Living in New Orleans, Florida is my go-to destination when I’m in need of a good dose Vitamin D or a quick escape. I’ve travelled all over the state, though most of my visits have been concentrated on the Emerald Coast.
Since I now have family that live on the Atlantic side, we’ve been venturing there a few times a year. We’ve just returned from a week’s reprieve to Florida’s Space Coast, and I have to say, it was stunning.
While the Atlantic surf is always rougher than its Gulf counterpart, the farther south you get on the Atlantic barrier islands (closer to Miami), the water becomes a gorgeous shade of aqua blue, and the sand so fine.
Barrier Island Sanctuary
My husband and I were with our 3-year old son, so of course 99 percent of the trip was geared to him. We discovered some wonderful things to keep us all occupied, including:
Florida’s Space Coast is only an hour’s drive from Orlando, but we’ve decided not to take our kid to the big attractions (i.e. Disney World) until he asks. For now, he’s just like his parents – the beach is his ultimate playground.
Have you been to Florida’s Space Coast? Did you love it?
Hello! I admit, I have been M.I.A. for a minute, but lots of good changes have happened in my life over the last few months. The most significant is that I finally moved from Atlanta to my hometown of New Orleans. The most recent is that I spent two wonderful weeks abroad in Europe!
Traveling – somewhere, anywhere – is a passion of mine, and I truly do get the travel bug every few months, even if it means getting in the car and driving for a few hours to a part of the state I’ve never been before. And I get that international travel itch at least every two years.
So this year, my husband and I decided to make a Europe trip. We decided on Paris, Amsterdam, and the Bavarian region of Germany. I studied in Paris as a college student, and my hubby had travelled there as a youngster, but we’d never been together – and it is, after all, the most romantic city in the world. I’d also been to Amsterdam, but it was a quick weekend jaunt from Paris when I was a student, so I didn’t remember much (go figure). So it was on the wish list. I have family living in Germany, so it made sense to visit them since we’d be so close.
To save money, we flew into Frankfurt, Germany, then took the international train to Paris – about a five-hour ride. I enjoy train rides – whether in the states or abroad. They take time, which means they force you to slow down and observe. Or read. Or meditate. Or listen to music.
I could really devote an entire post to each area of my travels (and maybe I will), so what I’ll do here is attempt to tell the story through some of my pictures. I didn’t take a lot in Paris or Germany – Paris because it kinda felt like home, and Germany probably just because we were there the shortest amount of time, but here are my favorites:
We booked our accommodations for Paris and Amsterdam through AirBnB. It was the first time I’d used their service, and I must say I enjoyed the experience! The process was easy and the hosts were friendly and responsive.
I have to say here that I absolutely fell in love with Amsterdam. It’s a city that’s built to a human scale and just makes sense. Public transportation is easy and efficient, many people opt for bikes rather than cars, food is fresh and healthy, thought is generally progressive, certain vices are legal but regulated and therefore decriminalized. Society works; people are happy. How refreshing!
We started our trip in Frankfurt, then caught trains to Paris, Amsterdam, then back to Frankfurt. Our final destination was Ansbach, located about 150 miles from Frankfurt.
Well folks, I hope you enjoyed my little travel journal as much as I enjoyed my trip. Travel opens the mind and stimulates the senses. I encourage everyone to go as far as they can, as often as they can. All it takes is some savings, planning, and determination. Do you have questions about international travel? Let me know in the comments below!
Hi all – sorry I’ve been M.I.A. for the last week. I spent a much needed and very relaxing long weekend in Miami! I’d been to Miami once on a day trip from the Orlando area, and in the airport multiple times en route to the Caribbean, but this was my first time spending real time in “The Gateway to the Americas.” It did not disappoint.
My husband and I were invited to what promised to be an epic wedding in ritzy Coral Gables. Long gowns were required of ladies, and black tie was optional for gents. This is what we wore:
I thought the gown was perfect for Miami because of the bright chartreuse color and light, flowing fabric and cut. Plus, since it’s the end of the season, I got it for over 50 percent off (score!).
For the hair, I knew my curls would go wild in the humidity, and the way our flight was scheduled I wouldn’t have time to do my hair the day of the wedding, so I had to do something with it the night before. To tame my tresses, I blow-dried my hair, curled small sections with a 1-inch curling iron, then pin curled them overnight. The next day, I took down my hair and looked just like Shirley Temple. Not exactly the look I was going for, so I separated the curls with my fingers and threw them up in a loose ponytail so they would stretch out on the flight. When getting ready, all I had to do was comb them out, recurl a few sections with the curling iron, and pin them to one side and over the shoulder to create a dramatic evening look. The above picture was taken right after it rained, so I’d say my hair held up pretty well!
The rest of the trip was spent at a boutique art deco hotel on South Beach two blocks from the ocean. For three days, we woke up, put on our bathing suits, ate a breakfast of fruit and pastries, and spent several glorious hours on the country’s most famous beach. We were drunk off the environment: wide sandy beach, crystal clear water, and the kind of big, blue sky that makes you wish you could fly.
Nights were spent eating fresh seafood on some patio, swimming in our rooftop saltwater pool, strolling along breezy Ocean Drive, having drinks on a friend’s balcony, and dancing to live reggae in the kind of tiny venues I love.
I wish I had taken more pictures, but it’s usually the last thing on my mind when I’m relaxed and having a great time (bad blogger!).
So Miami – thanks for being a gracious host and giving us a future trip to look forward to. We’ll see you again soon.