Marketing: How to Chill with the M-Word

Marketing – Oh NO!! – How to CHILL with the M-WORD

…-…. “Marketing isn’t my thing… I LOVE to create, but….not that sales stuff… It’s just not my T-H-I-N-G…” Ummm. Whoopsi…. I’ve heard that SO many times! Usually, from fabulously talented people with an absolute horror – almost dis-GUST – of marketing. Yuk! Sounds like you?  Be honest… 🙂 I feel ya… But let me ask you this: […]

Sassyliscious Brand Explosion

Sassyliscious Brand Explosion – Say wha’…?

….. What the booty is a “Brand”? – and why do I need one? Superliscious question! Why indeed? Well …. Actually, you don’t – “need” – a brand. You ARE – the brand. Woa! Ummm. Wha’..? I don’t get it…? Yep. Your brand is an expression of WHO you are and what drives you… aka WHY […]

Find your passion and true purpose

23 POWERFUL QUESTIONS to Awaken Your Passion & Find Your True Purpose

“Inside each and every one of us is one true authentic swing. Something we were born with. Something that’s ours and ours alone. Something that can’t be taught to you or learned. Something that’s got to be remembered.” – The Legend of Bagger Vance …. This inspiring quote from the movie “The Legend of Bagger Vance”, […]

The Menjangan Luxury Beach Hotel Bali National Park

MY 10 BEST OFFICES of 2016

…. 2016 was a fantastic year with many new impressions and adventures. Southern Africa, incl. Mauritius, New Zealand and Australia, South East Asia, including Bali, and Dubai. It was hard to pick a list of just 10, but here it is. Enjoy…;-) …. #1 – BALI – Deer passing in front of my porch….Beach Villa […]

ONE MAN’S QUEST TO ERASE POVERTY – ONE PRE-SCHOOL AT A TIME: How a Wild Motorcyclist turned Missionary is Transforming the Future of some of Botswana’s Poorest Children

********* Botswana is not a “pretty” country…. Beyond the magnificent wonders of the Okavango Delta and Chobe River & National Park, Botswana is mostly marked by the barrenness of the Kalahari Desert – and it’s a rather desolate sight. Unlike the Namib Desert with its spectacular Sand Dunes and warm, exquisite colors, the Kalahari is not a welcoming place. That’s […]

farm sit in South Africa Cape Town

A FARM SIT IN AFRICA….

********* “I had a farm in Africa….” Meryl Streep’s iconic first words from Out of Africa came to mind when I was offered a farm sit in the lovely wine region around Cape Town – Wellington to be exact. The scenery was quite different of course, and I wasn’t involved in running a farm, except for watching over […]

Namibia, Sossusvlei, Desert Dunes

NAMIBIA – The Desert Dunes of Sossusvlei (Namib Desert)

********* Sossusvlei in the Namib Desert remains to this day among the most stunningly beautiful experiences in all my travels! It was breathtaking, stunning, magnificent and also incredibly quiet. There is a stillness about the desert – and the Namib in particular. Time just stands still, you can hear the silence – and the colors….. The […]

MAGICAL ANGKOR WAT – The Most Stunning Site in Asia

********* Angkor Wat, the famous UNESCO Heritage site in Cambodia, is one of those once-in-a-lifetime experiences that really live up to the hype. It is absolutely spectacular and seemed to get ever more impressive with every temple we saw. Visiting Angkor is exhausting, for sure! You will never climb as many stairs in your life as […]

Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden

Cape Town – The Wonderful Gardens of KIRSTENBOSCH

********* “The most beautiful Garden in Africa”….. A fitting description for the magnificent Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens! Set against the backdrop of Table Mountain‘s Eastern Slopes and featuring a collection of bronze dinosaurs that appear everywhere in the park, my day spent here was truly wonderful. Lovely little pathways, benches along the way to enjoy the stunning vistas – and […]

diwan

TUGU HOTEL BALI – An Art Collector’s Dream in a Romantic Surfers’ Paradise

********* What do Donna Karan, Kate Moss and Roman Polanski have in common? well….they all stayed at Tugu Hotel Bali, one of the premier luxury hotels on the island – and often listed among the 100 Most Beautiful Hotels in the World. I recently had the opportunity to stay at this beautiful gem and what an amazing […]

Beach Villa at the Menjangan

THE MENJANGAN – Luxury Beach Villas in the West Bali National Park

********* In the most remote corner of Bali – the West Bali National Park – one very special place recently captured my heart: THE MENJANGAN,  a Luxury Resort with Beach Villas so quiet and secluded you easily forget busy civilization and all the stresses that come with it. A haven of peace, surrounded by beautiful nature and wildlife […]

Puri Bagus Lovina magnificent pool

PURI BAGUS LOVINA – Luxury Ocean Villas and a Magnificent Pool

********* “Beautiful Palace” that is the meaning of the Balinese word Puri Bagus – and it is indeed a fitting name! This well known luxury resort on the Northern Coast of Bali near Lovina features 40 Balinese style villas and a spectacular pool – right on the ocean. Green, palm tree lined pathways invite to leisurely strolls along […]

Scuba Diving in Amed

BALI Adventures – My First Scuba Dive in Amed

********* My first Scuba Dive! That one had been on my bucket list for a long time – and what better place to do it than a famous diving paradise like Amed on the Bali East Coast. Amed is a small village – quiet and chill – the only tourists you’ll find here are divers – and not […]

SUARA AIR Luxury Villas: Exquisite Solitude in the Ubud Countryside

********* It was my first visit to Ubud, the lovely artist town in the Bali heartland, and I knew it would be beautiful. I did, however, not expect to be so charmed by the lovely accommodation I found along the way: Suara Air Luxury Villas in the picturesque village of Benjar Melayang. Blissfully untouched by modern […]

Dubai Yacht Cruise with Atlantis Hotel

DUBAI Yacht Cruise – The Ultimate Dubai Experience!

********* A Yacht Cruise had not been the first thing on my mind when I visited Dubai for the first time this past September. There is so much to see and explore – and of course, there is the desert with all its adventures and fun. Fortunately, someone invited me aboard a small yacht and it […]

travel bucket list

My Travel BUCKET LIST….

********* After checking off so many things during the last year alone, I decided to finally put my bucket list “on paper” and share it here. Both as inspiration – and – I’d love to hear what’s on yours! Please share in the comments.   In no particular order: ADVENTURE Multi Day Horse Trek through Yellowstone Natl. […]

Dubai Day Trips: UAE East Coast & Mountains

DUBAI Day Trips: UAE East Coast & Mountains

********* What a different vision of this fascinating region! A Dubai Day Trip to the beautiful UAE East Coast and the Emirate of Fujairah via stunning mountain scenery! Here is a video of the whole trip: A Dubai Day Trip through 4 Emirates This Dubai Day Trip passes through 4 Emirates: Dubai, Sharjah, Ras Al-Khaimah and Fujairah – […]

Dhow Dinner Cruise Dubai

Dhow Dinner Cruise in the Spectacular DUBAI MARINA

********* A Dhow Dinner Cruise through the Dubai Marina Canal was another wonderful discovery during my first stay in Dubai! Dhow boats are the old (historic) wooden boats that can be seen everywhere in Dubai and Abu Dhabi. They are floating restaurants, very comfy – and a night time, a dinner cruise through the Dubai […]

Abu Dhabi Grand Mosque

DUBAI Day Trips: Abu Dhabi

********* Among Dubai Day Trips, Abu Dhabi is one of the most popular options. While the city is much smaller and doesn’t have the liveliness and extravagance of Dubai, it still has much too offer. Abu Dhabi Emirate is by far the largest and richest in the union. Unlike Dubai, whose oil reserves are running […]

Human Charger, jet lag

The Ultimate JETLAG Cure!

  You know the feeling….. You are excited about your trip. You can’t wait to see see Paris, London or Rome, but once you get there…..you are dead tired, completely exhausted, not good for anything. Travel from the US East Coast to Europe seems to be especially challenging – I always found the 9 hours from California […]

a walk with lions

A Walk with Lions in VICTORIA FALLS, ZIMBABWE

********* My first visit to Victoria Falls included 3 amazing once-in-a-lifetime experiences that are still among the greatest travel experiences of my journeys so far: The magnificent Victoria Falls themselves A stay at the iconic Victoria Falls Hotel – and – A Walk with Lions! A Word of Warning Before I get into the article I […]

Victoria Falls Hotel

The Magnificent VICTORIA FALLS HOTEL in ZIMBABWE – Luxury Hotels in Africa

********* Victoria Falls, the awe-inspiring nature spectacle in the heart of Africa had been on my travel list for many years, and I was excited to finally make the journey in March of 2016. A few weeks before, I had received an invitation as a travel writer from the legendary Victoria Falls Hotel in Zimbabwe – one of the oldest […]

Road Trip around stunning Otago Peninsula near Dunedin, South Island, New Zealand - SassyZenGirl.com/New-Zealand

Road Trips NEW ZEALAND: Otago Peninsula

One of the absolute gems on the South Island lies right off Scottish Dunedin – the Otago Peninsula. A place of fascinating remote beauty, wildlife and even a real Scottish castle and an Albatros research centre on its very tip. I entered via Highcliff road and was greeting with these stunning vistas:

Cape Town 10 things to do

10 Amazing Things To Do in CAPE TOWN (….aside from Table Mountain)

​”Breathtaking!” – “Stunning!” – “Amazing!” – were the superlatives coming to mind every day I spent in this amazing region!Cape Town and the Cape Penninsula are without a doubt one of most stunningly beautiful and varied regions in the world!Whether it is the turquoise blue ocean, sandy beaches, exceptional wildlife – whales, sharks and penguins in particular – historic Mandela […]

Mauritius

Why I did not like MAURITIUS….

.  Well…. there it is…… I said it. I did not like Mauritius. Not at all! Surprising, yes….. but that was my experience. Somehow I had envisioned white sandy beaches, palm trees, quiet lagoons and anything else you might expect in a tropical paradise, but there was none of that. The typical Mauritius photos must […]

Zambezi River Cruise

ZAMBEZI RIVER Cruise – Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe: It’s Hippo time!

The Zambezi is the fourth largest river in Africa and features the magnificent Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe. LOTs of hippos everywhere in all varieties and shapes. Another sunset cruise, this time with dinner. A lot busier than the Chobe River cruise, but I’m told lunch cruises are a lot more quiet. Nonetheless, a boat trip on […]

BOTSWANA – CHOBE River Cruise & Safari: Hippos, Crocs & Elephants

Chobe National Park in Botswana is the 2nd largest park in Southern Africa and includes the mighty Chobe River. A Chobe River Cruise is among the wonderful experiences in this region with abundant wildlife sightings and a remarkably quiet vibe, compared to Zambezi River cruises. This video features lots of of elephants, hippos and a few crocs. […]

rooben island mandela prison

SOUTH AFRICA – The Nelson Mandela Trail

    ********* Nelson Mandela – “Madiba” as he is lovingly called – is still ever present in South Africa. No matter where you go, you will see pictures and landmarks dedicated to him, and people everywhere – of all races – have the greatest love and reverence for him. A beautiful part of my […]

Road Trips SOUTH AFRICA – The Quiet Beauty of Golden Gate

    ********* After two days in Durban, I headed North towards JoBurg. Along the way were 2 more famous sites: Midlands Meander and the Golden Gate Highlands National Park. Midlands Meander is a collection of little villages with cute cafes, shops and galleries, dotted along the beautiful countryside around the highway. The signs will give you some idea… […]

Durban Skyline

Road Trips SOUTH AFRICA – The Other Side of Durban

    ********* Durban is awesome! I actually found it to be the most beautiful and interesting city in South Africa – definitely more interesting than Cape Town (though that’s almost sacrilegious to say….;-) Cape Town is nice, don’t get me wrong. And the scenery around it, the Cape Peninsula and the beaches are breath […]

road trip from aliwal north to durban

Road Trips SOUTH AFRICA – Spectacular Mountain Drive from Aliwal North to Durban

This second leg of my road trip through the mountains was absolutely spectacular! – and no more dirt roads or getting lost in the African bush….;-) I started from the farm near Aliwal North, first passing through a little town named Lady Gray (how lovely….;-)  –  until the road suddenly opened into the most amazing scenery! Distinctly shaped […]

Road Trips SOUTH AFRICA – Into to the Mountains: How I got lost in the African bush…

This was probably the most adventurous road trip of my entire Africa adventure – and it sure wasn’t planned that way….;-) After driving along the beautiful Garden Route and visiting Addo Elephant Park near Port Elizabeth (PE), it was time to head inland through the mountains towards Bloemfontein. A young German friend was working as a horse […]

Storms River Mouth

Road Trips SOUTH AFRICA – The Garden Route

    ********* Extensive volumes have been written on the Garden Route with all the many things you can do and see, so I will focus on the highlights that I very much enjoyed and hopefully it will give you some inspiration for your own planning. Lets start with a map: We ended the last leg […]

Cape L'Agulhas

Road Trips SOUTH AFRICA – Whale Coast Route to Garden Route

    ********* The Garden Route had been on my bucket list for many years – and I was excited to finally embark on this awesome adventure! While enjoying a lovely house sit in Simon’s Town on the Cape Peninsula with stunning views of the bay…. ….I planned my epic road trip all over South Africa: Garden Route to […]

Swakopmund, Namibia

NAMIBIA – Swakopmund, the Belle of the Sea…

Well….. if I didn’t know better I could have sworn I somehow ended up in “Little Germany” on my way to the desert – because that’s exactly what Swakopmund is.Namibia used to be a German West Africa back in the day and the influence is still noticeable everywhere – though nowhere as strongly as in Swakopmund.I […]

Timbavati Safari Lodge

An Oasis in the Bush….

Timbavati Safari Lodge at Kruger National Park I was lucky…. My first introduction to Africa was a beautiful place called Timbavati Safari Lodge near Kruger National Park. After reading many excellent reviews on TripAdvisor and several pleasant e-mail exchanges with managers Kylie and Rob, I decided to make Timbavati my starting point for my first African […]

Village Walk near Kruger National Park, South Africa

A visit with the local Villagers…

My last day at Kruger National Park was spent visiting the local village and later attending a gospel service where I was invited to play along with the choir. My guide for the day was Axon who also lives in the village and I was in for a few surprises…. We were first greeted by […]

elephant sanctuary south africa

My Encounter with Tembo, the Elephant

Elephants….. Giants of the wild, beloved all around the world – an aura of mystique and wonder, and somehow of everything that is good in the world. Even little children smile when they see an elephant – and most of us are mezmerized whenever we come across the gentle giants…. Recently I had the good […]

Safari in the Rain - South Africa Kruger

SOUTH AFRICA – Safari in the Rain (Kruger Natl. Park – Part 2)

My second day of safari started with heavy rain, spreading great joy, especially among the animals! While December is at the heart of rainy season, it hadn’t rained much yet this year and the river beds were dry. It was a big problem and the rare instances of rainfall were always welcome. After a gorgeous, sunny first day, […]

Kruger National Park, South Africa - on safari

SOUTH AFRICA – Safari at Kruger National Park (part 1)

The big day had arrived! December 1, 2015… I was finally embarking on my indefinite journey around the world and had reached my first destination South Africa after a 15 hour flight from New York. This was to be my itinerary for the next 2 months: Kruger National Park, the Namib Desert & Swakopmund in Namibia, […]