Retro Cool at Austin’s Lone Star Court

Lone Star Court is one of the most fun, retro-cool hotels in Austin. With a vintage mid-century motor court vibe — updated with a modern design aesthetic and Texas touch ...

Tasting Tequila on National Margarita Day

Today is truly a cause for celebrating: it’s National Margarita Day! What better way to commemorate this iconic and delicious drink than by taking part in a tequila tasting. This ...

New York City

How to do New York City on a Budget

There’s no city in the world like New York — and not many in the U.S. that can be as expensive to visit! In several visits there, I’ve figured out ...


A Glow in the Dark Sea? Bio-luminescence in Puerto Rico

I am sitting in a tiny airport in Puerto Rico, called Ceiba, ...

My Top 12 Lifetime Travel Experiences

Recently I was musing on all the incredible things I’ve seen and ...

Eating for less on the road

One of the best things about staying in a home vs a ...

Latest Experiences

60 Minutes Up, 60 Seconds Down: Adventures in Volcano Boarding

Cerro Negro is a very young volcano. At a mere 161 years old, it’s a newborn baby in fact. “The Black Hill” is one of 25 volcanoes in Nicaragua, of which 9 are active (or at least erupted in the last two thousand years). Cerro Negro is very definitely one of the active ones; in […]

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Trading Places is getting a new look!

After 6 years of having a lot of fun with Trading Places as a personal travel blog, my baby is finally growing up! Stay tuned, because Trading Places is in the process of getting a totally new look — as well as expanding to incorporate more travel channels, and more lifestyle content besides travel. We’ll […]

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Gear Review: Eagle Creek’s Flip Switch Wheeled Backpack

My last backpack was getting pretty pathetic; after seven years and many journeys throughout the world, I was ready to retire it after my last trip to India in November. On that trip, two of my travel buddies were rolling with Eagle Creek luggage, which they both loved, so I decided to look into the […]

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Parlez-vous français?

For a taste of a European city in North America, you need not go further than Quebec. The lovely and historic City of Quebec has a feeling unlike anywhere else in North America — far more like that of Paris. I’ve been spending the week here (and coming up week) Trading Places at a home […]

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Trading Places in Quebec

Tres belle! My Quebec City home for the next 10 days, doing a home exchange. Marie-Chantal is staying at my home in Austin. Selma and I can’t wait to explore this lovely city! This chic, three-story townhome is in an excellent location, only about a 15 minute walk from Vieux Quebec and in a lively […]

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Trading Places in Ireland

There is a reason that I named my blog “Trading Places.” When I travel somewhere, I like to try and experience what it would be to live life in that place, as much as possible. Yes, checking out the must-see spots and tourist attractions — there are certain sights and activities you just wouldn’t want to […]

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Duns Castle, Scotland

Queen for a Day in Scotland

How often do you get to actually live like royalty? I was fortunate to have that opportunity last week, when I was invited by HomeAway to spend a day and night at a Scottish castle, about an hour outside Edinburgh. I was already in Ireland, so it was a quick hop over — how could […]

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Brazil in Photos: São Paulo, Ilhabela and Foz do Iguacu

Over the new year, I made my first ever trip to Brazil. It’s been near the top of the list for me and my SO, Keith, for quite a while. We flew into São Paulo on Christmas evening and stayed a couple of nights. Most of our time was spent in the Vila Madalena neighborhood, a bohemian […]

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Alaska in Photographs

In late August, I headed to my 50th state for my 50th birthday: Alaska. It was a gorgeous, amazing trip exploring via train from Anchorage up to Denali National Park; then a week on a small boat with UnCruise Adventures, exploring John Muir’s Wilderness and Glacier Bay National Park. There was stunning natural beauty at […]

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Gear Review: Toiletry Kit and Sleep Pillow by Eagle Creek

When it comes to travel gear, I am a HUGE fan of the Eagle Creek brand. I use their rolling luggage (mine are the Tarmac 22 carry-on bag, and the FlipSwitch convertible wheeled backpack (full, check-in size), laptop bag, backpack and packing cubes. Pack-It Specter™ On Board toiletry kit So when I needed a new […]

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