Seattle: 12 Things to Do in Pioneer Square

  The Seattle summer may be starting to edge into fall, but that doesn’t mean it’s time to go indoors yet.  Grab your jacket, just in case, and head to Pioneer Square for a weekend soaking up Seattle’s history. On a weekday Pioneer Square is full of people in suits, the King County Courthouse and numerous office buildings are close by, but on weekends you’ll find a mix of workers, shoppers, tourists, and a few men and women who call the park benches home.  Walk around and discover Seattle history, wander through the shops and galleries, or grab a table at a restaurant or café.  TMobile Park and CenturyLink Field are a short walk away. Here are 12 suggestions of things to do in Pioneer Square to get you started. Meet at the Pergola in Pioneer Square   Located at the […]

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When I’m 64

I remember singing along: When I get older losing my hair Many years from now Will you still be sending me a Valentine Birthday greetings bottle of wine When I’m 64 was written by Paul McCartney as a teenager, and the song was released in 1967 on The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album. It was also featured in the movie Yellow Submarine. It’s a catchy tune. A song about aging with a young man querying his love about whether they’ll remain together through the ages. It’s about choosing to grow old together, about finding ways of staying connected. At the precipice of my teen years, and the accompanying angst, I sang along, although the words didn’t have much relevance at the time.  Now, I find myself humming the tune more often. I now know what the song […]

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Weekend Getaway: Playa del Carmen & All-Inclusive Reef 28

Mexico is an amazing place to head to for a girls-only vacation, and destinations don’t come much better than Playa del Carmen. If you’re looking for a Playa del Carmen all-inclusive vacation that combines a great location, unbeatable amenities, and top-notch dining, you can’t go wrong with the adult-only Reef 28. One of the best Playa del Carmen resorts, Reef 28 might have a reputation for being a romantic resort, but there are also many reasons why you should consider it for your next weekend getaway with your best gal pals. Here’s our guide to this amazing resort. Getting to Reef 28 Located in the heart of the Riviera Maya, Reef 28’s location combines the best of a beach getaway with the best of a city getaway. Most visitors from the U.S. will into Cancun (airport code CUN). You can […]

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You’ll Love These 9 Art Masterpieces in Florence, Italy

Florence, Italy, attracts millions of visitors each year and is well known for its art – art museums and galleries housing many of the world’s great art masterpieces. It has long been considered one of the most beautiful cities in the world. The city is just one of the many reasons that I love Italy. Since the 15th Century, Florence has been an economically prosperous city due to an Italian banking family known as the Medicis. Cosimo de’ Medici became a patron of art, science, philosophy, and architecture, which helped the city to become known as the birthplace of the Renaissance. The Historic Center of Florence is a UNESCO World Heritage site, with significant architecture, monuments, and cultural history combined with its art history.  Artists like Leonardo Da Vinci, Michelangelo, Donatello, Botticelli, and Ghiberti created masterpieces thanks to his patronage. […]

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Guadalajara Cathedral in the Central Historic District

As Mexico’s second largest city, there are many reasons to visit Guadalajara: it has high-quality museums, some of the best street food in Mexico and is the birthplace of mariachi, the quintessential Mexican musical genre. It is a wonderful combination of cosmopolitan city and historic center, blending the old with the new, the modern with the traditional, and the hip with the historical. It also has a massive jewel in its crown – the Guadalajara Cathedral, a minor basilica that is part of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Guadalajara. Visiting the Guadalajara Cathedral is one of the top things to do in Guadalajara, whether you’re exploring the city on your own or joining an organized walking tour of Guadalajara. Located in the downtown Centro Historico (Avenue 16 de Septiembre, Hidalgo y Morelos), Guadalajara Cathedral is known for being one of […]

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How to Use the NYC CityPASS for Savings on New York Attractions

  So you’re finally making the trip to the Big Apple. You plan to see all the sights, take in a Broadway show, and check out the amazing dining scene. But all that is going to be heavy on the wallet. If you want to get more for your dollar, you should buy a New York CityPASS. Offering admission to up to six New York attractions, the NYC CityPASS is a smart way to save money when visiting New York attractions.  What’s Included There are two types of passes to choose from: the New York City CityPASS and New York C3 Pass. There are ten attractions in total to choose from on these New York sightseeing passes – nine on the CityPASS and ten on the C3. With the NYC CityPASS you get tickets for six different attractions; three of these […]

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20 Best Beaches in Fuerteventura Spain

With 3,000 hours of sunshine every year, and winter temperatures averaging in the low 70’s,  Fuerteventura beaches lure travelers to their shores. Offering beautiful stretches of white and black sand, terrific year-round surfing, sailing, diving, sport fishing, and all sorts of adventure both on land and water. Fuerteventura is one of the Canary Islands (but owned by Spain), located about 63 miles off the coast of Africa.  Flights to Fuerteventura Spain go into the airport at El Mattoral, from dozens of cities across Europe, making it an easy and affordable destination for a beach vacation. So Which Fuerteventura Beach is For You? There are over 150 beaches on the island ranging from fine, white sand to black volcanic rock formed from volcanic activity, dating back thousands of years. Generally speaking, the beaches on the north part of the island have […]

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Update Your Bucket List

Bucket lists seem to be the target of some derision these days, the assumption made that people who have bucket lists and make travel plans from their bucket lists are somehow rushing through travel in the quest of a checkoff. Far be it from me to tell anyone how to travel – different strokes for different folks, after all – and I proudly embrace my personal bucket list. If you want to create your own bucket list, you may want to follow my approach. I started writing down places I wanted to go, things I wanted to see and do, and experiences that caught my eye. I set a top limit of 100 things, because, let’s face it, I could go on forever. With the parameters in mind, I just started writing. It took a few weeks to come up […]

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2019 Travel Reading Challenge

Last year I started a year-long reading challenge that focused on travel and books perfect to read while you’re traveling. It was premised on a yearly total of 24 books, an average of two books per month, with an advanced challenge of another six books for a combined total of 30 books for 2018. You can see the books I chose for the 2018 travel reading challenge here. I set my Goodreads challenge at 50 books for the year. I knew the reading challenge list was much less than I’d typically read and I wanted to stretch myself a little. Since I usually read on my , it’s easy to sync up with Goodreads and track books, but I found that often forgot to add those that I read in print. I think I’ve got everything added in now and you can […]

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2018 Year in Review at Traveling with MJ

2018 has been a transitional year here at Traveling with MJ. There’s been lots of travel – several new domestic destinations, some exploration around Washington State, and a couple of cruises. It hasn’t all been about travel, though. Now that Tony’s retired and helping me out in the business, we’ve had a few business changes this year. This site got a facelift this spring as we launched a new design and navigational scheme. It took some time to get all the kinks out, but we’re almost there and I think its streamlined approach to information and stories serves readers better. We’ve also changed up our content focus, really zeroing in on what we’re best at – value luxury destinations, experiences, and products. We think of value luxury as luxury for real people, not celebrities with private islands and jets. Luxury […]

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