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3 Great Tricks for Preparing for Your Travels

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  For many of us, travelling is the ultimate dream, and it’s definitely a dream worth following.
Seeing new places, new cultures, and new people can completely change the way we look at the world. It can open our eyes to the beauty of the planet, and fill us with inspiration and joy in our day to day lives when we finally get back home.
The only tricky part is preparing for those adventures in the first place, to make sure they go through without any major issues, so that we can focus on getting the most out of the experience that we possibly can.
If you’re gearing up for a life as a future globetrotter, here are some things you should do before heading out, to prepare.

Budget for every possible expense
The first thing to do when planning any trip is to decide just how much money you’re willing to spend on it. It’s far too easy to arrive at your destination and find that you haven’t properly budgeted for all the different costs involved — and the last place you want to be running out of funds is in a foreign country where you may not understand how the local institutions and systems work.
That’s not to mention that if you dramatically overspend on one trip, you’ll have less money available for going on your next adventure.
Take the time to sit down and properly work out your budget categories for the trip, and be sure to set aside enough money for every expense, whether that means working out a Vietnam visa cost, or planning your daily food budget..
Setting aside more than you think you’ll need is a great insurance policy to keep things from going wrong. Even better is to set aside a chunk of money for “stuff I forgot about”, so that surprise expenses don’t ruin your plans.

Research the area extensively
People often go on trips without a good knowledge of the area they’re travelling to. A big part of this is simply the desire to be surprised and spontaneous once you arrive.
While it’s great to keep yourself open to the awe and wonder of a new location, you don’t need to worry that researching your destination will ruin the magic for you. No guidebook or travel log will ever capture the true essence of a place.
What they will do is open your eyes to the kinds of attractions you might want to see, and the bad parts of town that you should avoid.

Start meditating and clearing away your expectations
One of the best ways of truly experiencing the magic of a place is to arrive there without solid expectations. If you want to visit Paris, and you’re completely obsessed by the idea of seeing guys in berets and striped shirts cycling around everywhere with baguettes under their arms, you’re just setting yourself up for disappointment.
Instead, work on clearing your mind of expectations, so that you can let the experience speak to you directly. Meditation exercises can be a great way of moving your attention to the present, rather than leaving it caught up in your expectations, hopes, and fears.

 

 

Travel Tips

Not Just A Fad, Travel Is A Tool For Life Enrichment

A lot of people think of travel as an occasional hobby or a tool to get away from the stresses of daily life. For some of us, however, it’s a passion, and for good reason. If you’ve been thinking of travelling more as of late, you might be concerned that it’s a waste of time or money that can be better spent on enriching your life and improving yourself as a person. However, there are plenty of ways travel can do that, which we’re going to look at now.

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Becoming stronger, more adaptable
Travel is a hassle, that much can be true. If you do it alone, you’re going to get very little help. However, while this also offers a little more freedom to enjoy your trip however you see fit, the fact is that solo travel, or travel in general, helps you become a lot more decisive, confident, and adaptable to different conditions. You learn to live with and respect new cultures, find ways around language barriers, and become emotionally resilient as you deal with a lot more time alone where you’re entirely responsible for yourself.

Living with no regrets
When we come to the later stages of our life, we very rarely regret that we didn’t do enough work or that we didn’t live an ordinary life. We think about the missed opportunities, the bucket lists we didn’t get started on, and the experiences we wished we could have had. To many, travel has been on their mind for a long time, but so many expect that they will free up the time later when they have more money and a more established lifestyle. In all honesty, the sooner your travel, the more experiences are open to you and the fewer regrets you will live with.

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Getting in touch with your spirit
It might be cliché, but travel can most definitely be a spiritual experience if you look for it. Good food, gorgeous landscapes, and fun cultures are all part of it. But so are destinations like mountaintopclinic.com that allow you to explore a different side of your spirituality and approach new ways of thinking about life. Travel helps you get in touch with yourself, not just the places you visit.

Changing the story
Travel can also help you change yourself by giving you a new perspective on topics you might have thought that you already had figured out. As huffingtonpost.com points out, a lot of people have misconceptions about travel in general. You might also have misconceptions about certain peoples, cultures, or places. The best way to blow them out of the water and get a more informed picture is to actually get up and go there. Get rid of your assumptions and prejudices and replace with a better understanding of the world.

Travel isn’t the answer to everything, but it can truly be a transformative experience if you let it in your life. Is it time you start seeing more of the world and what it can offer you?

 

 

 

Travel Tips

This is the Secret to Traveling More Often

Being able to travel regularly is a privilege that not everybody has. It would be great if we could all jet off around the world whenever we wanted to but, unfortunately, you’ve got to pay for it. When you add up the costs of flights, accommodation, and spending money, you end up needing a lot of money. Spending money and the cost of accommodation can both be reduced fairly easily if you’re willing to stay somewhere a little more basic and just enjoy the free attractions that the country has to offer. Getting cheap flights is a little trickier, but it isn’t impossible. Flights are usually your biggest expense, especially if you’re going further afield, so cutting the costs of them is key to being able to travel more often. If you’re still struggling to afford your next adventure, try out some of these methods for slashing the price of flights.

Minimize Luggage

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When you’re looking for flights online, the airlines are pretty sneaky. The price will come up and you’ll think you’ve found a great deal. It’s way cheaper than you thought it’d be until you actually go to book it that is. That’s when all of the extra charges start popping up and you realize that the real price is nothing like the one that enticed you in the first place. Extra luggage charges are a favorite of airlines and they can be pretty steep. Usually, you get free hand luggage but that’s not enough to take everything you need for one trip. Any suitcases that you take are going to be extra money on top of the ticket price. If you can limit it to one suitcase you’ll save so much money. People often end up taking more bags so they can separate toiletries from their clothes and other bits in case of spillages but you can easily solve that problem and get it all in one bag if you use packing cubes. They’re small bags that you can use to create a lot of subsections in your larger case so you can get everything in there together without worrying about it. You also need to be ruthless when it comes to choosing what to take. Only pack what you’ll actually need to use when you’re out there and think about what you can buy when you get there.

Layovers

Direct flights are almost always more expensive, and usually by quite a lot. People are often put off layovers because it’s going to take far longer but it’s worth the sacrifice for reduced fare. It also gives you the opportunity to fit another city into your trip which you otherwise wouldn’t have been able to visit. It’s only a brief stop but it’s still another place to add to the list.

Go in Winter

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It’s no secret that flights are more expensive during the summer, especially when kids are off school. Most people prefer to go when the weather is better of course, but if you can’t afford it, why not consider going in winter? The prices will be slashed and you get a different experience in a country during winter that most people don’t get.
You’ll have to make a few sacrifices to get cheaper flights but if you want to travel more regularly, it’s worth it.

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Afford to Look After Yourself – And Actually Do It!

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There seem to be many rules when it comes to life, along with many stresses and worries, like making sure the bills are paid on time. And while these are essential things, it’s still important to take time out to enjoy the treasures and treat ourselves occasionally, otherwise it will just feel as though we’re in a miserable cycle that repeats itself every week – and life should be so much more than that. There are so many beautiful things to see and do that it’s essential you get out there and be selfish every now and then. Here’s how you can do that:

Saving Up
The best way to have enough money so that you can indulge, is to save it. Work those extra hours, cut down on the unimportant purchases, and put all the spare change you have to one side. As tempting as it may be – think of the bigger picture – that’ll make it worth it. If you aren’t earning as much as you would have liked and you aren’t able to get another job just yet, maybe you should consider taking out a loan. Sometimes though, if you already have a bad credit score, your bank won’t want to lend you any money, and in that case, your best option is to go through a private money lender. They specialize in providing people with money fast and efficiently without all of the hassles.

Take a holiday
Jet off somewhere exotic for a week or two. That may be with your friends, your other half, or you may prefer to fly solo. Visit a place that you have always wanted to go to but never had the opportunity. Remember that if you book in advance, you will be saving an awful lot of money than if it was short notice. You will be able to get brilliant deals on flights and accommodation. Just think about all the delicious food you will be tasting. – Fresh seafood from the restaurant on the beach as you gaze off into the turquoise ocean and the crystal white sand… – The dream, right?

Get pampered
Have a pampered day, weekend, or even week! Sometimes it’s important to have some ‘me time’ that doesn’t involve anyone but yourself and the wonderful people that are pampering you with massages, champagne, and mani-pedis. Lose yourself to the calm music, the soothing water, and all the other wonderful sensations that touch every sense of yours. Forget about all your responsibilities and worries, and just let yourself drift off to a dreamland that you’ve created.

Throw a party
Not your birthday? … So? You can throw your own party whenever you want to. Celebrating life should be enough of a reason – it’s awesome. So contact all of your closest friends and family and give them a time and a place. You could even choose a theme and have everyone dress up accordingly – that just makes everything even more fun. If your house isn’t big enough, rent out a party house for the night, or even the weekend to extend the good times.

Travel Tips

Traveling Light and Far with Nothing but a Backpack

Backpacking has become one of the most popular forms of travel for those looking to explore the world. If you have a case of wanderlust, then nothing will sate you like a backpacking adventure. You’ll experience the world up-close, you’ll meet new people, indulge in unique cultures and sample delicious food that you won’t find in a restaurant. However, one of the major concerns for backpackers is, well, packing.

You see, backpacking is supposed to be light so you can move around easily. You won’t see backpackers with a suitcase and several bags dangling off their shoulders—it’s just not practical. At most, a backpacker will have one main backpack and perhaps a small shoulder or side bag, but that’s it. Everything they’ll need for several days is going to have to fit in the main bag, and it’s important to pack the right things if you’re going on a backpacking trip that will last several days, weeks or even months.
To help you pack lightly so you can go further, here are a couple of handy tips.

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What’s your food and drink situation?
Food is going to be heavy. If you plan to carry several bottles of water, a stove and raw ingredients to cook a meal, then expect to add a lot of weight to your backpack. The remedy? Don’t pack too much food. Learn to live off lighter snacks that don’t take much space or weight, such as protein bars. In terms of water, carry a bottle but nothing more, and take the chance to fill up the bottle whenever you can. Be careful, because some water sources aren’t palatable. Take a look at a water purification guide so you can learn how to source clean drinking water instead of carrying several litres with you.

Focus on sturdy, not fashionable
A mistake that some people make when picking gear for backpacking is they’ll go for fashionable items. It’s understandable that you want to look the part when you approach people, but if you’re backpacking you can’t compromise function for form. Take a look at inexpensive tactical gear for the best backpacks and survival gear that is made to last. Don’t walk into a designer store or your average high street clothing store. You need items that are built to be sturdy and used in survival situations.

Learn the layout
Backpacking should be explorative and fascinating, but it shouldn’t be dangerous. Whether you’re planning on taking public transport or exploring the city on foot, make sure you include a map in your backpack. Yes, a physical map, not a GPS device or your phone. The problem with phones is that they run out of battery fast, and battery banks that hold a lot of power are heavy and bulky. A physical map should weigh hardly anything and it can easily fit in your pocket. Together with a small compass, you can get around easily with a hardcopy map.
If you’re planning to go backpacking, do yourself a favour and skip all the unnecessary items. Focus on lightweight and learn to live off the land, not your technology.

 

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Don’t Fly Away: The Best Ways to Explore Europe

Flying is incredibly convenient, especially if you’re going somewhere far away like Europe. But much like everyone should try a road trip through America every once in a while, there is more than one way to explore the European continent. After all, it’s only the size of Texas, so it doesn’t take as long to cross so many borders. Ultimately, getting off the planes and traveling through Europe in alternative ways lets you get off the beaten path to see more of each country. Here are just a few options you could explore.

Boat

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You might not believe it, but there are some fantastic things to see along the European coastline. You can plan your perfect trip by buying a boat with help from boatfinancing.co – and the boat doesn’t need to stay in US waters to qualify – or you could get some friends together and split the cost of hiring a chartered boat for the duration of your travels. If you’re charting the course, you have full control over where you go, and how long you stay there. Alternatively, there are some amazing cruises with cruisecritic.co.uk that let you see more of Europe; cruises around the Amalfi coast in Italy, or around the Mediterranean are extremely popular, and full of history and culture. Not to mention the cruise itself has a lot on entertainment and activities on board, so you never feel bored while you’re traveling.

Road Trips

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Europe is incredibly well-connected, and thanks to ferries traveling to nearby islands, you don’t even have to find alternate ways to get to England or Ireland. One of the best road trips in Europe is the Wild Atlantic Way on the west coast of Ireland. It’s the longest coastal route in the world, spanning 2500 km, and has incredible views of the sea, cliffs, and beaches. Even if you’re driving a really fast car, it can take between two and four weeks to complete this trip, so make sure you plan a few stops to some Irish pubs along the way. Besides, it would be a shame to see all those amazing beaches and not stop to take a dip. There’s so many offbeat things to do on Wild Atlantic Way that will let you stretch your legs, so it may take you even longer to finish.

Backpacking

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This is your last reminder that Europe is not a huge continent; it can take you a single day to walk from one country to the next depending on where you are. There are so many breathtaking routes across the continent, that even the most reluctant hikers will find something they love. England has the Lake District, Scotland has the Hadrian’s Wall trek and Three Lochs Way, France has the Alps, and Albania is fast becoming a popular destination for backpackers because of its climate and close proximity to Greece, Corfu, and Italy. With so many backpacking routes available, it’s no wonder most people have “Backpacking through Europe” on their bucket list.

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Romantic Trips To Take When You Want To Wow Your Loved One

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Travel is something that we all often see as a way to see the world, escape the ordinary, and just get away from it all. But the idea of travel really doesn’t have to be limited to just that. In fact, you can actually work with travel to treat the people in your life. This is certainly the case when it comes to your significant other. Sometimes, you want to wow them with more than just material possessions. Because we all know that experiences can often mean more than just buying gifts. So whether you’ve got a special occasion coming up, or you want to plan something just because, here are the romantic trip ideas you could consider to treat your other half with.

Stay Stateside
But don’t just assume that you have to jet off somewhere in order to be able to treat your significant other to a romantic trip of a lifetime. Because there are a wealth of options available to you right here in the USA. Whether you want to schedule your hot air balloon ride over Phoenix or even try out a wine tasting in Napa Valley, there’s so much romance to consider at home. So think about the ways you can wow from right here in the States.

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A Break In Barcelona
However, you are still going to want to consider some of the overseas options that you have available for this romantic trip. And the first destination to consider is always going to be Europe. Because the continent really does have a lot to offer you. Starting with Barcelona. The city just screams romance. It’s atmosphere and attractions will form the perfect base to any romantic break, starting with a bottle of something special in the room when you arrive.

Visit Venice
Jumping from Spain right on over to Italy, next up you could always consider Venice. The city that sits on water is perfect for times when you want to impress. Whether you take a gondola ride or sit out in a piazza eating pizza, your loved one will be wowed. There are so many romantic boutique hotels in the city that you could book, and that you’ll never fail to impress when you consider this city for your break.

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Find A Penchant For Paris
And what would a romantic break blog post be without the presence of Paris. Known as the most romantic city in the world, it’s always going to be a contender for your sweet city break. With smaller escapes and the bigger and bolder choices of accommodation, you’ll always find something to suit your budget in Paris. Just the ideas will always impress.

Fall In La La Love With LA
Finishing off with a last stateside location, there’s always LA. Los Angeles is a firm favorite of travelers for a range of reasons. But it’s also a romantic spot for when you want to impress a certain someone. With its ever-present air of excitement and a wealth of romantic places for the perfect LA date, it’s definitely a spot to keep up your sleeve.

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The Best Cities to Study in Away from Home

Going to university is an exciting time in any student’s life full of new opportunity and promise, despite the possible debt and homesickness you might experience. It’s clear that the pros generally outweigh the cons though, as you’re more likely to land a job you love by showing you’ve completed an entire length course in it. But what if you’re unsatisfied with the opportunities at home? Where can you go away to to find the best college places? Combine travel and studying in one fell swoop.Here’s a few recommendations of universities around the world that have the best study chances.

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Montreal
Canada is a gorgeous place, so you know eyesores won’t be a part of your quintessential student experience. Brilliant views, many different languages surrounding you…there’s so much to see and take part in if you decide to study in Montreal. Oh and of course the universities themselves: the McGill University is situated here, and is a good idea for anyone interested in the sciences. Montreal is also incredibly nice in terms of its people as well, so if you’re anxious about not being able to find friends or trying to fit in in a Western centre, heading to Montreal can soothe some of these worries.
London
London is one of the top places in Europe, and also has a lot of student accommodation outside of residence halls. You’re more likely to be able to book a homestay in London than anywhere else, but these places can be quickly snapped up because of the sought after quality! As an international student, you’ll able to find cheaper student tuition here than anyone who actually lives there, which is just another bonus to the already brilliant location. There’s so much history and a mixing pot of culture, so you’re promised a lot of bang for your buck.
Seoul
Heading to Seoul to do your studying is your greatest bet at guaranteeing you a job after you’ve finished your degree. If you’re the type of person who thrives off a social life and always wants energy around you, Seoul has that down to an art. Seoul National University is on the top spot when it comes to the astounding 18 universities there are in the capital, which seems slightly over the top, but it means you’re never far from student life.
Vienna
If you’re studying something to do with European art or culture, than Vienna might be a great fit for you. Vienna has two top ranking universities to its name, and also has some of the lowest tuition fees in the world. Vienna is a great place for music students, with artists like Beethoven and Mozart on full display. There’s a smaller amount of university variety, but that just means everyone is closer to each other!
Choosing to study away from home, or even your country, is a big step and not taken lightly. But now you can see it has a lot more pros than it does cons!

A Quick Los Angeles, California Itinerary

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A Quick Los Angeles, California Itinerary

Early this March I took a quick trip to Los Angeles in honor of my 21st birthday! California is a place that I had been wanting to go to for such a long time because although I’ve been out of the country multiple times, I had never been to the West Coast. Because of work and college classes I couldn’t stay for very long, but during my four days in Los Angeles I was able to do some of the things I had wanted to the most. I would definitely recommend them for anyone who only has a few days to see the iconic city that is LA for the first time!

hollywood walk of fame

 

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I’m one of those travelers that loves seeing famous landmarks, so I was super excited to see the Hollywood Walk of Fame in person! While I wasn’t looking for any celebrity’s star in particular, it was fun to see stars belonging to icons like Michael Jackson, Bob Marley, Will Smith, Madonna, etc. Initially, I was under the impression that the Walk of Fame was its own isolated street that was only used to walk along and look at the stars, so it surprised me to see that it was actually all over the streets of Sunset Boulevard. I can’t guarantee you’ll find any particular star that you’re searching for because they’re scattered so much that it was impossible to see every single one. As we looked at the stars, we passed tons of different stores, restaurants, bars/clubs, theaters, and just lots of various entertainment. If you have extra time to spare, then you’ll definitely find a lot to do in the Sunset Boulevard/Sunset Strip/Walk of Fame area. I highly suggest going while the sun is still out if you want good pictures, since the stars are harder to see at night. Definitely stay for the evening though, because the sunset was so stunning here (maybe why the area is called the Sunset Strip?). I think that visiting the Walk of Fame really captured the cinematic feeling that Hollywood is so well-known for.

Where I ate: I ate at Los Burritos, a Mexican restaurant on Sunset Boulevard. If I’m being honest, I’ve had better Mexican food before. This place wasn’t bad, but it was very mediocre. I ordered a few chicken tacos, but the tacos literally just had chicken and waaay too much cabbage. For authentic Mexican food, there wasn’t much flavor to them, but I did like the rice and beans. The people I traveled with agreed that the food wasn’t anything great. I’m sure there were better places to eat in the area though, but we ate there on a whim instead of doing any research and that doesn’t always work out.

 

Disneyland & California Adventure

 

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Disneyland and California Adventure aren’t technically in Los Angeles, they’re located in Anaheim which is located right outside of it. Still, these theme parks are definitely something to check out if you’re in the LA area, especially if you have children or just haven’t been to Disneyland before. Being from Florida, I’ve been to Disney World plenty of times, but I still wanted to see what Disneyland would be like and I’d actually like to check every Disney park in the world off of my list someday.

California Adventure was more of a fun experience to me personally because it felt like I was visiting somewhere new, while Disneyland was extremely similar to Disney World, just much smaller (I’ll be writing a detailed post explaining Disneyland vs Disney World soon!). However, if you’ve never been to any Disney park then you should definitely make it a point to visit both. Disneyland is actually the only Disney park in the world that was built directly under Walt Disney’s supervision, making it not only a theme park, but a huge piece of history.

Museum of death

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The Museum of Death isn’t for everyone, but if you have a bit of a morbid side then it’s one of those experiences you can’t really get anywhere else. In this museum you can read letters written by serial killers and look at art they created, watch autopsy videos (these are a little hard to watch) and photos including those of JFK and Marilyn Monroe, see exclusive crime scene photos from famous murders like the Black Dhalia and Manson murders, see a severed head, lots of taxidermy, a section all about Heaven’s Gate, and much more. It’s a self guided walking tour, so you have plenty of time to really soak in what you’re seeing because there’s a lot to look at and read about and you’ll definitely learn something new. The way I see it, you’ll either think “What kind of sick person would enjoy going to this?” or you’ll be extremely fascinated or maybe a combination of both. Unfortunately, pictures and videos of any kind are not allowed inside of the museum, so it’s something that you’d really have to go and see for yourself. I personally really enjoyed going here and if you’re into crime shows, horror movies, or anything of that kind of nature then I highly recommend this as something a little different to do is LA.

venice beach

 

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Venice Beach is another one of those iconic places that you just have to go to during your first visit in LA. Admittedly, the actual beach itself is nothing special. It’s definitely not ugly, but it’s not a beautiful, brightly colored tropical beach either. However, the Venice Beach boardwalk is a place that really captures the culture of Southern California and that’s what really won me over. From getting something to eat and shopping around to getting a tattoo to even seeing if you qualify for a marijuana card (I’m not sure how genuine these booths are by the way), there’s plenty to do just walking along the boardwalk. You’ll also see plenty of people on skateboards, street performers, fortune tellers, musicians, and just all around interesting Californians. This is a place I’d love to go back to.

santa monica pier

 

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The world famous Santa Monica Pier made me kind of wish that I had grown up in California. The Santa Monica Pier is similar to a year-round fair, with its rides, games, and food. Despite being a very touristy area, I found it to actually be a charming place and you can’t beat the beautiful seaside view during the day (at night it gets extremely foggy, though). The only ride I actually got on was the ferris wheel, which gave a perfect view of the whole pier and the beaches surrounding it. Besides food and entertainment, the Santa Monica Pier is also a great place to buy souvenirs. I found the souvenir shops in downtown LA to be a little cliche, but you can get all kinds of cool, vintage California things from stands on the pier. Overall, I’d suggest this place as something to do right after going to Venice beach. The whole area has a really fun, carefree vibe to it!

Where I Ate: I ate at Bubba Gump Shrimp, which is a seafood restaurant inspired by the Forrest Gump movie. This isn’t exclusive to California, but I don’t think there’s really a better way to enjoy a plate of shrimp and a cocktail than with an ocean view at the Santa Monica Pier.

griffith observatory

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Last but not least, a first time trip to LA is not complete without a visit to the Griffith Observatory! I personally chose to go to the Griffith Observatory to get a good view and pictures of the Hollywood Sign, since this seems to be the easiest way to do it if you’re not a fan of hiking (I’m definitely not). Along with an easy place to get a look at the Hollywood Sign, the Griffith Observatory is also the perfect spot to take in an amazing view of the city of Los Angeles. If you actually go inside of the building, you can look at different exhibits and look through telescopes. Depending when you go, you can even see a live show at the planetarium. Admission to the building and the grounds is completely free, so there’s really no reason not to add this educational and sight seeing experience to your Los Angeles itinerary!

 

summary

The perfect way to describe Southern California in my opinion is a perfect cross of Florida and New York City, so having lived in both of these states, it almost felt as if I had been there before. Despite this, I was left wanting more, the way I am with nearly every place I’ve visited. There’s still so much of California and even Los Angeles that I haven’t seen (which just means I’ll have to go back someday), but I think that if, like me, you only have a few days to spend in the city of angels, you’ll get a decent taste of it and great memories from visiting everywhere on my list!

Have you been to Los Angeles? How did you spend your time there? Let me know in the comments!

 

 

 

 

Why I Chose My Major

Lifestyle

Why I Chose My Major

One of the questions college students probably get the most is “What’s your major?” and this is often followed by “Oh, okay…so what are you going to do with that?”. It can be a frustrating thing to answer when your major doesn’t have a set career to go with it. I started college at a university as an English major before transferring to a community college (a long story for another post). During the process of transferring colleges, I wasn’t too sure what I wanted to study anymore. A lot of people had actually brought me down about being an English major, since liberal arts are often seen as a “waste of time” or just assumed I wanted to be a language arts teacher…which I didn’t. I just knew that I wanted to pick a major, transfer from community college to another university, get my degree and move on. I juggled different ideas from psychology to veterinary technology, but I’ve finally come to a solution that I’m comfortable with.

i followed my passion

As corny as it may sound, I followed my heart and decided to choose English again. Why? Well, writing and reading are both things that I’ve always been passionate about and I’m good at both of these things. To be talented in something you really love is a truly amazing thing and I didn’t want this to go to waste. Being an English major was just something that felt natural to me, so I decided f*** what everyone else thinks and went back to it. I’m a firm believer in not letting others dictate your life choices. Sure, some people get the most satisfaction out of a major that pretty much guarantees money, like engineering or medical related subjects. There’s nothing wrong with that, but there’s also nothing wrong with studying an art if that’s what you want to do. A quote that I absolutely love that ties in is “Medicine, law, business, engineering, those are all noble pursuits and necessary to sustain life. But poetry, beauty, romance, love, these are what we stay alive for.” (Dead Poets Society). I feel like artistic passion is something that’s belittled in society. As artists, we are always told to think more realistically, to play it safe. We are forced to believe that our role in life is to wake up, go to a 9-5 job that we can barely tolerate, go home, pay bills, and repeat. This is not the life that I want, I want to choose the life that I lead. The first step towards this is making the decisions that I want despite what other people may think. That is why I am proudly and unapologetically studying something that I love.

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and here’s what i’m doing with that passion…

Of course, as much as I am a dreamer, I also like to go into things with a plan. I don’t expect to just spend a few years learning about things that I think are interesting and then being clueless about what to do when I graduate. I think anyone can make a career out of any major, you just have to think creatively in some cases. My goal in life is to travel the world no matter what, but I’m hoping to do this by being a full time travel/lifestyle blogger, turn my website into my own little business, and ultimately just be my own boss. I don’t really need a degree for this, but studying English will help me be the best writer that I can be for it. On top of majoring in English, I plan to minor in business so I can have some extra knowledge on the business side of my goal.

These things do take time though, which is why I plan to teach English as a second language in other countries as a way to make some money while traveling and building my blogging business. I don’t plan for teaching abroad to be my long-term career, but I’m super excited to spend a few months to a year in countries all over the world, making a difference in others’ lives while fulfilling my own dreams. I’ll be writing about these plans more in the future, but Japan and South America are definitely on my list! Finally, if I need a break from teaching English in other countries and I’m still working on my blogging career (because I refuse to give up!), I wouldn’t mind working in editing, publishing, or even teaching English as a second language to adults wherever I choose to live. I’d even love to publish a few books. The point is, I don’t feel scared or stuck with an English degree. I’ve already explored plenty of possibilities and I’m happy with them. Maybe what I want isn’t for everyone, but it is my life after all and I’m actually excited for my future.

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Moral of the story

Believe me, I know that the decisions you make in your young adult years come with an extreme amount of pressure from other people. Plenty of people that I know have decided to give up whatever dream they were pursuing in order to study a major that would guarantee them a big paycheck. If that’s not what your heart tells you to do, don’t do it! I know that I may never be rich, but as long as I’m comfortable and get to see the world I know I’ll be more than happy. I know that the major I chose is the right one for me. It’s not silly or childish to follow your passions. Other people have succeeded in whatever it is you want to do and that’s because they decided to take a risk and pursue it. The first step you take is one of the most important ones and if you decide that one of these steps is going to college, then my advice to you is to study something that you’re genuinely interested in. Do what you love and the money (and lots of happiness) will follow.