All posts tagged: backpacking

Prague: city of a hundred spires

My first impression of Prague was an intriguing blend of Russia, Paris and San Francisco. It was raining and there were cable cars, the beautiful city was spread along both banks of a river, and the colorful baroque buildings were topped with bulbous spires. In a disastrous plot twist, I dropped my iPhone in the hostel toilet, majorly impacting my ability to navigate and communicate while traveling solo. Since getting my unlocked phone to work in each country had been a point of anxiety up until the great plunge of October 8, I couldn’t help but think this was the universe’s way of stripping away another layer of my security and challenging me to exist without the comfort of a screen separating me from the experience of traveling in a foreign country. The food in Prague consisted of meat and pastry dough combined in various forms, with beer almost counting as the third major food group. The Czechs drink more beer per man, woman and child than any other country in the world —30+ liters more beer per …

8 perfect things to do in Paris

Here are a few of my favorite things I did in Paris, in no particular order: Sacre Coeur Climbing the steep hill to Sacre Coeur left me breathless. When I stepped inside this immense cathedral I felt awed by the grandeur. Arriving at sunset was an extra treat…Paris was awash in golden light. I brought a picnic dinner and sat on the grass to enjoy my feast with a view, then stayed until dark to watch the city begin to twinkle. Arc d’Triumph  A short subway ride from Sacre Coeur, the Arc d’Triumph was impressively large and gave a wonderful view of the Eiffel Tower and the wide boulevards of Paris, laid out below on interlocking axis. I found myself thinking, if city planners back then knew how to lay out such a beautiful, livable city, why don’t modern city planners apply some of these same ideas? As the Eiffel Tower twinkled in the distance, I savored a moment of being fully present. I felt overwhelmed with gratitude that I had begun my journey. Beneath the Arc was the …

Paris

Paris was a photograph come to life. Narrow cobblestone streets were lined with bistros and cafes, overlooked by tall 19th century apartments with windows fronted by wrought iron balustrades, intersected by canals and river walks, while the Eiffel Tower and the Arc d’Triumph stood sentry over the city.

Wild women: Finding sisterhood and adventure on an all-female backpacking trip

It was 3 AM at the bottom of the Grand Canyon, and I was crawling over a rickety footbridge on my hands and knees, wearing a 30 pound backpack. The river below looked dark and uninviting, and Kate was barely visible ahead in the darkness, her headlamp a dim beacon. I could feel the thin boards flexing as I made my slow progress towards the safety of the riverbank on the other side…