Exploring Santa Cruz California

Santa Cruz boardwalk merry go round

Santa Cruz Santa Cruz is a town located at the northern edge of Monterey Bay, about an hour south of San Jose. It is known primarily for its beach, its surfing, and its university. It has plenty of places to stroll, relax and people watch. The Beach Boardwalk is home to an amusement area with [Read more …]

Seattle Washington Hotels

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This post is a compilation of the hotels we have stayed at in Seattle Washington over the years. W Seattle 2021: We used our points to stay at the W Hotel in downtown Seattle for our 5-night stay (when you use points, you get the 5th night free). The hotel is very conveniently located 1 [Read more …]

Port Townsend Washington

Jefferson County Courthouse

The Olympic Peninsula is a scenic peninsula just 2 hours east of Seattle Washington. It is filled with steep, glacier-clad mountains, a conifer rain forest, rushing streams, and waterfalls. Most of its area is wilderness and is devoted to Olympic National Park. We began our trip to the area with a stop to one of [Read more …]

Sitka Alaska

Sitka Saint Michael

This is our third trip to Alaska. We first visited Alaska in 1980. As budget-minded tourists, we used the Alaskan ferry system to travel around to the various areas we wanted to visit. Our second visit was in 2011 where we revisited some favorite spots as well as some new ones. Travel Itinerary: The Alaskan [Read more …]

Vail Colorado

Slackline demonsration

Vail Colorado is in Eagle County in Colorado. At over 8,000 feet it is home to the highest ski mountain in Colorado. It is not one of our favorite towns. We are not skiers and we tend to not like these types of tourist cities. But the Swiss-themed city is conveniently located for when we [Read more …]

Denver Colorado 2021

Capital Hill Mansion B&B

Denver Colorado is the main place to fly into from San Francisco if you are heading to the Colorado mountains. In June 2021, we managed to hit the city during one of its hot spells, with temperatures around 100. Having only a single afternoon in the central city area didn’t give us a lot of [Read more …]

Bruges—From Fishing Village to Tourist Mecca

Bruges - Swans

The Rise of Bruges Belgium Bruges Belgium began as a small fishing village in the 2nd century AD. As citizens began raising sheep. the village evolved into a trading port around wool exports, and increasingly around the cloth that it wove. While it initially traded with a growing number of communities, it was vulnerable to [Read more …]

Beaune France

Beaune Town Hall or Hotel de Ville

What’s not to love about visiting France’s Burgundy Region? We love its foods, its wines and its atmosphere. We were last there 7 years ago and it was time to get back. Beaune France is the largest city that is specifically in the Burgundy Wine Region. It is also one of our favorite small French [Read more …]

Geneva Switzerland

Geneva - place des trente immortelles de geneve

The importance of this global, cosmopolitan city belies its small size of fewer than 200,000 residents. Although Geneva is a second-tier financial center, its more important role is as the headquarters city for more than 250 international organizations including the United Nations and the International Red Cross and Red Crescent (the latter of which was [Read more …]

Switzerland’s Scenic Alps Part One, Matterhorn

Chur railway administration building

It wasn’t supposed to work out this way. We originally planned to spend a day in Zurich, followed by a day in St. Moritz and another day on an end-to-end train trip (from St. Moritz to Zermatt) on the Glacier Express, one of the most iconic and scenic train trips in the world. We didn’t [Read more …]