Travel Diaries: Playa del Carmen

Travel Diaries: Playa del Carmen

We took a quick family trip to Mexico at the end of October and had the perfect weather during our 4 day stay. While having been to Cancun several times, this was my first time to Playa Del Carmen. Due to some scary travel advisories, we didn’t leave the resort the gated resort and shopping areas. Since we were traveling with our toddler, it seemed best to be on the safe side. And I have to say our beautiful resort, the Iberostar Quetzal, had plenty of activities for us to enjoy during our stay! 

I just have to talk about this hotel for a second because it is hands down the most beautiful place that I have ever stayed at. We were lucky enough to stay in one of the ocean front junior suites which have a terrace that takes you right out to the beach. Not to mention that there a a jungle in the middle of the property with monkeys, flamingos, peacocks, nutrias… it actually blew my mind!

Our daughter was almost 3 at the time of our trip and even though she was too young for the kids club, she had a blast! Swimming in the ocean, chasing the peacocks around and sneaking treats to the nutrias that liked to hang out in front of our balcony it was a toddlers dream.

I will admit that we were a little nervous about going to Mexico with all the travel advisories that are in place, especially bringing our daughter… BUT for this particular area of Playa del Carmen, we felt very safe. Before you even get to the hotel, you enter in through this gated area that’s essentially all vacation homes, shops and hotels. So you are definitely isolated from the actual town of Playa del Carmen. So while you may not be getting the cultural experience you might in other places, you definitely feel safe.

And the little shopping area was only about a 10 minute walk from the resort. The perfect place to pick up some souvenirs, grab some Starbucks and talk to some locals!

Another thing I have to note about this hotel is the customer service: Our daughter actually got an extremely high fever in the middle of the night and the people at the front desk were so helpful at taking us to the onsite physician and then having a courier pick up a prescription at the pharmacy. They really went above and beyond and as parents in a foreign country with a sick child, we really appreciated the extra effort.

I put together a quick little video of our stay, hope you enjoy ❤

New Orleans: Travel Guide

New Orleans: Travel Guide

New Orleans is one of the few places I have been that makes you feel like you have stepped back in time. There is something so magical about the architecture and the live music. We only had two days in the City so here is a comprehensive guide on what to do, where to eat and some hidden gems we found along the way.

FOOD:

Cafe du Monde: 800 Decatur St, New Orleans, LA 70116

Go to stop for world famous beignets! Just beware, unless yuou go super early or super late, there will probably be a line. Also note, it’s cash only!

Red Dog Diner: 3122 Magazine St, New Orleans, LA 70115

So good that we went 2 nights in a row. Great spot away from the crowds (drunks) in the Quarter. Very affordable, amazing food!

Sucre: 3025 Magazine St, New Orleans, LA 70115

Great gelato and macaroons. 2 minute walk from Red Dog Diner – spendy but very good.

Cochon: 930 Tchoupitoulas St suite a, New Orleans, LA 70130

Not to be confused with Cochon Butcher which is right next door (totally did that), but the food was very good. Upscale southern fusion – not ideal for kids though.

Surrey’s Cafe and Juice Bar: 1418 Magazine St, New Orleans, LA 70130

Amazing breakfast, tiny place so go early or you will have a line! Peanut Butter Pancakes were especially good!

WHAT TO SEE:

Some obvious choices are the French Quarter & Jackson Square. We loved going early and listening to the live music and looking at all the artwork on the square before walking over into the Quarter.

I have to say my favorite area was probably the Garden District and Magazine Street. Just a little bit more low key and I am such a sucker for old historic homes, and this is the place for it. We found a PDF for a free walking tour that gave a brief history of many of the homes. Highly recommend that!

Swamp Tour – we used Cajun Critters which was only about 20 minutes from the Quarter and we found a great discount on Groupon. Captain James was awesome, Sophie loved him.

City Park was a real surprise because I had never been there before. Amazing place to let your kids run around. So many activities to do – museums, playgrounds, golf, etc. And the Oak trees…just amazing!

Our last stop on our way back to Houston was Oak Alley Plantation, no this is a must see in my opinion! The history of the plantation, the gorgeous grounds… so glad we decided to stop. The tour of the home is included in the admission price and while you cant take picture inside the home, they will let you take them from the upstairs balcony once the tour is over!

And last but not least, I have compiled a video with all the highlights from our trip ❤ Enjoy!

HOW TO PLAN THE PERFECT ROAD TRIP: TRAVEL TIPS & HACKS

HOW TO PLAN THE PERFECT ROAD TRIP: TRAVEL TIPS & HACKS

When you are getting ready to plan the perfect road trip, there are a few things you need to take into consideration:

Where do you want to go? Are you trying to go on a round trip or just get from point A to point B? Are you flying or are you starting from home? Does an RV or car work better for you?

Lucky for you, I made this short video to help you decide on which options suit you best!

And if you do choose to travel in an RV, be sure to check out my blog post on my tips and tricks on traveling in an RV!

Toddler Carry-On Must Haves!

Toddler Carry-On Must Haves!

What to pack for your toddler when traveling internationally? Here’s 5 things we always pack! New toy, lovey, medicine, snacks and a pillow.

Some things that I keep for our toddler in my bag that I did not list are: a change of clothes, ziplock bag (for soiled clothes), another bag that can be used as a throw up bag, wipes and diapers (depending on child’s age).

I hope you enjoyed this video! Please give it a thumbs up and let me know what you pack for your little one during long flights!

== LINKS ==
Boogie Board – https://amzn.to/2TLz0of

Goals for 2019

Goals for 2019

Goal setting! Doesn’t that just sound so much nicer than a New Years Resolution?

This year I am setting 5 goals for myself , some short term and some more general goals. We are about to head on a ski-trip to Austria and I have not been snowboarding in over 8 years, so one of my short – term goals is to be able to successfully snowboard down the slopes without injuring myself.

Another more short term goal is to go on a backpacking trip with Steffen and Sophie! This is something that I am so excited for but also something that I know will really be challenging for me. We have our hopes set on getting permits for Havasupai this year (fingers crossed, the open up booking on Feb. 1st) but if that doesn’t work out we will likely do a trip to somewhere else in Arizona or Utah.

One of my more long-term goals is to physically get stronger and to practice more yoga. Those for me go hand in hand because if I can dedicate more time to my yoga practice, I will inevitably get stronger… NAMASTE!

And my last goal is to make more YouTube videos! I am finding so much joy in this new space. I have always watched loads of YouTube videos, so why not make some as well! We already have so many cool videos from past trips to look back on, I just love it and find it very rewarding. And if you are one of my viewers and have any type of video you would like to see from me, let me know!

xo Sarah