One Last Central Europe Hurrah: Bratislava, Slovakia

Bratislava, Slovakia is a city that’s been hit hard by pop culture. Remember that desolate wasteland featured in Eurotrip where the kids exchange $1.83 for the world’s most luxurious feast? Or, though I haven’t seen it, I hear Hostel paints a horrifying picture of what happens when you choose to backpack through Bratislava. In fact, as I learned while touring this so-called hellhole, Bratislava tourism dropped by a whopping 70% when the movie was released in 2005. Ouch.

I’m quaking in my boots.

As I prepare for this upcoming summer’s epic Balkans trip, I continue reflecting on last summer’s big trip to Central Europe. We began in Wrocław, Poland, continued to Berlin, Germany, then to Prague, Czech Republic, Vienna, Austria, and Budapest, Hungary before hitting our final destination: Bratislava, Slovakia.

So, did Bratislava live up to its media portrayal? Fortunately, I arrived in Slovakia unaware Continue reading  

2012: Another Travel-Filled Year In Review

I’ve been extremely fortunate in my 23 (almost 24, gasp!) years of life to travel all over the world. With 2012 at an end, it’s time again to reflect on this past year and all the fabulous opportunities I’ve had.

I kicked off the year at home in California, where I spent a wonderful two weeks reconnecting with friends and family, eating mountains of American food, and visiting all my favorite Los Angeles spots. But soon, I headed back to my beloved Spain to finish my year of teaching in Villarrasa and rediscover beautiful Sevilla.

The aftermath of my favorite New Year’s Eve tradition: driving down the Rose Parade route and getting silly stringed, marshmallowed, and shaving creamed by those camping out for the parade.

I ventured to nearby Cádiz to celebrate Carnaval, basically an absurd, giant Continue reading