Blog


Pompeii: A Buried Treasure

Stepping into Pompeii is both eerie and amazing. Rows of identical houses are connected by stone slabs, spaced out just enough for Roman chariots to plow through. In fact, you’ll still see what looks like chariot or wagon wheel tracks throughout the city. As if...

Seeing Pisa: The Tiny Leaning Tower

Up close with the leaning tower of Pisa, the iconic structure seems tiny. Tourists with selfie-sticks, crowds of visitors, and street-sellers all crowd to Piazza dei Miracoli (The “Square of Miracles”). Traveling through Italy is both familiar and foreign....

Discovering Ferrara!

Ferrara took me and my sketchbook by surprise.   On a whim, I decided to go with Ellie, my four-year-old, on a trip to a city I’d never been before, much less heard of. It was for the fifth edition of the Autori Diari di Viaggio Festival, or Travel Diaries Festival. A...

Travel, An Awakening

Travel didn’t always thrill me. The first memory I have of an airport was that ugly tarp in the old Philippine International Departure Terminal. It was muggy and gray, just like my memory of that particular day. The year was 1985. I was five years old, and my parents...

How A Rejection Letter From Google Was The Best Thing That Happened to Me in 2016

I lie. It was pretty devastating. But let me backtrack a bit… In November 2015, I’d heard that a Fortune 500 company was hiring. They needed remote content producers for a travel and tourism-related job. It required at least three years in publishing,...

Travel with Kids: West Bohemia in the Czech Republic

  On my second visit to Western Bohemia, I should’ve known better than to ask the waitress if the restaurant offered anything that “wasn’t so heavy”. “Evry-zing in Czech Republik iss e-vee!” came the curt reply. It was Easter and we were in Františkovy Lázně, a...

Venice Carnival 2016: Travel Tips & Video

  Carnevale Venezia 2016 comes to its grand finale on Sunday, February 10. The world-renowned festival itself is said to come from the Italian words “carne” (meat) and “levare” (to remove or withdraw). In former times, Venetians went all out partying and feasting...

Lake Como in Winter: Budget tips for an Italian Alps holiday

Lake Como may be the destination of the diamond-studded celebrity crowd, but if you know where—and when—to go, you can score a sensational holiday for half the price. For centuries, this pristine lake and its surrounding mountain peaks have been a prime holiday spot...

Hiking in Val Masino

Seeing the Val Masino was like no other landscape I had come across before. Wide, open spaces were scattered with piles of gigantic rock formations. Boulders that seem to have fallen out of nowhere sat majestically between hills and rivers, creating pools of crystal...

Wine Holidays With Kids! The Valtellina Vineyards

The last time I found myself teeter-tottering on terraces in the middle of nature, it was beneath the Sagada sun. The impressive ground below my feet was made up of fields of rice. They were intricately carved and a gleaming green: the famous Philippine rice fields....

50 Free Things We Enjoyed This Summer

  A biting wind blows outside as we all sleep in. The lake level has risen from last night’s thunderstorm. Before breakfast, we look outside to find that brand new snow has settled on distant Alpine caps. “Snow!” the children cry, “Hurrah! It’s winter, it’s...

Colors of Autumn in Italy

Temperatures have dropped drastically and the cold wind sets in. But the Fall season is still my favorite time of the year. Most of the tourists have gone home; it’s quiet and tranquil on the lake again. (Click on pictures to enlarge the gallery.) This slideshow...

Pompeii: A Buried Treasure

Stepping into Pompeii is both eerie and amazing. Rows of identical houses are connected by stone slabs, spaced out just enough for Roman chariots to plow through. In fact, you’ll still see what looks like chariot or wagon wheel tracks throughout the city. As if...

Seeing Pisa: The Tiny Leaning Tower

Up close with the leaning tower of Pisa, the iconic structure seems tiny. Tourists with selfie-sticks, crowds of visitors, and street-sellers all crowd to Piazza dei Miracoli (The “Square of Miracles”). Traveling through Italy is both familiar and foreign....

Experiencing Italy: Our Adventure Begins!

The goal is a little ambitious: to see as much of the Italian coast as we can while the kids are on summer school break! We started out on the west coast, heading from Milan straight to Genoa, then crawling back up north to do the entire stretch from the Italian...

Discovering Ferrara!

Ferrara took me and my sketchbook by surprise.   On a whim, I decided to go with Ellie, my four-year-old, on a trip to a city I’d never been before, much less heard of. It was for the fifth edition of the Autori Diari di Viaggio Festival, or Travel Diaries Festival. A...

Travel, An Awakening

Travel didn’t always thrill me. The first memory I have of an airport was that ugly tarp in the old Philippine International Departure Terminal. It was muggy and gray, just like my memory of that particular day. The year was 1985. I was five years old, and my parents...

Rainbow Season

“Brutto Primavera!” I have heard the locals say. There’s been a lot of rain this spring and summer. Unexpected thunderstorms and harsh showers. But despite the weather, every kind of sky over Lake Como is a gorgeous sight. Even when low-hanging clouds threaten to...

Travel with Kids: West Bohemia in the Czech Republic

  On my second visit to Western Bohemia, I should’ve known better than to ask the waitress if the restaurant offered anything that “wasn’t so heavy”. “Evry-zing in Czech Republik iss e-vee!” came the curt reply. It was Easter and we were in Františkovy Lázně, a...

Venice Carnival 2016: Travel Tips & Video

  Carnevale Venezia 2016 comes to its grand finale on Sunday, February 10. The world-renowned festival itself is said to come from the Italian words “carne” (meat) and “levare” (to remove or withdraw). In former times, Venetians went all out partying and feasting...

Hiking in Val Masino

Seeing the Val Masino was like no other landscape I had come across before. Wide, open spaces were scattered with piles of gigantic rock formations. Boulders that seem to have fallen out of nowhere sat majestically between hills and rivers, creating pools of crystal...

Wine Holidays With Kids! The Valtellina Vineyards

The last time I found myself teeter-tottering on terraces in the middle of nature, it was beneath the Sagada sun. The impressive ground below my feet was made up of fields of rice. They were intricately carved and a gleaming green: the famous Philippine rice fields....

Lake Como Love Stories: Until Tomorrow

  On the shores of Lake Como, under the shimmering light of summer, I spy them. Returning from a kayak session across these deep waters, the bright yellow canoe approaches, sending gentle ripples back toward us. My kids recognize them, too, and wave: “Ciao,...

An Artist’s Journey Pt. 2: Internal Resistance

(To read “An Artist’s Journey Pt. 1: Dreams and Desires”, click here.)     “One of the things most worth noting in a creative recovery is our reluctance to take seriously the possibility that the universe just might be cooperating with our new and expanded...