When talking about my travels, I often bring up how Amsterdam is the most surprising place that I have been. Why? Well, it’s one of the few places that blew my preconceptions of it right out of the water. Back a few years ago when we, me and a few friends, were planning our great European adventure, I was hesitant to add Amsterdam to the itinerary. Now, I’ll be the first to admit that I didn’t know all that much about the city. What I had heard was that it was a party city filled with legal drugs and prostitution and frat boys. (Do they have those in Europe?) But my friends wanted to go and I will pretty much go anywhere. What I didn’t expect was to be totally blown away by the Dutch city.
The holes we’ve been to.
Have you ever wanted to journey deep into the earth? Or gaze into the actual Devil’s Hole yourself? Then make a trip to The Lost Sea Adventure in Sweetwater, Tennessee, an extensive cave that you can take a guided tour through. Just be warned, this tour isn’t for the faint of heart, or the out of shape. Why you ask? Well, you begin by going down this big yellow tube:
It might look pretty intimidating going down, but it’s even more so coming back up. So, make sure you wear comfortable footwear. You descend into the earth via a metal yellow tube with your fellow group members and you might be thinking, this is impressive and all, but where’s the cave? Well, once you step out of said tube, the room opens up into the sprawling cave beyond. Strategically placed lights illuminate the natural wonders, stalactites, stalagmites, great rocky cracks and holes, and waterfalls and natural pools, a moonshine still. Well, that last one isn’t natural. But the caves were used as a hidden bar during prohibition and some of the famous Tennessee moonshine was made deep in it’s bowels.read more
It’s been a while! I’ve just been trying to figure some things out. In the meantime, why don’t we take a virtual tour of Versailles?
About 45 minutes outside of Paris lies probably one of the most famous palaces in the world. Why is this? What draws people to the Palace of Versailles? Is it the romance of the past? The perfectly preserved french architecture and gardens? The grandeur? It could be all of the above. Whatever the case, I had to go see for myself what makes this place so spectacular.read more
Old World in the New World
About an hour or so outside of Racine, a small town in Wisconsin where my mother is from, you can go back in time to when there were no cell phones and you had to churn your own butter. At Old World Wisconsin, the history lesson is immersive as you tour around old homesteads and farms with workers in full costumes as they take you through the daily lives of our ancestors. You begin to appreciate all of the modern technology that we have!read more
I‘m always curious about how everyday people of times past lived their everyday lives. One of the things those people did (and still do, I believe…) is use the toilet. I am always curious about toilets and bathrooms throughout the ages. Does that make me weird?
Anyways, at the Ruins of Philippi in Greece there are some pretty well preserved latrines. I don’t know about you, but they seem a little too communal for my tastes. But, I suppose if you had to go, you had to go!read more
I‘m a sucker for ancient ruins. I love to explore and learn about them whenever I get the chance. And a few years ago, on a trip across Europe, I had the opportunity to tour the well preserved site of Pompeii.
A couple hours away from Rome by bus, Pompeii is near the port city of Naples. It’s totally worth the trip, even if you are not really into ruins, or if you are ruined out from Rome. A whole town preserved in time, with parts of it even restored, you feel almost transported back in time.read more
One of them at least…
Confession time: I’m not really a beach person.
I grew up in Florida, surrounded by water and beaches. How can this be?
I’m not entirely sure, maybe it’s all the sand in places it shouldn’t be, the bright sun (night owl here!), or the self confidence issues that come with wearing bathing suits. I can appreciate a good beach every once in a while though. I’m just not as into them as other people seem to be…read more
The vacation that started it all
Not that we haven’t traveled before, but this is the vacation that spurred us to create Devil’s Hole Ventures. As three Florida girls that grew up in perpetual heat, we needed a break and decided that we actually wanted to freeze our butts off. The sweltering winter heat of Florida begs for icy roads and losing traction on snowy mountains. And so began our venture to explore the holes of the Tennessee Smoky Mountains.
As three broke-ass girls, we decided that we needed to do this trip cheap. And since it was freezing and out of season, we got a great deal on a cabin up a perilous road with a great view. A Place in Time, the cabin was called, looking like a lumberjack threw up all over it, covered in bear decorations and inspirational quotes. Oh, and a red heart shaped tub in the bedroom. Seeing as how none of us were on our honeymoon, it didn’t get much use…read more