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Carnival Cruise: West Caribbean

Once again, Carnival exceeded all of my expectations as we set sail for our second cruise in the Caribbean! This year we went to Grand Cayman Islands, Honduras, Belize, and Mexico! 

Grand Caymans: We booked an excursion to go swim with the sting rays at StingRay City with a company called Aquarius, our tour guide being Mario. They did a great job of telling us all about the sting rays, letting us interact with them and making sure they were being kept safe as we took pictures. The sting rays were like giant puppies! We also got to snorkel at a reef site and they served us Rum punch on the way back to the port! For sure go with this company if you ever find yourself in the beautiful Grand Caymans! Honduras: best excursion ever, swimming with dolphins! It was so incredible I made a separate post just for it that you can read HERE
Belize: Cave tubing with Butts Up! I’ll admit, from our port to the cave it was an hour drive plus a 30 minute hike. However, once we were there it was totally worth it! The tour guides actually carried our tubes the whole way and guided our group with ease through the National Park of Belize. In the caves there were bats flying around, monkeys hanging out in trees, and the coolest plants/fruits growing wildly in the jungle. This was definitely different from our usual tropical excursions but well worth it exploring inland Belize! Cozumel: The last port on our cruise was Mexico and I thought we would take it easy with a beach day at Paradise Beach.  It was a 8$ taxi from the port to the beach, and drinks and food were reasonably priced. I would for sure go back the next time we’re in Mexico! 

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Best Trip Ever: He Proposed! 

John and I are engaged!!! I was completely surprised and had no clue he would propose on our trip! I’ve always known I have wanted to marry John but did not expect to be engaged till later this year around the holidays. Hands down, the best trip ever! 
Day 2 of our cruise was a “Day At Sea” and we had “formal night” for dinner. While I was unpacking the last couple of items John said he was going for a run. He was actually out and about through the ship trying to find the best setting to propose! I was taking my sweet time to get ready and he pretended to be reading his book but later on he said “I was so nervous. I just needed a book to hide my face”. 

We then headed down to the main lobby to listen to the live band and as we were headed up the steps he asked a girl to take our picture. 5 seconds later he was down on one knee!! Praise Jesus! Couldn’t be happier. We then got to enjoy the rest of our trip calling each other “fiancé” and were all sorts of giddy! Here’s to the start of our biggest adventure yet–marriage! 

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Flight Deal of the month: OKLAHOMA TO SPAIN

Welcome to my new series: Flight Deal of the Month! Ask anyone I know and they will tell you that I’m always looking up flights to take me to a foreign land. There’s so many deals out there if you are flexible with dates and airlines. Check back each month for the best international and domestic flight deals!

For the month of April I give you OKC to MAD for $806 round trip July 1st – July 15th. I found this by looking at Norwegian Airlines (known for their bargain flights to Europe), and Allegiant Air.  The trick is to book two separate and small round trip flights instead of one big round trip flight. For example I typed in the exact same dates as above and the cheapest I found was $1,690. You can save $884 by using the simple trick of booking separately. Here’s the itinerary:

OKC to Orlando (July 1st)…..One full day in Orlando (DisneyWorld?!)….Orlando to Madrid (July 3rd-4th)……1 full week exploring Spain……Madrid to Orlando (July 12th-13th)…..One full day in Orlando (Universal?!)……Orlando to OKC (July 15th).

Crazy! Flights in the summer sky rocket so I was shocked to find this deal! I will say there are some disclaimers: 1. you get one carry on bag, you will have to pay extra if you check a bag. 2. you must pay for meals on the flights, so I suggest raiding the vending machine before you board! 3. typical flight times from USA to western Europe are about 12 hours long. With these flights being smaller airlines theres more layovers making the trip time about 17hours. Still, saving almost $1,000 by watching 5 more episodes of Greys Anatomy in an airport, eating from a vending machine, and packing a little lighter? SO WORTH IT!!


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Three Inexpensive Places to Travel To 

Traveling doesn’t have to cost your life savings (or your kidney or your plasma). Here’s 3 places I’ve traveled to that have been inexpensive and such a fun adventure!!

 The Philippines!! This place in STUNNING. Cheap + stunning! I went back in 2014 and really had a blast. Transportation is on these little bikes with a side car attached and cost less than 1$ American dollar!! I got a 1 hour massage on the beach for $8, and then had the best sushi in the world for $4. Hotels are about $20 per night (if you want to stay in a really nice one), but I stayed in one that was $10 a night! Also you can swim with whale sharks for literally $20!!! (it would easily be over $150 if you did it in the Caribbean). The bulk of your money will be spent on airfare and even then I’ve found flights for $700 round trip!! Highly recommend the Philippines or any SE Asia destination. Your dollar stretches so much further there than somewhere like Hawaii or Cabo!! 

  • Flights: $700
  • Hotel 1 week: $70
  • Transportation: $25
  • Food 1 week: $70
  • Fun/Entertainment (excursion, massage: $50
  • Total: $915pp

Ireland! I feel like everyone automatically thinks Europe is an incredibly expensive place to visit but it really just depends on which country you go to. Seriously anywhere/everywhere is a post card in Ireland. Their hostels are some of the cheapest in Europe. (get over the stigma that you’ll be raped or murdered in a hostel–u won’t!!!! also get over the idea that you always need a private shower + hot water + A/C to survive). Do a pub crawl in Dublin, ride the train into Cork to kiss the Blarney Stone, and sign up for a bus tour around the Cliffs of Moher. I’ve never felt more inside a Disney Movie than galloping around in the bright green fields of Ireland!! Total magic. Once again, bulk of money is spent on flights but once you’re there you can enjoy yourself on a super doable budget. 

  • Flights: 1200
  • Hostel 1 week: 200
  • Food 1 week: 140
  • Transportation: (bus + trains 200)
  • Entertainment: (pubs + castle 100)
  • Total: $1840pp 

San Antonio & Corpus Christi! Omg love it here!! Read about my latest trip HERE & HERE. If you’re from OK you can drive down and back to both of these places for under $100. All we do when we visit South Texas is eat chips and quac and drink too many margaritas, so it’s a pretty laid back vacation compared to other trips we’ve taken. For the past 3 years we’ve stayed at the Fairmont right above the Riverwalk and have thoroughly enjoyed every stay! Texas is full of wine tours/vineyards, Mexican culture, and pretty views of the Gulf of Mexico. A weekend trip is perfect for these two cities! 

  • Gas/Transportation: $100 (split!) 
  • Hotel 3 nights: $340 (split!)
  • Food: $40
  • Entertainment (drinking on Riverwalk + museums + wine tour) 200
  • Total: $465pp (assuming you split hotel and gas with someone). 

Hope this inspires you to make some plans to go travel this summer!!! Make it a priority & go see this beautiful planet!swimming with whale sharks in the Philippines! Kissing the Blarney Stone in Cork, Ireland! Dancing in Dublin pubs!! Wine Tour in San Antonio, TX! 

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BritPotter.COM Turns ONE!!

“I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list”. 

Happy Birthday to this little blog of mine! Thank YOU for reading this line right now and caring about what I have to say! Seriously so humbled that you even click on the link.

I started this website to share about my travels and over the year it has grown into more than that! Many of my friends + complete strangers have reached out to me for tips and advice which has fueled a new passion of mine..to become a……TRAVEl AGENT! Sadly I am not dropping out of school or anything drastic like that, but after graduation this Fall I plan to look into starting my own freelance travel agent business!! Look out for that this year 🙂 So HUGE “thank you’s” to all the readers that have contributed to unveiling this new dream of mine!

While I do not claim to know everything about traveling I have been very, very blessed to explore our planet a bit more extensively than the average 22 year old. Because of this experience I feel adequate to answer any questions you may have. If I don’t know it, I’ll find it and link you to helpful resources. One of the things I don’t post about on my blog is how many questions I get from people, so looking forward I plan to do more Q&A posts sharing those questions with y’all. Feel free to connect with me over FB, Instagram, in the comments section below, text, or send me an email!

Once again, endless thank you’s. Thank you for sharing my blog with your friends, thank you for all the sweet words of encouragement, thank you for your questions, thank you for not getting annoyed with me (lol), and thank you for READING. I love you, stranger on the other side of this screen!!!!!!!

xx, Brit


 

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Spring Break: San Antonio, TX – 2017

Okay I know I say “john and I want to move here after graduation” to pretty much every city we go to but I’m so serious and mean it this time about San Antonio!!! This was our 3rd SB spent in this fun city and here are my favorite things we did!
1. Pearl District Farmers Market + Mexican Festival at Market Square. Every Saturday and Sunday there’s a farmers market in the Pearl District! We got so many fun things, strawberry wine, organic chocolate, and all natural brownie mix for my mom to make us 😉 There’s local vendors that come in, live music, free samples, lots of dogs (!!), and a ton of fun coffee shops + book stores + dainty boutiques you can stroll through. The Mexican Market reminds me of the state fair but with the culture of Mexico intertwined!! The best place we went in for dessert was Tierra Cafe. Both of these markets are great for families and we always make sure to stop by when we visit! 

2. St. Patrick’s Day at the Riverwalk. Yallllll this is such a fun and festive place to be for St. Patrick’s day! It’s a 2 day long celebration on the Riverwalk. They dye the river green, they dye the beer green, they dye the margaritas green, and the people even dye themselves green! Our favorite place is Durty Nellys pub and it truly reminds John and I of when we visited Dublin, Ireland!! There’s a float parade, all sorts of contests, live music, bagpipe players, and it’s overall a super enjoyable time. Highly recommend you go for next years festivities! 
3. Hotel Emma + Lunch at Supper. If you know John and I at all you know that we stay in the cheapest places we can find! So when stumbled upon Hotel Emma while waiting for lunch, we were amazed at how fancy it was! It made CNNs list of top 50 luxurious hotels for 2016!! For the low price of $550 you can enjoy one night in the standard one bedroom ;). Connected to Hotel Emma is the cutest little lunch spot, Supper. Surprisingly they have a lot of affordable little plates, I got the salmon grilled cheese and John got the hummus sand which. Check it out the next time you’re in town! 

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Day Trip to Corpus Christi, TX – 2017

Corpus Christi from San Antonio is only a 2 hour drive so John and I decided to take a little day trip down south!! This is a place that I wouldn’t spend more than a couple of days in, but 24hours was perfect to experience this small beach city! Here’s 3 of my recommendations: 

1. USS Lexington. The history nerd in me came out full force when we took a tour of this WWII ship!!! You could easily spend 10 hours exploring the 2.5 acre museum, but we scheduled 2 hours for our tour and felt satisfied! There’s 5 different decks (my favorites being the flight deck & the lower deck) that are all self guided tours and really give you an idea of what life on the ship was like. It’s a bit more on the pricey side compared to other museums we’ve toured ($15pp + parking) but I highly recommend going!! Outside of the ship/museum Flight deck! 
2. Landrys Seafood + The Pier. Okay so I had no idea that this was a chain restaurant but I was sooooo impressed with Landrys! We had a great time eating appetizers, drinking wine, and looking over the city skyline from the water. I never trust seafood from Oklahoma (Lolol sorry) so I was in heaven eating all the shrimp and crab I could get my hands on!! Prices are totally reasonable if you share a couple of platters. Afterwards it’s fun to take a stroll on the pier and go into little shops and look at all the pretty boats on the water! Dinner on the Pier! so windy + so happy!
3. Bars. The nightlife in Corpus Christi is really laid back and casual. A couple of bars we had a blast in are Executive Surf Club and Rocket where there’s karaoke and pool tables. We stayed in the Omni Hotel (shockingly affordable!!) and located on the 25th floor is the the Republic of Texas–the nicest restaurant in the city. Since there’s no freakin way we were gonna spend $200 on dinner, we went to the bar and had a couple of drinks looking over the bay! Incredibly beautiful, go here with your sweetheart! 

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