Posts in Blue Blog
A Traveler’s Guide for Panama City, Panama

Five hundred year old Panama City, Panama was never on my travel radar until last January when a friend emailed that he was planning a gathering there to celebrate his birthday.  Within less than an hour, we had checked flight availability and booked miles tickets on Copa via United.  Fast forward to Thanksgiving Day, when we were among the few intrepid travelers at O’Hare awaiting a very early morning direct flight to Panama City.  

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How to visit Taboga Island from Panama City, Panama Without the Group Tour

If your Panama trip is limited to Panama City, you may want to fit in a visit to a nearby beach.  There are a few within a two hour drive, but we didn’t want to rent a car for a day or do a full day tour.  Instead, while we were having breakfast one day during our stay, another person at the same event told us about Taboga Island.  We decided to check it out later that day.

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The Red Dot Blue Dot Guide to Inspiring Kauai

I tried to cancel our honeymoon.  We were in Chicago for 12 hours between our wedding and our very early morning flight to Kauai, and in that time, I told my new husband that I wanted to cancel our honeymoon.  He vetoed that plan, and instead packed for me (which is why I still own a week’s worth of clothes from the Lihue, Kauai Walmart and Hilo Hattie’s) and we went anyway.

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She said, he said: 2018 in review.

In 2018 we visited 19 countries — 16 of them for the first time.  One or both of us visited US cities from San Francisco to Washington, DC, Carmel, Indiana to Miami, Florida.  

All in all, Amy spent just shy of 5 months traveling and Keith wasn’t far behind.  From stepping briefly into North Korea at the DMZ to nearly a month in different trips to Cuba we were fortunate to see more of the world in 2018 than any other year of our lives, and were even inducted into the Circumnavigators Club.  We decided to look back on our 2018 travels as we look forward to 2019.  As usual, we didn’t always agree.  Check out our 2018 Year in Review He Said, She Said below.

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See a Country in a Day: Our Daytrip to Andorra

The tiny country of Andorra sits about a three hour drive from Barcelona, landlocked between France in the north and Spain in the south.  The “microstate” is one of the smallest countries in the world by both population (fewer than 80,000 people) and landmass (180 square miles).  It is mainly known for its low tax shopping, skiing, and hiking that attract 10 million visitors each year.  (Yes, you read that right – 10 million visitors each year in a tiny country with only 80,000 citizens.)  

 

Frankly, not the kind of place where we’d normally want to hang out long-term, but as a day trip, why not? We had already booked several commitments in Barcelona (Sagrada Familia, the Picasso Museum, etc.) that required us to be in Barcelona all but one day of our time there, which happened to be the last full day of our trip.

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She said, he said...month two.

This is the anniversary of our second month of full time travel.  We have some work that requires us to be in the United States for our coaching and consulting business, Apochromatik, for the next couple of weeks.  But don’t worry — RedDotBlueDot continues as we have several more international and domestic (USA) destinations on the docket before the end of the year.  (And many, many posts to write for the Blue Blog and photos to share on the Red Blog!) 

With that said, how was month two?  Aren’t you just dying to know?

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Deadliest Food Tour: Tokyo Edition

In his book Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly, Anthony Bourdain confessed that for his very first meal on his first trip to Tokyo, in his jet-lagged and exhausted state, he was so intimidated by the soba restaurants and overwhelming nature of Tokyo that he went to Starbucks.  After considering his options, though, he bought a latte, rallied, and dove in to Tokyo.   

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A Guide to Guides: 21 Questions to Ask and Tips to Make the Most of a Group Tour or Private Guide

On our most recent Facebook Live (you can see them all on our Facebook page if you missed one), one of the questions was about using guides.  It is important to us that RedDotBlueDot be a place where readers can learn from our mistakes and benefit from our experiences.  So a more detailed answer to this question is in order . . . .

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A Traveler's Guide for Seoul, South Korea

When we were deciding where to go in Asia, Japan was our number one choice.  As we booked our tickets on Korean Airlines (using Ultimate Rewards points!) , we discovered that we could add a free stopover in Seoul, South Korea.  While we didn’t want to cut short our time in Japan, ultimately the prospect of being able to visit the DMZ and see another city weighed out, and we found ourselves (the two of us and Keith’s mom, Betty) arriving in Seoul at 4:00 a.m. one humid morning in July.  

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She said, he said...month one.

With about 22,000 miles traveled so far, we each reflected on the last month of non-stop travel (July 1-August 1).  We didn't discuss our answers before combining them and hitting publish.  As you can see, it's been a great month, but we definitely have our own perspectives on it.  August has already included some amazing experiences -- stay tuned, and let us know in the comments if you have other questions we didn't answer.   

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