Guest Blog, Summer Vacation Tour, Travel/Moving

TRAVEL :: France with Natalia: A Stop on the Summer Vacation Tour

In between a trip to Switzerland, packing up her place in France, and moving back to California for the summer, my sweet friend Natalia somehow found time to write a post for this series!

NATALIA in FRANCE

A little more about Natalia
My name is Natalia and I grew up in sunny California. After college I married my favorite man in the world and he whisked me off to France where he plays basketball. It’s not as easy as it sounds, but sometimes it’s fun to make it out to be oh-so-romantic! I chose to write about France because with all the ups and downs, I love the country and if I wasn’t attached to my family back home (and I could learn this stinkin language fluently!) I would consider staying.

Natalia’s top five things to love about France

  1. It’s beautiful. Oh so beautiful. The cities are picturesque and old and fabulous and the country is green and gorgeous and spacious. Coming from the greater Los Angeles area where all you see is city, I love it!
  2. The history. I am a huge history nerd. I love anything with a story behind it. In France, as in most of Europe, there is a ton of history! It is so amazing to learn about something and then go to where it took place!
  3. The lifestyle. The French seemed more laid back, the love to take breaks and relax. They understand the importance of vacation. It is refreshing coming from America where everyone is in a hurry to get somewhere! It’s nice, but then in a sense when you need something done and they’re always on vacation, it stinks!
  4. Location. I absolutely love that we are pretty central Europe. I have been able to travel and see quite a few other places on the cheap!
  5. Pastries. Duh! You thought I was going to leave them out, didn’t you? They are fabulous. And if you find a boulangerie (bakery) that makes a good baguette, oh man they are to die for! Oh and the choux – oh my goodness, I could have one every day!

Since I am doing a whole country it was kinda hard to narrow it down to just five photos! We have Cannes, Eze (all in the south), Parc Tête d’Or in Lyon, St. Etienne (where we live), and Paris — because you have to include Paris in France!

Beach in Cannes - Virtual Travel Tour - 5 Reasons to Visit FranceBeach in Cannes

Eze, France - Visit France - Top 5 Things About FranceEze in Southern France

Parc Tete d'or - France - Five Best Things about FranceParc Tête d’Or in Lyon

St Etienne - Virtual Travel Series - 5 things to love about FranceSt Etienne

Paris France - Top 5 Reasons to Visit FranceParis

Want to read more about Natalia’s life in France? Check out Ma Nouvelle Mode, where she blogs with her friend Christie about fashion, beauty, travel, and much more. You can also like Ma Nouvelle Mode on Facebook, or chat with Natalia on Twitter @MaNouvelleMode.

This post is a part of the Summer Vacation Tour, a virtual travel series hosted here on Oaxacaborn.com. To ‘travel’ to other locations while I’m taking a brief break from blogging, click here. (Want to be featured in the future? Email me!)

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Guest Blog, Summer Vacation Tour, Travel/Moving

TRAVEL :: Frankfurt, Germany with Alyx: A Stop on the Summer Vacation Tour:

Today’s virtual travel destination is Frankfurt, Germany. Alyx is a Nebraska girl who blogs (very humorously, I might add) at Every Day is a New Adventure, and she’s going to take us on a little tour!

ALYX in FRANKFURT, GERMANY

Hello, Oaxacaborn readers! I am so excited [and honored] to be here with you guys!

A quick introduction: I’m Alyx, and I currently live in Germany and blog over here.

I’m so happy that Gina asked me to share what I love about Frankfurt with you, because believe me – there’s quite a bit! I’m going to share my top 5 favorite things about the city in a minute, but first I just wanted to tell you why I’m here!

I’m actually teaching English in a tiny town about 45 minutes outside of Frankfurt, but I visit frequently and lived there a couple years ago while I was doing an internship. Germany is one of my favorite places in the world, and I’ve grown quite attached to Frankfurt because it is where I have spent a majority of my time in the country.

So, without further ado, my Five Frankfurt Favorites: 

I love the Main River so much. There are biking/running paths that run right next to it, and there are always people sitting on the grassy banks during the spring and summer. It’s just such a fun, relaxing, and beautiful place.

Most of Frankfurt was leveled during WWII, but the Altstadt (German for “old town”) makes you feel like you’re back in old Germany. It’s amazing, because it’s a five minute walk from the super busy Zeil, which is Frankfurt’s main shopping area (and obviously a very modern area). It almost feels like you’re leaving one world and entering another.

Okay, so I sort of feel like I’m cheating with this one because you can get it everywhere in Germany, but the most delicious Spaghetti Eis I have ever had has been in Frankfurt. My favorite Eiscafe is actually right in the Altstadt, so it’s a win-win.

The nice thing about Frankfurt is that, even though it’s a very industrialized city, there are still plenty of places where you can escape the hustle and bustle of city life and relax for a bit. Just realize that, in the winter, the parks are not going to as beautiful as they will be in the summer (as the picture above shows).

I really love climbing to the top of some of Frankfurt’s tallest buildings and looking out over the city. It’s beautiful in a way that is different from most German cities, and I think that’s one of the reasons I like it so much. The building this picture was taken from is actually pretty small compared to many of the skyscrapers in the city, but still offered a pretty good view.

So there you have it – my five favorite things about Frankfurt! If you have any questions for me about expat living, Germany, German, or just life in general, pop on over! I’d love to meet you! 

This post is a part of the Summer Vacation Tour, a virtual travel series hosted here on Oaxacaborn.com. To ‘travel’ to other locations while I’m taking a brief break from blogging, click here. (Want to be featured in the future? Email me!)

Guest Blog, Summer Vacation Tour, Travel/Moving

TRAVEL :: Dallas, Texas with Corrie: A Stop on the Summer Vacation Tour

It’s always fun to receive new email from readers I haven’t corresponded with before. When I put up the call for submissions for this virtual travel tour, Corrie emailed me with a glimpse into her perspective on Dallas, Texas.

CORRIE FROM DALLAS, TEXAS, USA

A little more about Corrie
I am a missionary kid who feels misplaced here! I lived in the suburbs for the past few years and tried almost everything to get out, but just felt God saying “stay”. Something I don’t do easily, especially when my surroundings aren’t as amazing as the ones I have lived in in the past :) My husband and I decided to move downtown and have been THRILLED to find that Dallas actually DOES have fun events, amazing restaurants, and outdoor activities. I decided to blog about each of my discoveries in hopes to encourage the ones who were as discouraged as I was or also those who may be visiting and feel like a fish out of water.

Corries top five things to love about Dallas
I am growing to love this location for the…

  1. …kind and hospitable people
  2. …AMAZING restaurants
  3. …hipster/city vibe
  4. …the chance to go urban chic, country western, or casual all in the same city
  5. …mild winters (trying to stay positive) ;)

Corrie currently blogs at Living for Today.

This post is a part of the Summer Vacation Tour, a virtual travel series hosted here on Oaxacaborn.com. To ‘travel’ to other locations while I’m taking a brief break from blogging, click here. (Want to be featured in the future? Email me!)

Guest Blog, Summer Vacation Tour, Travel/Moving

TRAVEL :: Finland with Annika of Hei Moose: A Stop on the Summer Vacation Tour

I can’t quite recall how I first “met” Annika, but I am fairly certain it was something to do with her post about Finnish winter traditions, in which she mentions split pea soup. ;) This might seem a rather dubious connection, but having Finnish blood in me, and having a particular aversion to split pea soup (although I ate it for years without breaking the news to my mother, who seemed to love making it for us!), it really does make sense. :) I’m thrilled to have Annika here today!

ANNIKA WINSTANLEY FROM FINLAND

A little more about Annika
I’m from Finland! Going to a summer cottage is part of Finnish life and many Finns have their summer cottages by the lake – no surprise as they say Finland is a country of a thousand lakes! I live in the UK these days and run my own online shop, Hei Moose that sells cool Nordic baby and children’s clothes. I chose this location [views from a summer cottage in Finland] to feature as, although my home town Helsinki is the World Design Capital 2012 and absolutely beautiful, Finland’s got much more to offer!

Finland - Scandinavia - Finnish Summer Cottage

Annika’s top things to love about Finland
I love Finnish Summer cottages by the lake. This place in southern Finland is absolutely stunning! I’ve taken these photos at night, except the one that is during day – the Finnish summer nights are amazing as in June it doesn’t get dark at all as you can see, the sky just goes a bit red! Finnish summer cottages have saunas and it’s good fun to run straight into the lake from a hot sauna. During day the main thing is to be lazy and relax. The possible activities include rowing on the lake and catch some fish, prepare food and maybe play some games and of course to heat the sauna!

Finland - Scandinavia - Finnish Summer Cottage - Finnish Summer Night over Lake

Finland - Scandinavia - Finnish Summer Cottage - Finnish Summer Night over Lake

Finland - Scandinavia - Finnish Summer Cottage - Finnish Summer Night over Lake

You are welcome to visit my shop at www.heimoose.co.uk and my blog www.nordicmumsnotebook.wordpress.com. -Annika

This post is a part of the Summer Vacation Tour, a virtual travel series hosted here on Oaxacaborn.com. To ‘travel’ to other locations while I’m taking a brief break from blogging, click here. (Want to be featured in the future? Email me!)

Guest Blog, Summer Vacation Tour, Travel/Moving

TRAVEL :: Hamburg, Germany with Sylvia of Artsy Ants: A Stop on the Summer Vacation Tour:

I’m delighted Sylvia from Artsy Ants is here with us today! She and her sister, Simona, who also blogs at Artsy Ants, have been an incredible encouragement to me since the start of my blog — they are always leaving the sweetest comments. And, Artsy Ants was the first blog ever to put up a Oaxacaborn button! I’m so thankful for their support, and really excited to share Sylvia’s city with you all. I must say, I didn’t know any of these things about Hamburg, and it was a real pleasure to read what Sylvia had to say and look at the beautiful pictures she shared. Take it away, Sylvia!

SYLVIA FROM HAMBURG, GERMANY

A little more about Sylvia
I am a wife, mama, writer, maker of stuff and lover of everyday beauty living in Hamburg, Germany with my husband, 2-year-old boy and soon to be born baby girl. I was born just outside Hamburg, but grew up in Hamburg and spent most of my life here. I stayed on different continents and in different countries for some months, but when I got married and started a family it was Hamburg, again! Right now we live in the heart of the city, trying our best as a family to stay connected to the natural world despite of our urban surroundings. Although Hamburg is the second-largest city in Germany, most people think of Berlin, Frankfurt or Munich first when planning a visit to Germany. But Hamburg is so diverse and has so much to offer, so I wanted to introduce my favourite city in the world to you with some photos and a few interesting facts!

Summer Vacation Tour hosted by Oaxacaborn - Hamburg Germany as told by Sylvia of Artsy Ants

Sylvia’s top five things to love about Hamburg

  1. Hamburg is a green city, 14% of the city area is made up of green spaces and recreational area. You can go to the beach, hike through forests, take walks in extensive city parks and spend your days on huge playgrounds, all in one city.
  2. There are so many streams, rivers and canals in Hamburg that it has 2302 bridges – more than Venice and Amsterdam combined.
  3. You do not need a car in Hamburg, the public transport system (consisting of busses, trains, subways and boats!) and a public bike system help you get around the city.
  4. Hamburg is a foreign trade center and has the second largest container harbour in Europe, one of the many reasons for it’s international flair!
  5. Hamburg is a city without skyscrapers. The typical skyline of Hamburg consists of the towers of churches and the TV tower.

2- Summer Vacation Tour hosted by Oaxacaborn - Hamburg Germany as told by Sylvia of Artsy Ants
3- Summer Vacation Tour hosted by Oaxacaborn - Hamburg Germany as told by Sylvia of Artsy Ants Summer Vacation Tour hosted by Oaxacaborn - Hamburg Germany as told by Sylvia of Artsy Ants Summer Vacation Tour hosted by Oaxacaborn - Hamburg Germany as told by Sylvia of Artsy Ants

Sylvia blogs with her sister Simona, who left Hamburg for love, at www.artsyants.blogspot.com. Sylvia is also on Twitter @artsyants.

This post is a part of the Summer Vacation Tour, a virtual travel series hosted here on Oaxacaborn.com. To ‘travel’ to other locations while I’m taking a brief break from blogging, click here. (Want to be featured in the future? Email me!)