Author Aimee Cebulski has been furiously catching up on lost time as a traveler after a five-year battle with fear of flying grounded her dreams of visiting far-flung destinations in her mid-20s. Now, she’s proud to have 52 stamps in her passport and considers each new one a triumph over fear. She’s worked as a freelance writer and photographer for almost 15 years and currently calls San Diego, California home. Her work has been featured in a number of travel, business and lifestyle magazines, web sites and photo galleries. She recently combined her love of travel, new cultures and writing with release of The Finding 40 Project (, a book about women turning 40 years old around the world. Always encouraging friends and families to follow their adventurous spirit, she believes strongly in the eye-opening power of travel and can’t wait for her next destination, whatever it may be! After returning from a volunteer trip to Cambodia in 2008, she organized and hosted a photo exhibition of her work called “Photography Works,” which raised more than $2,000 to fund water programs for The Trailblazer Foundation and Imagine Ankgor.

Five Ways to Practice Mindfulness When Traveling

Do research. Plan trip. Get on plane, train, or in an automobile. Spend hours, sometimes days, in transit. Get to XYZ amazing destination and immediately begin thinking about how to have the best Instagram posts, take the most amazing photos and use all the amenities at your hotel.

Sometimes it is hard to stay ‘in the moment’

Unfortunately, the stress of getting to a destination, along with the pressure to make the most of it …

A Fantastic Fjord Detour Worth the Drive in Iceland

Iceland’s most scenic and popular route is the so called “Golden Circle” of approximately 300 kilometers of breathtaking views, often traversed in a circular pattern out and back from Reykjavik.

Within the Golden Circle lie some of the country’s top attractions, including Þingvellir National Park, the spectacular Gullfoss waterfalls and Geysir in the heart of an active geothermal valley.

Visitors heading toward the edge of the Golden Circle route often stop in Borgarnes

One of …

Southwestern Michigan’s Wine Country Delights the Senses

Napa Valley in California; Tuscany in Italy; The Rioja region in Spain; and….Michigan? While the aforementioned destinations are top of mind as a wine lovers paradise, don’t overlook this lesser known but beautiful hidden gem just 90 minutes out of Chicago.

Round Barn Winery in Baroda

All up and down the southern shore of Lake Michigan are more than a dozen individual wineries often set on lush grounds offering a number of varietals. Some tasting …

Bypass Border Hassles With a Quick Getaway to Baja California via Tecate

Baja California’s raw beauty and stunning contrasts draws visitors year-round. Most common is the entry point at Tijuana, just south of San Diego. While convenient to accessing the area’s coastal towns of Puerto Nuevo, Roasarito and Ensenada, the border crossing is large and somewhat confusing, and drivers need to be quick on their toes to catch the right road out of town. Coming back into the United States this crossing can be a nightmare, with …

Duck the Heat With a Visit to Istanbul’s Basilica Cistern

Istanbul is a melting pot — Asia butting up against Europe, Byzantine symbols displayed along Muslim icons and a food lover’s mashup with diverse tastes from throughout the centuries.

The immense myriad of attractions means many visitors spend their days hoofing it from neighborhood to neighborhood, sometimes hopping on the local tram along the way, trying to see it all in just a few days. The result is often a sweaty end to the day, …

Skip the Greece Crowds In Aliki on the Southern Shore of Paros

Santorini, Mykonos, Ios…The top spots in Greece’s Cyclades are definitely must-stop destinations on any itinerary through the islands. However, after a period of time you may find yourself burned out on cruise ship crowds or incessant partying groups from Italy, Australia etc.

So how do you get a taste of a real Greek Isles getaway without the crowds? Head for the southern shores of Paros to the little fishing village of Aliki for an idyllic …

3 Things to Do in Boquete, Panama if You’re not a Birder or Mountain Hiker

Perched in the misty hills some 3,800 feet above sea level in central Panama, the small town of Boquete (Spanish for ‘the gap’) has attracted countless visitors  interested in the flora and fauna of the cloud forest since its founding some 100 years ago.

Boquete’s elevation gives it a dramatically different climate and feel from the lowlands and tropical coasts that are usually associated with Panama, yet some of these areas are just 40 miles away. …

Can Upstart .italo Break Trenitalia’s Grip on Italian Rail?

Independent travelers know that train travel is one of the most efficient and cost-effective ways to get from Points A to B in Europe. For decades, Italy’s Trenitalia has dominated the landscape for anyone looking to get almost anywhere by rail. But in the last two years, a new upstart has been trying to disrupt the Italian rail system, and they just might do it if the Italian government doesn’t exert enough financial pressure to

Is this the best $1 you will ever spend getting to know a city? Probably.

In the heart of Myanmar’s sprawling capital Yangon, an opportunity exists to glimpse local life and communities in a way not often available in other cities.

Local transport out the window of the train at one of the 39 stops

Opened in 1954, the Yangon Circular Railway is a rickety, barely-faster-than-a-jog train that runs a circular path all around the heart of the city, taking approximately 3 hours to cover some 30 kilometers and 39 …

Seasoning a Perfect Recipe for Burmese Cooking in Inle Lake

Just a few years ago, Myanmar (formerly Burma) was a closed land, with heavy travel restrictions and limited tourist facilities. Since the broad easing of travel restrictions in 2012, tourism in Myanmar has boomed.

Inle Lake and its famous leg spinner fisherman are a major attraction in Myanmar

Inle Lake in southern Shan State is a popular stop on many itineraries, famous for its leg-spinning fishermen, floating markets and local communities that dot the ring …

“Hunting” The Perfect Safari

As part of a larger seven-month trip around the world, my boyfriend and I knew we wanted to complete an African safari somewhere along the way. But where? How? I wondered where to start and how to budget for something like this.

Searching for a good safari? Some tips from my experience.

Like many travelers, I started at a travel agent, collecting glossy brochures of U.S. based tour companies specializing in safaris. Mesmerized by the …

Wake Up to Wine in the La Rioja Region of Spain

I’m not advocating necessarily waking up with a glass of “vino tinto” (red wine) with your scrambled eggs and jamon…Although that isn’t out of the question in this area where wine flows often more freely than water.

La Rioja is in Spain’s far north, just below the sunny shores of San Sebastian and nestled between the popular towns of Bilbao and Pamplona. The towns and villages in this area are quiet and sleepy, with the …

The Secret of my “Souq-Cess” — 10 Tips for an Enjoyable Market Experience

Whether you call it a souk, mercato, bazaar or market, visiting a city’s local shopping destination is a great way to immerse yourself in the local culture and get a feel for everyday life. There are countless types of markets: Livestock, produce, “wet” (meaning usually freshly killed or still living poultry, meat or fish), gold, spice, night, craft and more. No matter what you are shopping for, it is more than likely that there’s a

Drinking it up in Piedmont

In northwest Italy, Piedmont (Piemonte in Italian) is home to some of the country’s best wines. And truffles. And food. Some might say this area bordered on three sides by the Alps is a little slice of heaven. It’s hard to disagree.

View out to one of many hill towns in Piedmont

Encompassing more than 25,000 square kilometers and featuring fantastic foodie towns like Alba (home of the Slow Food Movement) and Turin, Piemonte is …