Amateur Traveler
Big Island Local Food Favourites-Kailua-Kona Hawaii

Big Island Local Food Favourites-Kailua-Kona Hawaii

I’ll admit I like staying in 5-star resorts in Hawaii but when it comes to eating food, I want the local and family owned places. While visiting the west coast of the Big Island and around Kailua-Kona, don’t miss these authentic Hawaiian eateries and soak in the local flavor. Drive 20 miles south from Kona...
Lively Dining on Coronado Island

Lively Dining on Coronado Island

Times have changed on the island.  Coronado, used to be known as a place Navy Admirals retired to and visitors put their toes in the water at one of the best beaches in the USA.  A slow pace of life and a beautiful shoreline, the town was predictable.  Now there is change in the air...
Wine River/Rhine River Cruise on AMAWaterways

Wine River/Rhine River Cruise on AMAWaterways

  Rhine river castle and vineyard Passionate about wines, this was just the right river cruise.  And I learned, it’s not about red or white wines and how to pair with food, it’s drinking what you like.  That’s a refreshing concept. I boarded the AMAWaterways ship in Basel, Switzerland on a chilly November afternoon but...
Dining on Coronado Island

Dining on Coronado Island

Times have changed on the island.  Coronado, used to be known as a place Navy Admirals retired to and visitors put their toes in the water at one of the best beaches in the USA.  A slow pace of life and a beautiful shoreline, the town was predictable.  Now there is change in the air...
The Tonga Room and Hurricane Bar-tiki everlasting

The Tonga Room and Hurricane Bar-tiki everlasting

Almost cult like, there is a serious following with no pretense and images of little grass skirts. Welcome to tiki bars, and this one hasn’t lost momentum in seventy years. Located in the famous and internationally known Fairmont hotel high on Nob Hill, San Francisco, the Hurricane Bar and Tonga Room are wildly popular. A...
Visit the Flower Fields in Carlsbad

Visit the Flower Fields in Carlsbad

I had to wonder if I was in Holland or really in Southern California basking in the enormous flower field.  Known for top rated beaches, cool surfing spots and snappy Legoland, Carlsbad, just north of San Diego city, is the motherlode of blossoming Ranunculus flowers. On a hillside just one exit from the Interstate 5...
Hawaii food and wine festival-Maui

Hawaii food and wine festival-Maui

Threats of hurricanes swirled near the Hawaiian Islands and as my plane landed, it amounted to very hot and humid conditions but the beauty of Maui was undisturbed. The 5th annual Hawaii Food and Wine Festival was underway and an all-star chef line-up had been created on 3 of the major islands. The islands swirled with...

Montgomery, Alabama-on the move from past to present

Hi Y’All, come on over here and enjoy tasty gulf seafood and sweet tea before boarding the riverboat. It was my first time to Alabama and I already felt southern hospitality flowing along the banks of the Alabama River where we gathered to take in the sunset. Oysters, Shrimp and plenty of “Yes, Ma’am” added...

Checkpoint Charlie, Looking in Different Directions

                      A machine gun turret was over my shoulder, yet I tried to remain calm as the East German and Soviet police made me sign a confession.  It was 1976 and the Berlin wall was as solid as the American dollar back then.  Not knowing it...

Archeology Museum in Palestrina, Italy-A Historical Treasure

Story telling of the Nile River all in mosiacs If you stood still and listened closely while standing on the mosaic tiled floor outlined with colorful fish, you might hear future predictions from the mythological orator in the cave of fates, or Antro delle Sorti.    The grotto structure, likely dedicated to the Egyptian Goddess Isis,...

Six Essential Things to Pack For Vacation

      For seasoned travelers experienced with the benefits of a smart phone and laptop, the check list continues to grow of things to carry on a trip. But, there consider adding these items to your treasure chest of travel gear: Power strip This came in handy when several of us shared a room...
Hand-Made Leis at Lin's Lei Shop  Honolulu

Hand-Made Leis at Lin’s Lei Shop Honolulu

“Oh, that plumeria lei smells good,” said the mainland tourist. “Tuberose,” said the native Hawaiian woman, one of the most scented fragrant flowers on the islands and so beautiful too.  Within minutes of wearing my tuberose lei, the sweet and lingering fragrance brought lots of attention to the delicate white flowers perfectly strung together. Lei...