U.S. Road Trip Re-Cap: Week One (California, Nevada and Arizona)

U.S. road trip week one recap: California, Nevada and Arizona

We’ve hit the one-week marker on our U.S. summer road trip, and I’ve already got ambitious dreams of visiting each of the 49 states we can reach by car. Do you think we can do it? I do! But to start, here’s a photographic overview of our first week on the road.  Continue reading

Our Travel Essentials: Our Favorite Travel Gear, Gadgets and Wear

Our Travel Essentials: our favorite travel gear, gadgets and wear

Packing is all about prioritization… identifying what you don’t need to make room for what you do. Despite our destination, when we’re paring down our packing list, this stuff always makes the cut!

Read on to find out what items keep us well-organized, working efficiently, and exploring comfortably on our travels. Are any of these items on your packing list?  Continue reading

How to Find a Safe, Comfortable and AFFORDABLE Place to Stay on Airbnb [Budget Travel Secrets]

How to find safe, comfortable and affordable accommodations with Airbnb

As budget travelers, we search for budget accommodations (on average $600 or less per month). But that doesn’t mean we’re frequenting skeezy hostels or crappy motels. Even a year after quitting our jobs to travel, we’ve continued to avoid the summer camp housing scene. If you’re searching for a way to make travel more affordable without kickin’ it bunk-bed style, Airbnb could be your answer.

If you’re searching for a way to make travel more affordable without kickin’ it bunk-bed style, Airbnb could be your answer.

To sustain our traveling life, we book most of our accommodations through Airbnb, a website I HIGHLY recommend for finding unique and affordable places to stay. It’s especially great if you’re traveling to an unfamiliar place, as a helpful host can be priceless when you’re exploring someplace new. We typically book what I refer to as a “home away from home” — a private room in a local family’s house or apartment — but you can find everything from private vacation rentals to shared rooms to traditional bed and breakfast inns on Airbnb. They even have some crazy cool accommodations like tree houses and geodesic domes!  Continue reading

Custom Embroidered Souvenirs Created by the Red Dao Women (Sapa Valley, Vietnam)

Custom Embroidered Souvenirs Created by the Red Dao Women of Sapa Valley, Vietnam

Though it’s been over a year since our trip to Vietnam, Ian and I look back fondly on our first overseas adventure together. We ended up with several unique souvenirs, none more so than our custom-embroidered pieces created by the Red Dao women we met in the hilly countryside near Sapa, Vietnam.  Continue reading

Shot of the Week: Writings in the Sand (Joshua Tree, USA)

Shot of the Week: Writings in the Sand (Joshua Tree, California)Last weekend, November 21-22, we visited Joshua Tree National Park to test some new cameras. After a night of photographing the Milky Way, Ian took some photos of me for my new travel fashion blog for women. Once I had everything I needed, he took a few more, just for fun, and this photo is one of them.

The above photo was taken with the Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark IIContinue reading

Desert Street Art: 20 Paintings in Twentynine Palms, an “Oasis of Murals” [PHOTO BOOK]

Desert Street Art: 20 Paintings from Twentynine Palms, California, an oasis of murals

Located just north of Joshua Tree National Park in California’s Mojave Desert, Twentynine Palms is a city characterized by three things: tattoo parlors, military haircuts, and murals. (Barbershop signs advertise two haircut options here: military and civilian.) Okay, so maybe there’s more to Twentynine Palms than what’s immediately apparent when driving through, but it’s obvious that this town is highly molded by the fact that it’s been home to a US Military base for over 65 years.  Continue reading

Shot of the Week: Vegas, Baby. Vegas. (Las Vegas, USA)

Shot of the Week: Vegas, Baby. Vegas.

This past weekend I finally celebrated my birthday in a city no one could believe I’ve never been to: Vegas! On November 8, 2014, I soaked up the Sin City views from the top of the Stratosphere and continued to celebrate through my birthday on the 10th.

The above photo was taken with the Sony a7s and Voigtlander 40mm f/1.4 NoktonContinue reading

How to Prepare for Burning Man

How To Prepare for Burning Man on northtosouth.us

[NOTE: This post was written prior to Burning Man 2014, but all the steps below still apply, year after year. Have a great burn, everyone.]

16 days til the man burns. That means less than two weeks to finish prepping for our week-long journey into radical self reliance and expression in the playa of Black Rock City. (If you’re not familiar with this exquisitely unique festival, read more here.)

When prepping for Burning Man, careful planning helps keep Walmart trips, Amazon orders and overall expenses to a minimum. These next two weeks we’ll be sharing our preparation process right here for your reading pleasure. Organization is key, so I’m splitting up the whole charade into easy-to-follow (but very thorough) steps. Continue reading

Arches National Park: A Photo Journal (Utah, USA)

Arches National Park, Utah, USA on northtosouth.us

Where in the world can you find over 2,000 natural arches, a balanced rock, a “devil’s garden” and a night sky dark enough for taking stellar astrophotos? On road trip day 6 we found just such a location: Arches National Park. Continue reading

Bryce Canyon National Park, After Dark (Utah, USA)

Bryce Canyon National Park, After Dark, Utah, USA on northtosouth.us

On the fourth day of our road trip through the Western U.S., we headed to Bryce Canyon. We arrived around noon and were happy to find that the ‘full’ signs had not yet been hung next to the campground names at the entrance.

Bryce Canyon hoodoos, Utah, USA on northtosouth.us

The park by day, along Queens Ridge Trail

Continue reading