Cannes Film Festival was this month. Thousands flocked to the town of Cannes, France to preview new films, sell their scripts or to distribute their finished film. It was one of my biggest dreams to attend. Ever since I was a little girl I had dreams of creating something for the movies. You could find me watching VHS tapes in my family basement most weekends.

Fast forward a few years. I married talented filmmaker: Aaron Craig. He and I wanted to make a film together. On a lark, we traveled to my family farm in Illinois and created a short film. It was a fun side project to see what we could do. Somehow, we pulled it off. Our actors were a funny mix of family friends and the local postmaster. My mom and dad served as our sound person and location manager (plus dog wrangler). Filming was a great experience, full of lots of laughs and learning. We took our footage back to New York City not expecting much.

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California’s low desert, where both Palm Springs and the Coachella Valley are located, continues to enjoy a resurgence in popularity it hasn’t seen since the 1940s and ‘50s, when the area became the getaway destination for Hollywood’s elite. Today, the crowds drawn to Palm Springs are still of a glamorous, upscale nature, but there’s a new ‘it’ destination in the area drawing a hipster crowd away from the low desert and out to the high.

Ubud was founded by a seeker; a Javanese monk named Rsi Markendya who discovered  the profound spirituality he was looking for and never left. Since then, thousands of people have come seeking something of their own in Ubud; this town on the tiny Indonesian island of Bali has lured painters and dancers, filmmakers and craftsmen, shamans and preachers.

Nestled among rice paddies and steep ravines in the foothills of the Gianyar regency, it is a place of the perpetual hiatus, a view shared by countless artisans. A true cradle of inspiration, Ubud allows its visitors to immerse themselves deep within its commonly perceived zeitgeist; inspiring, creative, and serene.

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Wanderlust for me is year-round, but there is something about the approaching summer that encourages many to finalize their travel plans and take off for a week. While generally the quickest and easiest route to a destination is via plane, there is a certain art and finesse to the road trip that can’t be beat.

So, what does one do to prepare to hit the pavement? Here are a few necessities to make the trip go smoothly.

One of the best parts about traveling is the ability to experience a culture and area different from your own. When traveling to Portugal, in addition to the beautiful scenery, you will also be captivated by the regional flavors that make this area so unique. As you are planning your next adventure overseas, why not explore one (or more) of these three beautiful areas of Portugal.

Ah, the solo traveler – fearless, wise and free. She is someone who breaks society’s rules to fulfill her own zest for adventure. For some, there is nothing more liberating than the idea of venturing out to explore the unknown alone. For others, there is nothing more terrifying.

When I lived in Madrid for one incredible year, I challenged myself to travel solo at least once. So, one weekend I set off for the city of Porto in Lisbon. While I quickly learned that solo travel was not my personal favorite, I also learned a bit about why that may be.

Do you think you were made for solo travel? You might have been, if: