A Weekend in and around Mystic, Connecticut

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Southeastern Connecticut is full of a range of activities; from fun parks, to museums or shopping to outrageous evenings at the casino. On days when you just need to be outside, visit the Mystic Seaport to see old whaling boats and learn about blacksmiths. While in Mystic visit the downtown to eat ice cream while watching the Mystic River Bascule Bridge open and close to let ships enter the Mystic River. For more fun outdoors visit the Mystic Aquarium and surrounding Olde Mistick Village Shops. Never ending night life is available at the casinos (Foxwoods or Mohegan Sun) and are great for shows, shopping, dancing, and gambling. Visit the nearby Stonington Borough for shopping and restaurants - try Milagros for amazing Mexican and Dog Watch Café for seafood. For breakfast or brunch in Stonington Borough head to Noah’s Café.

A view of downtown Stonington Borough
Stonington Borough
Downtown Mystic, Connecitcut
Shops in downtown Mystic next to the drawbridge
Have you visited Mystic or Stonington Borough before?

Adventures in Eating: Asia

Monday, April 8, 2013

One of my favorite things about traveling is sampling the local flavors. These are some of the best meals I've tasted in Southeast Asia.
A perfect way to quench my thirst in Singapore

Breakfast in Singapore- Kaya toast, rice, and spam

Breakfast in Shangri-La- Steaming hot noodles and a bowl of warm, sweetened soy milk

Dinner in Lijiang- Spicy tofu, fresh mushrooms and peppers, and stir fry bacon

Some meaty noodles in Yunnan
Personal hot pot in Dali, Yunnan
Hot soy milk and fried bread stuffed with sugar

Yangmei- the most delicious fruit

What Southeast Asian dishes do you love? Have you tried yangmei before?

Visiting Madison, Wisconsin

Madison, the capital of Wisconsin, is notable for its huge Saturday farmers' market, football, the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and its hipster culture. If you are traveling to Madison for school, work, or vacation, I'd suggest tasting some delicious WI fare and of course, eating some ice cream. For me, a trip to Madison focuses a lot on food because there are a huge amount of options. 

What to do

Start off a Saturday morning with a visit to the farmers' market around the Capital Square. The farmers' market around Capital Square is huge and crowded. Go hungry and be prepared to feast on fruits, vegetables, baked goods, and coffee. Yum! While at the market, take the time to enter the Capital building -- it really is beautiful inside. Make sure to walk down State Street towards the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus. Along the way, visit local shops. Visit the campus to taste some local beer and eat the wonderful campus-made ice cream. In the afternoon, visit the Olbrich Botanical Garden for a free way to spend a day outside. The UW Arboretum is a great place to walk in a restored prairie. In the evening, catch the latest Indie flick while sampling the local beer at Sundance Cinemas at the Hilldale Mall on Midvale.


For typical Wisconsin Fare, try the Great Dane near the Hilldale Mall or by the Capital, and the Weary Traveler (for the best burger ever!). Try Mickey’s Dairy Bar on Monroe St for breakfast, but get their early to avoid the long lines. The SunRoom Café and the Mediterranean Café on State Street are perfect for lunch on weekdays. I also love grabbing a quick lunch from the carts outside of the Memorial Library. Visit the Memorial Union for a yummy ice cream and great beer. The University recently (2014) re-did the inside of Memorial Union and I'm looking forward to getting back on campus to see the changes.


Visit Devil's Lake State Park for camping and hiking not too far outside of Madison. You will need a car to get here though.

Olbrich botanical garden
Olbrich Botanical Garden
Devil's lake state park
Devil's Lake

Radishes at the Farmer's Market
Madison, WI capital farmer's market
The crowds at the farmer's market
Farmer's Market treats
the UW arboretum
Rhododendrons in bloom at the UW-Arboretum

Olbrich Botanical Garden

Have you been to Madison, WI? What are your tips for visiting this city?

Daunt Books for Travellers: London, UK

For those who love traveling and books, visit Daunt Books for Travellers (83/84 Marylebone High Street). This bookstore has everything a traveler or lover of books could ever want. Spend enough time in the store to see every nook and cranny or even spend an evening with wine in the bookstore.