Episode 6 – All Things Chicago: Hot Spots with Ryan Valdez

Listen to Travel Brats on Apple Podcast

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Last summer, mine and Sofia’s friend, Ryan, moved to the Windy City. Back in April 2019, I helped Ryan go apartment shopping in downtown and we got to explore to some really awesome places before he moved here. Since then, Sofia has visited Chicago and Ryan got to show her around to some of the best night life and bars. We were happy to hop on a call with Ry to ask him about his experiences, reminisce, and get his insight on how to survive Chicago on a budget. Here are so of his top places to go:

Restaurants 

Casual Dining

Portillos: 

https://www.portillos.com

Imperial Lamian:

https://imperial-lamian.com

Ramen Takeya fulton market:

http://www.ramentakeya.com/menu

Cafe Ba-ba Reeba:

https://www.cafebabareeba.com

Au Cheval:

auchevaldiner.com/

Best Day Time Activities

Depends on season:

Options: 

https://www.choosechicago.com/things-to-do/

Summer:

(cubs games, “beaches”, shops, Divvy bike, parks, rooftop bars) 

Fall/Winter (weather is brutal so limited options – Bulls game, second city, ice skating at McCormick or Maggie Daley) 

Best Night Time Activities:

Concerts and Bars (Lincoln Park, Old Town, West Loop, River North)

Coolest buildings in Chicago: Hancock, Water Tower for shopping, Willis Tower

Bars

Wrigleyville:

https://www.chicagotribune.com/dining/ct-wrigley-bars-each-and-every-one-htmlstory.html

Sluggers:

http://www.sluggersbar.com

Point and Feather:

https://www.pointandfeatherchicago.com

Three Dots and a Dash (basement bar):

https://www.threedotschicago.com

What to Wear in Each Season

Fall: 

Light Jacket

Winter: Layer up, puffy coats, gloves, hats, be creative

Summer: Shorts, tees, tanks, anything goes 

  

When is the best time to visit Chicago? 

Ryan said: Summertime CHI is the best! – everyone is out & about, perfect weather, most things to do during this time 

 

Best places for Music and Theatre: 

CIBC Theatre:

CIBC Theatre

House of Blues 

https://www.houseofblues.com/chicago

 

How To Stay Safe in the City

Ryan said: not as scary as one might think – just be aware of you surroundings and try to have a buddy when you go out/walk through neighborhoods.

Thanks so much to our guest, Ryan, for letting us interview him! If you have more questions, reach out.

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Luxury Chicago Guide with the Travel Brats & Grandpa, Richard Komarek: Episode 5

 

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Listen on Apple Podcast

Chicago Facts & History— 

 (maybe help you win at trivia)

  • Chicago is located on the southwestern tip of Lake Michigan which is an inland sea 307 miles long and  118 miles wide.
  • French fur trappers coming south  along the shore of the Lake passed through the Chicago region as early as the 1780’s.
  • Jean Baptiste Point du Sable stayed, started a fur trading outpost  and is credited as the founder of the city.
  • It  stayed a wilderness outpost with a small fort, Fort Dearborn being built in 1803 and then being  abandoned a few years later. It wasn’t until 1833 that it was incorporated as a village.
  • Chicago then grew rapidly as the gateway to the westward expansion of the country. Huge quantities of logs from the North Woods were sent down the Lake and were processed into lumber needed for housing on the Great Plains and beyond. Manufactured goods came from the east. Everything went through Chicago. Grain from the surrounding farmland went East. By 1854 Chicago was the world’s largest grain port. 
  • By 1870 Chicago was the second largest city in the country.
  • Then disaster struck.  Because of the city’s rapid growth all, nearly all construction was wood rather than brick. In many places the sidewalks and even the streets were wood.
  • The fall of 1871 was hot and dry. On a windy day in October , legend has it that  Mrs. O’Leary’s cow kicked over a lantern which started her barn on fire. From there the fire spread rapidly and soon engulfed much of the city. 
  • It was estimated that as many as 300 people were killed and 100,000 people were left homeless. The embers from the fire  were still warm, when the first load of rebuilding supplies arrived. With aid pouring in from all over the country and the world, Chicago rebuilt and went on to an even greater growth spurt, going from a population of 299,000 in 1870 to 1.7 million in 1900.
  • This rapid growth created opportunities that  attracted immigration from Europe that is still  reflected in much of the city’s population today,Polish, German, Italian to name  a few.
  • The recovery from the fire  also created a confidence and optimism in the population can still be felt today.

 

Top Restaurants

 

  • Les Nomades  222 E. Ontario. We love  Les Nomades for its creative French Cuisine and its friendly elegance without a trace of stuffiness.It is what you imagine a Parisian restaurant to be. http://www.lesnomades.net
  • Spiagia 980 N. Michigan Refined  Italian Cuisine with a great view of Lake Michigan.
  • Spiagia Café is a more casual version open for Lunch as well as Dinner

https://spiaggiarestaurant.com/about/cafe-spiaggia-story

  • River Roast  315 N La Salle  Roasted chicken, beef, pork and fish served family style. With great view of Chicago River. Brunch with some of the  City’s best Blues musicians playing.
  • https://www.riverroastchicago.com/#_home
  • Tratoria No. 10   at 10 N. Dearborn Italian American charming  setting reminiscent of a Renaissance cellar dining  hall.
  • http://www.trattoriaten.com

 

 Comfort Food: 

  • Portillo’s: Beef sandwiches ,Chicago style hot dogs  and Polish Sausages

https://www.portillos.com

 

  • Lou Malnati’s:  Thick crust Pizza

https://www.loumalnatis.com/chicago-old-irving-six-corners

 

Drinks:

 

  • London house hotel

https://londonhousechicago.com

 

 

Best Museums: 

  • Art Institute of Chicago 111 S. Michigan Great Collection of French Impressionists and Post Impressionists. 

Iconic American 20th century, Hopper’s Night Hawks, Grant Wood’s  American Gothic and much, much more.

https://www.artic.edu

App audio guide

 

  • Field Museum of Natural History: Sue the T-Rex now has her own room plus  new Maximo the Titanosaur , the largest land animal that ever lived, Our Evolving Planet , Egyptian exhibit and changing exhibits.

https://www.fieldmuseum.org

 

  • The Shed Aquarium and Adler Planetarium are on the same Museum Campus  as the Field Museum.

https://www.sheddaquarium.org

 

  • Museum of Science and Industry 5700 S. Lake Shore Dr.   Has a real German submarine from WWII. Coal Mine , many interesting  scientific exhibits and Imax Theater.

https://www.msichicago.org

 

Favorite Sport Teams: 

  • Cubs play at Wrigley Field Clark and Addison . Core of World series team still on the playing but maybe not for long see the while you can.

https://www.mlb.com/cubs/schedule

  • White Soxs play at Gauranteed Rate Field (Sox Park) 35 th Street and Shields Good young team coming together fun to  watch.

https://www.mlb.com/whitesox/tickets/single-game-tickets?mlbkw=ds-g-p30687924720&gclsrc=aw.ds&ds_rl=1236799&gclid=Cj0KCQjw0pfzBRCOARIsANi0g0uqcB2q7CeMc5e1Pkmwl1rrREtu3K_lNVo-D5pIGB-Wy0f57E5v_l8aAvjBEALw_wcByya 

 

 

  • NFL  Bears play at Soldier Field 

https://www.chicagobears.com

  • League Soccer: Chicago Fire Play at Soldier Field also 

https://www.soccer.com/shop/fan/teams/chicago-fire?gclsrc=aw.ds&&gclid=Cj0KCQjw0pfzBRCOARIsANi0g0vIfuuqpHXv6GZHNXnuTzh7VRUPONOWD_i__WMDFZZkfjm-KTlOTfkaAgvKEALw_wcB

                          

  • Bulls in NBA and Blackhawks in NHL play at United Center
  • SKY in WNBA play at Wintrust Arena

https://www.vividseats.com/nhl-hockey/chicago-blackhawks-tickets.html?utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=DSA+NHL+Hockey+tROAS+v2&utm_term=&vkid=15545231&gclid=Cj0KCQjw0pfzBRCOARIsANi0g0swVoX2n2fZ_em9mal-mzjYhrbjuDCbclO_Q6SlycZRZXX3KHfcntIaAg9XEALw_wcB

 

Buildings: 

  • Willis Tower : (Formerly and still called Sears Tower) was the tallest building in the world for about 30 years and is still the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere. Has a great observation deck at the top including The Ledge, a clear glass platform you can walk out on and look down 103 floors,if you dare.

 

  • John Handcock Building: Almost as high as Willis tower, the observation deck  has beautiful views looking  east and north  over the lake and shoreline as well as west and south over the city.The deck also has glass panels that tilt out so you can look down to the street.

 

  • Navy Pier  is a 3300 foot long pier that sticks out into Lake Michigan starting at 600 E Grand Ave. It has a Ferris Wheel with an excellent view of the city and is highly recommended Also there are various boat rides out into the lake  from a tall sailing ship, the Windy, to speed boats, fast and really fast Sea Dog and Super Sea Dog, to calmer sightseeing and  lunch and   dinner cruises. We recommend you try at least one. The guides will a bit of history and explain  points of interest on all the cruises .

Navy pier is also the home of the Shakespeare Theater one of the best theaters in the city ,and it is not all Shakespeare.

 

  • CAC River Cruise  Over a century ago, Chicago was a young city and was rebuilding from  the fire; so there was  land and opportunity for young and innovative architects  to experiment with new and even radical designs. Not all of those buildings remain, but that spirit of innovation does remain in Chicago Architecture. To really appreciate this architecture, take a river cruise run by the Chicago Architecture  Center.Many of most beautiful buildings are built along the river. And the docents on the river cruises will give you a treasure-trove of information.

 

We have Chicago Part 2 coming out next week, March 24!

WWT’s Episode #4 “All Things Florida Keys”

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Listen to our Podcast on Apple Podcast! 

“All Things the Florida Keys”

Getting to the Keys:

  • Key West Express from Fort Myers to Key West 

https://www.keywestexpress.net

Entertainment/Activities: 

  • SkyDive Key West

https://skydivekeywest.com

  • Biking riding: Bike Man Bike Rentals 

(https://www.bikemanbikerentalkeywest.com)

  • Hemingway’s Home: house tour and bookstore

https://hemingwayhome.com

  • Southern Most Point — 90 miles to cuba

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g34345-d274104-Reviews-Southernmost_Point-Key_West_Florida_Keys_Florida.html

  • Mallory Square for Sunset and Entertainments

https://www.mallorysquare.com

Places to eat and drink:

Key West:  

  • Sloppy Joe’s (drinks and live music)

https://sloppyjoes.com

  • Kevin’s Irish Bar

https://irishkevins.com

  • Fat Tuesday

https://www.facebook.com/FatTuesKeyWest/?rf=146811228718041

  • Hard Rock Cafe

https://www.hardrock.com/404.html

  • Amigos for burritos

https://amigostortillabar.com

  • Nine One Five Restaurant

https://www.915duval.com

  • Croissants de France for breakfast

http://www.croissantsdefrance.com

  • Pepe’s for a shack style, breakfast

https://www.google.com/search?client=safari&rls=en&q=pepe%27s+key+west&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8

  • On the water, 
  • Dante’s

https://danteskeywest.com

  • Alonzo’s Oyster Bar and Grill

https://alonzosoysterbar.com

Islamorada/ Key Largo:

  • Lorelei Restaurant and Cabana Bar

https://www.loreleicabanabar.com

  • Hog Heaven (clubish)

https://hogheavensportsbar.com

  • Whistle Stop (pizza, pool table)

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g34346-d7349316-Reviews-The_Whistle_Stop_Bar_Grill_And_Wood_Oven_Pizza-Islamorada_Florida_Keys_Florida.html

  • Ocean View (O.V)

https://theocean-view.com

  • Florida Keys Brewing Company

https://floridakeysbrewingco.com

  • Tiki-Bar at PostCard

https://www.holidayisle.com/islamorada-restaurants/tiki-bar

BEACHES/ WATER ACTIVITIES

  • Nighttime Kayaking

 http://www.keywestpaddle.com/Nightpaddling.html

  • Fury for Jet Ski Rentals, Parasailing, Snorkeling

https://www.furycat.com/?nck=branded&gclid=Cj0KCQjw0pfzBRCOARIsANi0g0vX8EA7s_d0lN1mqqhP7MxBmlM4X2ra4Y-IJp5pzYPuGzWVShtNXGQaAqT2EALw_wcB

  • Dry Tortuga National Park (go by boat, great day event)

https://www.drytortugas.com

  • Paddle boarding Tours

https://keywestsebago.com/tour/watersports-all-day-adventure?gclid=Cj0KCQjw0pfzBRCOARIsANi0g0ujHMyvCHEKeywRIjFtF7mAmdp1hzM0f1SOKqYE_xrZoqg-YUx6rfoaArRdEALw_wcB

Nightlife

Pub Crawl: 

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g34345-d2578392-Reviews-Key_West_Pub_Crawl_Tour-Key_West_Florida_Keys_Florida.html

Events going on in the Keys: 

https://keywest.com/calendar/

WWT’s 2nd Episode: All Things New Orleans and Mardi Gras

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Click to listen to our NOLA podcast!

To find information on Mardi Gras:

Mardi Gras Parade Schedule 2020

https://www.mardigrasneworleans.com/parades/

Tours and entertainment:

Ghost tours via Trip Advisor:

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Search?q=ghost%20tours&searchSessionId=78DD8D500192109089092921EDA4DBCE1582583446357ssid&sid=A5C5CC4E8BFD88131B8ABE975C4690421582583470808&blockRedirect=true&ssrc=a&geo=60864

New Orleans Ghost, Voodoo & Vampire Walking Tour (2 hours along, walking, entertaining $14)

https://www.tripadvisor.com/AttractionProductReview-g60864-d11453064-New_Orleans_Ghost_Voodoo_Vampire_Walking_Tour-New_Orleans_Louisiana.html

Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop

http://www.lafittesblacksmithshop.com/Homepage.html

Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop. Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop is a historic structure at the corner of Bourbon Street and St. Philip Street in the French Quarter of New Orleans, Louisiana. Most likely built as a house in the 1770s during the Spanish colonial period, it is one of the oldest surviving structures in New Orleans. 

Food and History tour, French Quarter Food Tour, $65

https://www.tripadvisor.com/AttractionProductReview-g60864-d11454049-New_Orleans_Food_and_History_Tour-New_Orleans_Louisiana.html

River Boat Tours:

Creole Queen Mississippi River Cruise

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g60864-d2178225-Reviews-Creole_Queen_Mississippi_River_Cruises-New_Orleans_Louisiana.html

Steamboat Natchez River Cruise

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g60864-d549409-Reviews-Steamboat_Natchez-New_Orleans_Louisiana.html

Plantation house: Oak Alley Plantation

https://www.oakalleyplantation.com/sugarcane-plantation/plantation-tours

Carriage ride in French Quarters

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Products-g60864-zfc11970-zfg11873-New_Orleans_Louisiana.html?m=40646&supag=74046479642&supsc=aud-448833066947:dsa-650389793948&supai=358052534553&supap=&supdv=c&supnt=nt:g|clk:CjwKCAiAhc7yBRAdEiwAplGxX6E-FdyJQv7Dkyb5YHGkaiV_rrRwqfI-yfa4QkS6Qu1UFdagTDjT8RoClYwQAvD_BwE&suplp=9012211&supli=&supti=aud-448833066947:dsa-650389793948&tsem=true&supci=aud-448833066947:dsa-650389793948&supap1=&supap2=&gclid=CjwKCAiAhc7yBRAdEiwAplGxX6E-FdyJQv7Dkyb5YHGkaiV_rrRwqfI-yfa4QkS6Qu1UFdagTDjT8RoClYwQAvD_BwE

Graves/ grave yard

Nicholas Cage has his grave here even though he’s not dead yet, but it’s the only thing the government couldn’t take when he went bankrupt.

https://www.atlasobscura.com/places/nicolas-cage-s-pyramid-tomb

Marie Laveau’s fake grave is purple…painted over from the people drawling one it and making wishes.

https://www.roadsideamerica.com/story/43436

Museums

Mardi Gras museum

of costumes and culture: off conti street

https://www.mardigrasworld.com

Jazz museum:

piano, saxophone:celebrate all forms of jazz 400 Esplanade Ave

https://nolajazzmuseum.org

WW2 museum ( NOLA’s #1 Attraction )

The National WWII Museum, formerly known as The National D-Day Museum, is a military history museum located in the Central Business District of New Orleans, Louisiana, USA, on Andrew Higgins Drive between Camp Street and Magazine Street. Magazine street.

https://www.nationalww2museum.org

Old New Orleans rum,  2815 Frenchmen St, spiced rum world 2nd largest producer. “I drink and I know things”

https://celebrationdistillation.com

House of Blues: 

https://www.houseofblues.com/neworleans

Hole in the wall

Bookstores: 

William Faulkner House Books

https://faulknerhousebooks.com

Librarie

https://www.neworleans.com/listing/librarie-book-shop/33003/

Dauphin Street Book

https://www.facebook.com/DauphineStreetBooks/

Cape Robbin shoes on IG: @caperobbin, 

Food

Breakfast:

Café Du Monde:

Homepage

Cafe Fleur de Lis -breakfast BACON, strawberry mimosa

http://www.cafefleurdelis.com

Coterie restaurant & oyster bar

http://coterienola.com

Lunch:

Acme oyster house: Po boy, char grilled oysters, drunk root beer float.

https://acmeoyster.com

Napoleon oyster house

https://www.napoleonhouse.com

Central Grocery for homemade soda, looks like an old dinner:

http://www.centralgroceryneworleans.com

Coops Place (across for bb kings):

https://www.coopsplace.net

Dinner:

Apple Place :Aldolfo’s on Frenchmen St-cash, bottom bar, special sauce

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g60864-d445261-Reviews-Adolfo_s-New_Orleans_Louisiana.html

Dickie Brennan’s steakhouse:

https://www.dickiebrennanssteakhouse.com

HOUSE OF BOURBON:

https://www.bourbonhouse.com

Oceana Grill:

Oceana Grill Home – New Orleans Restaurant

Music/nightlife:

Cat’s Meow for Karaoke:

http://catskaraoke.com

Fortune Telling, Live music, Art in Jackson Square:

http://www.experienceneworleans.com/jackson-square.html

Bb kings blues club(BBQ)

https://www.bbkings.com/new-orleans

Places to stay

Astor Crown plaza:

https://www.astorneworleans.com

The Marque suite, sister hotel on canal street:

https://www.bluegreenvacations.com/resorts/louisiana/the-marquee#gref

Hilton

http://www.hilton.com/search/hi/us/la/new_orleans/0/00000000000/0/0/0/0/10?WT.mc_id=zlada0ww1hi2psh3ggl4advbpp5dkt6multibr7_153669424_1003528&gclsrc=aw.ds&&gclid=CjwKCAiAhc7yBRAdEiwAplGxX3OIgTnaIsZXGK2PqWZvb98OhjiYn1fAKITnMqaRjvGZiJaCoxZ0oBoCpc4QAvD_BwE

Thank you for tuning in. Send us a message if you have questions or need more recommendations!

WWT’s Episode 1: “All Things Fort Myers”

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“All Things Fort Myers” The Who Wear There Podcast with the Travel Brats

Fort Myers Beach— 

Hang out places:

Lani Kai Beach Resort:

A great place for live music, tropical drinks, beach front service, sports like volleyball and bean bags, and meeting other fun people!

https://lanikaiislandresort.com

IG: https://www.instagram.com/thelanikai/?hl=en

Getaway Marina:

(I called it Mike’s Marina, but it’s actually Getaway Marina): Grab place to rent boats, kayaks, fishing and other watersports

https://www.getawaymarina.com

Places to eat and drink:

Doc Ford: 

https://www.docfords.com/ft-myers-beach/

IG: https://www.instagram.com/docfords/

Nervous Nellie’s:

http://www.nervousnellies.net

IG: https://www.instagram.com/nervousnelliesfmb/

Bonita Bills Waterfront Cafe:

https://bonitabills.com

PierSide Grill:

https://piersidegrill.com/

Sunset Bar and Grill:

http://sunsetbeachtropicalgrill.com

IG: https://www.instagram.com/sunsetbeachgrill/

Salty Crab (Rum Buckets): 

https://saltycrabbarandgrill.com

IG: https://www.instagram.com/SaltyCrabBarGrill/

Great Live Music —

The Cottage Bar and Grill

https://www.fortmyers-sanibel.com/listing/gulfshore-grill/45911

Love Boat Ice Cream:

https://loveboaticecream.com

https://www.instagram.com/loveboaticecream/

For more on Fort Myers Beach, 

https://www.fortmyers-sanibel.com

https://www.instagram.com/ftmyerssanibel/

Downtown:

For Brunch and hanging out: 

Social House

http://www.downtownsoho.com

First Watch — The Daytime Cafe

https://www.firstwatch.com

Lunch: 

Cabos Cantina Taco and Tequila Bar

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g34230-d3636362-Reviews-Cabos_Cantina_Taco_Tequila_Bar-Fort_Myers_Florida.html

Downtown House of Pizza

https://downtownhouseofpizza.com

Coffee and Teas:

http://www.kapuakavabar.com

Bars:

City Tavern 

https://mycitytavern.com

Sky Bar

http://www.firestonefl.com

Celsius Night Club

https://www.facebook.com/celsius239/

Entertainment/Art:

Hotel Indigo

https://www.ihg.com/hotelindigo/hotels/us/en/fort-myers/fmymb/hoteldetail

For Upcoming Plays

http://www.floridarep.org

AIRPORT

Fly Fort Myers (RSW)

https://www.flylcpa.com

https://www.instagram.com/flyrsw/

Flight Recommendations

Southwest Airlines: 

https://www.southwest.com

https://www.instagram.com/southwestair/?clk=GFOOTER-INSTAGRAM

To track flight prices:

The Hopper App

https://www.hopper.com

https://www.instagram.com/hopper/

Traveling Deals to save $$$$:

Trip Advisor

https://www.tripadvisor.com

https://www.instagram.com/tripadvisor/?hl=en

Global Entry Information (Known Traveler):

https://www.cbp.gov/travel/trusted-traveler-programs/global-entry

Locate enrollment center: 

https://www.cbp.gov/travel/trusted-traveler-programs/global-entry/enrollment-centers

By Florida Gulf Coast University

Foodies 

Bahia Bowls — Acía Bowls

https://bahiabowls.com

FK Your Diet

https://www.fkyourdiet.com

Fancys Southern Cafe

https://fancyssoutherncafe.com

Artisan Eatery

https://artisaneatery.com

previous blog: 

https://thoughtfulblonde.com/2018/12/16/hidden-gem-in-fort-myers-artisan-eatery/

Divieto Ristorante 

https://www.divietoristorante.com

Follow @fgcufoodgods for more local good finds!

Shopping: 

Coconut Point

https://www.simon.com/mall/coconut-point

Miromar Outlets

https://www.miromaroutlets.com

Entertainment:

Game Time

https://www.gametimeplayers.com/locations/fortmyers/?gclid=Cj0KCQiAs67yBRC7ARIsAF49CdXElwKe2JkxghSdoQLyjht7avUczPEZEiZlMcrrPgMV0zZAj8pOIosaAgxaEALw_wcB

Dave and Buster’s

https://www.daveandbusters.com

Painting with a twist

https://www.paintingwithatwist.com/studio/fort-myers/

Movie Theatre in Coconut Point

https://www.regmovies.com/theatres/regal-coconut-point/1611#/buy-tickets-by-cinema?in-cinema=1611&at=2020-02-18&view-mode=list/

 

If you have questions, message me and I’d be happy to chat!

Island Hopping Guide to Grenada’s Carriacou

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I live on the beautiful island of Grenada, which is only 100 miles north of Venezuela and located in the Eastern Caribbean. Grenada is only 12 miles wide and 21 miles long with a little over 100,000 residents. Living the island life very much so comes with the small town vibes of knowing your neighbors and seeing familiar faces no matter where you are on the island. Grenada is south of St. Vincent and the Grenadines which are made up of 32 islands and cays. Grenada claims two of the Grenadines islands,Petit Martinique and Carriacou. 


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A few weeks ago, I took myself on a quick solo trip to Carriacou. The island’s name equates to “Land of Reefs” and is home to only 8,000 residents. It’s a very quaint, quiet, and beautiful island. It was very easy to get to from the mainland of Grenada by plane or boat. I prefer ferry because it’s very reliable and allows you to have different views of the island, and SVG Air cancelled my flight home.


So I took the Osprey Lines ferry; it docks in the Carenage and departs everyday at 9am. You can’t buy your ticket online, so you just have arrive a little early to purchase one.  It’s 80EC, so it’s less than $65 for a roundtrip to go island hopping! Then, it’s just a quick two hour boat ride, and you can easily get a taxi once you arrive in Carriacou. 


Once I got to Carriacou, I booked at a cute, boutique hotel that was right on the water. I spent my entire time there lounging in a beach chair, swimming, reading, and eating so much food at the hotel’s restaurant. It’s without a doubt one of the most relaxing and serene places I’ve ever been with the kindest locals and I hope everyone gets a chance to do a little island hopping. I am going again mid December when my dad comes down, and I will updated the blog with more activities, restaurants, and museums to visit. I have every intention of going snorkeling and exploring more local events!

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If you have an questions, leave a comment or message me. Enjoy! 

5 Books I’ve Read During Peace Corps & The Purpose They Serve

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I’ve done a lot of reading and writing over the last five months since joining Peace Corps, but these are the top 5 books that have shaped me and reiterated key moral values that I hold near and dear to my heart. I hope they positively impact your own personal development, like they’ve done to mine. 

 

  1. Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl Unknown one of the most impactful books I’ve EVER read. This book gave me perspective and another way of looking at experiences throughout life. Dr. Frankl endured life in extreme hardships inside the walls of Auschwitz, and despite the meek and dehumanizing environment, his outlook and his views on life, one’s purpose, and the spirit of the human condition is one that inspires me in all that I do. His voice and actions brought light to some of the darkest  times in history, and he showed that believing in yourself and your meaning is vital. I’ve read it a couple times now because it’s so noteworthy and commendable, and you should too.

 

  1. Moment of Lift by Melinda Gates —  Unknown-1This book gave me guidance and reassurance that this life is meaningful, and you have to take baby steps before you can run. There’s so much I want to do, and see, and be a part of, and I have great respect for the Gates Foundation for their contributions to the betterment of life around the world and also willingness to learn to understand. I have always had been an advocate for education and being a lover of knowledge, and by Melinda Gates sharing other’s stories and experiences, it reminded me just how important it is to have school and education. In order to have education, there are many things to work on— health concerns, cultural norms, equality, etc. It’s a very eye-opening book that intertwines faith, triumph, and human connection. 

 

  1. The Alchemist by Paulo CoelhoUnknown-2This book gave me ease to trust in my journey and in myself. I was reminded that all twists and turns, ups and downs are all a part of the process and should be valued. It is not so much about the destination, but how we go about getting there. There are so many people we come across and connections we make along the way, and those are true gifts in this life. We grow throughout our journey, and the truest treasure isn’t things or places or even other people. You will find out what the truest treasure is.

 

 

  1. The Leadership Crisis by John AllisonUnknown-3.jpegThis book gave me confidence to trust in my own abilities and qualities. It reminded me that I can learn the technical objectives in a career, but there are already true qualities engrained in my character and being. John Allison is a libertarian, but even if you don’t agree with his ideologies or political stances, his book has great philosophies and strategies that hinge on honesty, transparency, team work, and personal responsibility. I recommend it to anyone in management or leadership roles, or anyone with an interest on taking on more personal responsibility. Great and challenging read!

 

  1. Four Agreements by Don Ruiz (also referred to as the wisdom book) Unknown-4.jpeg—  This book gave me tools to reflect on my own agreements, ideologies, and perceptions, and to be able to work through some of shortcomings. It’s a short read, but the book holds so much meaning to me and working towards my own personal freedom. You may have differing religious beliefs than Don Ruiz, but the 4 key concepts are virtues that I carry with me. These agreements have helped me be more loving, forgiving, and kind to myself. A must read!

 

 

 

For more recommendations, message me or comment below!