We swam with whales! It was one of the most amazing, adventurous, life-changing experiences either of us have done. We spent 5 beautiful, cloudy days on the water searching for these massive animals. We couldn’t possibly put into words how incredible the experience was, but if anyone was considering taking a trip to Vavau, do it.
We booked this trip through a tour group that hired our boat, captain, guide as well as housing. Our housing came with a car and a beautiful soul of a house keeper. She rewashed all of our laundry after I washed it and it all turned sour. She also made us breakfast and cleaned our room every day. We couldn’t have asked for a better experience
10/1/18 - 10/12/18
We lived the Van Life for 12 days in New Zealand. It was quite the adventure and a lot more expensive than anticipated. It was unfortunate that we ended up spending more than we wanted to but the views were 100% worth it. Petrol was pricey and we unexpectedly had to search for campsites that had power hookups. It wasn’t disclosed to us prior that we needed to be hooked up to power for our power outlets to work instead of just relying on the battery.
On the flip side, NEW ZEALAND IS EYE CANDY. Seriously so easy on the eyes. We had magnificent views at every turn of our 12 day road trip. We crossed paths with the kindest humans and even picked up some nice American hitch hikers. It is quite the life. We loved the freedom of changing up our plans as we wanted. It allowed us to experience amazing things that weren’t originally on our itinereary.
Accommodation: Campervan rental that was certified contained. While it did come in handy to have a toilet in you’re car, we didn’t once use the shower and all but one of our camper sites had showers.
Transportation: Our camper van was a beast and petrol is expensive, if you want to visit NZ, rent a diesel car!
Highlights: Mt cook, Lake Pukaki, Queenstown, Bungy Jumping in Queenstown, Glow Worms, Hobbiton, and Hot Water beach
9/21/18 - 9/27/18
We hit up 2 major cities in SK: Busan and Seoul. Neither of us knew much about the country before going. We were pleasantly surprised with how much we enjoyed being in South Korea!
Busan (3 days)
Accommodation: Airbnb, for about $50 a night we got a 16th floor studio in the heart of Seomyeon. It was a hopping college town with lots of nightlife, foods and shopping
Transportation: subway and buses got us everywhere we needed to be! Google maps is precise on location and timing.
Activity Highlights: Exploring Seomyeon, Gemcheon Village, Huedaue Beach and boardwalk
Food Highlights: Korean BBQ, Bibimbap, and this amazing honey cake bread
Seoul (3 Days)
Accommodation: Airbnb, for about $50 a night we had a night little studio tucked in a quiet part of town.
Transportation: walking and trains!
Activity Highlights: I wouldn’t recommend going during the holiday Choesek. The weather was amazing but everything closes! We sill were able to go to a Korean Baseball game and a Korean Spa. We loved both activities very much!
Food Highlights: red bean pancakes x10! We ate those every day we were there.
9/15/18 - 9/21/18
We loved Japan! The people are so kind, and it is so easy to navigate. We split our time in three places: Tokyo, Kyoto, and Osaka. Our visit went way too fast and we will definitely be back.
Tokyo (3 days)
Accommodation: Capsule hotel found on booking.com, it had all the amenities you could ask for, space was minimal in the locker room, and we slept two whole floors apart!
Transportation: we took the subway everywhere and it worked out great! We also took a bullet train to Kyoto, it was fast and easy and we only bought the ticket an hour before our trip.
Highlights: Mari Car where you take a guided go kart tour around parts of the city, eating ramen, Meiji Shrine, Harujuku, Shibuya Crossing, Sensoji temple and surrounding area, more ramen
Kyoto (1 Day)
Accommodation: Airbnb that turned out to be more of a hotel, was clean and private, we slept on bunk beds and had a private sink, was in a great location
Transportation: We took the subway, which again, was easy to navigate and we were able to get to everything we wanted.
Accommodation: Capsule hotel found on booking.com, $41 for both capsules, we both liked this one better! It was way more quiet and more room to move around, despite there being more people and capsules, again tons of amenities! Like I didn’t pull out my pajamas or toothbrush and toothpaste once on this trip because they were provided!
Transportation: we used the trains and we walked
Highlights: We were only here half a day because we had a plane to catch but we spent our time in Dotonburi and the adjacent open air market and it was amazing, we loved the lights and the people and totally wish we had planned more time here
8/27/18 - 9/14/18
Okay okay we know the isn’t a new country. But we were transformed into a different world upon arrival. Hawaii was everything it’s made up to be, and more. There wasn’t a day that went by where we weren’t in awe of its beauty. Our time in Hawaii was broken up into 3 parts: South Oahu, Kauai, North/East Oahu. We spent incredible days exploring these beautiful islands and sadly left so much untouched.
Oahu Part 1
Lodging: Airbnb, $60 per night, private room/entry to a bed and bathroom
Car rental: Budget, Jeep Wrangler 2 door with a soft top, they convinced us to spend an extra $10 a day to play *eye rolls*
Activity Highlights: Koko Head hike (not for the weak), Manoa falls (bring bug spray!), and Pearl Harbor
Food highlights: Fatboys garlic chicken, BBQ sandwich at rainbow drive-in, Malasadas at Leonards, and all shave ice
Lodging: Airbnb in Kapa’a, $100 per night, private room/entry to a bed and bathroom, oceanfront with pool
Car rental: Avis, Nissan something
Activity Highlights: running the Kauai Half Marathon, The Grand Canyon of the Pacific, Renting bikes to ride along the shore, swimming in the pool
Food highlights: shave ice, shave ice, shave ice, we didn’t try as many things here
Oahu Part 2
Lodging: Airbnb, $50 per night, a shed with a futon, outside access to a bathroom connected to a house, outdoor shared space with 2 other rooms, the kindest hosts
Car rental: Budget, upgraded us for free to a 2018 Jeep Wranger with 4 doors and a hard top
Activity Highlights: Snorkling in Sharks cove, Lanikai Pillbox hike, Crouching Lion hike, Laie Point
Food Highlights: Haleiwa Bowls, Nalu Health Bar, Teddy’s Bigger Burgers, Ted’s Bakery (wish I could have tried everything)
Pro Tip: Bring Flip Flops AND shoes that can get muddy so you can really enjoy all of those amazing hikes !
6/22/18 - 6/28/18
We can confirm what everyone says and tell you that when you come to Iceland, it feels like you have landed on another planet! The black earth, the blue glaciers, the mossy green fields, and the fluffy sheep roaming the entire country were all factors in this breathtaking experience. We can’t stop talking about our hike across a glacier AND our swim in-between to tectonic plates in the clearest water we have ever seen.
How we got around: Rental Car - Sixt
Pro Tip: Waterproof everything!! We were not ready for the amount of rainfall and waterfall mist, therefore getting soaked to the bone in 50 degree Fahrenheit weather!
We started our trip on the east side of the country near Kruger National Park at a Safari. This was a HUGE cross off of both of our bucket lists. It is so surreal to be able to see these animals in their natural habitat. Cape Town and the surrounding area is thriving with culture and amazing coastal views. We loved the food market in the up and coming neighborhood of Woodstock.
How we got around: Rental car from JoBurg to Safari, Flight from Joburg to Cape Town, rental car in Cape Town
Pro tip: If you are going to spend any time in Cape Town, rent a car! There is so much to see in and around the city that it is just so much easier to navigate if you have a set of wheels.
We stayed in the resort town of Cancun for a little Christmas Vacation getaway, so while we did enjoy this trip, we can’t wait to go back to experience more. We stayed on the southern part of the strip and it was beautiful! We had great weather and the hospitality was excellent. One of the days, we planned a neat excursion that helped us change the pace and scenery, which we loved.
Accommodation: Westin Resort and Spa
How we got around: taxi to/from the airport
Highlights: swimming in a cenotes, snorkeling, visiting ancient ruins
Verona, Bergamo, & Venice
Take us back! I think we lost count how much gelato we ate on day 2, and how much pasta we ate on day 3. We still dream about the Pasta Carbonara we had there. Venice was incredible. We couldn’t get enough. We love learning about every city we visit and Venice took the cake. Can you believe it is built on wooden stilts? Some people think its too touristy, but we think it was there perfect combination. Our favorite memory is walking across Venice in the pouring rain looking for the best looking pizza.
How we got around: Rental car
Pro Tip: Stay outside for much cheaper prices and just take the train in during the day!
Switzerland is breathtaking. Even though Chad had been here before, he was just as excited to return and let me tell you, I UNDERSTAND. The vibrant spring green mountains that could reach to the clouds accented the darling Swiss chats just as perfectly as the clear blue lakes. Every turn we made, had something more charming than the last - this includes the CHOCOLATE and CHEESE. My mouth is watering just thinking about it. Our favorite memory was taking the train to the top of Jungfroujoch in the early morning to catch views that stretched for miles.
How we got around: Rental Car
Pro tip: Don’t pass up the opportunity to do something a little adventurous in the extreme sports capital of the world - Interlaken has everything you can name that would make your mom nervous.
Roadtrip Paris -> Annecy
Whether you are in the city or the country side, you will find beautiful scenery where you will keep pinching yourself, asking is this real!!? France is eye candy all the way through.
How we got around: Rental car
Pro Tip: Travel in the off-peak to avoid tons of crowds and for cheap flights!