Tag Archives: Best of

8 Favorite Destinations, Year 4

Hike to Kilauea Volcano, Hawaii

Four years ago we set out to travel the country fulltime in an R.V. When people asked us how long we planned to live in a motor home, the best answer we could give them was “until we’re done.” We didn’t know how long it would take for us to see everything we wanted to see or how long we’d enjoy (or tolerate) living in what amounts to a fancy truck. We now know.

It took us just shy of four years to zigzag across the country from Maine to San Diego and make the roughly 250 other stops we wanted in between. Year four took us along the West Coast, out to Hawaii and up to Alaska, where we completed our westward migration.

With our domestic travels largely completed, we traded in our motor home for a couple of backpacks and set off to see the wider world.

If you ask us now how long we plan to travel this way, lugging all our worldly possessions on our backs, the best we can tell you is “until we’re done.” We may not know the path ahead, but we do have pretty clear recollections of the year we’re leaving behind.

With that in mind, here’s a list of our favorite destinations from our fourth full year of fulltime travel. As always with these posts, the destination header links to the original blog post on the topic. 

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Best of the Blog: 2013’s Top 5

Kilauea Lava Flow at Night

Earlier this week we started counting down our ten most popular posts of the prior year. Today we finish with the year’s best five.

5) The Upside of Travel Planning

Spring European Travel Plan

We discover yet another way in which the clichéd and seemingly travel-wise advice to “go with the flow” fails us.

4) Pele Puts Out

Hike Across Hawaiian Lava Flow

It’s one of the most awe-inspiring sights we’ve ever seen: molten lava flowing into the Pacific Ocean. From our front-row seats near the edge of a cliff, we watched in wonder as Pele, the volcano goddess of the ancient Hawaiians, performed spectacularly.

3) That Old Black Magic

Voodoo Cock and Balls Doughnut

Yes, of course I measured it.

A Portland confectioner has us under its spell.

2) Are the Childless Selfish

The Childfree Life Time Magazine Cover

We take a bit of a detour from our regular travel musings to delve deeply into a thorny lifestyle question. Are we selfish for not having children?

1) Why We Won’t Travel to North Korea

North Korean Painting of Kim Il Sung

2013 witnessed the death of our namesake ambition. We won’t be visiting everywhere once, after all.

We started wondering whether everywhere on earth was really worthy of our tourist dollars in a post titled Rethinking Everywhere. That article received enough of a response to earn a place of its own on this year’s Best of List. But it was soon eclipsed by our deep dive into the ethics of traveling to one place in particular: North Korea.

Yaks at Blue Heron Cheese Company in Oregon

Best of the Blog: 2013’s Top 10

Big Sur California

Big Sur, California

With 2013 coming to a close it’s once again time for our annual retrospective. As with last year’s Best Of selections, we’ve combed through our statistics from the past year to find the posts you read and shared most often. And similar to 2012, the results are an eclectic mix of opinion pieces, travel stories, advice columns and photo essays (you’ll find links to the original articles in each of the headings below.)

Needless to say, 2013 was a great year. Here’s looking forward to an even better 2014.

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Yuma Balloon Festival Balloons in Flight

10 Favorite Destinations, Year 3

Glacier National Park, Three Arches, Going to the Sun Road

Time certainly does fly when you’re having fun; so much so that it is impossible for us to believe that we’ve really been on the road for three full years. But it’s not all fun and games, you know? With great travels comes great responsibility. And so we once again find ourselves confronted with the hard task of selecting our favorite destinations from the past 365 days.

Our previous “Best of” lists can be found here (Year 1 and Year 2)

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New York City, a Reunion Tour

New York City Nighttime Skyline

The downside of living someplace wonderful is that you take it for granted. Returning to New York after a long absence gave us a unique opportunity: to revisit all of our most familiar and favorite places and see them again as if for the first time. We couldn’t wait to dive back in.

Carmine’s Restaurant

Carmines Restaurant New York City Upper West Side

New York has more restaurants than some cities have people: 20,000 of them. So many, in fact, it is possible to eat at a different establishment every single night for 55 years. Yet with all of those choices we only had one eatery on our minds, Carmine’s.

Our relationship with Carmine’s dates back almost to its beginnings in 1990. It’s been a love affair ever since. The oversized menus bolted to the walls haven’t changed in the twenty years we’ve known her. Neither has her incredible food, which is also served in oversized portions meant for sharing.

Arti Cutler designed Carmine’s so that each meal is like an Italian American wedding feast. He succeeded in making our every visit a celebration. We still prefer Carmine’s original Upper Westside Manhattan location but are glad to know the celebration has spread to D.C., Atlantic City, Los Vegas and Atlantis. When we can’t be in New York, we’ll be looking for her there.

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