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Have you noticed there’s no other place for teenagers to talk about travel?

Here you can read what other teenagers have to say about travel – from day trips to journeys abroad, shopping, eating, coasting, and other activities on vacation. Also, parents can read what teenagers like and dislike about family vacations and destinations so that they can plan a family trip that YOU will enjoy.

 

Teen Travel Talk is also interested in YOUR travel experiences. If you want to become a paid blogger and publish your travel stories on Teen Travel Talk, click “contact us” on the left hand side, fill out your contact information and tell us why you’d be a great teen travel blogger.

 



My First Post! + Why You Will LOVE Bali

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Hi guys! I’m Bianca, a new addition to the Teen Travel Talk team! I’m English, though I was born and bred in Singapore, and I just turned nineteen years old – but exploring the world around me has been a passion of mine pretty much since I was born. I’m lucky enough to be able to say that to date I have been to more than 50 cities, 25 countries and 4 continents – and I can’t wait to share my stories with you!

Growing up in Asia has meant that I’ve had the good fortune of visiting Bali pretty much every summer since I can remember. It’s one of my favourite places on the planet, and so I thought for my first post for TTT, I’d let you guys in on why this little island is your new dream destination!

Karma Kandara beach club on Ungasan Hill

Karma Kandara beach club on Ungasan Hill

1. There’s a sense of culture here that is unlike any other. Known as the Island of the Gods, religion and spirituality are of the utmost importance to all its inhabitants – wander down any path at any time and see incense burning over colorful offerings, or even an intricate ceremony taking place. You can literally feel the tranquility in the air – breathe it in!

2. The weather! It’s around 30 degrees Celsius, always. Avoid the rainy season if you can, but not to worry – there will still be balmy sunshine from sunrise to sunset, and the perfect amount of breeze… Max and relax by the pool or beach and add a little tanning oil to really soak it up.

The Mulia Resort in Nusa Dua

The Mulia Resort in Nusa Dua

3. You will never, EVER be bored. Each of the island’s bustling localities offers a different kind of experience. Head to Nusa Dua for resort-style luxury, Uluwatu for an action-packed surf sesh, or Seminyak for some serious shopping – and if you’re up for a little more adventure, take a boat out to a nearby island like Nusa Lembongan, and enjoy the view (don’t forget the snorkels!)

On the boat en route to Nusa Lembongan

On the boat en route to Nusa Lembongan

4. Bali is one of the most picture-perfect places I have ever been. There’s definitely a ramshackle feel to its beauty – dilapidated houses with straw roofs are right next door to five-star resorts, and children play in the streets by booming beach clubs. But it’s that authenticity in the mix of modern direction and traditional island living that makes Bali so unique.

5. The food and beverage scene on the island just keeps getting better! There is such a range of cuisines – local warungs serve Indonesian food at its finest for under $1, right next to chic new cafés that cook up healthier twists on Western favourites – think spicy eggs with black beans on pulled pork, or tropical smoothies chock full of passionfruit and mango. There’s a little something for everyone, and it’s all bagus!

One of the most popular dishes at my favourite brunch spot - Watercress Cafe in Batu Belig!

One of the most popular dishes at my favourite brunch spot – Watercress Cafe in Batu Belig!

Although my shortlist doesn’t even come close to doing it justice, I hope you’ve gotten a little taste for this tiny corner of pure paradise, and that you will one day get to visit Bali too! Safe travels! Bianca x

Photo credits to Emilie Butler

Monterey, California

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When you search for the top places to visit in California (using Google search), a list of points of interest in California pops up. This lists consists of some of the top destinations that are a must-see in California. One of my favorites is Monterey, California.

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What does this city have to offer exactly?

You name it, Monterey has it! From a world-famous aquarium, the historical landmark of Cannery Row, the scenic Recreation Trail to Fisherman’s Wharf. There is something for everyone in the family.

The aquarium is absolutely amazing! Your younger siblings will enjoy seeing all of the marine animals and play with the interactive stations. The animals are beautiful and so active! You know how sometimes you go to the zoo and the animals are just laying around–doing nothing–in contrast, the marine animals love the attention!

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Whale watching is another big touristic thing to do in Monterey. Depending on the season, there are killer whales, dolphins, humpbacks, blue whales, or gray whales. I love watching the whales give their audience a show as they flip their tail, because they obviously love the attention too!

The history behind Monterey is interesting. Cannery Row was where the sardines and whaling industry took place. It dates back to when the Asian, European, and Native American settlements started. There are many historical plaques in this area of Monterey where it explains the history. My parents were remembering how their grandparents used to eat the sardines from the company back in the day in Mexico.

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The parks and beaches here are also worth seeing as well. If you get a chance to visit the city I would recommend renting a surrey bike and touring the Recreation Trail (its an 18 mile trail, we only did about 2 miles of this path).

DSC01588Don’t forget to bring a sweater, it does get kind of chilly! There is a YouTube video that is all about the top attractions in Monterey, it pretty much summarizes what I explained here. There is so much to do in Monterey, I really can’t wait to go whale watching again!

 

Family Vacation NOT Facebook Worthy?!

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My family of four – made up of my mom, dad, younger sister, and myself – have held a tradition of taking a family vacation every year during our spring break. My sister and I had the time off from school, my parents would take vacation time off from work, and we’d set off to explore new land. You’ve heard this story before – Chevy Chase does a fabulous job bringing laughter to this classic tale in National Lampoon’s Vacation.

Our family photo album is filled with photos like:

 

Parentals 78Summers at Cedar Point

Parentals 71 Adventures at Niagara Falls

Parentals 141Playing beach volley ball, or pretending!

 

But what’s missing in the family photo album are those “Oh my gosh, I can’t believe I’m here with them right now” moments. Or what I call the Non-Facebook worthy moments. Like the time we waited 2 hours in line to cross the border back into the United States from Mexico. Or the time we all got a bad case of some stomach bug, and spent more hours in the hotel than we would have hoped. Or the time a truck had caused an accident on the highway, creating a backup of stopped traffic on the interstate for a few hours. These are the stories that were NOT FUN at the time of occurring. And during these panic or boring hours my family and I were not entertained.

These moments happen to most families (and if you have avoided a non-Facebook worth moment yourself, consider yourself lucky!). To the rest of you, I get it. And so does Luisa Frey, Travel expert and mother of two. She shares her family travel expertise in her e-book “Vacations with Teenagers: Connect with Your Young Adult Through Travel & Leisure”. In this easy-to-read E-book, you can learn how to avoid some classic dreaded situations, and make the most of your next family vacation. The book is also available on Amazon for your Kindle or Kindle app.

Hopeful at the Detroit Historical Museum

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Last week, after a delicious brunch at the Woodbridge Pub and running some errands, I found myself in downtown Detroit with time on my hands before I had to get back to work. I didn’t feel like spending more money nor did I just want to sit around. I desperately texted a local friend begging for help, “What is there to do FOR FREE?!” Almost immediately, she simply responded, “Try the Detroit Historical Museum.” I looked it up, found out I was three or so blocks away, and made my way down there.

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I am not super into museums unless they are free, to be honest, and even that does not mean I will necessarily be interested. Detroit, though, is fascinating. The history of this city is a lot of things. It prospered because of the city’s ability to dream, much fostered by the presence of automobile industry, but was torn down time after time by racism and corrupt politics. This city was built on innovation and prosperity, but tragedy has made its way into this city even more often with poverty and oppression.
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And yet people still have hope. People still believe that Detroit will make a comeback. It is in the air. People are excited. Something big is going to happen to Detroit. Something good. And all these years this city has endured rotting away, with thousands of homes and buildings abandoned, will not be without redemption.
Though much of America has forgotten Detroit’s history, Detroit hasn’t. And they will not. It is what drives them forward to believe that Detroit has hope and will come back to life.
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This is why I enjoyed this museum.It is a simple building with two floors open to the public, but packed with a story. This museum does not simply exist as a memorial, but something to drive society forward. In preserving the memories of the past, people can believe that something beautiful can come out of nothing. In fact, the city’s motto was declared in the early 1800s after most of the settlement was destroyed by a fire: “Speramus Meliora; Resurget Cineribus”, or “We Hope For Better Things; It Shall Rise From the Ashes”.
At the Detroit Historical Museum, you will find out the history of the automobile industry in Detroit, which once fueled this city. You will learn about the underground railroad that made its way through Detroit, with slaves crossing Lake St. Claire for freedom in Canada. You will go through an exhibit that tells the story of how this land, once deemed uninhabitable, became America’s ‘Motor City’. The stories of many of Detroit’s historical neighborhoods are revealed, with accounts of individual businesses founded by excited and hard-working immigrants, and how some are still going strong after 70-90 years despite what has become of Detroit. The Prohibition, the Depression, the World Wars, the race riots, and the collapse of the motor industry have uniquely affected and molded this city, and this museum clearly reveals much of this.
And somehow, you walk out of the museum with hope. It brings you into the heart and mind of many Detroiters. You know how Detroit has had both extreme ups and extreme downs, and you can’t help but believe that from such a low, things can only get better. And maybe even great.

These Actually Exist?

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When you’re traveling the world you always need a place to sleep or rest, the majority of travelers rent a hotel, cabin, suite, etc. The standard hotel is just a tall building with many windows, balconies, your basic pool, and lobby. But, there are some other hotels in the world that just leave you with your mouth open! These are some of the strangest, beautiful, bucket list type hotels in the world.

#1. The Ice Hotel 

Not a big fan of winter, but this would be awesome to stay at just once in my life. Ice hotel in Sweden

Jukkasjärvi, Sweden. This is the first and largest ice hotel in the world. Its made up of snow and ice and is rebuilt every winter because it eventually melts into the Torne River. Looking at the pictures alone is breathtaking, I can’t imagine actually staying in one!

#2. Tropical Paradise

Maui, Hawaii. For those that don’t enjoy the chilly weather, there is always the option of going to a tropical paradise! At TheWestin, there is this amazing water slide along with the beautiful view. I could already feel my skin soaking up the sun and screaming my head off as I go down the water slide!

#3. Igloos!

Hotel Kakslauttanen in Finland. A glass igloo that allows you to watch the Aurora Borealis (aka. Northern Lights)

Saariselkä, Finland. The Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort looks absolutely stunning! Going to sleep and waking up to the Northern Lights in an igloo has to be the best thing in the world. On their website they have a section for “WINTER” and if you hover over it you see that they offer reindeer safaris, husky safaris, and aurora hunting!

#4. Palacio de Sal

Palacio de Sal (Uyuni, Bolivia)

 

Salar de Uyuni, Uyuni, Potosí, Bolivia. An entire hotel built from salt. Its made up of one million cubes of salt!!! Creating something like this takes talent, I’m amazed that something like this can even exist.

#5. Caves!

Turkey. The Cappadocia Hotels are laid out throughout Turkey and there is a selection of luxurious, historical, or charming types of hotels. I’ve never visited Turkey, but when I do I know where I’m sleeping! Staying in a cave would definitely remind me of the Flintstones!

These are just a few of the unusual hotels in the world. I can’t wait to visit all of these soon and cross them off my bucket list!

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