Sep 172011
 
A Vegetarian Trains to Eat Meat in Prep for China Travel

If you are a vegetarian, you are either going to be inspired or disgusted by this article, but either way, you will likely have pondered a similar quandary: What is the best way to deal with vegetarianism during travel to a very different (read: “meaty”) culture?

Colin is a vegetarian and has been for years, chiefly for health reasons: veggies are healthier than meat, especially processed meat. Then we bought our China [...Read More!]

Sep 102011
 
Badly Ordering Food by Menu Photos During China Travel

You’re hungry, you’re in Beijing, China, and you’ve stumbled into a restaurant where the menu is in pretty Mandarin characters with big pictures.

“Surely,” you tell yourself as you walk in the door, “pictures are all I need to order something yummy.”

Then you find yourself staring at the options on the wall displayed in the lower left photo in this article. Hmm… There appear to be six different choices, each with rice [...Read More!]

Aug 282011
 
Why China is the Most Intense Country I Have Traveled To

You’ve read my account of the Great Wall of China, the Forbidden City, and other China tourist attractions, but now let’s get into the darker side of my 17 days in the most populous country on Earth.

The reality is that China is the most intense country that I have ever traveled to, and I have traveled to over 30 countries across the globe!

Now, the intensity of China travel is actually good news, [...Read More!]

Aug 242011
 
A 16 Hour Fast Night Train from Beijing to Chongqing

One of the best nights of sleep I’ve had in my entire time in China has been… on a 16-hour fast train from Beijing to Chongqing!

Who knew that the key to a restful slumber was sticking yourself in a metal box hurtling hundreds of miles per hour through the most populous country on Earth?

For those of you who sometimes forget this, China is larger in area than the United States, so [...Read More!]

Aug 212011
 
Touring Beijing's Forbidden City Without Fights or Faints

“Be careful at zee Forbidden City,” our French hostel roommate warned. “Eet eez so big and so beautiful, that after a while you say: too much!”

“But look at that tiny rectangle on the Beijing map,” I protested, pointing to the box labeled “Forbidden City.” “I could walk that in like five minutes.”

The French lass guffawed heartily, said, “Well, just arrive as early as possible in zee day!” and headed off on [...Read More!]

Aug 162011
 
An Epic Hike on the Best Part of the Great Wall of China

We had been in China for less than 24 hours, the moment we found ourselves high atop the Great Wall of China, giddy with happiness.

At somewhere between 3,800 and 5,500 miles in total, depending how you measure its parts, the Great Wall of China stretches longer than the entire border between the United States and Canada.

This fact not only boggles the mind, but it also makes it tough for a tourist [...Read More!]

Aug 132011
 
What to Expect on a Flight from the U.S. to China

Hello from China, all the way across the world from where I was last week!

In the five days since I arrived here, I’ve already hiked the Great Wall, reunited with my dear friend Gareth who is teaching here through Peace Corps, toured the Forbidden City and Tienanmen Square, taken a 15 hour sleeper train to the center of the country, and (continuously) stuffed myself silly on mouth-watering Chinese food. In short, life is [...Read More!]

Aug 082011
 
Tickets Now On Sale for Meet Plan Go Travel Conference!

Do you dream of extended travel?

Well, wait no more. The time is NOW to make those career-break travel dreams a reality, because the ticket to finally planning and booking your travel tickets is HERE!

How? Where? The Meet, Plan, Go! Career-Break Travel Conference is coming to 17 North American cities on October 18, and tickets are on sale as of TODAY!

The concept of MPG is simple, but deeply powerful.

On October 18, you will MEET expert [...Read More!]

Aug 042011
 
Pre-Travel Freakouts: Seventeen Days in China Edition!

Tears poured down my cheeks and into my gourmet hot dog as I sat across from my friend Meg, less than a week before my flight to Beijing and the subsequent 50-something hours of trains and buses I will take through Chongqing, Yunyang, and Shanghai.

“I’m sorry,” I choked out, “but I’m always a complete mess before international travel. Every little thing makes me freak out: an offhand remark from a friend… a [...Read More!]

Jul 262011
 
Danger and Glory in Everglades National Park of Florida

“I’m not sure we’re going to survive the Everglades,” I gasped, browsing the Official Everglades Website. “Just listen to these warnings. They’re terrifying!”

“Please do not bring pets on the trails. Not only do you put your pet’s life in danger, you put yours in danger as well,” I read.

“I have this image of bringing a tiny yappy dog and having it instantly whisked away in the drooling jaws of a ‘gator!” I [...Read More!]