TraveLynn Tales: A Year Around the World

TraveLynn Tales: A Year Around the World

Just the words, “World Travel,” sound romantic. What’s it like to really chuck it all and travel around the world for a year? After visiting over a dozen countries on a shoestring-budget, I thought I’d do a little visual re-cap of some of the highlights. First stop, on my world travel adventure – Australia, including the Great Barrier Reef in Cairns, where I took a leap of faith as well as a leap in the ocean, and...

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Arashiyama: Bamboo Groves & Zen Dreams

Arashiyama: Bamboo Groves & Zen Dreams

On the outskirts of Kyoto lies a place of amazing beauty, a place so green and silent it speaks to your heart and soul…at least before or after the hordes of tourists pour through… According to Wikipedia, Arashiyama is a nationally-designated Historic Site and Place of Scenic Beauty, and deservedly so. I’ve never seen anything like it anywhere. There’s a hush in the place, a special feeling, that is hard to put into...

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Kyoto – Temples and Geishas

Kyoto – Temples and Geishas

Kyoto is a city of contrasts – modern buildings and very old temples, the latest fashions and traditional kimonos. It’s the kind of place I envision when I think of Japan. My first morning in Kyoto, I navigated the train system to get to Fushimi Inari, the temple of 10,000 gates (which should also be called the temple of a million steps!). It sits at the base of a mountain with thousands of giant red gates all in a long row snaking...

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Monkey Business in Yudanaka

Monkey Business in Yudanaka

Close to Yudanaka is the famous Snow Monkey Park, where Macaques, young and old, come to hang out in the hot springs. It’s one of the only places in the world where this monkey business is observed. To get there, after a short bus ride, there is a beautiful 30 minute walk on a winding trail through a forest filled with the scent of pine. At the end of the main trail, a rushing river roars past, with waterfalls and an onsen, its old...

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Yudanaka – Ryokans & Onsens

Yudanaka – Ryokans & Onsens

I’m in love…with the ryokan & onsen experience!! It’s like stepping back in time to old Japan. A ryokan is a type of traditional Japanese inn that usually features tatami-matted rooms, communal baths that are separate for men and women, with onsen (or hot springs), if you’re lucky. When you walk into Yudanaka Seifuso, the first thing you do is take off your shoes and don a pair of their generic one-size-fits-all...

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