My City Google Maps
The most common question I’ve received the past year is “where ARE you?”
Freelancing this 2018-2019 has enabled me to work from anywhere, which sounds oh so pleasant and Instagrammable (more on the realities of this later), but coupled with that I also have a partner whose job has him traveling two weeks of the month on average and lucky for me, I can typically tag if I want to.
Friends have compared me to a modern day Carmen San Diego, and I’m not mad about it (she was my favorite computer game after all).
Anyways, all this to say I’ve racked up the domestic miles. And I’m a planner. Ohhhh I’m a planner. So by popular demand (AKA DMs over social media), I’ve decided to put all of my Google Maps for the cities I’ve been able to hop to in one place.
I cannot promise these are the most comprehensive or that I’ve gone to every single spot on these lists (I create them as aspirational to-dos when I visit a new city), but I can promise they are vetted via hours of Google searches and divvied up by the important things: coffee, bakeries, happy hours, breakfast, dinner, sights, and more.
I will also go out on a limb and use my experience as Yelp Austin intern for a little under a year as addt’l #streetcred.
P.S. Let me know what I should add to any of the cities below, if any!
Austin - I lived here for like 5ish years so feel free to come for me on this if I left anything out!
Houston - Eating and drinking is the name of the game in Htown. There aren’t so many outdoor activities because you are living in a swamp. Yay!
Dallas - The place everyone else in Texas loves to hate, but TBH give her a second peek!
Fredericksburg - HELLO TEXAS WINE COUNTRY! I love Fredericksburg, and Texas wines. Fun fact from Wikipedia: “The sunny and dry climate of the major wine making regions in the state have drawn comparison to Portuguese wines. Some of the earliest recorded Texas wines were produced by Spanish missionaries in the 1650s near El Paso.” Good vibes, restaurants, and airbnbs for rent. About an hour outside of Austin. Does it get any better?
Philly - I freaking love Philly and visit quite a bit. More chill than NYC, more charm than Chicago, not as homogenous in culture as Boston.
Chicago - It honestly took me about five visits to warm up to Chicago. It’s not as walkable neighborhood to neighborhood as New York is, and I initially had only experienced the River North area and some parts of Wicker Park. Its grown on me- food is A+, and there’s quite a bit to actually do (versus eat/drink).
Boston - I’m super lukewarm on the food scene in BOS. They’ve got good sights though, but DYK Massachusetts doesn’t allow alcohol to be discounted so there are quite actually no real happy hours?!
Los Angeles - Oh, LA. I wanted to love LA and the beaches are MAGNIFICENT, but I didn’t walk away with the same awestruck-ness everyone else appears to. I think this is largely because I grew up on a coast, amongst a majority Mexican population, and chill vibes. So, wasn’t a huge splash for me.
NOLA - Controversial opinion: I was not too hot on NOLA. Had a lot of the beautiful architecture of Charleston, good southern soul food (obviously), but aside of that- meh. Some neat touristy things to do (the raised cemeteries), but overall I wasn’t vibing with this city. It’s worth noting that I a) grew up on a coast, b) got a lot of the live music bug from my time in Austin, and c) had already seen this sort of architecture in spots like Charleston and some of the border towns in Texas. Needless to say, there is still a Google map!
*New York is not yet in here because DO YOU KNOW HOW HARD THAT IS?! Coming soon though.
This list is constantly growing, and you can view my Instagram Highlights on most of the above cities here. Happy travels!