International or Domestic Travel

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Determining Which Type of Travel is Best For You: International or Domestic Travel

Knowing whether to choose international or domestic travel is hard enough on its own, but COVID has made things even tougher. So which type of travel is right for you? And how do you know? Let’s look at the Pros and Cons of both International and Domestic Travel!

International Travel – Pros

International or Domestic Travel: clear glass museum during golden hour

So you want to see the world. GREAT! Me, too! But it’s not like you just wake up in the morning and think, “I’m going to go to England today.” Or maybe you do, but I certainly don’t! It will take time, money, research, and planning!

Meet Incredible People

When you travel, you will meet all kinds of people from all walks of life. These people will have different dreams, aspirations, values, experiences, stories, and more! When you travel internationally, you can meet people where you travel, and you may meet people you are indirectly traveling with, like on a group tour, for example.

Explore Somewhere New

This one is fairly obvious, but needs to be said. Your local Metroparks may have great hiking trails or nature preserves, but there is something special about, say, hiking Machu Picchu. Sometimes, you’ll visit somewhere you’ve dreamt about your whole life. And sometimes, you’ll step outside of your comfort zone and discover something new about not only the world, but also yourself!

Have an Adventure and See the World

I’ve always been a fan of adventures. The Lord of the Rings, Treasure Island, the Call of the Wild: these were some of my favorite books growing up. So why not have an adventure of your own?

See the Beauty that Lives All Over the World

Maybe you want to see the sunrise over the Mediterranean, or take an African Safari on the Serengeti. Whatever your heart’s desire, there is so much beauty in the world. Travel and see some for yourself!

International Travel – Cons

International or Domestic Travel: busy city during night time

Unfortunately, International travel is not for everyone. So let’s explore some Cons of International travel.

The Cost is HIGH

So unfortunately, traveling isn’t free. And traveling abroad is no exception. Not only do you need to pay for transportation, lodging, and food, but, depending on where you go, you may need passports and visas and inoculations, as well as these days, COVID testing. So the cost can add up quickly.

It’s Exhausting

To be sure, all travel can be exhausting. But when you’re traveling all over the world, you can encounter several different time zones in one day. So the phrase “I need a vacation from my vacation” is not all that inaccurate.

There’s Potential Danger

Yes, there’s potential danger in literally everything, but some parts of the world are just not safe. Make sure to do all the necessary research and be smart!

You Might Have to Go Home Again

And, worst of all, this “vacation” thing might end, and they will expect you to go back home one day! They won’t just let you stay indefinitely!

Here Is a Taste of Where You Can Go!

paris
International or Domestic Travel: crowded street with cars along arc de triomphe
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com
singapore
International or Domestic Travel: Singapore, view of illuminated buildings at night
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com
peru
photo of machu picchu
Photo by Chelsea Cook on Pexels.com

Domestic Travel – Pros

Domestic Travel: adventure autumn california country

So what about domestic travel? There is a ton of natural beauty to see right here at home, so let’s not overlook it!

More Affordable than International Travel

Despite the price of gas, it is still more affordable to drive cross-country, exploring the National Parks, than it is to fly off to Europe. And transportation isn’t the only thing that makes domestic travel more affordable! Lodging can be cheaper, food can be cheaper, and some places, like U.S. National Parks, are low in cost, if not free, to visit.

No Cultural or Language Barriers

It’s not likely that traveling within the United States will be hindered by language or cultural barriers, which is a plus! Sometimes it’s hard to know all the etiquette and rules of a location overseas. And it’s true, we do not all speak the same language!

Easier to Plan Domestic Travel with Friends

Either traveling with friends or visiting with friends at their home, domestic travel is easier to plan with friends than International travel.

Support Local Economies and Businesses

There are so many areas in the U.S. that rely on tourist economies to survive. Domestic travel keeps that money here, bolstering the people that live in touristy areas nationwide.

See the Beauty of THIS Country

Yes, the world is beautiful, but that does not mean there isn’t a ton of beauty right here at home! The Grand Canyon, Hawaii, Yosemite, Crater Lake, Lake Tahoe, there is plenty of beauty right here!

Domestic Travel – Cons

brown grass field

You take the good, you take the bad, right? So what could be bad about traveling domestically?

No New Cuisines

American food is American food, whether it is plant-based, deep fried, or raw. You won’t be getting too far out of your comfort zone by picking another big chain restaurant located in another part of the country!

No New Cultures

Just like with cuisine, you won’t be heading into new cultures inside the U.S.

It is Harder to Disconnect from Real Life

Going off the grid in International travel is much easier. You can simply just not buy an International plan from your cell phone provider. Simple as that. But here, it’s much harder to completely and totally disconnect.

Here is a Taste of Where You Can Go!

Oregon
Domestic Travel: Crater Lake, Oregon
Photo by Andrea P. Coan on Pexels.com
jackson hole, wyoming
teton range and lake jackson in wyoming
Photo by dennis George on Pexels.com
washington, D.C.
Thomas Jefferson Memorial
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Contact me to talk about all your International or Domestic Travel!

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Safely Travel to Mexico

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Tips for Americans to Safely Travel to Mexico

Our neighbors to the south have a lot to offer, like amazing food, ancient ruins, and some of the most incredible beaches in the whole world. But it can also be dangerous if you’re not careful. The US State Department has labeled Mexico as a Level Two on their Travel Alert scale. This means that Americans are encouraged to travel, but they should be alert and aware of their surroundings. Here are some tips to help you safely travel to Mexico, and enjoy everything this beautiful country has to offer!

Safely travel to Mexico
Mexico is Home to some of the BEST Beaches in the World.

Make Copies of All Your Important Travel Documents

You may feel that having your papers on you at all times is the safest. But having a copy is best to avoid pickpockets. Keep the originals locked in a safe in your room and carry the copy instead.

Do Your Research!

Safely Travel to Mexico

You don’t want to find yourself in one of several “Level 4: Do Not Travel” locations, so it is best to know where you’re going. Or, even better, get yourself a travel agent that can guide you on where is the safest and best location for your budget!

Watch What You Eat and Drink

Safely Travel to Mexico

I’m sure you’ve heard “don’t drink the water” before. And this is SO TRUE in Mexico! Take and drink bottled water everywhere you go. And you will see food vendors all over the streets, and it will smell amazing, but you should only buy food from vendors with long lines full of tourists AND locals. That short line may seem enticing, but there’s probably a reason it’s short.

Do NOT Get Super Drunk

Tequila, Mexico
Tequila: Where Tequila Comes From

Tequila is like water in Mexico, there is Mexican beer everywhere, and HEY! You’re on vacation! But safety first! Do not accept drinks from strangers, do not walk back to your hotel drunk in the dark, and be mindful of your surroundings.

Have Emergency Contacts At The Ready

Mexico now uses the same 911 system that we use in the United States, but you will also want to have the American Embassy and Consulate numbers handy. And, of course, copies of your important travel documents!

Consider an All-Inclusive

Cancun All-Inclusive

All-Inclusives are the BEST way to travel. Not only is everything prepaid before you get there, but you rarely need to leave your resort. Also, if an all-inclusive isn’t for you, but you don’t plan to leave the pool and/or beach, stay at the most popular hotels.

Do Not Use Lyft/Uber to Get Around

It is best to stick with a registered cab company for transportation. While tourists are generally not kidnapped in Mexico, it, again, is better to be safe than sorry!

Learn Basic Spanish

Learning some basic Spanish will help you get around safely, and make you seem less ignorant. Not to mention it can greatly increase your chances to NOT get swindled!

Contact me today to book your SAFE vacation to Mexico!

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Enjoy Hawaii!

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Read Time:8 Minute, 6 Second

Three Unique Things To Do on Each of Hawaii’s Islands to Help You Enjoy Hawaii!

Enjoy Hawaii
Hawaii’s 6 Islands

Hawaii is a tropical paradise tucked away in the Pacific Ocean. It is made up of 6 islands, and each one has plenty to do if you choose to visit. Here are three things to do on each of Hawaii’s islands, and they are sure to help you enjoy Hawaii!

The Big Island: Hawaii

Enjoy Hawaii

The Big Island of Hawaii is home to the world’s most active volcanoes, but don’t let this keep you from visiting! They have warnings for these sorts of things. In fact, the world’s most active volcano, Kilauea, has been actively erupting since 1983! So what is there to do on the Big Island?

  1. Visit Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. This park is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, though it is closed on most holidays, so it’s best to check before you go! And you can purchase a pass online that will be valid for 7 days from purchase. Enjoy day hiking, back country hiking, the Crater Rim Drive tour, the Chain of Craters Road Tour, the Kahuku Unit, and visit two of the world’s most active volcanoes, Kilauea and Mauna Loa. To truly take in the most of this natural beauty, you should plan to spend at least one day exploring the park.
  2. Akaka Falls State Park. Here, you can see two gorgeous waterfalls on one short, .4-mile hike uphill through a lush rainforest filled with wild orchids, bamboo groves, and draping ferns.
  3. Mauna Kea. Mauna Kea is a dormant volcano on the Big Island of Hawaiʻi that last erupted approximately 4000 years ago. At 13,796 feet above sea level and over 33,000 feet from the bottom of the ocean floor, Mauna Kea is the tallest sea mountain in the world. In the Hawaiian religion, the peaks of Mauna Kea are sacred. Stop by the Visitor Information Station, the best amateur observation site on Earth! Also, the Onizuka Center holds free nightly stargazing sessions from 6-10 pm. And on weekends, guests can take part in Mauna Kea summit tours!

The Valley Isle: Maui

Enjoy Hawaii - Maui

Maui, known also as “The Valley Isle,” is the second largest Hawaiian island. And Maui has been voted “Best Island in the U.S.” by Condé Nast Traveler readers for more than 20 years!

  1. The Road to Hana Tour. This tour has something for everyone, including the INCREDIBLE beauty of Hawaii! You will be able to catch a roadside waterfall, or enjoy an off-the-beaten path hiking trail. Also, some of the best banana bread stops in the state! Guests can either drive themselves or take any number of guided tours.
  2. Haleakala National Park Maui. Towering over the island of Maui, 10,023 feet above sea level, in fact, the Haleakala Crater is a dormant volcano with breathtaking views. Haleakala means “house of the sun” in Hawaiian, and legend goes that the demigod Maui lassoed the sun from its journey across the sky as he stood on the volcano’s summit, slowing its descent to make the day last longer. (You’re welcome.) Catch the sunrise, or the sunset, and learn about how Haleakala contributes to the fragile ecosystem of Maui.
  3. Ka’anapali Beach. Three miles of white sand beach and crystal clear waters: the literal definition of paradise. And, of course, the ideal way to enjoy Hawaii! Here, you can take in one of the world class golf courses, or zip line above the breathtaking coastline and see the incredible beauty of the beach for yourself. Each night, a cliff diver lights the torches of the cliffs known as Puu Kekaa, diving off Black Rock in a reenactment of a feat by Maui’s revered King Kahekili.

The Gathering Place: Oahu

Chinaman's Hat - Oahu

Chances are, everything you know about Hawaii is on Oahu. Beacause Oahu is the most populous island in Hawaii, the home of Waikiki and Pearl Harbor.

  1. Kailua Beach Park. The main park here is 35 acres of green space and sand dunes and, since Kailua Beach is less developed than Waikiki, it has more natural beauty. Enjoy the white sand beaches and crystal blue waters as you enjoy Hawaii in this amazing paradise.
  2. Pearl Harbor. There is a TON to see and do, as well as learn, at Pearl Harbor. It is certainly more than just the USS Arizona, though that is the most important part.
  3. Diamond Head State Monument. Created about 300,000 years ago by a violent volcanic eruption, the Diamond Head crater has become Oahu’s most recognized landmark!

The Garden Isle: Kauai

Enjoy Hawaii - Coast of Kauai

Kauai, the oldest island of the Hawaiian Islands, is a place where worries vanish in the trade winds, warm saltwater laps the golden sands of Kauai’s Beaches and the rain-forests of Koke’e host earth’s rarest plants and birds. While here, you will experience the secrets of The Garden Island as you dive into the beauty Kauai has to offer. There is truly no place like the Garden Isle of Kauai.

  1. Waimea Canyon. Waimea Canyon State Park is the largest canyon in the Pacific. Here, you will find several Insta-worthy photo spots and overlooks to capture the breathtaking sights. Surrounding the Waimea Canyon is the Koke’e State Park, which occupies 4,345 acres of land. Norfolk pines, Koa hardwoods, native plants and wildlife are just a small fraction of what you will see here. State operated cabins and hiking by permit is available year-round with advance reservations.
  2. Na Pali Coast. This rugged coastline stretches along the Northwest side of Kauai, and is absolutely GORGEOUS! Here, you can take in the high cliffs, sea caves, cascading waterfalls, and lush green valleys of the coast. During your visit, you can go snorkeling, take a catamaran tour, helicopter tours, and more!
  3. Hanalei. This idyllic town, located on Kauai’s north shore, is home to everything from historic places to contemporary art galleries. Here, you will find the Waioli Mission House, where you can learn more about the history of beautiful Kauai. Or maybe you would like to see a ukulele concert at the Hanalei Community Center. Also, you can take in the breathtaking beauty of the misty green mountains and try to figure out words to describe their beauty. Fans of the musical South Pacific may recognize the Hanalei Pier, which was featured in the movie version.

The Friendly Isle: Moloka’i

© Avichai Ben Tzur 
Moloka'i Hawaii

Moloka’i is the fifth largest Hawaiian island. So this island is TINY! In fact, it is only 38 miles long and 10 miles wide. And it has some of the highest sea cliffs in the world and the longest continuous fringing reef. It is said that Moloka’i is the most urban and most “Hawaiian” of all the islands. It is also quite rugged, so it is not for the faint of heart!

  1. Kaluapapa National Historical Park. In order to even access Kaluapapa National Historical Park, you have to take a 3-mile mule ride. Like I said, Moloka’i is NOT for the faint of heart! Here, you will find the highest sea cliffs in the world, according to the Guinness Book of World Records. This serene park is a breathtakingly beautiful place of preservation and education.
  2. Papohaku Beach. Known as “Three Mile Beach,” this three mile stretch of white sand beach is home to, well, nobody. You will enjoy the “Friendly Island” vibe while taking in the amazing sands, without all the foot traffic. There are campsites, indoor and outdoor shower facilities, restroom facilities, and picnic grounds. And you can take in the incredible views of Oahu from the serenity of the beach!
  3. Moloka’i’s Seacliffs. The absolute best way to take in the beauty of the Moloka’i Seacliffs is to take a helicopter tour from Maui. What an awe-inspiring way to enjoy Hawaii!

The Pineapple Island: Lanai

Enjoy Hawaii

Once a pineapple plantation, Lanai is now owned by billionaire Larry Ellison, and he is turning it into a playground for the super rich. This is the smallest Hawaiian island that tourists are allowed to visit.

  1. Munro Trail. This rugged 12.8 mile trail can only be hiked or biked, you cannot drive. It was named after the New Zealand Naturalist, George Munro, who arrived in 1890. Munro introduced the Cook Pine Trees that you’ll find along the trail.
  2. Keahiakawelo (Garden of the Gods). The rock towers, spires, and formations formed by centuries of erosion are at their most enchanting at dusk. But know that the area is only accessible via four-wheel drive vehicle or mountain bike. The area actually used to be part of a native dryland forest, parts of which have survived today. As the sun sets, it casts a warm orange glow on the rocks illuminating them in brilliant reds and purples. And on a clear day, visitors can see the islands of Molokai and Oahu from these high elevations. 
  3. The Cathedrals. For SCUBA divers, the Cathedrals offer an underwater wonderland full of rock formations, coral, and native sea species.

How You Can Visit and Enjoy Hawaii

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