Port of Hamburg: Photo Essay

Sorry Philadelphia, but I’m having a love affair with Hamburg, Germany.  I love its old traditions balanced with a spirit of new ideas, its humble, working class beginnings, and this port city’s seafaring feel.  Where Philadelphia’s shipping history was almost snubbed out because of America’s highway system (in recent years, there’s been a huge push to revitalize it), Hamburg’s is still thriving 826 years later.  Honestly, a life at sea is not complete with a stop at Hamburg Harbor. This past winter, I took a trip back to visit Hamburg and was welcomed by unseasonably beautiful weather.  As a result,

Heini Hiltunen Timo Kaukonen, left, sweats it out at the Sauna World Championships.
From ESPN "Sports from Hell"

That Time I Almost Died in a German Sauna

There are two types of people in this world: there are those who go to saunas for relaxation.  Then there are those who turn relaxation into a competition.  Yes, there are literally people who go to saunas to challenge one another on who can stay in a sauna the longest.  Back in 2010 I read a story about that Russian guy who died in a sauna competition in Finland.  The relaxation aspect of it I can get, but I think it’s a bit crazy that people take it to a whole new level and put their bodies through stress just

dall sheep

Have You Seen the Dall Sheep?

Alaska is teeming with wildlife.  In fact, Denali National Park & Preserve is home to 39 species of mammals, 169 types of birds, 14 fish, and 1 amphibian.  Amongst them are wild bears, moose, coyotes, wolves, eagles, and other creatures worth excitedly wiping out your camera and accidentally dropping it for.  But no animal in Alaska gets the older male tourist population more pumped than the Dall sheep. When compared to the other majestic creatures that you encounter in Alaska, the Dall sheep are simpletons.  You can usually observe them far off in the distance, hanging out on the peaks

Sun Rise

From the Darkness Comes Light

Hey there readers, On A Travel Broad, I tend to focus only on the positive and exciting side of my life and travels.  I share with you pictures from my time living in Germany and stories of my jaunts through Europe and North America in hopes of inspiring you to go out and experience the world for yourselves.  But I hardly ever discuss the difficult times I sometimes face.  Some of these challenging times are by my choice because I love traveling and sharing my travels with you gives me purpose.  In the 5 years since I’ve started this blog,

deutsche bahn

How to Navigate Germany When Deutsche Bahn Train Drivers Go on Strike

If you want to tick off a group of Germans, tell them that the train is going to be fifteen minutes late. But if you tell them that none of the trains will be running due to a strike? Utter chaos! Hundreds of thousands of travelers depend on the Deutsche Bahn to transport them to airports, cities and neighboring countries in Europe. But as Deustche Bahn train drivers prepare to go on strike tomorrow through Monday, these travelers, many of whom will be converging on Berlin this weekend for the 25th anniversary of its fall, are scrambling for an alternative.

roma kids

Playing with Roma Children

Below Acropolis in Athens, Greece, Roma children work as street performers, playing accordions, drums and the bouzouki, a type of Greek guitar, for money.  They purposely target marketplaces and tourist areas, knowing that that’s where the cash flows the fastest.  There are several levels of aggressiveness when it comes to begging.  Some casually perform on the street corner — in fact, the older kids are very talented at playing folk music, turning street corners in to concerts.  Then there are others who go from cafe table to cafe table playing music while simultaneously begging for money. Some get creative by

favorite place in the world

Answer to the Infamous Question, “What’s Your Favorite Place in the World”

“What’s your favorite place in the world?”  It’s often the first question that everyone asks when they learn that I’m a travel writer.  In my younger years, I often answered with a place I had recently gotten back from, mostly for the sake of conversation.  “Oh I was surprised how much I loved Denmark” or “I loved Barcelona for the food”. But the more I travel, the more I realize that there is no definitive answer to this question.  People sometimes expect me to pick a favorite place because of the sites (“isn’t Paris the best because of the Eiffel

York Post

York: England’s Most Haunted Town is Actually Charming

York: England’s most haunted town.  Seems like a bold claim, but when you look at York’s gruesome history of the Black Death, murder, poverty, war, and genocide you can kind of see where these ghost stories come from.  As a result, many businesses in York are cashing in on things that go bump in the night.  Nightly ghost tours take upwards of 75 thrill-seekers at a time to go ghost hunting at famous sites, hotels offer premier rates to stay in their “haunted suite”, and pubs have banners and signs claiming York’s most haunted pub, not because of any quantifiable

cats of athens

The Cats of Athens

People often talk about how many dogs are roaming around Athens, but let’s take a moment to enjoy the cats. With the picturesque views and the natural coyness of cats, I have enough photos to do a 15-month “Kittehs of Athens” Calendar if I wanted to.  Here’s a few of my favorite felines so far.


6 Things I Wish I Knew Before Road Tripping Alaska

This past September, my roommate and I embarked on #RoadTripAlaska.  We flew into Anchorage, rented a car and hit the road with only a vague idea of what we wanted to accomplish.  I must say, that given the minimal planning, my roommate and I did a phenomenal job going with the flow and making it up as we went along. But after the journey, I had a dose of retrospect.  Looking back there are things that I learned on the journey that I wish I had thought of beforehand — but I guess there’s always next time! 1. Bring toiletpaper

Top 5 Hotels I’ll Never Stay In

… And no not because I’m poor and travel within my means.  I’m a woman who enjoys simplicity and even if I had all of the money in the world, I would still find overly extravagant hotels ridiculous.  I don’t look at the accommodations of a luxury hotel and go “yes – this is what I need.”  HELL NO!  I’m the girl that goes into a hotel and says “perfect – it has a bed”.

Lap pool, helicopter service, private library?  Who needs that?  Here are five hotels that make me laugh because they exude hilarious levels of luxury and outrageously extravagant accommodations.

1.) The Presidential Suite, InterContinental, Hong Kong

PRESIDENTIAL_SUITE5For the low price of $13,715 per night, you can experience one of the best foggy panoramic views of the overly polluted Hong Kong.  With a wrap around balcony and more square feet than my apartment in Philadelphia, this suite comes with a rooftop pool and jacuzzi overlooking the Victoria Harbor.

This spacious suite comes with a master bedroom, dining room, a gym with a wall of windows facing the city skyline and a kitchenette.  It’s not a full kitchen — people who have enough money to spend on this suite don’t have to cook. Why cook when you can eat the most extravagant meals from world class chefs for breakfast, lunch and dinner?

2.) Villa La Cupola Suite, Westin Excelsior, Rome

8-villa-la-cupola-suite-westin-excelsior-rome-most-expensive-hotel-suitesWhy pay for all four years of college when you can spend a night in the ultra lush and extravagant Villa La Cupola Suite at the Westin Excelsior in Rome.  For $30,000 you can spend one night in one of Europe’s larges suites.  Inspired by ancient Rome, the Villa La Cupola Suite features stained glass, frescoes and marble designs throughout.  There’s also a private sauna and spa, private wraparound terrace to catch some sun and a private movie theater… because who needs to socialize when you’ve got this much money?

3.) The Presidential Suite, The Raj Palace Hotel, Jaipur, India

110830032459-raj-palace-horizontal-galleryGet your own palace in India for only $45,000. I mean, what a deal, who could pass up this very reasonable price!  The only way I would ever stay in this suite is if I did it with 450 of my closest friends so that I only had to spend $100.

It’s the biggest suite in all of Asia, coming in at nearly 1,500 square meters and has a private roof terrace with swimming pool offering panoramic views of the pink city of Jaipur.  This lavish, four-story apartment is decorated throughout with ivory, gold leaf and mirrors so that you can look at how rich you are.  I think what really blows the lid off of how ridiculous this suite is is the fact that it comes complete with its own private museum — private museum?!  Because it’s absurd to even fathom sharing a museum with anyone else — hell no — need to keep a museum to yourself.

 4.) The Maestro Suite, The Dolder Grand, Zurich, Switzerland maestro-turm-living

Peer down from the tallest tower of the Dolder Grand in Switzerland in the Maestro Suite.  Inspired by the classical music conductor Maestro Herbert von Karajan, this lavish accommodation includes two bedrooms and a bathroom constructed of marble.  Enjoy meals from a private kitchen in the luxurious dining room located in the tower of the suite and unwind from the day in the private sauna (being rich can be so stressful).  There’s also a bar and a fireplace, making it a grand space to entertain.  And all for the low price of $18,800 per night.

5.) The Penthouse, The Fairmont, San Francisco, California, USA

The Penthouse at the Fairmont San Francisco

This is a truly entertaining space.  The 6,000 square foot Penthouse at the Fairmount in San Francisco, California includes a dining room that can seat 60 people, a large terrace overlooking the San Francisco skyline, a living room with carved wood paneling and a domed billiard room paved in Persian tile.  But I think one of the silliest aspects of this space is that there is a secret passageway that connects the two-story library to the penthouse!  Though I find it exceedingly extravagant, I would have fun with the library and the secret passageway — that’s just dreamy!


  1. Becky Padmore Reply
    • Kae Lani Reply
    • Kae Lani Reply
  2. henry thomas Reply
  3. Arianwen Reply
    • Kae Lani Reply
  4. Bianca @itsallbee Reply
    • Kae Lani Reply
  5. Rebecca Reply
  6. Nico Reply
    • Kae Lani Reply
  7. Peter Reply
    • Kae Lani Reply


× four = 28

CommentLuv badge