California Globetrotter

HOW To Take Travel Themed Engagement Pictures - California Globetrotter


HOW To Take Travel Themed Engagement Pictures


First off, if you’re here looking at how-to-engagement pictures, you must be engaged so let me say CONGRATULATIONS! If you’re not engaged (yet) but you’re brainstorming ideas for an upcoming engagement, then you’ve come to the right place! Especially if you’re a die hard travelholic and want to include travel into your engagement announcements and want to WOW your friends and family!

Taking engagement pictures has evolved way so much since the time my parents go remarried in the late 90s. It was more about taking a simple picture to celebrate your engagement. Back then, as far as I know, there was no such thing as a “Save the Date” card or engagement announcements. And there was certainly no Facebook to send out electronic announcements or change your status. You generally found out people were gettin’ hitched when you got the wedding invitation in the mail.

I personally have suffered from severe wanderlust my whole life as I was practically born traveling, so it comes as no wonder that when my engagement finally arrived, I knew right off the bat I wanted to include travel into our engagement/wedding somehow.

I chose to share our engagement pictures today because for the next 3 weeks we will be pretty busy entertaining friends and family as they come in to join us from around the world on our wedding day on October 28th! So please forgive the lack of new posts until after the wedding! Continue reading



The Delectable Town of Bacharach


When you dream of visiting Germany, perhaps you you imagine romantic fairy tale castles perched high up in the mountains or perhaps you imagine towns with endless half-timbered houses that are hundreds of years old, walking down alley after alley of picturesque cobbled-stoned roads and a charm that transports you to another time.

For me, I dream of both. I dream of a world where small towns and villages transport me to a time and place before technology, when life was slower and more relaxed and people were more concerned with the simple things in life.

Like many half-timbered towns that lie along the romantic Rhine river, Bacharach is brimming with colorful houses, allies of cobbled-stones and adorable little corners to have a romantic moment in and endless vineyards on the hills surrounding the small town.

Bacharach lies along the 67-km UNESCO World Heritage segment of the Rhine River that stretches from the towns of Bingen and Rüdesheim north to the city of Koblenz where the Rhine and Mosel Rivers merge. Continue reading

GPSMyCity - California Globetrotter


A Travel App Changing the Way We Travel: GPSMyCity


You need an App for something? You can bet there’s an App for that!

If you’re a die hard traveler, you have an app to help you with every leg of your journey. There’s an App to help you with your hotels, your flights, food, photos and more!

Remember that time you found that great article online of all the top must see destinations to visit, hidden gems or must-try restaurants, but left it all at home?

Since 2009, GPSMyCity, a Smartphone App that has provided over 5,000 DIY guided walks via smartphones in over 700 cities around the world! Each kind of walk such as “Sightseeing Walks” or “Shopping Walks” is comes with an offline travel guide guiding you every step of the way to all the best attractions, monuments and more! Forget those local guides!

GPSMyCity has been around for a while now, but like all things, they have stayed innovative, adapting to how users interact with their phones. More and more people rely on their Smartphones for everything. Now, GPSMyCity has begun reaching out to travel bloggers, like myself, to collaborate with travelers to turn their existing travel blogs filled with useful tips and information into GPS Guided Travel Apps!

I have been using GPSMyCity for a little while now and our travels will never be the same. Now, we can easily navigate through any new city to all the best locations and hidden gems and never miss a beat, carrying nothing but our Smartphones! Continue reading

The Darling Storybook Town of Rüdesheim am Rhine, Germany - California Globetrotter


The Darling Storybook Town of Rüdesheim am Rhine


Along the picturesque, winding river of the Rhine, you’ll find the enjoyable historic town of Rüdesheim am Rhine surrounded by fields of vineyards, producing the region’s most famous wine, Riesling. This region of German has produced wine here since the time of the Romans, making this area one of the most breathtaking UNESCO World Heritage Sites!

Rüdesheim am Rhine lies on the east bank of the Rhine River slightly before reaching the Loreley. Just a few kilometers past the town, the river was once so nu-navigable because of rapids and sandbanks that the goods on the ships were unloaded in Rüdesheim before being taken to Lorch and put back on to ships there. Because of this reason, Rüdesheim became a wealthy town.

Today, it is a popular tourist destination for those cruising down the river by boat, people biking or driving along the Rhine all looking to experience a time long gone. Continue reading

The Loreley am Rhine - California Globetrotter


The Loreley am Rhine


There is a legend in Germany, that takes place along the Rhine River of a beautiful siren who sang lovely melodies while combing her golden blonde hair, but because it is at the deepest and narrowest point of the entire Rhine River, it is extremely dangerous for ships to pass. The Loreley bewitches the hearts of all sailors with her enchanting voice and beauty. Looking to catch a glimpse of the woman whose voice has charmed them, they would forget about the dangerous rapids and soon their boats were crashed and sunk beneath the waves forever.

Well, I hope I have that effect on men! Or at least enough to make them turn and stare at my beauty!

My real first name is Lorelei. I was named after my mother’s middle name which my grandma had given to my mother. As to where my grandma found the name Lorelei, I have no idea. As to why she gave it to my mom, I also sadly have no idea. However, my father loved my mother’s middle name so much, I was blessed with the unique and very uncommon first name of Lorelei.

It wasn’t until I was in the 8th grade and I switched from learning Spanish to German that I learned my name was German and came with a story.  Ever since that moment, every other person upon learning that my real name isn’t just “Lori” but Lorelei, they always ask me if I have ever been to, seen, know of the Loreley am Rhine and the story behind it.

Continue reading

A Bavarian Thankgiving - Erntedankfest Bad Gögging - California Globetrotter


A Bavarian “Thanksgiving” – Erntedankfest Bad Gögging


Another harvest season has come and gone. The hops fields have been cleared, the rows of corn have been harvested, and the fields have begun to be plowed, prepping them for the approach of winter.

When you think about Thanksgiving, you traditionally think of it only as an American holiday celebrated to give thanks for another good harvest year. We carry on this tradition to remember the Pilgrims who gave thanks to the Native Americans for their help through a bitter, harsh winter. However, Thanksgiving isn’t just unique to America. Many countries around the world come together at the end of another successful harvest season to give their thanks in some form or another.

In the small Bavarian farm village of Bad Gögging, located between Regensburg and Ingolstadt, a festival known as “Erntedankfest” has taken place every year since 2006. The festival includes open air folks music with locals dancing to the tunes. Everyone wears their best, most traditional Lederhosen and Dirndl. Families and friends gather to celebrate, peruse the stalls adorned with hops selling traditional Bavarian goods. This one day festival is typically held on the last Sunday of every September.

Continue reading

A Taste of Europe Bucket List - California Globetrotter


A Taste of Europe Bucket List


Let’s admit it, half of the reason why we have an addiction to travel is so that we can try new authentic foods that we can’t get at home (of equal deliciousness). PLUS, they say that “when you travel, calories don’t count“, riggght?

For some, trying new foods helps people to understand a culture better than visiting any ol’ tourist landmark. You wouldn’t have truly experienced a new city if you didn’t try the food. You would be missing out on some of the most jaw-dropping mmm, mmm, mmmmms.

I know that for Hans and I, whenever we travel anywhere, we always want to eat local cuisine. We either look for the place that has the most people which clearly signals good food, or we look on TripAdvisor for some of the top rated restaurants. Other times, I research either in my travel guides (DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Germany) or I ask around for MUST-TRY food! After all, I don’t want to deny my taste buds a cultural experience of delicious food! Continue reading

The BEST Tips to AVOID Looking Like a Tourist - California Globetrotter


The BEST Tips to AVOID Looking Like a Tourist


Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. If you click on one and make a purchase, I might make a little extra spending money, at no extra cost to you. As always, all opinions are my own and these products/services have been found useful during our travels and come highly recommended to you from yours truly!

As someone who has been living abroad for just over 4 years now, I can spot a fellow American a mile away. You would think that by now with our world being one big multi-cultural society, we would all blend in. But unfortunately this isn’t the case.

While I know we all love to have our unique, one-of-a-kind look that makes us special when we’re home, fashion is mute when it comes to traveling. Sure, lots of people wear their best outfits while traveling to have that beautiful picture, but ultimately, when it comes down to it, to increase your safety, it’s highly recommended that one blend in.

But why should you bother AVOIDING to look like a tourist when traveling… when you ARE a tourist?

Well, for starters…

  • You might be taken advantage of by scammers looking for naive travel-newbies.
  • You might be harassed for being an American – wait…WHHHAT? You heard me. I’ll explain in a bit!
  • You might come off as someone who doesn’t care about another culture’s customs.
  • You might scream “I’m rich! Come rob me!”

Do these things REEEALLY happen? No not always, but it CAN and DOES happen to the best of us!

So, you’re headed out on your first adventure out of the US? How should you prepare? What should you pack? What should you NOT pack? Continue reading

HOW You Can Save MONEY Traveling as a Couple - California Globetrotter


HOW You Can Save Money Traveling as a Couple


Traveling the world alone is easy and you only have yourself to concern yourself with. But how do you continue to afford to travel how do you continue to afford to travel once you found your best travel companion?

Here are some of the travel strategies we use in order to afford travel as often as possible without breaking the wallet!

1. Gift Giving

While most girls love when their boyfriends/husbands come home with a bouquet of flowers or a box of chocolates and the guys love when their ladies bring home a case of beer or new clothes for them, gift giving can actually eat away at potential travel spending money. Giving gifts is always nice and much appreciated, but I would rather save that 20 to enjoy a nice dessert at a restaurant with a beautiful view somewhere in Italy! Continue reading