Where I’m Going in December 2020,
And Where You Should Go Too ✈️

“I have wandered all my life, and I have also traveled; the difference between the two being this, that we wander for distraction, but we travel for fulfillment.”
— Hilaire Belloc

So if you’re itching to get out and create some new memories, but you’re not sure where to start, don’t worry.

I got you.

For the best places to travel in December 2020, read on for the official Of Whiskey & Words recommendations.

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Best International Destination for Americans in December 2020

For International Travel: Ecuador

Okay, maybe I’m biased, and the best place to travel in December 2020 is where I’m already planning on going. Or maybe I’m going BECAUSE it’s the best place to travel in December…

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“Never delay kissing a pretty girl or opening a bottle of whiskey.”
— Ernest Hemingway

When I first started started drinking whiskey it was Jameson or bust. For the first few weeks when I was trying to be a ‘whiskey guy’ I’d go to the nearest liquor store and buy whatever was on sale. Three weeks in a row it was Jameson and for a really long time I didn’t see the need to change. While Jameson will always have a special place in my heart, it’s no longer the only thing I drink.

Since my Jameson days, I’ve spent a lot of time (more than I’d like to admit), trying different types of whiskey. To be honest, when I first started drinking whiskey I didn’t really know what the different types were or what made them different. Over the past year, I’ve drank more and more rye and bourbon and found that I really enjoy both. …

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This summer, I had the absolute pleasure of white water rafting the Colorado River through 200 miles of the Grand Canyon; and what a trip it was. Throughout the 11-day, paddle-only trip, there were multiple times I was amazed that this was something I was getting to do. I’d been looking forward to this paddle-only rafting trip since 2018 and I can honestly say I wasn’t disappointed.

A large factor in this trip being so badass was the company I booked through and the guides we had.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m pretty positive it’s impossible to have a ‘bad time’ rafting in the Grand Canyon, but certain things will add or detract from the overall experience. Before the trip, I read reviews and did my best to find what I thought was the best rafting company in the Grand Canyon. And if I wasn’t sure before the trip, I definitely am now. I can comfortably say with firsthand experience that Colorado River & Trail Expeditions (aka CRATE) is by far the best rafting company in the Grand Canyon. …

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“You are still young, free.. Do yourself a favor. Before it’s too late, without thinking too much about it first, pack a pillow and a blanket and see as much of the world as you can. You will not regret it. One day it will be too late.”
-Jhumpa Lahiri

Traveling the world is an exciting experience, but it can be somewhat daunting when it is your first time traveling abroad. However, there is nothing to worry about and why we put together our 8 tips for traveling abroad for the first time.

You don’t have to start traveling the world as a complete novice; with a little research, and light reading, you can learn some pro traveling tips that will help you ensure a comfortable and enjoyable international vacation. …

“At 30, you’re old enough to look back, and young enough to look forward.”

In March, I turned 30.

As the birthday came and went, I realized in some ways it was the end of an era -a defining decade. My twenties are officially done, and what a ride it’s been. I always thought turning 30 was going to be bittersweet (with an emphasis on bitter), but now that it’s happened, for me, it seems to be more sweet than anything.

Over the past 10 years I got to cross a lot of things off my bucket list and I can’t imagine having a better 20s. Looking back, I feel thankful for all the chances I took, opportunities I created, and most importantly the people I met along the way. I won’t pretend it was a perfect decade and I’ll be the first to tell you I f*cked up (a lot). But those choices led me to travel to over 50 countries, find a career I love, and share my passions with the world. …

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“It is what you read when you don’t have to that determines what you will be when you can’t help it.
Oscar Wilde

Like a big chunk of the world, I’ve been at home these past few months. I still remember the day (March 13th), I stopped traveling. I said goodbye to the road and hello to my family and bookshelves.

I have a habit of collecting books while I travel. Collecting. Not necessarily reading. Time always seems to slip away.

But once the routine of April kicked in, I started to slowly work my way through an embarrassingly large stack of unread books (I still have 50 more to go. …

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“Traveling shouldn’t be just a tour, it should be a tale.”
Amit Kalantri

If you’re like me, then you already understand the importance of curating your social media and inbox to only include the best of the best when it comes to travel blogs and travel-related content.

If so, let’s get straight to the good stuff →

You have a busy life and other things to do, so while you may have the best of intentions when signing up for a newsletter, you can also easily find yourself inundated with advice and “hacks” that aren’t necessarily relevant to you.

So why bother? …

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“It’s not about the whiskey. It’s about the lives you touch and the people you meet. The whiskey is a by- product of a good relationship.”

Recently a friend recommended I watch Neat: The Story of Bourbon and I’m super glad that they did. It may be obvious, but I enjoy a good glass of whiskey, scotch, and bourbon, but if I’m being honest don’t know nearly enough about any of them. So sitting down for an hour to watch a documentary focusing on bourbon wasn’t a hard sell.

Neat is a documentary that dives into the rich and storied world of bourbon. Exploring it’s colorful history, charismatic characters, and uniquely American process, the film is a celebration of the time, artistry, and relationships that make for America’s only native spirit. …

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It’s no secret John Steinbeck is one of my favorite writers. Hell, the blog name Of Whiskey and Words isn’t too far off one of his most popular books Of Mice and Men. East of Eden is my favorite book of all time and I decided recently to reread it. The reread got me thinking about Steinbeck’s other books, short stories, and letters.

John Steinbeck Background

Born on February 27, 1902 in Salinas, California, John Ernst Steinbeck Jr. was brought up with modest means. John Ernst Steinbeck, his father, had several jobs to make ends meet. The senior Steinbeck ran a flour plant, was a Monterey County treasurer, and once owned a feed-and-grain store. Olive Hamilton Steinbeck, his mother, was a former teacher. John Jr. …

“Burning Man will change your life…You just do not know how yet”

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It’s that time of year, time for the Burn. For me, Labor Day means Burning Man . Whether I was lucky enough to get a ticket or am stuck at home catching glimpses from my social media, once you know Burning Man exists you’ll forever long to be apart of it. But what is Burning Man? If you follow my adventures through Of Whiskey and Words or Instagram you know that I’ve been to Burning Man a few times. …

Todd Smidt

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