Area

Easier than by country, this is by the region or area of the world.


Can an independent traveler find happiness on an organized tour? 1

Can an independent traveler find happiness on an organized tour?

After well over 6 solid years of days traveling on my own, traveling solo, going where I wanted when I wanted, seeing whatever I wanted on my own schedule — I signed up, paid for, committed to, an official 9-day tour.

I have to admit, I have been a bit of a tour snob. I’d watch groups of look-alike people follow a red umbrella or an orange flag, sticking together in a mini-mob, looking at what the guide said to, taking photos even when they seemed not to know why, standing in front of some monument for a photo just to show they’ve been there. That wasn’t my idea of fun or of cultural enlightenment.

Yes, I was going on a group tour. I was committing to travel with a group of people I didn’t know. I was facing the potential to be stuck with people I didn’t know, like, or have anything in common with.

However…
I knew this tour organizer so I knew it would be a worthwhile experience full of great places, people, and experiences…

One of many fabulous dinners with La RosaWorks Tours.

Deb in Prague train station

Side-trip from Bratislava to Prague

One of three popular destinations from Bratislava is Prague. It’s a relatively short train or bus ride. As I had not been to Prague or any of what was Czechoslovakia during my first travels, I decided that a couple of days in Prague, Czech Republic (as it is now called) would be a new experience and more worthwhile. So today, having relaxed and enjoyed much of Bratislava at my leisure, and knowing I needed to be back there for my friend Annaline to arrive and travel with me to Israel, it was the perfect time to take my side-trip.

I don’t always know where I’ll stay upon arrival to a new place but in this case, I had already selected and reserved my accommodations for the night. All that was left was to enjoy getting to Prague and making it my next home.


Catania to Palermo by train, finally going to start seeing Sicily

My first morning in Sicily wasn’t where I had planned it. I’d planned to arrive into Palermo, but due to circumstances had to end my into-Sicily travels in Catania instead. This morning I would continue onto Palermo with just enough time to start my first-ever organized tour — Sicily’s Beating Heart Tour with La RosaWorks.

I woke up at 10 — only because I’d set my alarm for the last possible minute that I could shower quickly and still make check-out. Still groggy and with my coordination not intact, I started my day.


Best amusement park in the world – people-powered!

In the forest about an hour north of Venice, Italy, is a 100% people-powered amusement (theme) park built by one local restaurant owner named Bruno. The story, images, and video is inspiring and amazing.

I certainly don’t want to visit Italy again without dining at Pioppi and trying some of his 40 electric-free rides amongst the trees. I think it must be one of the most unique restaurant/theme park experiences!


House sitting in Tzfat Israel 1

This week I had a new experience in Tzfat. A woman I have known for a while invited me to her home. Then she needed to go away but she also needed to be here for the refrigerator repairman. So I got to house-sit. I cleaned out the fridge and salvaged food.

Sound boring? Sound crazy?
Here’s the thing: that fridge is in a stone-walled kitchen!


Buying Peanut Butter in Israel

This is for all the Americans backpackers and other Americans who are traveling to Israel and love our Peanut Butter.

As you shop for Peanut Butter in Israel, you’ll find plastic jars with screw tops like we’re used to in the USA — but you’ll also find a solid plastic contain with either a green or red lid.

It’s not the same as the stuff in the screw-top containers. See how liquidy it is.


Music and bonfire dinner in Qatzrin (Katzrin) Israel

Upon arrival at the comfortable Golan Garden Hostel in Qatzrin (Katzrin) , Israel, I was invited to the Bonfire Music Jam and Donation Dinner. After a fast tour of this nice, comfortable hostel, some great conversations and a bit of work time, it was time to head to the bonfire. I was hungry and ready, as were we all. This clearing and fire ring were an easy 15 minute walk from the Golan Garden Hostel. I asked what town we were seeing in the distance. The lights in foreground are Rosh Pina and those at the top of the mountain are Tzfat. After living in Tzfat for so long and looking out at the lights of other towns, I was now enjoying the lights of Tzfat in my view. It was a beautiful warm evening. Perfect weather, stars high above us. People from a variety of countries. The fire was even interesting. There was a […]


Learning about Fiji – in Israel

Today I shared Kava Kava, a traditional Fiji drink made from a root, with a great group of people from Fiji. I learned to clap my hands twice first, then drink it from their traditional bowl, then clap again.

No, I have not flown or otherwise been magically transported to Fiji. Fiji came to me – at the New Tiberias Hostel in Tiberias Israel.

This is what happens when you travel, stay in hostels, and say hello to other guests as you come across them.


Great Pizza in Tzfat, Israel 1

If you’re craving pizza while in Israel, you will do very well to have that pizza at Pizza Simta in Tzfat! Crispy crust generously sprinkled with sesame seeds surrounding nice-tasting sauce and cheese, freshly made right in front of you, then served bubbling hot!

My pizza standard was formed by growing up with NY and then NYC pizza. It was furthered by pizza in Naples, Italy. If I had pizza in other states or countries, I was unimpressed to remember it either way. For me to say I love a pizza is a pretty big thing.


0-100 in Hebrew — by age

It’s always important to learn at least basic numbers for countries you visit. Here’s the most fun you’ll have being introduced to the numbers 1 to 100 in Hebrew! And even if you don’t want to learn Hebrew, it’s a great video. It took Tom Ross and It took Maya Cohen three journeys to Israel to make this video. 101 people, one from every age between 0 – 100.

Counting 1 to 100 in Hebrew - by age