Kumano Sanzan and Ise Grand Shrine: 4 Gorgeous Temples on the Kumano Kodo Pilgrimage

Kumano Sanzan and the Ise Grand Shrine

In 2018 I visited Wakayama, a remote and wild region of Japan south of Osaka and Nagoya, to walk parts of the Kumano Kodo, a network of ancient pilgrimage trails. These trails are easily accessible, making them one of the best pilgrimages in the world for travelers. Besides these amazing hot springs at the eastern …

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Yunomine Onsen and Four Other Awesome Wakayama Onsens

Yunomine, one of the best Wakayama onsens

Hikers doing Japan’s Kumano Kodo walk, a network of trails that follow a pilgrimage route going back over 1000 years in Wakayama prefecture south of Osaka and Nagoya, are rewarded with a plethora of hot spring baths along the trail. After tramping up and down forested trails all day long, one of the best things …

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How Hiking in New Zealand Transformed My Life

Hiking in New Zealand

This is not one of my typical “how to” travel guides, on the subject of hiking in New Zealand. Rather, it’s a personal story of transformation going back almost two decades, to a zen moment I had alone in the mountains of New Zealand, when I realized my life calling. If you are nature lover …

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A Taiwan Dong Ding Oolong Tea Review

In order to put one of my new favorite oolong/wulong teas, Ai-Want Formosa Tea‘s 2015 Winter Dong Ding oonlong tea, to the ultimate test, I’ve decided to take extreme measures. I am going to carry out a trial on the pickiest, most captious food and drink critic that I know: my Taiwanese father-in-law. You’ll have …

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Ruby Red #18 Tea (台灣紅玉紅茶)

Ruby Red 18

Ruby Red 18 was the first tea sample that I received as a part of my subscription to Global Tea Hut‘s monthly Tea and Tao Magazine. Read more about my visit to Global Tea Hut and my full guide to Miaoli, where the international organization is based. When I first started writing about the amazing …

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