South Philly Food Tour

where to eat in south philly south philly food tour with jeet yet?

Over 1.5 million people call Philadelphia home, and of that number, around 600,000 are immigrants. That means one amazing thing in my eyes: diversity. Of culture, of language, and especially food.

I visited Philadelphia last weekend with one mission: go on a food tour of South Philly with my friends Dana and Chad, who run the awesome podcast, Jeet Yet?, highlighting and reviewing some of the tastiest eats in the City of Brotherly Love. We tossed around a lot of ideas for this food tour and ultimately settled on one that pleased both of us: exploring the cuisines of the burgeoning ethnic groups moving into South Philly. The area was originally Jewish, then Italian, but has now seen an influx of Southeast Asians and Mexicans, meaning the food choices have grown beyond pizza and pastrami.

So, we spent about seven hours walking roughly nine miles, stopping at one eatery after another, tasting as much as we could before our stomachs, feet, and wallets started to feel the impact.

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5 Essential Electronic Gadgets for Travel

5 essential electronic gadgets for travel There are all kind of gadgets out there to make travel easier–some are completely worthless while others are almost essential, especially for longer-term trips. There are five things that I refuse to leave home without if I am traveling for more than a long weekend (or a beach-only vacation). Everything I travel with is relatively compact and lightweight as that’s imperative for me when packing. Additionally, I throw all of this stuff in my carry-on so that I always have it at arm’s length. So, what are my five essential electronic gadgets for travel?

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Photo Friday: Roatan

gumbalimba park suspension bridge roatan honduras

I hate heights. It’s always been one of my biggest fears. I get this trembling in my legs, my stomach jumps to my throat, and I get so lightheaded that my eyes sort of gloss over and little stars twinkle and flutter around. And what makes this fear even worse? When the thing that’s high in the air isn’t totally secure or shake-free. Couple all of those things together and you’d quickly see that suspension bridges are basically the bane of my existence. When I was a kid, I loved them. I walked across the Mile High Swinging Bridge without so much as a second thought–wind blowing in my hair as I practically skipped and giggled my way across. Cut to years later. I was doing a tour at Gumbalimba Park in Roatan, Honduras, where my main goal was to cuddle with some monkeys, and part of the tour requires you to cross a suspension bridge. It’s not especially high or anything, but high enough, and it sways and shakes with every single movement. I never know quite how to handle these situations: walk as fast as possible just to get it over with or take it slowly as to not cause unnecessary movement. I stayed a few feet behind my sister and guide so that the bridge didn’t have quite so much bounce and I kept my eyes on my shoes and my hands on the ropes after snapping a few photos at the beginning. For years I’ve been dreaming of doing a canopy walk in Costa Rica, but after this short suspension bridge, I know I have a lot of room for improvement when it comes to overcoming my fear of heights.

Like the photography on Meganotravels? Check out my Etsy shop to order prints!

Dream Destination: Spanish Road Trip

A few months ago, I watched the Bollywood Film Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara (or You Don’t Live Twice) for the first time and it inspired some serious wanderlust for a Spanish road trip. The culture (and dialect) varies in different regions throughout the country, which adds even more interest for me. I think I could spend quite a bit of time driving around Spain, trying to delve into all the different regions and discover something I love in each. Given that I don’t really have that kind of time right now, here are the top five places I’d see on a road trip through Spain!

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3 Things to do in Roatan

things to do in roatan honduras

A lot of people go to Roatan to spend some time lying on the beach, soaking up the sun, and cooling off in the perfect water. But, if you’re not the typical beach person, there are a few other things you can do to pass the time. On those days that you’re not wanting to pack your beach bag full of books and sunscreen and head for the sand, try something different! Here are three other things to do in Roatan!

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Photo Friday: Iceland

iceland

To say that Iceland is home to some epic landscapes is a gross understatement. This country that I fell head-over-heels in love with in 2011 and even more deeply in love with last year, is quite possibly the most beautiful place I’ve ever laid eyes on.

While I spent night after night searching for the Northern Lights, I filled my days with adventures and explorations. One morning I was finishing up breakfast in the kitchen at my hostel when an older Australian man came in and asked what I was up to that day. I didn’t have an agenda–I just knew I wanted to go on a photo expedition. Turns out–this guy was a photographer traveling around Iceland for several months just capturing it in all its glory. He invited me along on his quest for some new subject matter and at that moment I knew it could go one of two ways: it could either be a terrible idea to join a complete stranger on an adventure to the middle of nowhere.. or, it could be possible the best idea ever. Thankfully, the latter was true.

We spent the whole day climbing steep hills in his trusty 4×4, talking photography and occasionally stopping and shooting. At one point, we were headed a bit higher than either of us felt comfortable with, so we parked the car and trekked on foot for a little while. When we crested the gravel hill we’d been laboring on for about 45 minutes, we were greeted with this view. And it was perfect. I had to stop and pinch myself and do a 360 to take it all in and ensure it was real. Iceland never ceases to surprise me with its landscapes. Every corner you turn, you’re met with an awe-inducing view. It’s a country I could explore for years and never tire of.

Like the photography on Meganotravels? Check out my Etsy shop to order prints!

On the Concept of Home

home sweet home

In my short 30 years on this planet, I have lived in more than 18 homes. Most of these have been centered around two geographic areas, but 18 different bedrooms, 18 different streets, and 18 different Zip codes nonetheless.

When I decided to stay put in Pennsylvania for a while after my travels, I had to register my car in state and get a new driver’s license. The lady at the DMV noticed in my records that I’d previously lived in Pennsylvania, and when she handed me my paperwork to go have my photo taken, she simply said, “welcome home, honey.” Welcome home. It’s something I haven’t really stopped thinking about since.

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Top Destinations for First-Time Solo Female Travelers

top destinations for first-time solo female travelers

I’m not the world’s foremost expert on solo female travel, but I have traveled around (at least) ten countries alone so I have a bit of insight on the subject. There are people on both sides of the fence regarding solo female travel–some are strongly for it and some are strongly against it. I fall on the side that stands strongly for it. While I don’t like always traveling alone, I think there’s something really special about going it solo–relying on yourself for every decision, forcing yourself out of your comfort zone, etc. I think you can learn a lot about yourself and the world while traveling solo.

Before my very first solo trip, I was so nervous that my teeth were chattering and I swore my heart my burst. Things were a bit crazy, but I fell into a routine that was comfortable for me. Then, years later, when I decided to travel alone for an extended period of time, I was dreaming up every imaginable horrible thing that could possibly happen to me. I decided that the best way to go about it was to ease myself into the long-term solo travel by starting with an “easy” country. So, with that, here are my top solo female travel destinations.

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Photo Friday: Philadelphia

philadelphia skyline from loews hotel

I’m not typically a fan of overly processed photos, but I loved playing with this photo of Philadelphia’s skyline. I made probably 15 different edits of this in a variety of ways, but I loved this super saturated and colorful version of this city that I love. I usually stay with friends when I go into the city, but this particular time I stayed at the Loews and requested a view of City Hall (my favorite building) and was rewarded with quite the view. Watching the sun go down over the city was fabulous and made for quite a few great photos over the course of that long weekend. Philadelphia is such a beautiful city, and this view was perfection.

Like the photography on Meganotravels? Check out my Etsy shop to order prints!

What to Wear: Maxwell Scott Bags

maxwell scott medolla

For years I’ve been searching for the perfect bag to travel with. I’m not only picky when it comes to the style of the bag, but there’s a big bill to fit in terms of must-haves. I want something that is classic and can be carried in any season, any country, and with any outfit. I need something that offers organization; is large enough to hold everything I might need for an entire day out on the town; that can be carried cross-body (bonus points of the strap is adjustable to be carried on my shoulder); and that has either a zipper or flap closure to keep away those prying hands. While it might sound like a lot, I don’t think any of these things is extraordinary. So why is it so difficult to find one bag that encompasses all of this?

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