Your Complete Guide to 5th Water Hot Springs

Reasons tohike on yourbirthday.pngThis place is undoubtedly one of the most magical places I’ve ever been to. I remember finding it from fellow hikers and falling in love with the beautiful photos that almost seemed too good to be real. So, I planned a trip to Provo and decided I had to see this beautiful natural wonder for myself.

This is located in Uintas National Forest right outside of Provo, Utah. The forest is insane, overflowing with green trees and purple toned snow cap mountains. There’s about 1000 waterfalls within the forest, and so many other hikes that lead you to incredible elevation gains. I arrived into the forest late into the night and parked right at the trailhead, as I knew I wanted to get there before anyone else. There were a few other cars in the parking lot, but all seemed empty, backpackers off deep into the wilderness I suppose. That night my boyfriend and I slept under the stars in his 4-runner which we had now turned into our car, kitchen, and bedroom. The forest was quiet and calming and the only sound besides our breathing was a soft wind rustling the trees.

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We got up around 6:30 to eat and get ready for the hike. It’s 5 miles total, so not terrible but definitely something you want to prepare for. The hike in was absolutely beautiful, you walk alongside the creek while behind you are stunning mountain views. The only faces we saw were hikers coming out of the forest, but beside that it was complete solitude. You know when you are reaching the hot springs because of the smell. A thick smell of sulfur filled our noses as we made our way up the trail, but we didn’t mind that only meant we were getting closer. The water starts to change as well from the typical green/brown creek color to powdery blues.

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As we climbed over the final hill I knew we had made it. Powder blue and green hot spring pools lay in front of us, and not a single person in them. Beautiful. The hot springs are *technically* clothing optional, so in the mornings it’s not uncommon to find some aspiring nudists out for a skinny dip. The ones at the bottom are about the temperature of the perfect hot bath, I’d say around 98 degrees give or take. As you keep going up toward the waterfall they gradually get hotter and hotter.DSC_0519.jpg

Once you get to the waterfall you can actually climb up and under it, which I thought was pretty neat. In addition to that it’s a pretty easy climb to the top of the waterfall and from there you have a beautiful view of all the forestry and hot springs.

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To be honest I was a bit hesitant to share this post. I usually don’t share locations out of fear that they will soon be ruined by over-trafficking of these beautiful lands. When we got here there were only a few pieces of trash, which made me happy to see that people had left places either the same or better than they found them. Remember to keep these places wild, clean up after yourself, and leave the place better than you found it so we can continue to enjoy these spaces. Happy hiking!

How to Pack With a Backpacker’s Ticket

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“Backpacker’s tickets” have honestly saved my life. If you don’t already know, they are the cheapest of the cheap when it comes to airline tickets. Yes, you will load the plane last. Yes, you will probably be in the middle. And finally, yes you will not have access to overhead bins. When I first read this while booking a ticket for my first solo trip my over-packing mind thought “how will I bring every thing I need without at least a carry on?” But after extensively going through each item I thought I needed, I found ways to minimize my packing list but still bring my must-have’s.

One of the most important things in this journey is making sure that your one personal item is a spacious backpack. Now, I’m not talking packed to the ceiling type deal but you can pack your typical day hiking bag to the brim and it will still fit under your seat. Some of my favorite backpacks are High Sierra, and Teton. They are usually light weight, have a water bladder, and built to last. You don’t have to drop tons of money to get a nice bag though. TJ Maxx, Marshall’s, Ebay, and even Facebook market place usually have some great deals on usually very expensive backpacks.

Next is learning how to pack in a more *minimalist* manner. I know at the time it really feels like you do need all 5 sandals, 12 sundresses, 8 bikinis, and 7 pairs of leggings but I promise you will survive (beautifully.) You can still have all of your essentials, while still managing to get away with not paying the ridiculous fee’s to check a bag. Sort out all the items you want to take, immediately get rid of any of those items you are packing in case you “might need them.” 90% of the time those items sit in the bottom of my bag and never get worn, so why even pack them.

From there, try to bring pieces that you can wear multiple times, and know what you can sacrifice. So maybe instead of bringing three pairs of black hiking leggings, just bring one. Or bring a skirt that you can wear with multiple tops, things like that! This saves you a lot of room if you can get multiple outfits out of one piece. Lastly, with shoes make sure you are wearing your bulkiest shoes (ex; hiking boots) on the plane so you can save room in your bag. My personal rule for shoes is to bring 1 pair for comfort and 1 or 2 pairs for fashion.

If you are a blogger like myself, most of us are also packing a camera and a laptop for editing. These things can take up HUGE amounts of space. Try to narrow down what kind of shots you are going to take, and from there decide what lenses you need. I try to bring just one if I’m only bringing my backpack because as I said, lenses can get pretty bulky. Lastly, REMEMBER WHAT YOU CAN BUY. Travel size items are sold nearly every where, why take up space bringing your own travel size items when you could purchase the same ones there?

 

Thanks so much for reading everyone if you want to check out how I travel on a budget, click here!

 

 

How You Can Help the Environment this Summer

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Summer is finally here, which means exploring new places for so many people. So many of our national and state parks reach their peak activity levels in the summer, which unfortunately means there’s a larger number of people acting carelessly in our protected lands. If we don’t treat these places with the respect they deserve, we won’t have them around to enjoy anymore. Be mindful of the spaces you are in. Our environment is begging us to treat it better and we aren’t listening. Here’s a couple of the easiest things you can do this summer that will help out mama earth.

Pack Out What You Bring In

Although this may seem like common knowledge, we all know from experience many people don’t do this. Park rangers have things much important to do than pickup after you. It is so sad to see some of the most beautiful wonders being cluttered with trash from previous visitors. More importantly, animals can eat your leftover trash and become sick or even die from it. Leaving food out attracts animals as well and puts them in danger. Even if it seems like a hassle, respect these places and clean up after yourself.

Go Strawless

This is a movement that’s been gaining a lot of traction lately, and for good reason. Straws have a drastic impact on our environment and it’s time we #stopsucking. American’s use around 500 million straws each day, for on average of 20 minutes before they are thrown in the garbage to go to a landfill. The plastic will break down overtime, but never completely biodegrade. Plastic straws are filling up our oceans and causing our marine life to become ill. If you feel like you need a straw, there are PLENTY of biodegradable and inexpensive options available like this one on Amazon.

Recycle and thrift your clothes

Did you know textile dying is the second largest contribution to polluting water in the world? Many of the chemicals used to give fun and exciting colors in our clothing comes with a cost. These chemicals are carcinogenic and can disrupt an animals hormones as well. With the fashion industry always trying to keep up with the newest trends that means that there’s tons of clothes just being thrown out because they aren’t “on trend.” Lessen these impacts this summer and start recycling your clothing. Companies like ThredUp allow you to get paid for donating your clothes, then they recycle the ones they don’t accept. This not only gives customers incentive to recycle our clothes, but also allows us to be helping the environment. In addition, by buying second-hand clothes you are keeping more environmental waste from being made (plus thrifting is honestly so fun.)

Composting

Summer means fresh fruits and veggies, but that also means there’s a lot of waste when these foods go bad. Instead of throwing them out turn them into compost for your flowers or fruit/veggie garden. There’s so may benefits to composting like protection from diseases in your plants, prevention of pollution, healthy soil, and no more chemical fertilizers! Composting only requires a little extra work, but the benefits are plentiful.

Below I’ve added a link to some more ways you can be environmentally friendly and also save some money, check it out!U

Living With Anxiety, and How to Manage It

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For as long as I can remember, I’ve had anxiety and it wasn’t always easy for me to open up about. Anxiety is more than just worrying about things, anxiety effects you both mind and body. Being in such a transitional stage in life is difficult at times. At this age it feels like the people around you are either barely hanging on by a thread, or have the perfect balance and everything figured out.

What makes it even harder is that no one wants to be transparent about their struggles. People feel like dealing with every day struggles isn’t a normal part of life, so everyone ignore it and pretends it’s not happening until they can’t anymore and just lose it. In addition to that, many of us college age 20 somethings are going through huge transitions. First real job or internship, living on our own, being alone more often, balancing all the things that have to be done, taking care of ourselves, the list goes on. The fact that we have to get thrown into this all at once is extremely overwhelming, and can bring out a lot of anxiety that feels like it’s consuming us.

Although I know medicine is necessary in some cases, and can be extremely effective, I have found in my case that there’s plenty of natural remedies that help me better than medicine. I am in no way a doctor, but I’ve found these things to be the most effective for me. Check it out below!

Healthy Diet 

When we love our body, it loves us back. If you want to feel good, you need to nourish your body. Foods with dyes, artificial sugars, and high fructose corn syrups have been shown to increase anxiety. Now look, I get it. Nearly everything has at least one of these things in it, but you don’t need to cut these things out completely just practice them in moderation. Lessening my consumption of foods with these things in them not only helped my anxiety, but also helped my overall health. I didn’t feel so exhausted after eating, my acne cleared up more, and you could tell my body was reacting positively to eliminating these toxins. Instead of picking up foods with those ingredients, grab something like blueberries, bananas, or cashews which have all been shown to decrease anxiety.

Exercise 

I am not a gym girl, I’ve never been one to enjoy a morning run or going on the elliptical for hours. That doesn’t mean I can’t be active though! It’s all about finding what exercise is right for you. For me, I love hiking. Being outdoors has been shown to decrease anxiety, and it’s definitely my biggest stress reliever. Even if it’s just going on a 30 minute walk each day, staying active is extremely important. When we exercise, our brain releases chemicals that help make us feel happy and relaxed.

Meditation

This is a huge one for me. Taking time to reflect and be honest with yourself about your struggles can do wonders for you. Many people thing meditation needs to be some full on session with a gong and a monk leading you, but it doesn’t have to be like that AT ALL. Finding a quiet place each day to be alone and mindful about your thoughts can be amazing. I love to light some candles, hit the lights, and meditate while I’m in the bath each night. Meditation is as simple as closing your eyes, focusing on your breathing, and allowing your mind to wander. I try to do this for at least 30 minutes a day because I’ve found it really clears my mind and especially makes the physical symptoms of anxiety go away.

Let things go 

We are only in charge of ourselves and our emotions. We can’t change how people feel, or think, or react. Anxiety tells us to hyper-focus on everything, and constantly replay how things could’ve gone differently over and over. However, we must learn to let things go, not for other people but for ourselves. We are all still growing and learning, and at some level we have to let things go and forgive ourselves for the mistakes we have made.

These are just a few things, but I would love to hear about what everyone else does to manage their anxiety and stress. Having an open conversation about this is key to helping ourselves and helping our eachother. Have a great day!

What You Do and Don’t Need For Your Dorm

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Ahh, dorm shopping. Nothing feels quite as anxiety provoking, but also exciting as buying things for your first college dorm. I remember reading so many different blogs, and by the end of it I felt 1) overwhelmed, 2) like I needed to buy every single item in Target’s home section. However as the year went on, I realized there were so many things I had bought that were completely useless. Below I’ve included a list of the things I found to be most useful and essential for your dorm and the things that really aren’t worth it.

Don’t buy a drying rack

I know, your mom is insisting your sweaters and delicate clothes will shrink if you put them in the dryer and then they will be ruined! Here’s the thing though, I promise you that you will NEVER use it. I saw so many people claiming this as a must have, but for me it just took up space in my dorm. If you feel like you really have to wash your sweaters just lay them flat over the air conditioning, promise it works the same.

Do buy a quality mattress pads

While shopping for your things you may think, “oh, i’ll just pick up this cheap mattress pad, the beds can’t be that bad.” But they can, and they are that bad. Imagine prison quality with a fireproof cover and that’s exactly how your bed will feel. When you get there, you will thank yourself so much for investing in a thick and quality mattress cover because now you can actually sleep.

Don’t buy 30 different towels 

Seriously just don’t. I get the vibes you feel right now. You want to be independent, you want to spread your wings and feel grown. Buying so many towels though is going to just take up space. My roomie and I both came with 5 towels each and it was by far too many. Stick to two and maximum three, that’s seriously more than enough.

Do buy an electric tea kettle

You guys…. I seriously can’t stress enough how much this thing saved my life. Even if you aren’t a tea drinker these things have SO much use to them. If you don’t know what they are, they basically are an appliance that boils water super fast. Not only can you use this for coffee and tea, but you can also use it to make things like oatmeal, ramen noodles, mac and cheese, and a bunch of other really easy meals. This was super helpful for me especially in the mornings when I didn’t want to walk to the dining hall before class.

Don’t get boxes of plastic forks and spoons

Although it feels easier to buy these, use them once, and throw them away, it’s super harmful for the environment. If you don’t want to have tons of different silverware either, invest in some of the eco-friendly utensils like these  they can be thrown away and don’t cause the damage that plastic does! This not only saves the environment, but also keeps you from the hassle of having to do dishes

Do buy an essential oil diffuser

Many dorms don’t allow candles, and buying the plug-in’s can get really pricey. I opt’d to buy an essential oil diffuser for my room and it’s worked wonders. Essential oils are relatively inexpensive (I found a set of 4 at tj maxx for $10,) but the diffusers themselves are usually under $20. Plus essential oils have been shown to have positive effects on your mood depending on the oil you diffuse.

Don’t buy extras of everything 

I know at the time your parents are stressing, and you’re stressing and it feels like you should buy 2 sets of extra light bulbs, batteries, sheets, link rollers, ect. For me though, I found at the end of the year that over half of the things I got extras of didn’t even get used. Save yourself the space and the money, even if you do run out of something dorms are very communal and there’s a good chance someone down the hall has an extra of what you need.

Do buy a Brita Water Filter

Even if you don’t mind tap water, most of the time the faucet in your bathroom (if you even have that) isn’t going to be big enough to fit your water bottle in and fill it up. Rather than spending money on plastic water bottles every month, invest in a Brita. My roommate and I alternated filling it up every morning and it saved us so many trips to the water fountain downstairs to fill up our bottles.

THINGS I FOUND MOST NECESSARY 

  • Command hooks for towels
  • String lights to make the place more home-y
  • Re-usable bags ($1 at TJ Maxx)
  • Ethernet cord (wifi is unreliable in college kids)
  • Amazon Fire Stick (you need this)
  • Cozy throw blankets
  • Bathroom bag
  • Slides (shoes)

 

 

 

How to Make Your Summer Trip to Chicago Perfect

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Everyone knows about The Bean, the Skydeck, and Navy Pier; being a local I of course avoid these places like the plague. Chicago has endless opportunity for fun, and if you spend all your time hitting major tourist attractions you are honestly missing out on what this city has to offer. Let’s get started

Where to Eat

Yo…other cities…I’ma let you finish, but Chicago has some of the best food I’ve ever had. Skip Giordono’s and Garrett’s Popcorn, hit these places instead!

  • Chicago Pizza and Oven Grinder– This is hands down my favorite restaurant in the whole city. Tucked away in Lincoln Park is this small and locally owned pizza place that has been around since the 50’s. The restaurant specializes in two things: pizza pot pies and and oven grinders. A pizza pot pie is exactly what you are thinking and that’s the only way I know how to describe it. The oven grinder’s are these HUGE and yummy sandwiches. I typically do the full 3 courses and get a chef salad, with Mediterranean bread, and a cheese only pizza pot pie (you can add meat or mushrooms if you want.) I MUST warn you though, this place does not take reservations and it gets busy FAST especially on the weekend. I would highly recommend going around 5:00PM to avoid a long wait.
  • The Athenian Room- Not only a favorite of mine but also a favorite of the beloved Tina Fey as well. I love this place because it doesn’t break the bank, but it has some of the most amazing Greek food I’ve ever consumed. Like Tina Fey, my favorite meal would also have to be the Chicken Kalamata and crack fries. It’s kinda simple, but the flavors will blow you away.
  • Clarke’s on Belmont– Looking for the perfect hangover food, or maybe a good place for some comfort food? Clarke’s is the exact place. This diner, which is a Chicago native serves some of the homiest food you can find in the whole city. They honestly have something for everyone, whether you want Salmon Eggs Benedict, the perfect waffle, or just a classic breakfast sandwich their menu covers it all.

What to Do

  • Museum of Contemporary Art- Don’t get me wrong, the Art Institute is absolutely beautiful. The MCA has such a different vibe to it though. At the MCA you are going to see more culturally relevant pieces that really make you think and feel something which I don’t find as easy in some of the pieces at the Art Institute. The displays are constantly rotating and they always have really neat exhibits up. On top of that they also have a beautiful outdoor cafe for you to sit at after you take in all the art inside. PLUS, students and Illinois residents always get a discount. This is also perfect walking distance if you are staying on the Magnificent Mile.
  • WhirlyBall- This isn’t kid friendly, but god it makes you feel like a kid. WhirlyBall is a business located in Lincoln Park that pretty much specializes in a good time. They have a bar, bumper cars, games, and bowling. Plus this place is open until 3:00 AM, come on you know you all want to get a little tipsy and then play bumper cars.
  • Lincoln Park Conservatory- Lincoln Park Conservatory is one of Chicago’s only glimpses of nature in the whole city. Although I prefer Garfield Park Conservatory much more, for the sake of visitors though LP is just a much more centralized location. This beautiful conservatory features beautiful plants from all types of environments. This is perfect for families and children as well. Make a whole day out of it and after you finish up at the conservatory, walk across the street to Fullerton beach, grab an ice cream cone from one of the many vendors, and relax with the picturesque skyline behind you.
  • Shop in Wicker Park and Logan Square- These two neighborhoods are by far my favorite places in the whole city. There’s tons of food, bars, street art, and shopping along the street. You can get everything from a Ramen Burger, to classic comfort food. The walk between Wicker Park and Logan Square is about 2.1 miles, but if you enjoy walking and window shopping it’s not bad at all. For me personally, I love shopping at Ragstock, Buffalo Exchange, Village Discount, Kokorokoko, and Crossroads Trading Post. There’s honestly something for everyone in each of these shops.

Where to Drink 

Chicago is not only boujee, but boozy! Check out these fun bars below

  • Cindy’s Rooftop- Located downtown, across the street from Millennium Park is the stunning Cindy’s Rooftop. Cindy’s has a home-y but still modern vibe, and the drinks are the same way. In addition to the fun and crafty cocktails, there’s also an absolutely STUNNING rooftop overlooking Lake Michigan and Millennium Park. A must for first-timers in my opinion.
  • Emporium- Located in Wicker Park, this bar takes you back in time. Complete with hundreds of arcade games like Pacman and Pinball and a vintage 70’s setting, this bar is sure to have you feeling like you are in a different decade. For my crafty beer drinkers, this place is made for you! Emporium has DOZENS of beers for you to choose from as well as hand-crafted cocktails.
  • Three Dots and a Dash- Head straight to the island with Three Dots and a Dash. Located in West Loop, this Polynesian bar will give you all the beach vibes. Not only is the whole place decorated in Polynesian attire, but the drinks are as well. All of their juices are cold pressed daily, and paired with fresh seasonal fruit to ensure some of the freshest drinks you can find. Nearly every drink comes in a cute tiki themed cup. Put your watch on island time, and dance the night away.
  • The Green Mill- This one is a bit different, but it’s too great for me not to mention it. The Green Mill, located in uptown is a bar that has been around since Prohibition times. Velvet booths line the stage with a giant stage in the front for local musicians or speakeasy poetry on Sunday evenings. Behind the bar you can find a tunnel in the floor that was used to hide alcohol in the 1920’s. My favorite part about this place though is that it was also Al Capone’s favorite, and he even has a booth dedicated to where he would sit and enjoy his cocktails when he would take a short break from being a mob boss

That’s it everyone! I’d be more than happy to answer any questions you all might have so shoot me a message if so. Have a great 🙂

Phoenix’s Most Instagram-Able Spots

Phoenix’s Most Instagram-Able Spots

Recently I took a trip out to Phoenix to escape some of the cold weather in my hometown and enjoy myself. I’ve been to Phoenix a couple times and it is by far my favorite city in the US. It’s warm year around plus the desert aesthetic is just breathtaking. Another amazing part of Phoenix is of course all of the photo-ops you get from being in such a beautiful place. Below I’ve taken my own little spin on the best places for photography in Phoenix.

 Desert Botanical Garden in Scottsdale, this is a little nature preserve dedicated to plants from all different deserts. They also have a monarch butterfly garden that is purely surreal.

Roosevelt Row in downtown Phoenix, this whole area is dedicated to street art and is flooding with the most interesting murals

 Phoenix Art Museum in downtown Phoenix. This museum had so many displays but my favorite by far would have to be the firefly room pictures above which featured millions of little string lights to mimic fireflies in the summer

Friendship Inn Motel, this isn’t really a destination spot as it’s really just an old motel that closed down but I fell absolutely in love with the whole aesthetic of this place. The pastels of this place really turn it into a dreamy desert scenery

 McDowell Sonoran Preserve, I opted out of choosing a close up picture of myself so I could show off some of the beautiful desert flora and fauna. This preserve is in northern Scottsdale and has tons of different trails ranging in difficulty. Also I might add it’s an absolutely breathtaking place to watch sunset.

Last but certainly not least, Phoenix Mountain Preserves. This place is so beautiful and allows you to see views of all the mountains in Phoenix along with views of Scottsdale, Tempe, and Phoenix. I chose to hike Piestewa Peak and it definitely did not disappoint.

College Study Tips

Being a college student is hard enough as it is, it feels like there’s constantly a deadline or a test or a project due and it’s easy to become overwhelmed. With midterms coming up in the following weeks I thought I would share the study tips that have helped me the most with getting prepared for exams or honestly just retaining the content that is being taught.

Always have something to keep you hydrated, along with a little snack to keep your energy up. I prefer to have salted almonds and hot tea or a naked juice

If you’re a music listener, have a playlist or queue ready before you sit down to study. This way, you don’t lose focus or end up taking unnecessary time up to pick out songs

Try writing using different colors. Psychology shows that using different colors helps your brain stimulate your creative side and later recall specific details because our brain is “mapping” the different ideas. Colors like red, yellow, and orange have shown to be the most effective with memory.

If you’re reading lengthy texts try using techniques like annotating, highlighting, and rephrasing what you are reading into your own words rather than copying the text word for word

Take breaks in between. Studying for hours on end only makes us physically and mentally drained. This makes us end up losing focus and not retaining anything. Make time for breaks in between studying to go outside for about 15 minutes and just breathe.

Good luck with midterms!

4 Days In New York: What I Ate, Saw, and Did

Happy Tuesday everyone! I’m actually typing this from a coffee shop in Brooklyn because I missed my flight back to Chicago…oops. This long weekend in New York was absolutely amazing. I made some new memories, ate great food, and saw beautiful sights. Luckily for me, New York had really amazing weather. Minus it being a bit chilly and rainy one day, it was 40’s and 50’s with lots of sunshine which is basically the equivalent of summer after living through negative temperatures in Chicago winter. 


While I do like to be “boujee” when I travel, I also like to do whatever I can to save money so that I can keep traveling. I talked about this in my last post about how I travel on a budget linked here in case you haven’t read it yet! For our stay in the city we did one night in a Manhattan hotel and then the other 3 nights in the cutest Airbnb in Bushwick, a neighborhood in Brooklyn. I highly recommend staying in this area if you enjoy street art and like hanging around locals instead of the tourist-y vibes of Manhattan. Bushwick has tons of nightlife if you like to go out but also has tons of options for food from your typical NY pizza to Pan Asian hole-in-the-wall places. The neighborhood is very safe and family oriented which I really liked because it’s nice to see how others in the area live and what they like to do. 


In Manhattan, we stayed in the Hyatt House Chelsea/Soho and loved it! They offered free breakfast which was great because I was able to snag some snacks for the day, and the views from the rooms were breathtaking. On the first night of course I had to make a VERY QUICK stop in Time Square. I only did this because I haven’t been to New York since I was literally 12 so I just wanted to see it one more time for memories. If you have been to Time Square before, there’s honestly no reason to see it twice because it’s a huge tourist trap. After Time Square we headed to the famous Joe’s pizza for a slice of NY pizza. Joe’s is perfect if you aren’t trying to spend a lot but still get a really good meal. It’s fresh and classic NY pizza so not much more you can ask for. We called it a night early, but the next day we got up early and made our way to Soho, a huge neighborhood known for it’s shopping and affluent residents. Soho is adorable, but a little stuck up in my opinion. Still, it was a super cute place to window shop and walk around. 


After a few hours in Soho, my friend and I made our way to Little Italy. You can lyft there if you prefer a faster route, but personally walking was my favorite part. You’ll get to see cobblestone streets, little pop up stands with everything from mugs to handmade jewelry and t-shirts. There’s also lots of aesthetic coffee shops on the way which I definitely appreciated. I’m a self-proclaimed soft serve addict so on our walk through little Italy I had to make a stop at Milk and Cream Cereal Bar. This is actually one of the coolest food experiences I’ve seen. Basically you go in and they have tons of cereal, so you choose your ice cream and cereal and they blend it. Then they top it with anything and everything you could ever want and swirl it into a little cone or cup. Now this place is a bit pricey for ice cream not going to lie, however I feel it’s an experience worth having. 

Next on our list was Greenwich Village. Greenwich Village is literally my favorite part about New York. The neighborhood itself is so friendly, there’s so many parks and great places to eat. We were in Greenwich Village a couple times throughout the trip because we just couldn’t stay away. Our favorite restaurants there would have to be Rossopomodoro a classic Italian pizza and pasta place, and Big Gay Ice Cream. Big Gay Ice Cream is a soft serve ice cream shop adjacent to Stonewall in. 

 Before dinner, we finished up our time in Manhattan by taking a stroll through Central Park. After our stroll we headed to Brooklyn for some Mexican food. We ended up going to this little hole-in-the-wall called Los Hermanos. This place was super close to our Airbnb as well which made it convenient for us. As I said before our Airbnb had tons of restaurants in the area so if you’re considering staying there some of our favorites were King Noodle (Pan Asian, amazing wings), Knickerbocker Bagel, and Dweebs (coffee). 


While in Brooklyn, we stopped at Smorgasbord. Smorgasbord is a outdoor market hosted every Saturday in Williamsburg and had been on my bucket list for AGES. They have everything from edible cookie dough, to Thai fried chicken, to artisan fries. It’s also really close to a lot of clothing and book stores so after you’re finished it’s nice to window shop in the area. We also made a stop in Dumbo so that we could walk across the Brookyln Bridge and get some views of Manhattan. 


So overall, it was an amazing long weekend in New York City. I didn’t include everything we did or else this post would’ve been a book so if you have any questions let me know! I’d also love to see some suggestions from fellow bloggers who have visited or lived in the city! Have a great day, loves!

How I Travel On A Budget

How I TravelOn a Budget

Being a college student, it’s no secret that most of us don’t have just a plethora of money laying around to travel the world with. Between all the papers and projects we have it’s challenging to be able to make money to travel as much as some of the older people in the blogger community can, but that doesn’t mean it’s not possible! I am someone who possess major wanderlust, so because of that I’ve done everything I can to be able to travel. Because of the tips and budget tricks I practice I’ve been able to go to Phoenix twice, San Francisco, LA, and New York all in the past 6 months. I know how important it is to travel, traveling opens us up to new cultures and allows us to broaden our horizons. We also get that escape from reality we all need sometimes. Below I have included my favorite tips and trips for traveling!

 

Getting there can sometimes be the most expensive part of the trip. Driving isn’t always an option, and flights can be so expensive sometimes. To make sure I’m getting the best possible deal I always use Momondo, a website dedicated to helping you find the best possible flight deals. Through this website I’ve been able to find ridiculously cheap flights to places like Phoenix for $200, NYC for $145, and LA for $230. Another thing I like to do is if I have the option of a 5 hour layover in a cool place or a 12 hour layover, I always pick the longer one if it means it’s cheaper. This gives you a chance to maybe mark a place off your bucket list without having to spend any extra money.

 

 Another tip is that if you are going to have to rent a car once you reach your destination, DO NOT rely solely on the large rental car corporations to help you find a car. There’s so many apps like ZipCar or GetAround that offer rental cars for about half the price that a big car rental company would. These apps only require you to be 18+ which is great because most car rental places require you to be at least 25. In addition, these apps are really SO inexpensive so it’s easy to find something within your budget and they are also a lot more flexible with their cars and prices. Another cool thing is that many companies like enterprise often partner with universities, do if you are a student then you can rent a car through them as well. While we are on the subject of transportation, I cannot tell you the amount of money I’ve saved from using public transportation. Trust me, I know public transportation can be daunting especially if you are from a small town like me where it’s not common. 90% of the time though your phone will show you the exact route you need to take, and once you get the gist of public transport it’s pretty easy to navigate in any city.

I’m a huge foodie, and often times I’m always thinking about what I’m going to be eating next. Buuuut, food can be seriously expensive. Whenever I’m paying for the trip with my own money I try to pick maybe 2 and max 3 places I want to eat out at. Other than that though, I’m buying groceries the whole time. I usually pick up a throw away cooler from a grocery store and get lunch meat, cheese, bread, and a couple snacks and that’s what I eat for most of the trip. It’s not exactly gourmet, but it keeps me sustained and allows me to keep doing what I love.

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Lastly, I know it would be perfect if we could all afford to stay in a 5-star-hotel in Mykonos, however that is just not within the budget sometimes. Hotels and Airbnb don’t mess around, and that can break the bank. One tip I have to keep from that is using Momondo! I know I’ve touched on it a few times throughout this post, but that’s honestly because I love it so much. Momondo and other websites like Hotels.com, Kayak, and Booking.com can save you so much money when booking hotels. A way I’ve saved money using Airbnb is by getting a shared room vs. the whole house. I know it may seem awkward, but more times than not the host is extremely welcoming and helps create a more home-y environment for you during your stay, plus most are more than happy to give you the local scoop. Finally, if you are in a country outside of the US it’s completely common to find hostels to stay in for next to nothing. This allows you to have a cheap and safe place to stay, plus meet other travelers along the way.

Happy Travels!