Five Things to Do in Ibiza for Introverts

Five Things to Do in Ibiza for Introverts

Foam parties until dawn, music that may forever tarnish your ear drums, sex, drugs, and rock & roll.  That is what people think of when they hear that you are going to Ibiza.  I noticed the party starts on the plane on the way there.  Until this day it has been the most noisy of flights ever.  It got so bad that the pilot faked turbulence just to get us all to sit down and be quiet.  However, I learned that we get the experience we are looking for and moving my booty to booze and other recreational activities was not on my personal plans for Ibiza.  I wanted a lot of alone time, reading good books, and just enjoying the people watching and discovering what it is that makes this place so special.  Ibiza feels like you have landed on another planet and the beaches are as different from each other as if you were in an entirely different place.  I believe this is as close to paradise as possible.  My introduction to Spain was this island before later venturing out to the mainland. I definitely did not go for foodie adventures since the island pretty much caters to tourists, worldwide, but I did discover Pintxos on this island.  All in all it was an absolutely memorable time and I would do it all over again in a heartbeat.  To read about food in Spain check out my post: 12 Yummy Barcelona Experiences. #5 LET IT ALL OUT:  On my first day I arrived from London, where it was already getting chilly so I had to quickly get rid...
HOUSING OPTIONS YOU ARE OVERLOOKING

HOUSING OPTIONS YOU ARE OVERLOOKING

The biggest decision we will make after we decide what destination to visit is HOUSING.  It will most likely take the biggest chunk out of your travel budget and can also make or break your vacation.  Have you ever stayed at a five star resort that was under construction or have an AirBnb nightmare story?  There are many other options out there that people are not considering, but that can save them big money.  Here are five alternative housing options that you can look into: 1) Monasteries:  You do not have to be religious or into spirituality to stay at a monastery.  There are many around the world that have been welcoming travelers.  In some of these places, you can volunteer to serve food or help with chores in exchange for a free stay.  It does not matter what your background is, there is a monastery waiting for you to discover its serene and peaceful welcome. Staying at a monastery is cheaper than a hotel or short-term rental and will provide the safety that you want.  Monasteries come in all shapes and for all budgets.  From the luxurious and pristine to the basic and rugged–surely you can find one that suits your needs and travel style.   For a list of monasteries that you can stay in The United States: monasteries.net For a list of monasteries that you can stay in Europe: Goodnightandgodbless.com The best part about monasteries is that they offer a wonderful alternative to hotels and resorts.  Usually, they offer organic food and it is already a given that it will provide you a serene environment.  In...
Holbox An Island on the Verge….

Holbox An Island on the Verge….

Dreamy, sleepy, enchanting, and peaceful are just a few words to describe this island on the verge of becoming a major tourist attraction.  I am blessed to know it before it officially has streets, traffic lights, and bustling tourists from every corner of the earth. The irony of finding a gem is that what makes it so special is also just “about” to morph and change into a town where people will stand in line to take a photo in front of the letters that spell the beach town.  However, I am happy to share my experience with all of you so that you are ready for your first visit. First comes first: GETTING THERE FROM PLAYA DEL CARMEN:  The good news for those of you that want to experience Holbox, is that you no longer have to take a bus to Cancun and then transfer to another bus. There is now a direct bus that leaves Playa Del Carmen at 9:20am (Juarez Station only) and the ride lasts two hours and 20 minutes. It arrives just in time for the noon ferry! The ferry takes about 18 to 25 minutes. ***Special Hint: the red ferry is nicer and quicker. It also costs the same as the blue one. Getting to this island considered as 1 of 5 most peaceful in the world—just got easier! LODGING:  I stayed at Tribu and I am so glad I did.  There were like minded individuals there ready to explore the island and to share memorable times with.  I am aware that the hostel environment is not for everyone, but you can get...
YUMMY Restaurants in Playa del Carmen Cheat Sheet

YUMMY Restaurants in Playa del Carmen Cheat Sheet

1)TACOS: El Fogon Tacos al Pastor (Pork tacos with pineapple) Tacos with Chorizo and queso Tacos with Arrachera (steak) Carnitas Teresita for Tacos de Chicharron or Kastacan as they call it in this region. For more Info: Carnitas Teresita 2)  ARRACHERA (Steak dinner) HC de Monterey & El Fogon both have excellent steak dinners 3) FRESH FISH FILLETS & AWESOME CEVICHE La Tarraya has been a local favorite for over 20 years.  Any of their fish dishes are a winner.  From fish in garlic sauce to Pescado Tikinxic—try them all;)  Winner ceviche with fresh homemade totopos (word here for tortilla chips).  For the health conscious a lot of their dishes are grilled. 4) FRUIT AND VEGGIE JUICES El Nativo Although this place is known for their amazing juices at very affordable prices, their lunch and dinner specials deserve to be mentioned as well.  A local favorite—I cannot stop going here whenever I need authentic meals on my nomadic budget;) 5) BEST COFFEE AND TERRIFIC BRUNCH Cafe Chou Chou:  For more info:  Cafe Chou Chou 6) ITALIAN FOOD WITH FRESH HOMEMADE PASTA: Romeo´s 7) VENEZUELAN FOOD: Kaxapa Factory:  Breakfast, fruit juices that you have never tried like “Venezuelan Lemonade” and awesome overall menu all day.   For more info: Kaxapa Factory 8) ENCHILADAS Piknik (65 pesos Lunch menu) 9) DELICIOUS DESSERTS: Ah Cacao (elote cake) and any of the desserts at Chez Celine.  The corn bread dessert at Kaxapa Factory is delicious too! 10) LOCAL DRINK: MICHELADA (a local favorite).  Order it anywhere!  It is not always on the menu but they will make it for you everywhere. ***BONUS:  MY FAVORITE FINE DINING...
7 Top Meals of 2016

7 Top Meals of 2016

When it comes to choosing my favorite meals of 2016, it is not an easy task.  There were many!  However, I chose these because it was a combination of great food, company, and ambience.  I look back on the year and these were the experiences that I remember the most.  From London to Spain and Mexico, my taste buds celebrated all year with so many amazing foodie experiences.  They are not in any particular order.  I loved them all!  It is important to mention that these are affordable restaurants.  You do not have to be wealthy to enjoy any of these.  On the contrary, some of the meals below were actually very affordable. 1) Crocker’s Folly in London Special Occasion This place was so beautiful and their food so delicious that I mention them below in a separate blog post: 3 London Hidden Gems 2) Pintxos in Spain   Cheap Eat The pintxos concept in Spain was a new experience for me.  Are they tapas?  Some people get it confused with tapas, but the pintxo is something you will always pay for.  Originally, tapas were free bar snacks served whenever you ordered something to drink.  A pintxo is still a snack, but you will not get it for free.   At the end of the meal, they count the toothpicks to see how much money you owe.  I noticed most pintxos were just One Euro.  If you notice the pic below, there is one pintxo tagged with a red toothpick.  These were a bit more pricey because they had more expensive ingredients like prawns. The foodie scene in Spain...
Oh La La

Oh La La

Oh La La, Playa del Carmen, Mexico “It is not surprising this is #1. It’s mine too.” I am a seasoned traveler and I do not make my decisions on impulse. This is a fantastic place. Period. After living in New York City for 8 years, and spending time in Paris when I was younger, you could say I have been to many restaurants all over the world. Think about it for one second.  There are over 700 restaurants in Playa del Carmen, and this one consistently shows up as #1.  The reason?  You combine amazing food with authentic owners that love what they do and you have a winning combination.  I found this place to be unique on many levels: #1 I truly believe chefs are artists, and you’re only as good of an artist as you are as a person. The owners, Jorge and Mikaela—have a passion for what they are doing and it is obvious in the food. #2 When we are on vacation, celebrating a special event, or just want a good meal, we want a peaceful environment to share the experience in with our loved one’s. This place is beautiful. Of course I may be biased because they have one of my favorite paintings on the wall “The Kiss.”   #3 The food (obviously) is amazing. Oh my! It is so delicious but words or photos do not do it justice.  You have to go and check it out for yourself. I celebrated my 40th birthday there with friends from the USA, and I recently took a solo trip to further research this place. I truly believe it’s the...