paris. Grateful for a time to recharge and be inspired, we spent 30 glorious days drinking in the language, sites, and wine that the city had to offer. Read More ›