Tag: Nashville


Twipper of the Week: David and Veronica from The GypsyNesters!

Current city:  Ventura, California

Age:  David 58, Veronica 54

Total countries visited: Our current count is 54,and we are always looking to add to that total.

What makes you interesting:  Hmm, can’t say we have been asked that before. We have had quite a life, married for 35 years, living in Nashville, St. Croix, New York, and now Southern California, and having dozens of different jobs through the years, along with all of the stories from our explorations. It’s all in our book GOING GYPSY: One Couple’s Adventure from Empty Nest to No Nest at All.

What brands do you love: We love our iPhone, can’t imagine traveling without it. As for travel companies, we love Backroads, Viking Cruises, Road Scholar, Discover Corps., Country Walkers, and VBT for amazing adventures that are well planned and cater to folks like us that want to be more than just tourists. When we visit a destination, we want to do more than just take a quick look.

How has travel changed you or how do you hope it will change you:  There is great quote from Mark Twain:  ”Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness…” We have found this to be very true. Our greatest discovery in our GypsyNester journey has been that people all over the world are basically good and decent, friendly and welcoming.

What destinations are on your bucket list and why: There are still a few. We call ourselves “greedy travelers” because the more we see, the more we want to see. Antarctica would have to be near the top of our list since it would make all seven continents visited for us, but there are plenty of others as well. We’d love to see New Zealand, Scotland, Egypt, Jordan, Israel, the South Pacific, or almost anywhere else that we haven’t been.

What are your travel pet peeves:  The fact that we are both sitting here trying to think of something must mean that there really aren’t any big ones. There are always little things, but we have become quite good at letting them slide.

Describe the last time you tried something new:  It wasn’t the last time, but certainly the worst. Eating silkworms in China certainly stands out, but not in a good way.  Of all the crazy things we’ve eaten (and it is quite a few, we have a whole category on our website) it is by far the nastiest. Thoroughly disgusting, but we found the humor in it, even at the time.

What is the best part about having a travel partner:  We discovered that by trying and experiencing so many new things together we really reconnected as a couple and found those crazy kids that fell in love decades ago.

It’s 2050, list all the places you are most proud to have visited and why:  One thing we really like is visiting places that were not allowed back in our younger days. Russia, China, Cuba, Poland, Czech, Estonia, Slovenia, and Hungary, were all forbidden so were extremely interesting to see. But that wouldn’t be our proudest, that would have to be our voluntourism experiences. We have had the chance to help while traveling in Africa, the Caribbean, Central America and right here in the states, and hopefully by 2050 will have added significantly to that list.

Next travel destination:  We are off to Hawaii, which will mean that we both have visited all 50 states.


Twipper of the Week: Victoria Philpott from Vicky Flipflop Travels.


Current city: Chattanooga, Tennessee

Age: 31

Total countries visited: 59

What makes you interesting: I’ve got some good stories to tell after two years on the road!

What brands do you love: Apple and Ray-Ban I think that’s actually it! 

What’s your Travanality: I’m a mixture between a Maverick and a Wayfarer. They sound cool.

What item will you never leave home without: My laptop, who I call Lappy and think of as my child. Also my phone, even though I’ve got painful RSI in my thumb from using it too much. Those iPhone 6’s are too wide!

Where and when were you the most culture shocked: I’ve spent most of the last two years traveling. Whenever I’ve come back to London I’m shocked at how busy it is, how crazy, how expensive, and how fashionable and cool everyone is. I’m always shocked that I lived there for six years. I still love it! The more I travel the more I think how London is so unique! 

What are your travel pet peeves: I hate it when people get all anxious and mean in airports, as if getting on the plane is some kind of race or competition. I also really, really hate when the person in front of you on the plane puts their seat back. I don’t know why they make them with that functionality.

What is your favorite mode of transportation when you travel: Moped. It’s absolutely my favorite thing about Asia. 

What have you learned about yourself during your travels: How resilient, adaptable, brave and totally impatient I can be. Not all good things!

Next travel destination: I’m off to Memphis and Nashville! 

Travel Trends for the Epicurean: 5 of the Hottest Food Festivals to Visit Around the World


Photo courtesy of petergreenberg.com

By: Lauren Durden

Details on the best food festivals worldwide.

Epicurean Twippers are known for their love of all things culinary – from the pursuit of the next great bite to the search for that special ingredient. They wholeheartedly celebrate food holidays, seek out farmer’s markets when traveling and take snaps of their plates to add to their stacks of photos from their travels. Sound familiar? You may be an Epicurean Twipper yourself.

While celebrating food holidays may be fun enough, food festivals offer days of delectable treats, meet and greets with culinary celebrities and a peek into the culinary traditions of different cities and countries around the world. You may know of the New York City Wine and Food Festival or La Tomatina in Spain, but what about a festival dedicated to truffles, or one all about hot chicken? These five food related festivals are TWIP’s  picks for some of the best culinary celebrations our Epicurean Twippers can visit on their next travels. Don’t forget to mark your calendars!

LuckyRice Festivals

The LuckyRice Festival celebrates the cuisines and cultures of Asia through a gastronomic lens.Originally the festival began in New York City, but the tastings, dinners and culinary events surrounding the festival have also recently spread to San Francisco, Los Angeles, Miami, and Toronto.

With big culinary names like Anita Lo, David Chang, Masaharu Morimoto and Sang Yoon on their culinary council, festival attendees know they are in for a treat. Guests of the festival can learn the proper slurping technique at LuckyRice’s ramen Slurpfest or enjoying a cocktail inspired by Asian ingredients at the Moon Festival Cocktail Feast, among other events. Events are now ongoing throughout each city.

Music City Hot Chicken Festival


Photo courtesy of travelphilosophy.com

While fried chicken has always been a much loved dish, hot chicken is a regional specialty of Nashville that has been steadily gaining national popularity. Hot chicken is made by frying chicken, then saucing it with a spicy paste made with cayenne pepper, chili powder, garlic, brown sugar and paprika to give it a special kick and serving it over a slice of white bread with pickles atop the chicken.

The festival, which takes place every 4th of July in Nashville, is free to the public and offers festival attendees free samples of hot chicken, endless vendors of hot chicken, beer, a parade and even an amateur hot chicken cook off.

Acqualagna Truffle Festival


Photo courtesy of one.classetouriste.be

Though Acqualagna is home to both a Black Truffle Festival and White Truffle Festival, it is the National Truffle Festival in late October through early November that the town is known for worldwide. For two weeks in fall, the luxurious and delicious tuber is celebrated for its importance to the Marche region surrounding Acqualagna. The Marche region produces two-thirds of Italy’s annual crop of truffles, with more than four varieties found throughout the area.

During the festival, the small town of Acqualanga bursts with visitors and vendors alike. Guests can peruse vendors offering truffle tastings, classes to learn more about the elusive treat, food stalls and art exhibitions. If travelers are a bit more adventurous, they can even tag along on a truffle hunt, for a fee.

Fête de Vendanges de Montmartre


Photo courtesy of paradisefoundaround.com

Many visitors of Paris visit the city without ever knowing their close proximity to a vineyard. The butte de Montmartre, where the beautiful Sacre Coeur cathedral sits, is surrounded by more than 1,200 grape vines and plays host to the Fête de Vendanges de Montmartre, or the harvest feast of Montmartre, during the first days of October each year.

The festival includes a week of events featuring visits to the vineyards on the sloping hillsides of Montmartre, a parade, talks on food sustainability and preservation of traditional methods of winemaking, and over 100 food and wine stalls for guests to taste the fares of the local Parisian vendors.

Tales of the Cocktail

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Photo courtesy of fest300.com

For those that are serious students of the bar, the annual Tales of the Cocktail festival in New Orleans offers cerebral, informative boozy events for attendees who are more obsessed with bitters than baking.

The five day festival began in 2003 as the art of crafting a cocktail had begun to sweep throughout the United States. Today, the festival brings together some of the best mixologists, bartenders, distillers and purveyors of all things related to liberal libations to show off their skills and fares. There are tastings, distillery and cocktail tours, and opportunities to learn more about everything from the latest garnish trends to the history of the daiquiri. The festival culminates with the Spirited Awards, which crowns the best mixologists, bars, brands, writers and spirits in the industry – and gives guests a sneak peek into upcoming trends and which bars and restaurants they should be visiting in the coming year.


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