USA

GTGL Snippets: Family Night at the Museum for the Terracotta Warriors Exhibition

Ten of the terracotta warriors were on display in Philadelphia for the first time in 30 years at The Franklin Institute. Philly is one of only two cities in the United States to host what is called the Terracotta Warriors of the First Emperor exhibition, the other city being Seattle. Naturally, we had to see it as it is definitely one of those family outings that we don't want to let pass. Who knows when these archeological gems will be near us again?!

GTGL Snippets: Family Night at the Museum for the Terracotta Warriors Exhibition

GTGL Snippets: Family Trip to The National Cherry Blossom Festival, Washington, D.C.

Second time's a charm! 

Our first attempt to witness the cherry blossom trees was a fail. We seized the opportunity to take the trip to Washington, D.C. during the kids' spring break in 2013 (almost two years after moving to the northeastern part of the country, but that's another story). The National Cherry Blossom Festival was scheduled on March 20th through April 14th of that year, and the National Park Service predicted that the trees will have their "peak blossom" on the festival's second week.

GTGL Snippets: Family Trip to The National Cherry Blossom Festival, Washington, D.C.

GTGL Snippets: The Igloos at 230 Fifth Rooftop Bar

The igloos at 230 Fifth Rooftop Bar is one of the most popular things to do in New York City during the wintertime. This past December, I finally got to go with some of my friends. The cocktails were great; the views, better; the holiday air was festive; and the company made the experience unforgettably beautiful.

GTGL Snippets: The Igloos at 230 Fifth Rooftop Bar

Reflections on our experiences together while hiking through Mt. Tamalpais

For this year's Get There | Get Lost Founders Meetup (I just came up with that, and I'm going to make it a thing!), we had planned a two-day excursion of some of Bianca's tried and tested places in Marin County, and one of them was Mt. Tamalpais. 

I had some reflections on our travels together - how often we see each other, and how it's never enough. 

Reflections on our experiences together while hiking through Mt. Tamalpais

GTGL Snippets: The Italian Water Garden at Longwood Gardens

The first glimpse of it got us all awestruck. We followed the path to the viewing deck, all the while taking glances of the intricate water garden, to have a full scale perspective of the whole thing. 

Pure elegance.

GTGL Snippets: The Italian Water Garden at Longwood Gardens

GTGL Snippets: Independence Hall, Philadelphia

Previously called the Pennsylvania State House, this Georgian edifice now known as the Independence Hall is the venue where both the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution were signed. It is located on Chestnut Street, between 5th and 6th Streets, with its north facade leading to a cobblestone street and to the Independence Mall. 

GTGL Snippets: Independence Hall, Philadelphia

[PHOTOS] Self-guided tour of the Mural Mile, Philadelphia

Philadelphia is long known for its riveting street art culture, which speaking volumes on the city's urban lifestyle, and its people's glorious moments and agonizing struggles. The Mural Arts features the skills and talents of artists on traditional mural-making, who transform public spaces into one big engaging, thought-provoking, and even life-changing outdoor art gallery.  

[PHOTOS] Self-guided tour of the Mural Mile, Philadelphia

GTGL Snippets: Palmer Square on Ice, Princeton, New Jersey

Love is in the air!

Ice Sculpture Philly embellished a little corner in downtown Princeton, New Jersey with super cool (see what I did there? 😜) artworks. For their final piece, the ice artists carved out these linked hearts to commemorate Valentine's Day. 💕

GTGL Snippets: Palmer Square on Ice, Princeton, New Jersey

GTGL Snippets: Manhattan, New York City, USA

The larger-than-life ornaments are a New York City Christmas season staple. These giant, red, steel-reinforced fiberglass balls with chrome-finished caps and hooks, are installed every year since 1993 in front of the Exxon Building on the Avenue of the Americas (Sixth Avenue). They are among the most photographed holiday decorations in Midtown Manhattan.

GTGL Snippets: Manhattan, New York City, USA

GTGL Snippets: Barnegat Lighthouse

I was so moved by Bianca’s snippet of the Portland Head Light that I’m sharing one of the many photos I took from the top of yet another United States lighthouse, the Barnegat Lighthouse in New Jersey. It took me 217 steps to get to this point of Old Barney, a nickname that residents has fondly bestowed on this local beacon, which visitors are quite happy to instantly adapt, and to capture this drone-like shot of this absolutely gorgeous pre-summer midday scene below.

GTGL Snippets: Barnegat Lighthouse

GTGL Snippets: Portland Head Light

Looks familiar? That's because the Portland Head Light is one of the most photographed, if not THE most photographed, lighthouses in the US. Even the rugged cliff it sits on, towering 101 feet above the water, is picture perfect. I think it's the white farm style fence and the red roof of the adjacent building that give this whole vista that postcard-ready feel.

GTGL Snippets: Portland Head Light

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park

With over 10 million visitors in 2015, the Great Smoky National Park is the most visited national park in the United State. Hiking trails, waterfalls, and scenic overlooks all combine to make this a splendid place to spend a vacation.  

We spent three days at the park, and even though we hiked a lot of trails, and saw a lot of natural sites, we did not scratch the surface of what this spectacular place has to offer.

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park

GTGL Snippets: The Wizarding World of Harry Potter - Universal Studios Hollywood

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Universal Studios Hollywood did not disappoint. It's comprised of Hogsmeade and Hogwarts. There are two rides - the 3D Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey ride through Hogwarts, and the small roller coaster Flight of the Hippogriff. You also get in line to Ollivanders where there's a bit of a show for the wand to find the wizard before you shop for your wand. With your interactive wand, there are various spots throughout the park where you can use it. 

GTGL Snippets: The Wizarding World of Harry Potter - Universal Studios Hollywood

GTGL Snippets: Brooklyn Botanic Garden, Brooklyn, NY, USA

Mother's Day 2013 at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. That year, instead of my husband doing the usual and giving me a bouquet, I opted for him to take me to see the flowers bloom. 

GTGL Snippets: Brooklyn Botanic Garden, Brooklyn, NY, USA

LIST: Ultimate Romantic Getaways

Valentine’s Day may be just around the corner but why not make February the month of love and celebrate it in the best possible way – by eloping with your loved one from all the chaos of your daily schedules and embark on a romantic journey into one of these amazing destinations. They will surely make you fall in love again.

LIST: Ultimate Romantic Getaways

GTGL Snippets: MIT, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA

A photo is but a second (well, more or less for you shutterbugs out there) of the entire experience - captured, eternalized, relived. Every one is just a moment of a story, in the chapter of our lives that brought us to that instant.

So, we're starting a collection within our blog called GTGL Snippets - a photo (or 2), and the story behind the shot. There's only so much you can write to caption a photo on Instagram, but there's so much to share. And we'll do just that.

GTGL Snippets: MIT, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA

48 Hours in Boston for the First Time

Everyone will say, you must take the off-the-beaten path. But then they will also say, there are must-sees that you just cannot miss. So really, it would depend on what you’re really looking for. Our travel focus is usually around history, architecture, and food. With the help of friends who frequent Boston, locals I’ve connected with, subscriptions to travel magazines, and guidebooks, here’s a suggested itinerary that worked for us first time visitors. Much like any major city, 48 hours is not enough to explore Boston. But for 48 hours, I do think it’s possible to get some sense of the city - its geography, its food, and even its people. 

48 Hours in Boston for the First Time

Accessible Outdoors: Muir Woods National Monument

In 2012, a friend of mine told me I should hike the Cinque Terre for my sabbatical. He showed me two pictures and I was sold. I merely mentioned the Italian Riviera to my husband, and the answer was yes.

Accessible Outdoors: Muir Woods National Monument