San Francisco through my eyes

Since I came to the US two years ago (seriously, though!) I have visited several cities in the country. Traveling is one of my passions (as you didn’t know that already! LOL) and I made sure to travel as much as my budget and time allowed me to do so.

One of my favorite cities (besides Chicago, of course!) was San Francisco.

My parents, my sister and I went on a road trip during the summer in 2014 from Atlanta to San Francisco, and making a lot of stops on the way. It was an exhausting trip but I learned a lot of things, discovered tons of stuff and places and had a lot of fun. Check out this post to learn more about the trip

My parents, my sister and I went on a road trip during the summer in 2014 from Atlanta to San Francisco, and making a lot of stops on the way. It was an exhausting trip but I learned a lot of things, discovered tons of stuff and places and had a lot of fun.

We could only spend a couple of days in the city, as we had a pretty busy schedule. When you do a road trip with a limited amount of time and you want to stop and visit plenty of places, you definitely have to plan very good when and where you’re going to be so you can use the time you have as wise as possible. Even if our schedule was tight, though, we did allow ourselves a little flexibility sometimes. You want to enjoy the vacation too, am I right?

And, again, I planned the trip.

Not that I really care, because I LOVE planning trips!

I collected a list of must do’s and must see’s, which included seeing San Francisco from the other side of the Golden Gate, visit the Painted Ladies (where the “Full House” house is located) and go to Lombard Street. And we got to see and do so much more! It was an amazing trip and I hope I can come back to some of the places with a little more time in the future.

On the way to Muir Woods

Muir Woods 4Muir Woods 3Muir Woods 2Muir Woods 1

The first day we took a trip to the Muir Woods National Monument, which is part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. It’s pretty close to San Francisco (12 miles) and I think it’s totally worth it. Just take a jacket with you even in summer, because the trees don’t let the sunlight in that much and it is pretty humid.

We were inside the park and walking the trails for a good 5-6 hours. It might sound like a lot, but it was awesome. It’s a great place to go for some quietness and to run away from the stress of the city.

Lombard St

My father talked about Lombard St. and that he wanted to go see it. Of course, after seeing pictures on the internet, we all wanted to go haha. The pictures don’t even show how funny this street is. There was a ton of people in the sides of the street, at the top and at the end of it. I don’t know if I would live there, though, as I’m guessing is a little noisy from all the cars passing by for fun and the people watching on the sidewalks.

Floating Houses Sausalito.jpg

Sausalito is very close to San Francisco, right in the other side of the Golden Gate bridge. It is a cute little town where we had lunch on the way back from the Muir Woods National Monument and I loved it. We walked around an area where they had floating houses and I found them really cute J

The Painted Ladies

Of course, we couldn’t skip a visit to the Painted Ladies Victorian houses. It was really nice to hang out for a little while there.

City View SunsetMe and the Golden GateSan Francisco TramwaySan FranciscoStraight StreetGolden Gate Bridge 2

Have you ever been to San Francisco? How did you like it? Can’t wait to go back and explore more!

 

5 Things I Love About Chicago

It’s been a while since I shared any of my travels on here so I thought today would be a good day. I haven’t traveled in a while and I can feel the urge of planning a trip or going somewhere for the weekend. But that is going to have to wait a little longer.

So, even if it’s not the same, I try to get rid of that wanderlust for a moment by thinking of past trips. Or cities that I’ve been to and that I loved. Like Chicago.

20 Things I Love About Chicago.jpg

The first time that I went to the Windy City was in August 2014. Since my plan was to stay in the US for just a year, I knew for sure that I had to visit Chicago. And it had to be during the warmer months, as I don’t deal very well with cold weather.

Me holding a HUGE Hershey's bar

I went with a couple of friends for a long weekend and we were going to places nonstop. We stayed in a hotel near the airport, which isn’t the most comfortable thing when you visit a city, but the hotel was great (good price too) and Chicago is a well connected city by metro and buses.

I also went on May 2015 (a crazy super short trip) and I enjoyed every minute in the city.

The things that I love the most about Chicago are:

  • It’s a very easy city to walk around. When I go to a new city I love to walk to places if I can. It is more interesting and you can discover buildings, shops and special spots that you would have missed otherwise. I also have a better idea of where everything is situated if I walk around and see the “surface” than going by metro. Chicago offers that, with nice sidewalks. And you actually see people walking in the streets! (I’ll do another post about things that surprised me when I first got to the US). If it wasn’t that cold in winter I would consider moving there.

N Wabash Ave. Pizzeria Uno

  • Disney Store. I don’t know how much time I spent in there, but I’m pretty sure that it seemed a lot to my husband. It is huge! And I’m like a kid lol

Disney Store in Chicago

  • The 360º view from the Hancock Building. You can stay up there as long as you want, and we went around sunset. A-MA-ZING. And I always like to try and see where everything is. “Look, our hotel!”, “There’s the Hershey’s store!”. Again, like a kid haha *picture is not good quality because my camera was pretty crappy at the time… I promise to update the pictures whenever I go back*

View from Hancock Building

  • The lake shore is a great place to walk, run, bike or just sit. It’s not as good as the beach shore, but it could perfectly be the second best option. The cycling path is 10-15 miles long.

Lake Michigan Shore

  • While walking around in downtown Chicago I loved to look up and be surrounded of skyscrapers. They make me feel pretty small, but I like how they don’t seem to have an end.

Skyscrappers in Chicago

Have you been to the Windy City? What did you like about it? What didn’t you like?

10 places I want to visit

Am I the only one that every once in a while likes to look to a map and plan an imaginary trip anywhere? And there are so many places I want to go to that I’m not sure if I’ll ever going to get to see all of them!

Today I’d like to tell you some of the places that are on my list and I definitely want to go and I’m going to do my best to do so in the next few years. Wanna know more? Keep reading! *BTW, they are not in order of importance or anything like that. I wouldn’t be able to do so! LOL*

  • Brisbane, Australia. One of my first options when I was thinking of leaving my country. Seeing the pictures I guess it’s not difficult to imagine why, right?

Brisbane, Australia

  • India. Just take a tour around the country. Can I? I have read a few books where the stories took place in India and I’m kind of really interested on it now.

India

  • Bahamas. I don’t need to take a week-long vacation in a super luxury resort. Well, it’s not like I’d say no if I’m offered, but with a couple of days in a regular hotel (if that really exists there) I’m more than fine!

Bahamas

  • Vienna, Austria. Along with many European cities. When I was a kid and I saw Inspector Rex I knew I would love to go see that amazing city.

Vienna, Austria

  • New Zealand. Who doesn’t want to see where The Lord Of The Rings was filmed? And I have heard amazing things about New Zealand.

Queenstown Bay, New Zealand

Queenstown Bay, New Zealand

  • Northern Europe. Finland, Norway, Sweden. Even if it’s super cold, the fiords have to be awesome to see in person. And the Northern Lights. *I know that there are other places to see the lights and I might go there too. You can never see the Northern Lights too many times, right?*

Northern lights Tromso

  • Hawaii. And I’d love to find a place to learn how to surf.

Hawaii

  • Bulgaria. Being my husband from there, it’s a place that I have on my list and I’m looking forward to our visit so he can show me everything!

Sopot, Bulgaria

Sopot, Bulgaria

I know. It’s pretty much every place in the world. But I can’t help it, I’m a crazy traveler! I really enjoy discovering new cities and looking for new corners everywhere I go. Someday I’ll tell you the story about the wonderful malt that I had in St. Louis… Until then, let me know in the comments the places that you definitely don’t want to miss!

That time I did Road Trip Around the South of France

That Time I did a Road Trip Around the South of France

I love road trips. I. LOVE. ROAD. TRIPS. And travelling. A lot. I also love the feeling of coming back home from a long trip, to my bed, my things and my people… but that’s another story.

A couple of years ago I did a 5-day road trip with my mom, starting home and getting to Narbonne, in the south of France. It was around 1600km or 995 miles. It was amazing and we stopped in several places on the way. If you haven’t been in Europe let me tell you it’s soooo different from the US.

I have been living in Georgia for the last 19 months and I often miss the European way of life. I might do a post of things that I miss from there and things that I like better here.

Road trip around FranceThe first day we went to see Bayonne and Hossegor. Bayonne is a little city in the southwest part of France, which is also known as French-Basque Country. We walked around the city center and saw the Sainte-Marie of Bayonne Cathedral, the city hall and the Chateaux Vieux. We also walked along the river and took a gazillion pictures!

It was already night time when we got to Hossegor, so we just looked for a hotel. The temperature was so nice that we went back outside and walked around for a couple of hours. We got to the beach and walked up to Capbreton, a little town next to Hossegor. They are so close to each other that we didn’t even realized when we changed locations!

The second day we went to Toulouse, where we were going to meet my friend Caro. I had lived there for about 5 months when I went on Erasmus, so I already knew the city. It was so good to be back, though! We walked about 4-5 hours that afternoon, which is not that much for such a beautiful city.

Toulouse, France

When my friend left, my mom and I decided to go spend the night to Carcassonne, which is just an hour away. We skipped the main highway so we could enjoy the landscape. Isn’t it amazing when you don’t need to rush and you can really enjoy the trip? Sometimes it is one of the best parts of traveling.

We went to see the city and the fortress both that night and the next morning. The medieval fortress is a place full of history, added to the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites in 1997. It is definitely a place to go if you’re in the area! And it has a special magic at night, with all the lights along the fortress.

Aerial view of Carcassonne

Aerial view of Carcassonne by allworldtowns.com

We took the car the third day in the afternoon to get to Narbonne Plage. It is about 15 minutes from Narbonne City, and it is a typical summer place. It is located in the Mediterranean Sea so we thought the water would be warm, but we couldn’t be more wrong! It was freezing, so we took a walk along the shore. Being the end of the summer, there were not many people, so we could enjoy ourselves without having to deal with big crowds.

Perpignan

We went to Perpignan the fourth day, although we only spent there a few hours. I had already been there too, but for some reason, this time didn’t seem anything special. We left and went to Roses, in Cataluña, to go later to Les Escaldes, in Andorra. I had been in Andorra when I was little, but I barely remembered anything. Andorra is the middle of the Pyrenees, the mountains that separate France from Spain. The views are just amazing. And I like the city too. Not very big, but you can find anything to do (if you love sports, it’s a great place to go too) and many people go there shopping (very low taxes).

Les Escaldes, Andorra

Les Escaldes, Andorra by hdtimelapse.net

We ended the tour going back home on the fifth day, stopping in Biarritz to get an amazing crêpe and a waffle. Let me tell you… this French people really know how to do those. You don’t know what a good waffle or crêpe are until you try theirs. OMG

Love road trips

We obviously left some stuff to do, and I definitely want to go back to Hossegor (surfers’ paradise!), but it was a great trip, we enjoyed ourselves a lot and we have fun.

Are you planning on doing a road trip anytime soon or have you done any recently? Where to? Let me know in the comments!