The Evolution of Medellin’s Notorious Comuna 13

Mark Stewart Cities 2 Comments

For years, Medellin was the most dangerous city in the world. Between the different drug cartels vying for control and the military attempting to control them. To leftist revolutionary guerrillas and the privately funded right-wing paramilitary groups locked in conflict. Car bombs, shootings, kidnappings and outright war were commonplace in the region. While the city itself stood amongst the most violent on earth, until as recently as 2010; one neighbourhood in particular ranked deadliest of all. The neighbourhood of San …

8 (Almost) Free Activities in Medellin

Mark Stewart Cities, Travel Tips 8 Comments

Maybe you’ve arrived in Medellin at the end of your trip, money is running out. Perhaps you’ve spent a little more on beer or accommodation than expected and your budget is tighter than you planned. Whatever the reason, just because you’re looking to pinch pennies during your visit doesn’t mean you need to lock yourself in your dorm room. We’ve put together a quick list of the eight best activities you can do in Medellin for as as close to …

Central America: Reflecting on Five Months in the Region

Mark Stewart Inspiration, Travel Stories, Travel Tips 21 Comments

It’s such a tiny area. The entirety of Central America – including the regions of Mexico we visited – could fit within the country of France. Yet every country is different than the next, each one having its own distinct culture. In Guatemala for example, the Mayan roots are very obvious; from physical features to traditional clothing and general way of life. While right next door in El Salvador, due to several tragic moments in recent history, the Mayan culture …

Medellin Love

Mark Stewart Cities 2 Comments

I’ve fallen in love with cities in the past, but never this quickly. Bangkok took a bit of time, upon our second visit we finally dove into what she had to offer. Montreal happened much faster. With Seoul, the depth of love wasn’t realized until we’d left. Edmonton of course, our hometown, goes without saying. However, within the first day of arriving in Medellin, with it’s cool air and laid-back vibe, It’s clear. I’m in love with this city. Following …

The Best Things to do at Lake Atitlan

Mark Stewart Travel Tips 6 Comments

Lake Atitlan is one of the most popular destinations in all of Guatemala, for good reason. Between the seemingly endless activities and laid-back vibes, visitors usually end up staying much longer than planned! To help you make the most of your time, we’ve put together a list of some of the best things to do during your stay. Although you’ll likely stumble upon many more on your visit, these are a few that you shouldn’t miss! Trek to Lake Atitlan …

Hostel Etiquette: Shared Kitchen

Mark Stewart Opinions, Travel Tips 8 Comments

Here’s a topic we’re both very passionate about, not only because as chefs we love to cook, but for the very same reason, we despise it when people disrespect the shared kitchen. It doesn’t matter if you’re using a shared kitchen in a large hostel, or a small AirBnb with only a few other guests. The kitchen is everyones, and should be respected as such. One time in Oaxaca, a couple of younger guests were sharing the kitchen with us, …

The Villages of Lake Atitlan, Guatemala

Mark Stewart Cities, Travel Tips 8 Comments

Often, those who visit Lake Atitlan are pressed for time and often struggle with deciding which town(s) to visit. We were definitely part of this group. Seeing as our visit coincided with the Christmas holidays, we booked our accommodation several weeks in advance – in fear that we may not find anything. We decided to split the majority of our time basing ourselves out of San Pedro and Panajachel roughly half and half, though if we were to do it …

Caribbean Colombia – Santa Marta

Mark Stewart Travel Stories 14 Comments

After just narrowly making our flight in San Jose, we found ourselves high above the Caribbean as we flew towards Colombia. The flight itself was quite a treat; not only was there a significant amount of leg room, but there was a meal – with wine – included! This might not seem like much but considering the flight was under two short hours, most airlines won’t even offer pretzels! After a brief stop in Bogota, where we sampled some deep-fried …

The Best Travel Books We’ve Ever Read

Mark Stewart Inspiration 49 Comments

As we packed up our house and sold our belongings in preparation for our new life, the books on the shelves were one of the last things we touched. We sat on the floor and reminisced about some of our favourite reads. Quite a collection had built up over the years. Many of the books were read only once, a few we hadn’t yet gotten around to. Then there were the ones that had been read and re-read countless times, …