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My fellow explorers,

A few weeks ago my family rented a house in Cape May, and it was BEAUTIFUL.

While staying a mile away from the beach for and entire week in August we got lucky with the weather, learned to surf, bought Cape May Diamonds and met a former finalist of America’s Got Talent. All in all it was a great vacation.

The town of Cape May looks like it belongs in a Pippi Longstocking book, with all the houses having vintage themes and cute names.

If you have never been to this particular part of New Jersey, it is definitely worth the trip. There are adorable shops, great beaches, a historic WWII tower and boat, and you are only 20 minutes from famous Wildwood.

The entire week was filled with walking tours, shopping and sun bathing. There was however one particular tour that I do not advocate participating in. The Trolley tours.

My family are big fans of Boardwalk Empire, and the whole 20’s prohibition era. No surprise that we got excited to take a trolley tour around town called “Rum Runners & Bootleggers.”   This was the description:

The Actors Offstage transport you back in time to Cape May’s roaring 20s on the new Rum
Runners & Bootleggers Trolley Ride. Prohibition turned ordinary citizens into criminals and ordinary
criminals into kings. While Nucky Johnson built his Boardwalk Empire and Al Capone ruled Chicago,
Cape May happily supplied the illegal hooch that made the roaring 20’s roar. Your “host” on this trolley
ride into the bygone days of basement stills, moonshine and racketeers, will be a genuine gun-toting
gangster or a real bob-haired flapper. They’ll tell you firsthand what it was like in not so genteel Cape
May when the Volstead act was the law of the land.

Sounds pretty exciting right? WRONG. We got onto a trolley that drove us around cape may for 45 minutes. A girl “gangster” got on, made a poor attempt to hold up the trolley and proceeded to read a script off of the current day’s newspaper. Nothing was pointed out to us, no factual information about the time period was known, and when someone asked a question, it was avoided, passed over and the subject was changed. It was very disappointing. I can’t imagine any of the other tours were better.

If only we knew before...

Bottom line, go to Cape May, love every minute of it, but don’t spend your ten dollars to take a trolley tour that won’t be any more informative than your walk to the beach every morning.

Did I mention Wildwood was only 20 minutes away???!

This is the site to the surf camp we took: I highly recommend it

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My more luxurious travel friends, 

If small, cramped, underwater hotel rooms do not suit your fancy, you should maybe check out this hotel in St. Lucia. Each room in the Jade Mountain has only three walls because the fourth wall is a private infinity pool overlooking the Caribbean.

These private utopias can run your wallet anywhere from $950 to $2,700. Although certain weeks in 2011 are on promotion, spend four nights, enjoy the fifth one free.

Not much can be said to show the fabulousness of this amazing hotel, so I’ll just show you:

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My fellow adventurers,

Lately my time looking around for fun travel destinations and news has been taken up with the search for the most inventive and interesting places to stay. I think the oddest one I have found so far exists near Stockholm, Sweden.

If you stay at the Utter Inn, you are committing yourself to a very small confined space under water, with panoramic views of the ocean.

In my opinion it looks like a floating outhouse at first glance, but like I said, the real treasure is underwater. Renting the Utter Inn starts at $25o a night, which gives you a boat ride to this private little island, two twin beds and a table. You can also have dinner brought to you by boat.

For recreation many people swim, sunbathe and canoe around the area (canoe provided by the hotel).

I love neat and original ideas like this, but I’m not sure I’m adventurous enough to actually try it.

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My dearest, and slightly neglected, fellow travelers,

I apologize for the week-long hiatus caused by the ending of my senior year of college, and bring to you today the prospect of renting your very own country for your leisurely pleasure.

It has recently come to my attention that the vacation booking site Airbnb is offering the country of Liechtenstein for the very low rate of $70,ooo a night (with a 2 night minimum).

When you look it up on the site the price doesn’t seem so unreasonable. The countries 61.7 square miles can accommodate up to 900 people. $140,000 comes out to roughly $160 per person…not to bad considering it includes 500+ bedrooms in addition to 500+ bathrooms, no additional charge for extra guests and an enormous list of amenities (including  but not limited to allowed smoking, laundry services and wireless internet access).  Who knew a country could have all that!

Here is the snippet of information provided by Airbnb:

“RENTAL RATES START AT $70,000 A NIGHT TO ACCOMMODATE 150 PEOPLE, INCLUDING CATERING, AND BASIC BRANDING AND ACTIVITIES. PACKAGE PRICES CAN VARY DEPENDING ON THE VARIOUS SERVICES, ACTIVITIES, AND CUSTOMIZATIONS THAT YOU WOULD LIKE INCLUDED IN THE PACKAGE. GENERALLY, IT COSTS $450-$500 PER NIGHT PER PERSON.”

Be careful if you take this vacation opportunity however, as Lichtenstein has a “super strict” cancellation policy.

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Hello fellow travelers,

Sad to say I am back home in Connecticut. What a whirlwind weekend from CT to Houston then back again in 36 hours, but MAN WAS IT WORTH IT! University of Connecticut in the Championship game against Butler… as if you didn’t already know!

I shot some crappy video on my dad’s smartphone to showcase the massiveness of the crowd and noise in the stadium

I was very fortunate today with traveling back, all my flights were on time, traffic from the airport was light, and everything (starting at 5:00 am) went off without a hitch. What more could a traveler ask for?!

Before you get to the pictures of last night’s events, I’d like to share a story about the travel out of the stadium in Houston. It was the most terribly inefficient system for moving mass amounts of people I have ever seen. The Final Four game hit a record attendance with over 75,000 people last night. At the end of the second game my father and I were directed to a ‘taxi stand’ whose line was estimated to be 10,000 people long. We waited almost 2 hours to get a taxi, with no other form of transportation available. Unbelievable right? You would expect a better system to be in effect, considering they had over a year to prepare.

Regardless of the transportation issues, the entire night was AMAZING. Although I was disappointed with the lack of UConn fans, I met so many wonderful people, a lot of Kentucky fans, who I must admit, were overly respectful.

The atmosphere of the pre-game tailgate and the games themselves were well well worth the extreme exhaustion I am currently feeling. If you ever get the chance to go to a national sporting event (even if you don’t like sports) DO IT! It’s an experience unlike any other.

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Howdy Travelers,

I’m writing to you from Houston Texas today!  Why am I in Houston you ask? Because UConn is about to dominate the Final Four tomorrow at the Reliant Center.

Lets face it, this post isn’t going to be much about travel, it’s more for me to talk about how excited I am to be here and to be going to the big game tomorrow!

The best thing about this trip to Houston is that it came out of NO WHERE. I’m traveling with my dad, who sent me a full plane itinerary the morning after the Huskies beat out the Arizona Wildcats in Anaheim. (did I mention my dad is the best?) The downfall to spontaneous trips like these, is that they tend to be more expensive, because it’s a big event that tons of people are trying to get to.

The upside to this particular trip is meeting awesome new people. (I’m pretty sure I could have started a UCONN cheer on the plane, and would have had about 60 people join in.) My plane from Bradley international was overflowing with UConn fans trying to get to Houston for the game. Except for one guy…Joe.

If you haven’t figured out what is wrong with him yet, you need to check out the bracket for tomorrow’s game. The Huskies are going head-to-head with the University of Kentucky.

Poor guy got heckled all the way to the back of the plane. But he took it in stride, knowing it was his fault for decking himself out in UK geer.

(He couldn’t have been that bad of a guy though because he did let me take a picture knowing it was going to end up on this website for all the UConn fans to hate on.)

So anyways here I am in Houston Texas for the next 33 hours…hopefully coming home pumped about the championship game on Monday.

Follow me on twitter for live tweets during the game tomorrow @kimj1021For the sake of the travelness of my blog. I should throw in the observation I made today about how people have been getting screwed into paying to check their carry-on luggage because some people cannot follow standard size rules for carry-on bags. I’m pretty sure airlines need to really start cracking down on size restrictions and what they actually let in the cabin. Also TSA took my  face wash today because they thought it was anthrax…awesome right?!

Till tomorrow my fellow explorers!

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From yesterday March 26th until April 10th Washington D.C. is holding it’s annual Cherry Blossom Festival. The festival is a commemoration of  “the March 27, 1912 gift of Japanese cherry trees from Mayor Yukio Ozaki of Tokyo to the city of Washington. Mayor Ozaki donated the trees in an effort to enhance the growing friendship between the United States and Japan and also celebrate the continued close relationship between the two nations.”

There are tons of amazing events going on through the next 2 weeks. Some include sushi tasting, river cruises, parades, lantern-lit walks, flower shows and much much more.

For more information about events and times visit the official website.

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