Vietnam days 11-13: countryside Disneyland in Ninh Bình / Tam Cốc

Hello to a new week! I spent the last 3 days in a scenic countryside town called Ninh Binh in Northern Vietnam. Nihn Binh and its less bustling neighbor Tam Cốc (where I technically stayed) are popular tourist destinations known for their tall rock formations, rice paddies, mountain pagodas, and peaceful countryside vibes. It’s labeled … More Vietnam days 11-13: countryside Disneyland in Ninh Bình / Tam Cốc

Vietnam days 3-7: iconic Hà Giang motorbike loop

I’m back from my amazing motorbike road trip through Hà Giang, Northern Vietnam! After 400+ km over 4 days, I’m happy to report I’m alive and well. From seeing the most spectacular scenery to stretching out of my comfort, I can honestly say this was one of the most meaningful experiences of my gap year. … More Vietnam days 3-7: iconic Hà Giang motorbike loop

Vietnam days 1-2: beginnings in Hanoi + spontaneous trip decision

Hey hey! I wanted to shoot off a quick post before heading off for an exciting adventure. My first days in Vietnam have been a whirlwind, but I’m happy with how everything has been unfolding, as each event has led me to do one of the most spontaneous things I’ve done this year… Day 1: … More Vietnam days 1-2: beginnings in Hanoi + spontaneous trip decision

Malaysia days 7-12: beach life and local community in Langkawi Island + my 29th birthday!

My last days in Malaysia were just beautiful. After a week in Malaysia’s big cities, I headed to a beach island off of West Malaysia called Langkawi. It was also my birthday(!), and I wanted to choose a relaxing, scenic place to celebrate. Langkawi blew me away in so many ways. Mostly, the community there … More Malaysia days 7-12: beach life and local community in Langkawi Island + my 29th birthday!

Malaysia days 4-6: eating my way through culinary capital, Penang

Hey friends! It’s been another packed few days. After kicking off Malaysia in Kuala Lumpur, I headed to Penang, an urban state and standalone island off of west Malaysia. Penang piqued my interest because it has both city and nature and is known as Malaysia’s “culinary capital.” The past 3 days have been filled with … More Malaysia days 4-6: eating my way through culinary capital, Penang

Malaysia days 1-3: sightseeing in modern Kuala Lumpur

Hello from Malaysia!! I’m starting off in Kuala Lumpur, the capital city. My first days have been packed with activity as I’ve crammed as much sightseeing as possible in two short days. Kuala Lumpur left a great impression and turned out to be a rare big Asian city I enjoyed. Get ready for a lot … More Malaysia days 1-3: sightseeing in modern Kuala Lumpur

Indonesia days 20-23: last days in Nias island + day trip to megalith ruins & swimming hole + trip reflection

My last Indonesia post! After a fabulous start to Nias Island, my last days here were the perfect mix of relaxing and activity as well as bonding with the awesome people I’ve met here. Day by day, I fell even more in love with the island and its community. By the end, I actually felt … More Indonesia days 20-23: last days in Nias island + day trip to megalith ruins & swimming hole + trip reflection

Indonesia days 17-19: authentic beach village life on Nias Island

Following my quiet, solo time at Lake Toba, I was ready for some beach time, so I headed to one of Sumatra’s beach islands on the west coast called Nias Island. There are a LOT of islands to choose from in Indonesia, and Nias isn’t usually on the backpacker trail radar. I ended up on … More Indonesia days 17-19: authentic beach village life on Nias Island

Indonesia days 13-16: scooter adventure around Samosir Island, Lake Toba (part 2)

Following my first 3 days at Lake Toba, I stayed another 3 days to round out the perfect lakeside retreat. These past few days were filled with more scootering around Samsosir Island (island within Lake Toba), learning more of local Batak living, and lots of relaxing by the lake. Day 13: scooter adventure day 3 … More Indonesia days 13-16: scooter adventure around Samosir Island, Lake Toba (part 2)