Simply put, I love to travel! I’ve been fortunate that my career has allowed me to travel to many destinations and allowed me to collect airline miles to go many other places on vacation with my family. In my posts, my focus is on sharing information for those who wish to travel independently, which is my favorite way to go. I’ve been to over 50 countries, and try to post regularly on recent visits and places I’ve visited in the past. I love Europe and the Mediterranean especially.

I hope you enjoy the information shared here. I welcome your comments and suggestions. Please contact me at theindependenttourist@gmail.com


  1. Hi Paul,

    We are thinking of a trip to the Galapagos…just read your notes about Quito. . Any effects from the altitude? Any other thoughts.


    1. Hi John,

      Quito is great, as you saw in my post. No effects from altitude, but I live in Colorado. I think you will be fine. If you have any additional time, there’s a lot to explore in Ecuador, from the mountains to the beaches to the rain forest. Lots to see in a compact country. Enjoy the Galapagos!

    2. John,

      Unlike Paul, I live at just a little above sea level. I flew in to Quito on an evening flight. I had a headache the first night that lasted until about noon the next day, but after that it was fine. Extra hydration is the key. I probably started too late by waiting until I landed.

  2. Hi Paul,
    When you travel, do you have a list of certain criteria that helps you determine where you want to visit in each country? What is the biggest draw for you when you travel? (I.e.- culture, people, architectures, etc?)

    1. Hi Mark,

      I usually study each country quite a bit to figure out what I can do to maximize the time I have, so finding locations I want to visit within a given geographic region, for example. Once we know where we want to go, I will usually get 1 or 2 guidebooks (Lonely Planet, Rough Guide, etc) that help me plan the sites, plus I do refer to some blogs I find.

      Regarding what I like to see, history is usually the main focus, I love historical buildings, followed by interesting or weird things whether they’re old or not. Certainly natural beauty is a factor too. If I can combine all of the above, I love to do so. Turkey and Croatia and Greece would be examples.

  3. Hare un viaje a Perú en septiembre con mi esposo y dos parejas mas y me ha tocado organizar el viaje, me han sido muy utiles tus comentarios pues como dices se necesita una guis que te de mas detalles.
    saludos desde México.

  4. Your website is amazing, I’m surprised that you don’t have more viewership. I am going to go to Ireland in March (same time as you visited, for 7 days) then head down to Madrid and Seville (3 days each) immediately after.
    In Ireland, you went ALL over the place in 8 days. Did it feel too rushed? I am going to try to hit most of the spots you suggest, but in 7 days, but I wonder if we’ll be too rushed?
    Thanks for the wonderful insights!

    1. Thanks, Sam. The website is a hobby that doesn’t get enough attention from me, I don’t really promote it. It’s more of a journal.

      Regarding Ireland, no, we didn’t feel too rushed because distances are not far. But, admittedly I don’t sit around. It’s a wonderful country and “underutilized” as a tourist spot, which is good for me and you! Be prepared for regular rain showers–they don’t last long, but seem to be nearly constant. Enjoy.

    1. Hello,

      As I recall the Monastery is open weekdays, but I do not remember the hours, we visited in the morning. The cost for a visit was a few US dollars at most, although they also rent out rooms during the summer that are relatively cheap (less than $50 US).


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