HaLong Bay, Vietnam- breathtaking!

After a quick flight from DaNang to Hanoi, a driver picked us up for a three hour drive to HaLong Bay. I enjoyed the scenery on the drive, and tried not to pay attention to the crazy Vietnamese driving practices!  Upon arrival at…

Hoi An, Vietnam- loads of charm and the world’s best sandwich!

The drive from DaNang to Hoi An was so beautiful, we were definitely out of the city now. This was more how I envisioned Vietnam to look. Our first order of business was to find a certain sandwich shop that…

DaNang, China Beach and a mountain of marble

We arrived in the city of DaNang, late at night and the entire hotel staff was waiting for us. We stayed at a small boutique hotel, owned and operated by a family, and they were so nice and accommodating. Matt…

Ho Chi Minh City, (A.K.A. Saigon), Vietnam

We were fortunate enough to spend the first few weeks of this month in the beautiful country of Vietnam. We started in Ho Chi Minh City, at the far southern tip, and worked our way north to Hanoi, with a few stops…

Daruma Doll Festival- Haijimadaishi Temple

A visit to a shrine, within the first few days of the new year, is a very important aspect of Japanese culture, known as hatsumode. There are various celebrations held at these shrines, but we chose to attend the Daruma…

Shopping + Gambling = Fukubukuro

New Year’s Day is the most important Japanese holiday, where many “firsts” are celebrated. Some of these special firsts include; first prayer, first sunrise, and first …SALE! The Japanese phenomenon known as fukubukuro, (or “lucky/happy bag”), entails heading to a store…

Home for the Holidays

“Oh, there’s no place like home for the holidays,” so the song goes….and it’s so true! Matt was scheduled to attend a conference in the States, so we tagged along to spend time with family. We met up with Matt’s parents and…

Gyeongbokgung Palace, Seoul- (and the Chinese papparazzi)

Our last day in Seoul, began with a visit to Gyeongbokgung Palace, in the heart of the city. The palace was originally built in 1395 for the Joseon Dynasty, but has been largely rebuilt and restored over the years due…

DMZ- Demilitarized Zone, South Korea

Our second day in Seoul started with a tour to the demilitarized zone (DMZ), that lies between North Korea and South Korea. Our first stop was Imjingak, the town furthest north that is freely accessible to South Koreans.   The ribbons…


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