A day of learning at Big Cat Rescue in Tampa, Florida-www.casualtravelist.com

A Day of Learning at Big Cat Rescue

Every year during the holidays we head south to Florida, to sunny Tampa where we get to celebrate Christmas with Steve’s family with palm trees and 80 degree weather replacing pine trees and snow. Of course one of my favorite parts of our yearly Florida trip is spending time with my niece Morgan, a super fun kid who is growing up far too fast for my liking. When it came time for our girls’ day adventure we had tons of options, after all Tampa is famous for its white sand beaches and theme parks. This year, our choice was completely up to Morgan and she had one place in mind-Big Cat Rescue.

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Where to Travel in 2017- Top Travel Bloggers Share Their Favorite Destinations www.casualtravelist.com

Where to Travel in 2017- Top Travel Bloggers Share Their Favorite Destinations

If you’re anything like me as soon as the fireworks and celebrations of New Year’s end the search for where to go in the coming year begins. I reached out to the travel blogging community for their suggestions on the top destinations for 2017 and the response was overwhelming. The 34 destinations on this year’s list span the globe; from Antarctica to the Azores, Fiji to Finland, Malawi to Mongolia these places will surely inspire your wanderlust. Without further ado, here is where to travel in 2017. Read More

The Casual Travelist Turns 3-Yet Another Year of Adventure Near and Afar

As we all celebrate the start of a new year January 1 also marks the anniversary of when I first hit publish here at the Casual Travelist. I started writing three years ago as part of the healing process after my Mom passed away from early-onset Alzheimer’s and every day I’m amazed and grateful for all of you that have chosen to stop by my little corner of the internet. The past three years have been filled with opportunities and adventures that I couldn’t have imagined when I started writing but what I cherish the most is all of the new friends, both in person and online, that I’ve made along the way. You guys really are the best.

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My Best Travel Moments of 2016

If you’re like me right about now you’re wondering just how the past year flew by so fast. I managed to make my goal of traveling at least once a month over the past year,all while working full time. Three countries, seven states and a whole lot of exploring Virginia provided a year’s worth of adventure. Without further ado, here are my best travel moments of 2016.

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15 Instagram Travel Accounts to Inspire Your Wanderlust

Unique Gifts for the Traveler on Your List www.casualtravelist.com

Unique Gifts for the Traveler on Your List

The holiday season has rolled around again and figuring out what to get the travel savvy jet-setter on your list can be a bit daunting. I’ve combed the internet to find gifts that will inspire your wanderlust, brighten up your home or make travel a bit easier.  My gift guide features gifts that are sure to delight any traveler in your life, but no one would blame you if you got a little something for yourself (because you certainly deserve it!).

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A few things I'm thankful for this year www.casualtravelist.com

A Few Things I’m Thankful For This Year

I can’t believe how fast 2016 has flown by, as I write this thoughts of turkey and pumpkin pie dance in my head and visions of Christmas sales flash across my TV screen. Tensions still run high from one of the most contentious election seasons in history, but despite the doom that pops up in my news feed there is a lot that’s good and right in the world. I choose to focus on the positive and this year has generally been a good one for me. Here are a few things I’m thankful for this year.

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I went to Mexico and Didn’t get Sick, Attacked or Kidnapped-Here’s What Happened Instead

When I was planning my recent trip to Mexico I was excited. It was my first trip to the country, and rather than head to a luxury resort I wanted this trip to be about the culture. Don’t get me wrong, I love a luxury resort as much as the next person (as you can see here and here), but the Mexico I wanted this time didn’t involve palapas or infinity pools. A few days at an immersive cooking school in the small mountain town of Tepoztlan, with mornings spent walking through town to the market to gather the ingredients for dinner that night all within view of dramatic limestone cliffs capped with the ruins of an Aztec pyramid; followed by the frenetic mix of modern and historic in Mexico City would be my introduction to Mexico. When I announced my travel plans to friends and family I was a bit taken aback, more than any other place I have visited I was deluged with warnings and questions about my safety.

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One Great Weekend:What to do in Mexico City www.casualtravelist.com

One Great Weekend: What to do in Mexico City

A heady mix of traditional cultures and cosmopolitan buzz, there is no doubt that Mexico City is having a moment. A rich indigenous and Spanish colonial history, a vibrant arts scene and one of the most exciting culinary scenes on the planet, the allure of Mexico City is endless. As one of the world’s largest cities, it’s nearly impossible to ever fully know Mexico City but you can certainly get a taste of the Mexican capital in two days time. Here are my recommendations for what to do in Mexico City. Read More

A Taste of Mexico with La Villa Bonita Culinary Vacations www.casualtravelist.com

A Taste of Mexico with La Villa Bonita Culinary Vacations

It’s no secret that I travel to eat, I find that food is one of the best ways to experience a destination. For my first trip to Mexico I wanted to immerse myself in it’s cuisine, from vibrant salsas to smokey moles and everything in between, I wanted to experience Mexico’s diverse food culture on a deeper level. This is what led me to La Villa Bonita, a hands-on cooking school and boutique hacienda in Central Mexico’s highlands.

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