Category — Markets + Shopping

{itineraries} 3 Days in London – Off the Beaten Path (With or Without Kids!)

Having been to London quite a few times, on a recent trip I decided to try some activities and itineraries that are decidedly off the beaten path. It was so much fun to avoid the crowds of Big Ben, Piccadilly Circus, and Buckingham Palace and get into some spaces and places that were less clogged by tourists yet even more enjoyable.

london off the beaten path cutty

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August 14, 2015   No Comments

{bella roma} My Favorite Things to Do and Eat in Rome

Since tonight I officially returned to my Italian lessons after a 6 month hiatus, I was inspired to share my Rome travel guide. I have emailed this list of recommendations to so many people, but somehow it has never made it onto the blog. I’m excited to report all of my favorite things to do and eat in Rome, organized by neighborhood. I can’t wait to go back so I can expand this list even further!

rome street

Centro Storico [Read more →]

July 7, 2014   1 Comment

{travelogue} I Went to Hanoi, and All I Did Was Eat and Take Pictures. If That Sounds Good to You, Read This

Hanoi is a fun, vibrant, dirty, smoggy, incredible city that I can’t recommend highly enough. It’s modern and old-fashioned and surprising and busy. It’s Vietnam with a French Instagram filter.

hanoi 2

Just when you can’t take almost being run over by 22 dozen mopeds anymore, you can duck into a soothing courtyard oasis and eat something wonderful. And in hindsight, I spent nearly a week there and basically all I did was eat and take pictures. So if that sounds good to you, keep reading!

hanoi1 [Read more →]

June 12, 2014   No Comments

{travelogue} Street Eats and Spicy Stuff; Crickets and Craft Beer: A Second Time Around in Shanghai

I recently went back to what I think might be my #1 favorite Chinese city: Shanghai. I have met so many Westerners who tell me they don’t like Shanghai, but I think the problem is that it’s like New York or London or any other huge metropolis: it is so big and there are so many things to do that it can be hard to crack past the touristy spots and get into the real Shanghai. But once you figure out what to do and where to go, it is a fantastic cosmopolitan destination that should be on everyone’s short list.

detail of stone carving

This trip, we made a point of discovering great street food, trying restaurants that represent cuisine from different parts of China, and exploring some hidden treasures. Here are my recommendations to help you figure out all of the very best things to do in Shanghai. And be sure to read my previous post for a complementary set of recommendations so you’ll be totally well-versed on all that’s great about this busy city!

January 29, 2014   No Comments

{a few of my favorite things} 8 of the Coolest Artist-Made Holiday Gifts You Can Give this Year (for $50 or Less!)

Each holiday season I try to buy local, artist-made goods to support my community and the creative class at large. No Walmart for me!

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Here are some of the coolest things I’ve found this shopping season – and they’re all made by individual craftspeople and artists, and they are all really special. If you happen to slip any of them into my stocking… well, let’s just say I wouldn’t mind.

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December 4, 2013   No Comments

{10 second vacation} Winter Weekend in Monterey, California

Monterey is most famous for its fabulous aquarium, but the area boasts lots of other charms. If you can largely avoid the tacky, touristy Cannery Row area you are in for a real treat. A 10 minute drive down the peninsula will put you in the quaint town of Carmel, so it’s really like a two-for-one! Point Lobos State Reserve is one of the absolute gems of the California coastline – and rivals many a national park in beauty and sights. You can spot sea lions, tide pools, and hidden beaches at nearly every turn. 

There are lots of fancy spots to try, and I do enjoy a sunset drink with bagpipes with the upper crust at The Inn at Spanish Bay, but I find myself gravitating more to the down-home dives for meals… like an early morning stop on funky Fisherman’s Wharf to hit up Loulou’s for creme brulee-style oatmeal or enormous pancakes, or chicken shawerma lunch with fluffy pita and garlicky sauce at teeny-tiny Paprika Cafe. To warm up, try a big sourdough bread bowl of creamy clam chowder at Schooner’s right over the water. For more Monterey recommendations, check out this article with tons of great suggestions. 

gibson beach point lobos ca

Gibson Beach

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November 25, 2013   2 Comments

{ask me anything about anywhere} 3 Days in Big Sur and Hearst Castle?

People ask me for travel advice all the time, and sometimes I just don’t get around to blogging about it in advance. Here’s your chance to ask me anything about anywhere! If I have any good intel–I’ll gladly share it with you.

The question: My husband and I are taking a 3 night trip to celebrate my 40th birthday – and leaving our 3 kids at home with Grandma! We want to go somewhere driveable from the San Francisco Bay Area. Where should we go, and what should we do once we get there?

 

big sur

November 5, 2013   1 Comment

{travel tips} Zürich in Summer

I’m just back from a trip to Switzerland and Italy, and wanted to share all of my favorite things in Zürich before I forget them. Zürich in the summer is a wonderful place to visit, with so much to do!

zurich river

Things to do in Zürich

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September 9, 2013   2 Comments

{travelogue} Maui Update: More Favorite Eats and Activities Around the Island

I love Maui – it’s one of my favorite places in the whole world. I have written previously about some of my favorite places to eat and visit in Maui, but that post mostly covered the Western part of the island. Since then, I have made enough repeat visits to explore most other parts of the island as well. Here is a second round of suggestions for great things to eat and do on Maui!

aloha

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August 5, 2013   1 Comment

{travel tips} 21 Fabulous and Unique Things to Do and Eat in Paris

Today is Bastille Day, so I thought this seemed like an appropriate time to offer my top recommendations for Paris. Paris can be overwhelming, but after several visits I have distilled this list down to my all-time favorite things to do (and eat) in La Ville-Lumière. Since it’s me we’re talking about, they are mainly food-focused, but I’ve thrown a few cultural recommendations in to round it out!

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21 Fabulous and Unique Things to Do and Eat in Paris  [Read more →]

July 14, 2013   2 Comments