The Ultimate Kazakh Mongolian 8-hour Dance Party [Videos]

Dancing with Kazakh Nomads in the Altai Mountains of Mongolia

I’m not that much for big crazy parties. Don’t get me wrong I have my moments. But normally I’m pretty low-key, preferring an intimate dinner to a raucous evening out on the town. But on a trip to Asia, I  gleefully indulged in one of those aforementioned “moments” with a group of Kazakh Mongolians.  And when […]

Why Kazakh Nomad Women in Western Mongolia Spend Half Their Summer Milking

Kazakh-woman-milking-goats-in-mongolia

It’s milking time. Again. All hands are on deck. The women of the Kazakh nomad community in Western Mongolia are in all-out commando mode. Their tongues click and arms wave as they chase their herds of goats and sheep into a pen. Hundreds of hooves dart this way and that, swirling and spinning, trying to avoid […]

Why a Mongolian Kazakh Wedding is so Much More Fun

Scenes from a Kazakh wedding in Mongolia

I remember musing that an American wedding planner would think I’d lost my mind. Wrestling? You want wrestling at your wedding?! Her shock giving way to complete bewilderment and horror when I followed up with…..and, we’ll want a horse race too. A Kazakh Wedding Tradition: The Wrestling Begins I scanned the celebration and grinned.  This […]

Kazakh Nomads and the Importance of Tea

This Kazakh woman cut huge bricks of cheese Photographing Kazakh Nomads in Mongolia

We sit on the ground around a low wooden table waiting for the day to begin. It’s overcast, threatening rain, and the ger is dim, throwing everything into monochrome. A pot of boiling milk sits on top of a battered wood-burning stove in the center of the room, and I watch as steam rises into […]

Camping and Kazakhs: My Amazing Mongolian Adventure

Three Wrestlers: Scenes from a Kazakh wedding in Mongolia -

It’s been a while since my adventure in western Mongolia with photographer Timothy Allen and seven fellow photography lovers, and yet I still think of it all the time. We camped in the Altai Tavan Bogd National Park, a vast and profoundly beautiful and pristine expanse where we met the world’s most tolerant and gracious […]

Amita Thai Cooking Class in Bangkok: A Delicious Culinary Adventure

Cooking chicken Satay

If you’re looking for something a little different and delicious, try Amita Thai Cooking Class in Bangkok—a few hours in a garden kitchen is a perfect way to spend a few yummy hours. A couple of years ago I was in a bit of a quandary over a 24-hour layover in Bangkok on my way […]

Six Reasons You Should Toss Out the Spa Vacation and Go to Exotic Myanmar

Sunset in Bagan, Myanmar

  Whether you’re a seasoned traveler looking for something new, or you just want a grand adventure, Myanmar (a.k.a Burma) should be high on your short list. Here are 6 reasons why… Because now you can For over 5 decades Myanmar’s government — a military junta that seized power in the early 1960’s — made […]