24 Hours on Ireland’s Dingle Peninsula: Beaches, Ancient Ruins, and Lots of Coffee

In June, I traveled with a group of five to Ireland and Scotland for two weeks. I’ve written all about my travels, including tips on what to do, where to stay, and how to get there, in a series of blog posts

24 hours on Dingle Peninsula what to see and do

Visiting Dingle Peninsula was at the top of our list for places to see in Ireland. National Geographic Travel deemed it “the most beautiful place on earth.” Often described as a less-touristy alternative to the Ring of Kerry, Dingle is known for its unspoiled coastline, friendly locals, and ancient sites. Continue reading

Spring Break on Folly Beach

Spring Break on Folly Beach

There are several reasons why locals love Folly Beach: the breezy, laid-back atmosphere, miles of sandy beaches, and its reputation as one of the best places to surf on the east coast. With an abundance of short-term rentals and eclectic shops and bars, the island is a popular destination for spring breakers. Below are my tips for spending a fun-filled week on Folly.   Continue reading

Charleston for Nature Lovers

The Lowcountry of South Carolina is known for its natural beauty. From driftwood beaches to Cypress swamps, the region’s diverse landscape has inspired art, literature, and film.

South Carolina’s Lowcountry region encompasses the coastal land that is at or near sea level. The most convenient way to see the region is by car along Highway 17, with a side trip to Beaufort. There are several state parks along the coast. Charleston County also has an incredible network of local parks that are inexpensive to visit.

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8 Reasons to Visit Charleston in Winter

Budget Travel: Charleston in the off season

January through March is one of my favorite times of year in Charleston. When we moved here from Kentucky five years ago, we left icy roads and frost on the ground for sunny skies and mild temperatures. We didn’t wear a winter coat for the entire first winter we were here. Now we have acclimated to the climate and wear heavy coats when it’s 60 degrees out like everyone else here does! Continue reading

Day Trip: Kiawah and Wadmalaw Islands

Guide to Charleston Beaches

Looking to explore South Carolina’s Lowcountry for a day? My in-laws visited last summer, which is high tourism season here in Charleston. To get away from the crowds in downtown Charleston, we decided to do a little island hopping outside the city and visit John’s Island, Kiawah Island, and Wadmalaw Island. The road is lined with Live Oaks covered in Spanish moss, and along the way we saw horse farms, tidal creeks, and farm stands with local produce. Continue reading

California Road Trip: Marin County

Travel Tips for visiting Northern California

California is my happy place. For several months we were planning our Pacific Coast Highway roadtrip from San Francisco to Los Angeles. A large chunk of our trip was going to be in Big Sur–we booked a few nights at a lodge there (the cheapest we could find was still at $250/night) and we had all of our hikes planned for the state parks in the area. Sadly, the area was devastated by the Soberanes fire in late July that they are still battling two months later. Because of the wildfire and poor air quality, we decided to change our travel plans and go north instead. With just a few weeks to go, we had to find new places to stay and come up with a Northern California itinerary. It was part stressful and part creative problem solving! Continue reading

California Road Trip: Pacific Coast Highway North

The last three days of our travels through northern California was a drive down Pacific Coast Highway 1. Our first stop was for a late lunch in Fort Bragg at Sea Pal Cove, tucked away behind an industrial fishing area on the Noyo Harbor. We stuffed ourselves with fish and chips and clam chowder. Seating is outside only but there are views of the inlet, where we spotted a harbor seal and a sea otter. The otter had caught a fish and was boldly showing off by swimming around on his back. This is what we came for. Continue reading

Day Trip: Botany Bay

The weekend after our dog died, we were desperate to get out of the house. We not only wanted a change of scenery, but a place to go that didn’t remind us of our beloved Ruby everywhere we looked.

We had been to Botany Bay once before, a few years ago. I remembered that the beach was long and narrow, so it was important to go when the tide was low or going out. I also made a mental note to never go on a hot day in the summer…and even though it was mid-July we decided we could handle it if we went early. Finally, Botany Bay is a place we told my family about countless times, but it’s close to an hour away from where we live so they hadn’t been. Since my parents and sister were in town visiting from Kentucky, we figured that now was the right time to pack up the car and head to Botany Bay. Continue reading