Colorful Cartagena

A beautiful city right on the Caribbean Coast of Colombia, this city feels like you’re on the set of a Pirates of the Caribbean movie. But, none of this series of films was actually filmed here. What inspired us to come was Romancing the Stone, in which some of the plot took place in Cartagena. Again, however, none of this movie was filmed her either. That didn’t stop us from coming to soak in the charming and colorful Cartagena this past April, though – after continuing on from our trip to Panama. Founded in 1533, this colonial city is as rich in history as it is in color and diversity.

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Bocas del Toro Boat Tour

The Panamanian archipelago surrounding Bocas del Toro is best done by boat. If you book your tour somewhere in Bocas Town, you’ll likely end up crammed on some tiny boat with 20 other tourists. So, when we found out that a boat tour was leaving straight from our dock at Koko Resort on the other side of Bocas Town, we were game on. A tour with 5 sounded a whole lot better than a tour with 20.

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Bocas Del Toro

Our next stop was the archipelago of Bocas Del Toro in northern Panama, near the Costa Rica border. We kept seeing pictures of these islands while we investigated Panama, and since I’m a huge Survivor fan, I probably remember the islands from a few seasons ago. Bocas can be reached from Costa Rica, or from Panama City via plane,

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Visiting the Panama Canal

US History doesn’t usually teach us that we vastly intervened in the politics of “Gran Colombia” and helped Panama become an independent country in 1903. Then we started work on building the Panama Canal ourselves. Oh, and yeah, 18 years later we paid Colombia $25 million in “compensation” for basically stealing a nation from them.

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Panama City

We stayed in the Casco Viejo neighborhood which is the historic center of the city and is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site (since 2003). The city was actually founded in 1519 a different section called Panama Viejo. But after it fell in 1671 to Captain Henry Morgan, the city was moved 8km southeast to the current Casco Viejo. This peninsula was easier to defend and walls once surrounded the city.

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Guest Post: Skiing in Niseko, Japan

Incredibly cold air blows in from the plains of Siberia, sucks up moisture from the Sea of Japan, remains freeze dried as it wraps around various volcanoes and then dumps around 500“ of snowfall Mt. Annupuri, home to five ski areas. Annupuri, Niseko Village, Hirafu, and Hanazono are all under the umbrella of Niseko United and off to the side is Moiwa, the little family resort that rocks.

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Guest Post: Skiing in India – Gulmarg

“There’s skiing in India?” This is the number one question I got when telling my friends and family of my upcoming adventure. YES! There IS skiing in India! When my friend, Leslie from A-Basin, asked me to join her on this epic bucket list item she was ready to check off I really hadn’t the slightest idea where the skiing actually was in Kashmir, India. Nor did I care. Skiing with rad women in a wildly foreign country? I’m in. As the months unfolded before departure it became apparent this was going to be the trip of a lifetime.

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West Elk Wineries

The three wineries we visited in the West Elk area near Paonia, CO were all great and each one was very different from the rest. The Stone Cottage Winery is the most authentic and down to earth, while the Azura Winery was the most scenic and the model boats add to its uniqueness. And the Black Bridge Winery has something for everyone, and is great for kids or others who are looking for things other than just wine! Honestly, I wouldn’t skip any of them if you were doing West Elk Wine tour yourself!

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