Trip Report: Antigua, Guatemala

For the first part of my current trip to Central America, I traveled through Guatemala and Belize with my sister Laura. We both flew into Guatemala City and out of Belize City. Since we were traveling through remote areas, the internet was spotty at times, and I’m finally getting around to recapping our adventures.

Quetzal

Guatemala’s currency is named after the Quetzal, its national bird.

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Wandering Simplified: How to Travel Around the World on a Limited Budget

(This article is edited by Sara Bruestle and was originally published in the New Years edition of the Everett Herald)

Josh Smith on the Great Wall of China

Visiting China to see the Great Wall in 2014.

I was awash in wonder as I climbed close to 1,000 steps to the top of the Great Wall of China. When I reached the top of the wall at Badaling — a tourist hotspot because it is the most magnificent section of the Great Wall of the Ming Dynasty — I realized I was alone. No other tourists were hiking the wall as far as I could see in either direction. It was eerily quiet.

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New Zealand

Silver Fern Frond

The silver fern is prevalent in New Zealand and can grow to heights of 30 feet. Its unfurling frond, shown here, is one of the national symbols of the country.

New Zealand is a nation in the southwest Pacific comprised of two main islands, known as the North and South Islands. It is a member of the British Commonwealth.

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Trip Report – Driving Adelaide to Alice Springs, Australia

On a recent trip to Australia, I had the opportunity to relocate a rental car from Adelaide in the south to Alice Springs, which is in the remote center of the country, otherwise known as “The Outback.” According to the terms of the relocation, I had five days to travel between the cities, which was enough time to stop off at quite a few places along the way, since driving nonstop only takes 16 hours or so.

Australia Road Trip Map

My route through Australia

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Istanbul

Sunset in Istanbul

Enjoying sunset in Istanbul with Turkish tea

Istanbul, the largest city in Turkey, spans both Europe and Asia and is a meeting point for Eastern and Western cultures.

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Cusco

Cusco at sunset. The two cathedrals near the center of the picture border the main plaza

Cusco at sunset. The two cathedrals near the center of the picture border the main plaza.

Cusco is a popular tourist destination in Peru. Once the historical capital of the Incan Empire, it is now a major launching point for tourists visiting ruins in the Sacred Valley and of course the Incan city of Machu Picchu.

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