WANDER WEDNESDAZE: Seoul, South Korea

3.03.17

Korea was one of the best places I’ve ever been to in my entire life thus far.
— Cannot wait to make it back one day. 


AIRBNB  F O R E V E R |

Starting with our AirBnb, the vibe in Seoul was pretty incredible right off the bat. We were traveling around the world during a time when there were some pretty crazy things going on in the United States, politically…and AirBnb actually housed (and possibly continues to do so) a number of refugees and their families completely free of charge — making them one of the most awesome companies I could’ve possibly chosen to do business with given the circumstance at the time. A time when actions speak and money talks, and where you choose to spend yours dollars actually carries weight and has been shown to have significant impact. 

All personal reservations aside, there were so many other awesome things about this space. Some of which being that it came equipped with a washer, a dryer, a tiny balcony, and a fully functioning small kitchen! It may seem bananas to most people but we like to cook when we travel, so places with kitchens are always a win. Our hosts also hooked it up with this stuffed animal mouse-bear thing AND a mi-fi — which made things like staying connected to the web, navigating, posting on social media etc. (while exploring a completely foreign country where you wouldn’t otherwise have any data connectivity without purchasing a SIM card) ridiculously convenient….HELLS YES!

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THE  F O O D |

I could probably talk for longer than I care to admit about the eats in Seoul but I’ll try to spare you. Just understand that it’s pretty life changing. ALSO, there was actually a surprising amount of options for me as a vegetarian! I definitely indulged. I tried a fried veggie rice noddle dumpling hot pocket thing from this awesome night market. I have no idea what it was but it was out of this world delicious. I ate all the fresh breakfast pastries from another cool market. Things like fresh apple cinnamon waffles and deep-fried powdered sugar donut holes. I ate noodles multiple days in a row.
I mastered chopsticks for the first time!!!!!
Caleb has been trying (unsuccessfully) to teach me how to use chopsticks literally since we met. It seemed appropriate I finally learn almost 8 years later in South Korea, haha! The food is too good.
TOO. GOOD.

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Korea Seoul South Korea Travel Blogger KurtzTravels Miles to the Max Blog Wanderlust Do You Travel Traveling Couples Travel Bloggers Gangnam Canon Photos Travel Photography Explore
Korea Seoul South Korea Travel Blogger KurtzTravels Miles to the Max Blog Wanderlust Do You Travel Traveling Couples Travel Bloggers Gangnam Canon Photos Travel Photography Explore
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S I G H T S |

• Love-lock lookout
• Bongeunsa Temple
• Gyeongbokgung Palace
• Gangnam (City)
• Samsung Interactive

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If you never walk around in new places, you miss stuff like this. Uber and Lyft are cool but so is walking — never forget!

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Korea Seoul South Korea Travel Blogger KurtzTravels Miles to the Max Blog Wanderlust Do You Travel Traveling Couples Travel Bloggers Gangnam Canon Photos Travel Photography Explore Phoenix Photographer Freelance PhotographyKorea Seoul South Korea Travel Blogger KurtzTravels Miles to the Max Blog Wanderlust Do You Travel Traveling Couples Travel Bloggers Gangnam Canon Photos Travel Photography Explore Phoenix Photographer Freelance Photography
Korea Seoul South Korea Travel Blogger KurtzTravels Miles to the Max Blog Wanderlust Do You Travel Traveling Couples Travel Bloggers Gangnam Canon Photos Travel Photography Explore Phoenix Photographer Freelance Photography
Korea Seoul South Korea Travel Blogger KurtzTravels Miles to the Max Blog Wanderlust Do You Travel Traveling Couples Travel Bloggers Gangnam Canon Photos Travel Photography Explore Phoenix Photographer Freelance Photography
Korea Seoul South Korea Travel Blogger KurtzTravels Miles to the Max Blog Wanderlust Do You Travel Traveling Couples Travel Bloggers Gangnam Canon Photos Travel Photography Explore Phoenix Photographer Freelance PhotographyBongeunsa Temple Korea Seoul South Korea Travel Blogger KurtzTravels Miles to the Max Blog Wanderlust Do You Travel Traveling Couples Travel Bloggers Gangnam Canon Photos Travel Photography Explore Phoenix Photographer Freelance PhotographyBongeunsa Temple Korea Seoul South Korea Travel Blogger KurtzTravels Miles to the Max Blog Wanderlust Do You Travel Traveling Couples Travel Bloggers Gangnam Canon Photos Travel Photography Explore Phoenix Photographer Freelance Photography
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Bongeunsa Temple Korea Seoul South Korea Travel Blogger KurtzTravels Miles to the Max Blog Wanderlust Do You Travel Traveling Couples Travel Bloggers Gangnam Canon Photos Travel Photography Explore Phoenix Photographer Freelance PhotographyBongeunsa Temple Korea Seoul South Korea Travel Blogger KurtzTravels Miles to the Max Blog Wanderlust Do You Travel Traveling Couples Travel Bloggers Gangnam Canon Photos Travel Photography Explore Phoenix Photographer Freelance PhotographyBongeunsa Temple Korea Seoul South Korea Travel Blogger KurtzTravels Miles to the Max Blog Wanderlust Do You Travel Traveling Couples Travel Bloggers Gangnam Canon Photos Travel Photography Explore Phoenix Photographer Freelance Photography
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BAU HOUSE PUPPY  C A F E |

Yes. Seoul has a puppy cafe. This is not a drill. They exist. A real place where your typical dog lover can just go, order some caffeine, and bask in the magnificence that is puppy heaven. All kinds of breeds from Corgis to Golden Retrievers to Pomeranians — older dogs and little puppies — we’re literally talking doggy heaven. There is no cost, just the purchase of at least one drink. Make sure to hide your stuff in the cabinets under the table though, those fuzzy little butts will definitely rifle though your goodies if you’re not quick enough lol. I’m pretty sure I actually died and went to heaven this day. Just another reason why Korea is up there at the top of the list for most favorite country visited so far. 

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Bau House Korea Seoul South Korea Travel Blogger KurtzTravels Miles to the Max Blog Wanderlust Do You Travel Traveling Couples Travel Bloggers Gangnam Canon Photos Travel Photography Explore Phoenix Photographer Freelance Photography Puppy CafeBau House Korea Seoul South Korea Travel Blogger KurtzTravels Miles to the Max Blog Wanderlust Do You Travel Traveling Couples Travel Bloggers Gangnam Canon Photos Travel Photography Explore Phoenix Photographer Freelance Photography Puppy Cafe
Bau House Korea Seoul South Korea Travel Blogger KurtzTravels Miles to the Max Blog Wanderlust Do You Travel Traveling Couples Travel Bloggers Gangnam Canon Photos Travel Photography Explore Phoenix Photographer Freelance Photography Puppy Cafe Doge


A D V E N T U R E |

Real life moment: We ran into a small snag the last day of our trip and missed our flight back to the States. Thankfully , my earth-mate is pretty much a points magician and we were able to catch an early flight back to the U.S. that next morning, at no out-of-pocket cash cost for airfare.
»(PSA: Caleb runs a pretty awesome travel blog and if you’re ever curious to know how we travel the world for next to nothing,  definitely check it out  H E R E
It gets a little tricky trying to keep a positive outlook when you find yourself in situations like that but honestly, things happen. Not everything goes according to the plan, which is why depending so heavily on plans is a dangerous game anyway, to be honest. It takes a lot of practice and adjusting…but I really believe that keeping a higher vibration during what would otherwise be a stressful or tense situation, can help change the entire outcome. Thoughts are energy; and the more we can be aware of what we’re filling the space with, the better – seriously.

So to anyone who thinks all of these travel adventures are without hiccups, now you know! ; ) 

Bumps in the road can be a little exhausting but what’s life without a little improvisation?!

Korea was so special. The people were ridiculously kind, and friendly, and would attempt all kinds of conversations with you regardless of the obvious language barrier. There is culture and history everywhere you look. The transportation is a breeze. This was an all-around amazing adventure.
Thanks for all the memories – until next time, Seoul ❤

Another One Off the Bucket List (Abbey Road)

F I R S T  U P.


L O N D O N 02.2017:

We made our way around the world in February (a literal circle around the globe). The first stop was London — which is always a good time.

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B U C K E T   L I S T   I T E M:  M A J O R  !


One of the coolest things about this UK trip was finally getting to see Abbey Road.

If you (are like the majority of people and) are wondering where the infamous re-enactment photo is, allow me to be the first to disappoint you and let you know that there isn’t one. Quite honestly that is one of the more stressful situations I have been in on an evening out and about during travel. Trying to get a photo in a real cross walk at a busy and fully functioning intersection
without getting hit by a car
(selfishly) making a car wait for you to take your selfie
before more cars come
without any other tourists in the photo with you somewhere
is harder than people might think…We hung around that intersection for a solid 15 minutes and I just did not care to put that much time and effort into a single photo. So I snapped what I could and called it a night. I didn’t even get it from the right side technically, now that I’m looking at the actual photo *face palm* — But it’s fine. London isn’t going anywhere, and next time I just need to better research which times of the day are more ideal for getting that popular Beatles re-enactment pic. Being able to see where that original photo was taken was awesome enough though, honestly…so don’t get too caught up in the hype of everything always having to be perfect — never forget ; )

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Wander Wednesday: New Orleans, LA. – January 2017

L O U I S I A N A


New Orleans gave me the most rad and magical 48 hours.

I hung out at the Crescent City Book Store for a few hours on Sunday afternoon and an employee or patron that was there gifted me two poetry books. I made friends with a super fluffy cat. I bought a new (used) book about the real story behind the governments assassination of Martin Luther King Jr.

I met a homeless couple in the French Quarter and they recommended this ridiculously cool coffee shop called Envie, and they spike your caffeine… I opted for a White Russian –
Espresso. Cream. Vodka. Coffee Liqueur.

Y E S  T H A N K S.

Anyway, I was so stoked I decided to repay them by getting them both some lunch from there, and some scrambled eggs for the two fur babies they had, of course. Her name was Ophelia. I’m not sure what her boyfriend’s name was – he was off running an errand when I brought the food back. They made my day. 

I ate at least 6 beignets from Cafe Du Monde. All of the food I ate was delicious and insanely flavorful, despite there not being a ton of options for vegetarians.

Bourbon street is just as wild, fun, (and dirty) as you’d probably imagine, but still a mandatory experience, in my opinion.

On the last day, we hung out by the Mississippi River and watched the big boats in the morning, and then walked around the French Market after that. There’s this massive church that you can go to – it has the highest ceilings and the prettiest stained glass windows. On the way there you walk down this alleyway filled with art, artists, street performers, various palm/tarot readers, and live jazz music of some kind is always playing in the distance. Capturing it with photography and taking it all in is one of my favorite parts of travel. The sun was out, the breeze was light, and the atmosphere just kind of made you feel alive.

I believe there’s magic in every city. NOLA was no exception : )

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It’s November Now.

Hello.
My name is Alyssa.
It’s been 24 days since my last post.

“Hi Alyssa”….

I am such a repeat-offender for blog abandoning…
But who am I kidding. There’s a lot to absorb right now, with the world in general (unless you’ve been living under a rock, in which case you wouldn’t really notice). And to be totally honest, writing just hasn’t come as effortless. Absorption is good, along with equal parts release. The idea behind that being: the acknowledgment of your thoughts, feelings and emotions – and then filtering out and letting go of what doesn’t belong. Working on that part!  But anyhow, what I’m not going to do, is go down the typical beaten path of excusing or explaining away the absence; I’d rather keep it simpler, and just share some of what I’ve been up to the last 25 or so days.
It’s good stuff. 

Travel SouthWest Miles to the Max Free Travel San Diego, CA
Lighthouses in Southern California.Yuba City, California Bridal ShowerHappy faces and celebratory gatherings in Northern California.San Francisco Farmers Market San Francisco California Vegan Juice Suja Juice Organic Vegan FoodThe transition to a *mostly* vegan diet.Anthem PetsVolunteer freelance photography work for the animal rescue in my community.Kid Cudi Cudi Saves #CudiSaves Michelle Hux Lauren Chanel
Connecting, collaborating, and networking with really great people! Doing good things, purely because you want to and because it feels good.
Victoria, BC Canada Maple LeafVictoria in the Fall.Travel SouthWestMore of this.Coffee in San Francisco Fisherman's WharfCoffee in San Francisco.Caleb Kurtz Alyssa KurtzAll with this guy –
Travel buddy.
Life partner extraordinaire.25 days comes and goes before your eyes.
Seasons change, all the time.
and before you know it, it’s November..

NYC – SEPT 2016

New York isn’t really something that even the most articulate person could accurately explain or describe with words. you kind of just have to go there. You just kind of have to be there and feel it for yourself.

I had a full day there this time around and it’s never anything less than magic for me. some people don’t necessarily see the smell of fresh piles of garbage, subway rats, honking taxis, tons of people, or public urination as very “magical” but thankfully, the way others choose to perceive the world around them isn’t any of my concern.

S T O R Y T I M E

Spending time in central park never gets old. I’ve officially been there in the fall months when the leaves are amazing and vibrant and all over the ground, and now in a stifling 90 degrees at 50% humidity – and the park stays amazing, regardless. You always see different things. Different happenings. Every day carries a different vibe. You could never be bored if you really knew how to observe. Every human tells some story of sorts.

Also, hanging out with Caleb never really gets old either. When was the last time you did something new, talked about something important, or uncomfortable, or opened your mind up a little more with someone you love? Chillin out having a recharge session in the grass of central park might not seem super thrilling, but being a tiny spec on the map…just at home in the world…and being able to have those times with your favorite human on the planet, is something I’ll always cherish. Observing the humans of new york is magic in and of itself, in my opinion. Every human tells some story of sorts..

me:
me: “great day to be alive isn’t it?!”

If I’m honest, the views never quit. nyc new york city travel blogger free travel miles to the maxYou feel really small.nyc new york city travel blogger free travel miles to the maxYou feel really big.nyc new york city travel blogger free travel miles to the maxThere’s no shortage of great coffee.
but not like Starbucks. I mean actual coffee.
local or independent coffee houses. ones that don’t give money to larger coalitions which advocate the blocking of gmo food-labeling laws in the u.s. Yes – I’m going there, haha. We’re so fortunate to live in a time when opening up dialogues is actually pretty cool if you know in specific details what it is you believe to be right, and can articulate such issues and why you feel so strongly and passionately about them.
What a time to be alive! : ) * see more about that here if you’d like*
New York was also pretty awesome this time around because I had the realization that I’m rapidly approaching this place in which everything surrounds me the same, I’ve just finally stopped hearing the noise. I know how cheesy that sounds, but fully getting the hang of that is much easier said than done in most cases – so feeling that kind of stillness in the city that never sleeps on an 8-hour layover between continents, was pretty cool.Thanks as always, New York. I can’t wait for the next one : )

CODY, WY: Y E L L O W S T O N E NATL PARK + THE ART OF DISCONNECTING.

Bear Tooth Pass

There’s no cell service when you’re 10,000 ft up..
Continue reading “CODY, WY: Y E L L O W S T O N E NATL PARK + THE ART OF DISCONNECTING.”

Los Angeles/Taste Of Chaos Tour: 7.16.2016

TasteofChaos

I really wanted to go to a good Summer music festival this year because it’s my belief that live music is completely necessary in life. 
Lubs (Caleb►Life Partner) and me decided on the Taste of Chaos tour in San Bernardino.

Summer.
So-Cal.
L.A. traffic.

Taking Back Sunday.
Saosin (w/ Anthony Green!) *slowly dies*
DASHBOARD.
Senses Fail.
The beach. 
SO – MUCH – Y E S.

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So we rocked out on Saturday, and cruised Los Angeles and the Santa Monica Pier on Sunday.

Southern California is one of my favorite places to go. It’s a Summer time ritual. The air is humid, the wind is cool. There’s always something happening there (which is what makes annual trips so easy). I think I typically enjoy every city I visit because I see them and embrace them totally for what they are, and not what I think they ought to be.
No – You normally can’t find parking in under 5 minutes, for less than $5 dollars.
Yes – L.A. has horrendous traffic. No matter what. No matter where you’re going. No matter what time.
Yes – The roads might be old, bumpy, and just all-around crappy to drive on.
Yes – The pollution is a complete atrocity. It really is. As a pretty environmentally conscious person, I have no problem admitting this. Does it sadden me? Yes. Do I think it sucks? Yes.
Am I going to boycott the city and never go there just because it’s my hope for us to one day live in a world with little-to-no smog or other air pollution? No.

I could go on forever. But I’m not. Because I love Los Angeles.
Exactly how it is.
For all of those elements of it.

Here’s how I see it: If you go to L.A. and don’t see dumb amounts of smog, at least 50 bros, spend $6+ dollars on fair-trade certified organic coffee, fresh pressed juice or any other fancy beverage, or sit in traffic, did you really even get the experience?! I say no. Just relax. Enjoy yourself 🙂

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Santa Monica Pier Travel Free Travel Miles to the Max Alyssa K ohalyssak Canon Photos California Beaches Husband and Wife Couples that travel Santa Monica Los Angeles Beach Cruiser

Santa Monica Pier Travel Free Travel Miles to the Max Alyssa K ohalyssak Canon Photos California Beaches Husband and Wife Couples that travel Santa Monica Los Angeles Beach Cruiser

Santa Monica Pier Travel Free Travel Miles to the Max Alyssa K ohalyssak Canon Photos California Beaches Husband and Wife Couples that travel Santa Monica Los Angeles

►► Happiest of Mondays to all you stellar humans out there! 
🌻☀️🌏 🌊

 

4 Hours In Boston – 05/2016

On the way home from Europe a couple of months ago, we had a layover in Boston.
* need to go back*…

Boston Travel Free Travel Miles to the Max Create Art blogger

Continue reading “4 Hours In Boston – 05/2016”

Northern California: 7.02.2016 – 7.04.2016

I went back home to visit for a couple of days last weekend.
I took pictures.

▼▼▼▼

Canon Photos Family Photos VSCO LightRoom Adobe LR Nor Cal Northern California

► s w e e t  p e a c h ◄

Continue reading “Northern California: 7.02.2016 – 7.04.2016”

Key West, FL – 5.29.2016

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Travel Free travel Key West Florida Keys Miles to the Max Airline Points Travel Blogger VSCO CAM

Favorite parts of this weekend included:

• Strolling downtown Key West at night.
• Finding the most bomb hole-in-the-wall healthy vegan food place to eat at.
• Kayaking through mangroves.
• Swimming w/ nurse sharks and sting rays.
• Sunset on the ocean.
• Dolphins.
• Road tripping for 5 hours from Key West to the Fort Lauderdale airport w/ my favorite human.

*click to check out favorite human’s travel blog*

TRAVEL

► happiest of  f r i d a z e  to all of you amazing people out there! ◄