Road trip music for the Active Explorer

Road Trip

Since the late 1930’s when Route 66 was completed, road trips have become a staple of the American people.  I have fond memories of my parents packing up the station wagon (and later the mini-van), ushering my brother and I into the back seats,  and trekking across America to some distant family member or long […]






Winter travel to Paris, France: Exploring French culture and food

Mmmmmm sweets!  - Photo Credit Stephen Carlile

I love escaping crowds whenever possible. After reading this guest post, I’m ready to finally visit Paris – in the winter! ~ Enjoy   While the City of Lights is a sight to behold in the summer months, Paris sparkles even more in the winter. The dazzling lights shining through a light blanket of snow, […]






Five favorite drinks from my travels

Moose Drool

I’ve logged thousands of miles over the last year and along the way I’ve found several drinks, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic, that I enjoyed. Some drinks need to be enjoyed in the context of a place or experience or they lose their charm. For example, most of the time Summer Shandy wouldn’t be my first […]






Photo essay: Tarpon Springs, Florida

The Anastasi

As many of you know, I get restless when I’m not traveling so I frequently look for a dose of culture near home to tide me over between trips. This January, I decided to do a photo project on Tarpon Springs, Florida. Tarpon Springs is notable for having the largest concentration of Greek-Americans in the […]






Photo essay: The boutique hotels of Puebla

A suite at El Sueño. Loved the natural light and warm color.

Few modern hotels have distinguishing features. However, in Puebla, all of the hotels we visited were in interesting historic buildings. The architecture alone was enchanting, and the rooms were tranquil refuges from modern glitz. Historic and avant-garde features combined to create fascinating contrasts, each making the other more interesting. Additionally, each property included a restaurant serving […]






Cantona Archaeological Site, Puebla, Mexico

Overlooking the ruins from the top of a temple. Note the unexcavated sections beyond the walls.

Treading silently along ancient roads where 80,000 people once passed engaged my imagination. I pictured the streets full of people going about their daily routines, never thinking their home would later be abandoned, encased in centuries of accumulated soil and plant growth. Cantona, a Mesoamerican archaeological site located roughly 58 miles from the city of […]






St. Nicholas Cathedral, Tarpon Springs, Fla.

St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Cathedral, Tarpon Springs, Fla.

Tarpon Springs, Florida, has the highest concentration of Greek immigrants in the United States. St. Nicholas Cathedral is beautifully decorated with illustrations of the Greek Orthodox faith. My camera didn’t do it justice.To learn more about the area, read my Examiner.com article: Tarpon Springs, Florida: On and off the beaten track.  






A hometown Christmas at sea

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For years, my friends and family suggested I write about my childhood at sea. But, putting those many memories on paper was an overwhelming thought. Finally I decided the best way to approach the task was to do what I’ve always done, plug my nose and jump into the deep end! This piece takes place […]






Hiking to Rawhiti Cave, New Zealand

Photo by Francois Roche

A guest post by Amy Heritage – Thanks Amy!   The next time a guide book mentions a ‘one hour walk’ for people with a ‘moderate level of fitness’ I’m going to regard it with caution. This is how the trek to Rawhiti Cave is described to tourists by the New Zealand Tourist Board. Truthfully, […]