Another month calls for another trip with Nomoon Travel as I embarked on a brand new adventure: Iceland! Although I am all about the #beachbumlife, I was truly astounded with the beauty of this incredible country. Never have I seen such interesting landscapes, mountains, waterfalls, and hot springs before my eyes!
With the rapidly growing amount of tourists visiting Iceland each year, there was no question as to where the travel squad and I wanted to explore. We decided to ditch the resorts, get on a rental car, and tour the mysterious western region of Iceland.
What people don't realize about the country is that they have so much to offer besides the Blue Lagoon. As I met with the locals, visited the small country towns, and witnessed the most beautiful terrains I have ever seen, I learned a thing or two about their culture and simplistic way of life.
Howdy, ya'll! Although I don't normally say this to people on a daily basis, hearing that greeting always puts a smile to my face; because when it comes to the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, everyone is welcome to join in on the country, western fun! And with every Rodeo I attend each year, it brings back old memories of me wearing my cowgirl boots, eating a turkey leg, and watching some of the most intense horse riding competitions. The Houston Rodeo also showcases some of the most popular music concerts! I fondly rememeber my first music concert when Destiny's Child performed at the Houston Rodeo in 2001. It's the one time in the year where I am fully immersed with the southern fun of Texas.
Returning home usually means I'm in recovery mode. And when I mean recovery mode, I....would be wiped out from all the adventures outside the parameters of my country, needless to say. I'll be a complete hermit, going home straight from work as I stay in, watch Netflix with a mud mask, and scope out the next flight deals for my future trip. Sure, I have friends, and I do live in a great city to explore, but my wanderlust would haunt me saying," No, girl. Save money and stay home." I was conditioned to believe that stepping on a plane would be my saving grace, because that's the only time I would ever consider having any fun.
Tada! After performing for the Super Bowl (stay tuned for a blog post recap about it this coming week), I immediately hopped on a flight to another country that I have never been to before: Mexico! What made this trip extra special was that I was going to experience Mexico for the first time with my Nomoon team! I've been an ambassador for this travel company for almost a year, and I am ecstatic to finally meet the people I've been working for months in person! January has been a whirlwind of events (which included getting my phone stolen), so traveling to Mexico has been a getaway from all the work and hustle back home. For a week, I had an eye-opening experience learning about Mexico's culture and amazing way of life. Here's an exclusive view of my trip, along with the details of where I explored:
A lot of things in my life had changed since my last trip. As I was ending the year of 2016, I decided to take a lot of risks in my career and personal life. With that said, I wasn't able to travel and ended up cancelling a lot of my trip plans for the opportunities I was offered back home. During my time back at home, I was thinking about the travels I wanted to plan in 2017, and I instantly thought about LA. Los Angeles was a city I (shamefully) had never visited, which is sad, because I've gone to the Philippines, an island across the Pacific Ocean, more times than I have been to California.
When I went to the Philippines this past year, there were some questions I wanted answered. Anyone who knew me personally would admit that I had been a workaholic- a person who relentlessly works, inside or outside of college and part time jobs, until I was available to work on something new to fill the vacant spaces of my schedule. Although I knew a lot about my culture growing up as a child, I have always felt distant from my extended family due to the fact that I was raised differently, living away in the US. I felt like it was time to learn more about who I was, where I came from, and how my life has been intertwined with my family generation. I was ready to openly understand the life of my family in the Philippines and learn more about my grandparents, Lolo and Lola.
Texas culture is a huge part of my life. It is crazy to imagine how much this state has impacted me throughout the different stages of my life. My growth has shaped my appreciation about everything this city offers to the community. Despite the fact that "everything is bigger in Texas," it doesn't mean you have to spend big bucks to have a good time. In collaboration with Katrina from katrinalavie.com, I am sharing 10 things you can do in Houston for free- with the assumption that you have enough gas to drive yourself there. Not only are these activities free, but this fun list also shares with you many of the activities I enjoy doing while I'm in the Houston area. So whether you're on a tight budget or you are interested in what I enjoy, I hope you learned a lot more about my home city! Let's begin:
Just because we reached the fall season doesn't mean the heat in Texas has worn off! If you ever desired to live in an area where it's summer time 24/7, then Galveston is where you want to be. From the nice sand, tropical trees, and friendly people, Galveston has all the perks of being a beach city. However, a good population of Galveston is filled with families and retired elderly, so I would consider the beach scene a "PG" rated version of Miami. Galveston is just an hour away from Houston, and I had a fun day enjoying the beach and reminiscing on my summer travels.
Before my blog, before I graduated from college, before I decided to travel...I went to New York City to perform in Carnegie Hall. It was my very first time visiting The Big Apple. Nonetheless, my first time performing at such a prestigious concert venue. With my chosen major, I was not able to study abroad during college. However, I was so grateful for the opportunity this trip gave me. It was this trip that sparked my desire to one day travel the world. Luckily, I was glad that one of my best friends in college came along with me to experience the city together. One of the most memorable moments of this trip was watching my first Broadway production in NYC. I just wasn't expecting the man who sat next to me to be really cute.
My trip in Bicol was heartwarming. Every time I visit, I learn so much about my family and myself that I leave the Philippines in hopes of revisiting again. Despite the illness I encountered from my last post, I was still able to explore the province of where my parents grew up. If you ever decided to visit Bicol, one of the highlights from my trip was staying at The Oriental Hotel Legazpi.
Oriental is a great name and description for this hotel. The ambiance really gives off a luxurious style that enlightens guests about Asian culture. However, I was also impressed with how they fused contemporary design into their hotel rooms, lobby, and restaurant. As a tourist, I felt right at home in the Philippines.
Hi there! My name is Ressa and I am a Filipino-American travel and style blogger with a heart for music.
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