Visiting Bali GEO Coffee Plantation in Ubud

The second someone mentioned a coffee plantation in Bali, I knew I’d be going. I’d previously had a blast learning everything there was to know about tea in India, so I would not pass up a chance to learn about my other favorite beverage.

We arrived at Bali GEO where we were greeted by a woman who walked us up a small path while pointing out a few of the plants. This was similar to the spice tour I went on in India, which I found a little underwhelming. Soon we arrived at a cage with...

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Nusa Lembongan: The Best Beaches to Sunbathe, Snorkel & Chill

Nusa Lembongan Best Beaches Dream Beach

Whenever I told someone I was going to Bali, they'd say the beaches were kind of meh, and that I should just head to the Gili's. Over and over I heard the same thing, but I felt like everyone who didn't like Bali had been to the wrong places. *cough* Kuta *cough* Now, I know I was right.

Off the coast of Bali lies three small islands. Most people don't even realize they're there, but by some chance, my mom and I found them. I can honestly describe them as paradise. Still...

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Taking a Khmer Cooking Class in Phnom Penh

I think it's good to challenge ourselves every day. For me, cooking is always a challenge, so taking a class in each country I visit is always interesting. I wasn't really sure what Khmer (Cambodian) food was before I got here. Even after being here for a couple of weeks, I'm not entirely sure I understand authentic Khmer food. As far as I can tell, it's got noodles like Thailand, fried rice like China, and soups like Vietnam. It seems to be a wonderful mix of the surrounding...

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What to Expect from the 3 Day & 2 Night Mt. Rinjani Trek

Three day two night mt rinjani trek indonesia

I decided to rearrange my schedule and trek Mt. Rinjani after hearing several people say it was their favorite part of Indonesia. When everyone agrees that one thing was his or her favorite, it’s a no brainer. I chose to go with Rinjani Trek Centre after reading pages of good reviews on Trip Advisor. It was so easy to arrange with them, that I was sure it was too good to be true. I got off my plane expecting there to be a mix up, but as I exited the airport, I saw a little sign with my...

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Snorkeling in Nusa Lembongan, Ceningan & Penida

snorkeling in nusa lembongan cenigan penida

The boat hits a wave, and suddenly, we're airborne. Everyone gasps in unison, grasping for whatever they can hold onto. The boat tips to the right, and finally, lands back on the water evening itself out. We all brace ourselves for the next wave, and when it comes, it's even bigger than the last. This is not what I signed up for. I look at my mom, who hates the water, and she looks miserable. We'd expected a nice calm...

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Responsible Tourism in Phnom Penh

responsible tourism phnom penh

It's ironic that I had a conversation yesterday about not judging a book by it's cover. This saying is true for Phnom Penh. It's a city that most people see quickly on the way to island paradises. At first, it's easy to see why no one wants to spend time here. Scams are at large and bag snatchers are a serious problem. If you walk down the streets at night, you'll see a plethora of prostitutes waiting for single men. These are the things that make you want to stay in your hotel and never go...

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Surviving the Mt. Rinjani Summit in Indonesia

Mt Rinjani Summit Trek Indonesia Lombok

It’s 2:00am and the clatter of groggy people moving around half asleep fills the air. The word coffee is whispered multiple times, and a bright flashlight shines into my cozy tent. It’s time to get up. I’m wearing as many clothes as I have with me, and it’s still freezing. With my headlamp on, I look around. Today, me and about a hundred other tourists will try to summit Mt. Rinjani.

Mt. Rinjani is an active volcano on the island of Lombok in Indonesia. It stands at 12,224 feet....

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Biking to Tonle Sap Lake in Siem Reap

Tonle Sap Lake Siem Reap Cambodia Bike Ride

Before arriving in Siem Reap, I'd heard mixed reviews about Tonle Sap Lake. Some said it was beautiful, while others described it as a tourist trap. After talking to a few people, I felt deterred in going. At the same time, I had planned a few extra days in the area and was a little tired of temples. My friend Kam suggested we rent bikes and head toward the lake, but skip the boat rides and tourist attractions that waited at the other end. Sometimes it's the journey and not the destination...

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Visiting the Killing Fields in Phnom Penh

Visiting Cambodia Killing Fields S21 Prison

Please note that this post may contain disturbing images and stories. I'd like to mention that I felt very conflicted about taking these photos. Often times I took a photo while tears welled up in my eyes. I'm even having trouble hitting publish on this post. That being said, the people of Cambodia have chosen to display these images and remains so that people can learn their history, and so that history never repeats...

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Angkor Wat Photo Essay

angkor wat siem reap

There are some places in the world that I could write about for days, and there are others that are best seen in photos. Angkor Wat is the latter. Constructed in the 12th century, this once Hindu temple was later converted to a Buddhist temple. It's now a major tourist attraction and the largest religious monument in the world. Angkor Wat is actually the name of the main temple, but the surrounding areas feature over 50 smaller temples. In the western world, this place is most known for...

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