Don’t Miss these 11 Highlights of Latvia

Latvia is a gorgeous country with an intriguing history. They originally declared independence in 1918, only to be occupied by the Russians, then the Germans, and then the Russians again. After living under Soviet rule for decades, the Eastern Baltic countries had enough. On August 23, 1989 approximately two million people joined hands to form…

Riga, Latvia: 18 Amazing Things to See and Do in the City

Latvia is a small country located on the eastern side of the Baltic Sea. What it lacks in size, it makes up with a fascinating history. Over the past century Latvia has been occupied by Russia, then Germany, and then Russia again, before finally gaining independence in 1990. Today the country is made up of…

Is Uzbekistan Safe for Tourists? A Female Traveler’s Perspective

This is a common question that we’ve gotten during our 3 week trip to Uzbekistan. Many people see the shared border with Afghanistan, which is generally considered to be unsafe for Americans, and assume that Uzbekistan experiences similar unrest. It is rather difficult to find safety information about Uzbekistan as the government does not release…

New Zealand Bucket List: 26 Epic Things To Do on the South Island

We had the opportunity to spend 3 months in New Zealand back in 2014. We bought a campervan in Auckland, drove around both the North and the South Island, and then sold it in Christchurch. We did some truly amazing multi-day hikes, went fishing with some crazy Kiwis (people, not birds), drank delicious Sauvignon Blanc,…

Best Places to Visit in Uzbekistan: Top Sights on the Silk Road

Uzbekistan is a country in Central Asia that was under Soviet rule until the early 1990’s. In just two years the government has made great strides in making it easier for tourists to get here and to get around the country. The money is unpegged, ATMs are now widely available, the e-visa process is simple,…

Muynak, Uzbekistan: A Visit to the Aral Sea Ship Cemetery

A popular trip from Khiva is north, to the city of Muynak where you can visit the “ship cemetery”. The residents of Muynak once made their living by fishing on the Aral Sea. But for decades the sea has been decreasing in size and volume. Fishing boats were abandoned in the sand that was once…

32 Things to Know Before Visiting Uzbekistan

Prior to visiting Uzbekistan we read several blogs that actually made us really nervous. We read about the currency being pegged so people had to exchange their US dollars on the black market. We read about foreign officials being quite paranoid about foreigners taking photos. We had a hard time finding accommodations that looked decent….

What to Pack for a Vacation in Uzbekistan

So you’ve booked your trip to Uzbekistan, woohoo! I’ll bet people are asking you “how in the heck did you choose that vacation destination?” Well once they hear your stories and see your amazing photos, they’ll understand. But you’re probably wondering what to see and do in Uzbekistan, how to prepare for your trip, and…

Top 12 Things to See in Khiva, Uzbekistan

If you start your journey in Tashkent and head north, Khiva will be the last stop on your Uzbekistan itinerary. It’s not easy to get to, as it is a 7-hour train or car ride from Bukhara. But a trip to this darling little pedestrian-friendly old town, filled with history, is most certainly worth the…

Guide to Shopping in Uzbekistan: What to Buy and How Much to Pay

The souvenir market scene in Uzbekistan is strong, especially in the touristy towns of Bukhara and Khiva. You can’t walk down the road or enter a madrasah without walking past the colorful embroidered tapestries, bags, and jackets. Ceramic plates line the sidewalks of the roads to get to the tourist shops. And vendors call out…