Nijo Castle Review & Tips

Posted on Apr 25, 2017 by Tom Bricker  •  Points of Interest  •  4 Comments

Nijo Castle (二条城, Nijōjō) is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Kyoto, Japan that is the former residence of Shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu. We’ll review the prestigious Japanese castle in this post and share some of our tips for visiting. While the construction of this site began in 1601, when the Shogunate ordered all the feudal lords […]

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Best Castles in France’s Loire Valley

Posted on Apr 24, 2017 by Tom Bricker  •  Points of Interest, Tips  •  5 Comments

Following our recent trip to France, we’ve visited Loire Valley twice, and have spent all of our time there touring the beautiful castles, manors, and country houses that comprise the châteaux of the region. (Well, touring the châteaux and eating!) Based on our experiences, I thought I’d rank the château we’ve visited. Note that this is […]

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Best Ramen in Los Angeles: Tsujita LA v. Daikokuya

Posted on Apr 19, 2017 by Tom Bricker  •  Dining  •  2 Comments

Thanks to Little Tokyo and Little Osaka, Los Angeles has a thriving Japanese culinary scene, which is probably best evidenced in its many delicious ramen shops. We’ve tried many of these restaurants in Sawtelle and Little Tokyo, and think the two best choices for ramen are Tsujita LA and Daikokuya. It would seem that many […]

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Madame Tussauds Hollywood Review

Posted on Apr 15, 2017 by Tom Bricker  •  Points of Interest  •  8 Comments

Honestly, I don’t even know where to begin with this review of Madame Tussauds Hollywood. Out of all the things to do in Los Angeles, I never expected that I’d actually visit this wax figure museum. In fact, it’s been something of a running joke between Sarah and I. We go somewhere that has a […]

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Osaka Castle Tips & Review

Posted on Apr 12, 2017 by Tom Bricker  •  Points of Interest  •  2 Comments

Osaka Castle (大阪城, Ōsakajō) is one of Japan’s most popular tourist attractions, with millions of people visiting the iconic landmark each year, particularly during cherry blossom season when there are special hanami parties and night illuminations. I’ve had the chance to visit both during sakura season and regular times of year, and will share some […]

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Review: Is the Sony Studio Tour Worth It?

Posted on Apr 10, 2017 by Tom Bricker  •  Points of Interest  •  2 Comments

The Sony Pictures Studio tour takes guests behind the scenes of the former MGM studios, one of the most famed studios of old Hollywood. During this walking tour, guests go inside various sets and soundstages, and get a general taste for life on the Sony lot. In this review, we’ll cover the pros & cons of […]

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10 Best Beaches in Laguna Beach, California

Posted on Apr 9, 2017 by Tom Bricker  •  Tips  •  No Comments

Laguna Beach has the absolute best selection of beaches in Southern California. In fact, its miles of coast along Pacific Coast Highway might be some of the best in the world. While this quiet little beach town located an hour or two south of Los Angeles (depending upon traffic) can be quite busy during the […]

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LACMA Review & Tips

Posted on Apr 5, 2017 by Tom Bricker  •  Points of Interest  •  2 Comments

The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) is the largest art museum in the western United States, and is located near the La Brea Tar Pits in Southern California. This review offers photos from LACMA, tips for visiting, and pros and cons of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art as compared to nearby […]

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Golden Pavilion Temple in Kyoto, Japan

Posted on Apr 4, 2017 by Tom Bricker  •  Points of Interest  •  11 Comments

The Golden Pavilion (Kinkakuji, 金閣寺) in Kyoto, Japan is a world-renowned temple named (and famous) for its pure gold leaf finishing. In this post we’ll cover some of the pros and cons of visiting the Golden Pavilion, share some photos from our experience there, and offer random thoughts and history on the pavilion. For starters, […]

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Review: Is the Warner Bros. Studio Tour Worth It?

Posted on Apr 3, 2017 by Tom Bricker  •  Points of Interest  •  4 Comments

For a behind-the-scenes look at Hollywood movie-making, the Warner Bros. Studio Tour is one of the best options around Los Angeles. This tour offers a 2-3 hour experience inside a working Hollywood studio, with the chance to explore outdoor sets and soundstages used to create La La Land, Gilmore Girls, The Big Bang Theory, and numerous […]

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