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Florence

Florence

The city is as much a masterpiece as the works of art that reside there.
The narrow streets of the Centro Storico, lively Piazzas, and views from across the Arno of seemingly endless red tile roofs stay in your memory forever. To walk in the footsteps of the great Renaissance artists is an inspiration for all who are fortunate enough to visit.
Depending upon how much time you have there, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by all the museums to cover. Our advice, pick a few, there are the obvious must-sees, and leave enough time to do what is so magical about Italy. Wander. Explore. And take time to just stop and smell the roses.
Venice

Venice

Another daunting task, to offer some new perspective on a destination written about in countless blogs, travel guides, magazines…everywhere!

Well, what we offer you here is quite simply what we learned and experienced, and what made it magical for us. We hope you’ll enjoy reading our story, seeing the beautiful images, and find it useful if you or someone you know is going…or if you’ve been, rekindle the memories you cherish…and as always, please comment on what we may have missed.

Prior to our trip we heard all the negative stories. Venice is overrun with selfie-stick tourists. It can be dirty, smelly, hot…sound like most other big cities in the world? But we found a magic unlike any other city in the world. And with that here is our list of Magical Moments.

Phuket

Phuket

Our trip to Thailand was very special and personal for us. Our daughter went there to teach English, and we hadn’t seen her in seven months. We’re so proud of her courage and determination to set off on such an adventure. She had her ups and downs for sure, but as usual, proved to everyone that whatever you set your mind to can be accomplished.

So, this post will have several chapters, since we did and saw so much on this trip of a lifetime…let’s start with where to stay in Phuket.

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Prague

Prague

We’re thrilled to feature our first guest blogger, our dear friend Jean Devlin…sharing her travel adventures and stunning photography.

When it comes to foreign travel, I try to familiarize myself with basic words and phrases of the native language. My language acquisition hit some serious roadblocks when it came to Czech and the only word I could remember was pivo, which means beer. Fortunately, that really came in handy and better yet, most merchants and waitstaff speak decent English in the city.

Prague is a beautiful city that deserves a visit. Most of the main attractions are within walking distance of each other, which is good because though the metro system is simple to navigate, trying to figure out how to pay for a ticket is extremely difficult. Personally, I’d rather be above ground, soaking in the sites instead of riding on a subway anyway. The Vlatva River divides Prague, with the Little Quarter and the Prague castle on one side of the river and the Old Town and New Town on the other.

The Charles Bridge is a beauty and not to be missed and we crossed over it many, many times during our visit. I’ll get into my observations on that later.

When in Rome

When in Rome

OK, so its pretty daunting to even try to write something unique about Rome. What hasn’t already been said about the eternal city? So, I’m just going to write about a few things that simply made me so happy I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else in the world at that moment. And I can close my eyes and remember what it was that made the moments so special. Hopefully, you’ll find some some inspiration here if you’re going, plan to go, or can relate to if you’ve been. And you’ll close your eyes and relive some very special moments.

Our favorite Piazzas in Rome.

Traveler Pics

Traveler Pics

There is no debate: Instagram is having a profound affect on the travel industry. Now six years old, Instagram has more than 500 million active users sharing an average of 80 million photos a day. Influencers with large followings are being tapped by destinations worldwide to inspire those followers to visit. Some say it’s causing overcrowding of once undiscovered places, while other feel that tourism brings the awareness needed to protect those places.

In my humble opinion, the beautiful places of the world are meant to be shared and experienced. The special places we all dream about are not ours to own, though we need to find a way to responsibly share them with each other. Travel mindfully, respect the environment, and respect one another’s space, and keep seeking out those unexpected adventures that happen when we wander off the beaten path.

Now that that is said…here are a few of my favorite Instagramers that are inspiring me to grab my camera (or my phone) and get out there.

The Quarter

The Quarter

Ahhh, Nawlins niightlife…if you’ve been, you know what we’re talking about. From the elegant historic restaurants, Preservation Hall Jazz, to over-the-top, anything goes, party-all-night Bourbon Street, it’s all there. And everyone’s invited…

But during those sultry days of exploring the alleys and architecture in the French Quarter, there’s nothing quite like enjoying the classic watering holes, offering cool, refreshing, specialty cocktails and local delicacies in one-of-a-kind gathering places where you’ll share your adventures with new friends on both sides of the bar. Here are our top five:

Pochuck

Pochuck

There’s nothing quite like a discovery in your own backyard. And since our backyard is the great state of New Jersey, we’re always on the lookout for something a bit different and off the beaten path…and in this case the path is unlike any other.

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San Antonio

San Antonio

We love New Orleans…(OK, kind of off topic, right?). It’s usually our first choice for a long weekend away for sooooo many reasons (but that’s a story to come). Point is, we wanted somewhere we hadn’t been. And there’s nothing quite like someplace new. So, off to San Antonio, which we must say, exceeded our expectations…and the bar was set quite high.

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  • Yes, it was a business trip, but had to take an evening stroll down Lower Broadway. Gotta love Nashville!
  • 'Over every mountain there is a path, although it may not be seen from the valley.'-Theodore Roethke
  • A long ride through New England on a sunny Fall day. Rowell's Covered Bridge in West Hopkinton, New Hampshire, over the Contoocook River. The Long truss bridge was completed in 1853.
  • A great day to be out exploring. Along the Appalachian Trail climbing the ' Stairway to Heaven'. It was a challenge, but Gracie and I knocked it out!
  • 'Sometimes it takes a wrong turn to get you to the right place.'-Mandy Hale
  • 'Above the cloud with its shadow is the star with its light. Above all things reverence thyself.-'Pythagoras
  • Quote from my favorite author!!
'My escape is to just get in a boat and disappear on the water.'-Carl Hiaasen
  • The sun will come out tomorrow...🎶
  • A great day to explore the Manasquan Reservoir. A five mile hike in our beautiful garden state. These submerged trees gave a cool, eerie feeling under a grey sky. Highly recommended!