How To Plan A Relaxing Fishing Trip To An Exotic Location

There’s nothing quite as enjoyable as sitting back, relaxing, and waiting for your lure to haul in your next catch. Fishing is one of the most popular pastimes that men of all ages enjoy, and it doesn’t matter whether you have thousands of dollars worth of high-end equipment or a make-do fishing rod because you can still go home feeling like a winner at the end of the day. The experience of fishing in an exotic location is one that can’t be beat!

There are so many great adventures to be had outdoors, but only if you’re looking to seize the day. Here are some things to take into consideration when planning your next fishing trip:

The Right Location

The first step is of course to find a location you’re interested in. Your budget does have an important role to play, so if you’re strapped for cash currently, you can still enjoy having fun at a nearby lake or river. However, if you have ample budget for travel, you can even make it to South America!

The Right Lodgings

During your trip, you will need a safe place to stay. You may not require all of the creature comforts out there, so investing in a basic motel room may be more than enough. If you’re going to be traveling within your state, perhaps renting an RV and camping outdoors may be more your style. There are plenty of options out there, and when all else fails, turn it into a camping trip that the entire family can enjoy.

Get Your Gear In Check

Of course, you’ll need a vessel for fishing – a kayak, canoe or boat. If you have your own small boat or canoe, you should by all means take it with you. However, all fishing destination hotspots will allow you to rent boats, so it’s important to factor the rental costs into your budget.

The next step is to equip yourself with the right gear. You will need fishing lures, bait, rods as well as appropriate seasonal clothing for the climate. If you’re going to be outdoors in the summer or early spring, make sure to put on plenty of sunscreen to protect your skin in the sun.

Lastly, many places require fishing permits and licensing in order to fish outdoors. Make sure you secure permission before you get into trouble for trespassing!

Helpful Tips When Traveling By Air With A Laptop

Traveling, whether it is a way of life or an enjoyable experience is something that happens every single day. As you travel, there are likely items you choose to take with you and some of them are a little more challenging to bring along than others. One of the items that many people choose to travel with is a laptop. In order to keep your digital device safe and make the most of your trip, there are some things that you should do. Read on to learn more.

When you travel by air, traveling with a laptop can be quite lucrative. More and more flights are adding wi-fi service and bring a laptop along is a great way to work, watch a movie, or catch up with friends. The computer allows you to have an easier and more productive flight.

As you plan your travel, make sure that you do not back your laptop in your checked baggage. A laptop is a delicate machine and baggage handlers aren’t always gentle with luggage. Instead, pack your laptop in your carry on bag, such as one of the TSA approved laptop backpacks. If you are a frequent traveler, you may prefer to choose one of these “checkpoint friendly” bags that can save you a lot of time as you go through the security checkpoints as laptops are required to be removed from bags. This type of bag makes it simple to take the computer out as required.

If you are an occasional traveler, you can use a regular laptop bag. Before placing your computer in your luggage, turn it off. Then, make sure it is properly protected to keep it safe.

Once you reach the security checkpoint, you will be required to place your computer in a screening bin. Stay with the bin to assure you know where it is at all times.

As you enter the plane, keep your laptop with you. Placing it in an overhead compartment is not the safest option. Items can fall and move around in the compartment. If you can, place your laptop and bag under the seat in front of you. This is the most comfortable and safest option. When you are ready to use your laptop, follow the airline’s instructions for logging onto their wi-fi.

In conclusion, traveling with a laptop takes some planning on your part. This allows you more productive travel and a properly protected computer.

Visiting Sacre-Coeur in Paris

Are you planning a trip to Paris, France and looking for things to fill your itinerary? No trip to Paris is complete without a visit to Sacre-Coeur. Located in the Montmartre district, Sacre-Coeur sits at the top of the hill as the highest point in all of Paris. Sometimes known as the Basilica of the Sacred Heart, the Sacre-Coeur basilica was constructed in 1873 to pay tribute to the 58,000 lives lost during the Franco-Prussian War. It is home to a 19-ton bell, which is the largest of its kind in the world.

With easy Metro access, you can make this area of Paris your base for exploring the surrounding area as well as the city itself. Many reasonably priced hotels can be found near Sacre-Coeur in the 18th arrondissement.

French travertine stone gives the basilica its snow white color, which you can see from almost anywhere in Paris. This is what makes it one of the most prominent and noticeable landmarks in Paris. As you might imagine, one of the benefits of visiting Sacre-Coeur is the vantage point you have above the city when you ascend to the top of the dome. In fact, you can see all of Paris from the top of Sacre-Coeur.

The clock tower at the basilica is home to the world’s largest Savoyarde clock. The Luc-Olivier Merson designed apse mosaic, which depicts Christ in Majesty and The Sacred Heart worshiped by the Virgin Mary, Joan of Arc and St. Michael the Archangel, is also the largest of its kind in the world.

Inside the dimly lit Sacre-Coeur, you will find golden mosaics that match the bronze doors of the grand main portal. You can also view the bronze altar, the large choir, the 11 round and tall arches that create the barrel vault and the large dome. The crypt of this Catholic basilica is home to statues of saints as well as a relic, which is believed to be the very sacred heart of Christ.

Once you are done enjoying the interior architecture of Sacre-Coeur, you can head to the rear of the basilica. The grounds are home to a fountain and garden. Entrance to the garden and basilica are free, but there is a €5 admission fee to enter the dome and the crypt.

Get more info on fun things to do in Paris Rick Steves Paris 2016.  All of the guides by Rick Steves are some of my favorites when it comes to finding things to do that don’t cost a fortune.  He also offers some walking tours that you can download to your phone on this page. I have found these to be very enjoyable when checking out a new city – definitely better than paying for a local tour guide who may have an accent that is hard to understand. Plus, you typically have to tip those local tour guides, so these audio tours are awesome for travelers like me who are on a bit of a budget.

Airlines That DON’T Allow Pets In Cabin

If you’re anything like me, then you dread seeing someone get on a plane with a cat or small dog. Personally, I have allergies to pets and the thought of spending hours trapped in a small space with one or more of them is not a pleasant one. No one wants to end up at their destination with allergy issues.

An airline will remove peanuts for a peanut allergy but do nothing for the people with pet allergies. In fact, it seems like more and more airlines are becoming pet friendly. If you want to avoid pet friendly airlines, here are the airlines I’ve found that do not allow pets in the cabin.

The list below is in alphabetical order so that you can easily search for an airline.

Pet-Free Airlines

Aer Lingus – only allows pets in the cargo hold

Aerolíneas Argentinas – only allows pets in the cargo hold

Air CanadaONLY flights to/from Hawaii have pet-free cabins

Air MaltaONLY flights to/from UK have pet-free cabins

Air New Zealand – only allows pets in the cargo hold

AlitaliaONLY flights to/from UK and Ireland have pet-free cabins

American AirlinesONLY flights to/from Hawaii, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Uruguay and Venezuela have pet-free cabins

British Airways – only allows pets in the cargo hold

Cathay Pacific – only allows pets in the cargo hold

Delta AirlinesONLY flights to/from Hawaii, the UK, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand and Hong Kong have pet-free cabins

El Al AirlinesONLY flights to London, Johannesburg, Hong Kong and Australia have pet-free cabins

Hawaiian AirlinesONLY flights to/from JFK airport have pet-free cabins

Japan Airlines – only allows pets in the cargo hold

LAN Airlines – only allows pets in the cargo hold

QantasONLY international flights have pet-free cabins

Singapore Airlines – only allows pets in cargo hold

SWISS AirONLY flights to Ireland, the UK, Kenya, South Africa, Hong Kong and the United Arab Emirates have pet-free cabins

US AirwaysONLY flights to/from Europe, South America, the Middle East, Antigua, Bridgetown Barbados, Montego Bay, Jamaica or St. Lucia have pet-free cabins

United AirlinesONLY flights to/from Australia, Dominican Republic, Hawaii, Italy and the UK have pet-free cabins

Virgin AmericaONLY the First Class cabin is pet-free

Virgin Atlantic – only allows pets in the cargo hold

Note: Service animals are generally exempt from pet-free cabin rules, so you may still find yourself on a flight with an animal in such an instance.

***Keep in mind that this info can change at any time – so if you have an allergy please confirm with the airline***

Each airline has pet travel information on their website, which you can confirm prior to booking.

If you see any airlines that I’ve missed, please let me know!

Franklin Barbecue – Best Barbecue in Austin?

I recently drove from Dallas to San Antonio, which means that I had to go right through Austin, Texas. When I was planning my trip, I decided to see what restaurants were best rated in Austin and pick one for a meal either on the drive down or back up to Dallas. And Franklin Barbecue is the place that I decided on. I’d found several things online raving about the place – to the point that I was going into it with VERY high expectations.

As someone who grew up in Tennessee, I know good barbecue when I taste it. My dad is always trying some new hole-in-the-wall BBQ joint in search of the best of the best. I also lived in Kansas City and tasted what they try to pass off for barbecue there (blech). And I’ve had plenty of brisket and other BBQ in the DFW area. So, Franklin BBQ had some pretty big shoes to fill right from the start.

Since I read online that lines start before 10am, I knew that this would have to be a stop on the way back to Dallas. So, on the day that I was to leave San Antonio, I got up at 6:30am to get ready and make the pilgrimage to Franklin Barbecue. From what I had read online, this BBQ was going to be a religious experience – at least the brisket.

I’d read that Anthony Bourdain was in Austin earlier this year and declared it the best brisket he’d ever eaten – and that is quite an endorsement. So, I got in line around 9:25am and there were already five or six people there. Most of the people started arriving around 10:30 though. They don’t open up and start serving until 11am.

I wasn’t traveling alone, which means that I got to sample more than one thing on the menu. I tasted the brisket, the pulled pork and the ribs. The sides I tried were the slaw and the potato salad.

Best Brisket in Austin? The Verdict

I can say, that the brisket was definitely the best that I have ever had. It was not quite a religious experience, but I would stand in line for it again. The pulled pork also ranks really high up there for me. However, I didn’t really care for the ribs. The meat seemed a little dry and tough. Sides were good but nothing to rave about. It is also served, if you order the 2-meat plate, with two slices of white sandwich bread (I didn’t eat mine).

Why didn’t I eat my bread? Because they give you enough food on the 2-meat plate to feed a small army! Seriously. They really heap the barbecue on your plate. For two of the 2-meat plates and two iced teas, the total was just over $31. I can’t wait to have an excuse to go back to Austin just to get some more of this brisket.

Franklin Barbecue two meat plate

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