Visiting St. Patrick’s cathedral in Dublin and learning about the Saint

“Yes, this is that St. Patrick’s Cathedral,” said the security guard. I must had sounded so out of place when I asked, “If this is the famous St. Patrick’s Cathedral or is this a replica?” Well, I’m sure you all know that this is the world famous cathedral. When I was in Dublin, I thought this was just another church named after the saint. Kind of like the one in Midtown Manhattan. Funny fact, my friend was having an event at that the Manhattan St. Patrick’s Cathedral in the middle of summer once. It was about 94 degrees outside (34 Celsius), I just came back from a trip to Argentina. When I had my bags checked, the security guard saw my winter coat. He asked me,”Are you coming from the North Pole or are you one of those New York weirdos?” Two times when I seemed out of place, both ironically in the Cathedral named after the same guy.

In St Patrick’s cathedral photo courtesy of Hugo Morel

There is an entrance fee to get inside this church, I think it was about 10 usa dollars. The fee is used to maintain the place. It’s good to know that my money is going to good use. Once inside, you are engulfed by all the patterns on the floor and the colors of the windows. One thing about catholic churches, they are usually very beautiful. I was speechless at how much effort was put into building this visually appealing place.

Where mass is held at the cathedral photo courtesy of Hugo Morel

The atmosphere just felt peaceful. Everybody was having a good time. It is somewhat easy to just spend hours in this place and lose track of time. With every turn, lays another beautifully painted glass window or arches that together look like a masterpiece. I had giant smile on my face.

Every Glass window tells a different biblical story. Growing up catholic, you tend to take these things for granted. Been to Buddhist temples, mosques and Hindu temples. They all have their own standard/style of beauty. With mosques, the Persian and Berber/Moorish styles tend to have the most breathtaking patterns. Buddhist temples tend to have beautiful statues with incredible architecture. The Hindu temples are so colorful and otherworldly charming. However, none pull my heartstrings like the catholic churches. There is just so brings so much nostalgia. The way the windows are painted just remind me of my childhood. Even though, I was asleep most of time during Sunday mass as a kid. I was the kid that kept getting pinched at church for sleeping. Regardless of how I feel, you really have to appreciate how humanity shows their love towards their religion through art and architecture.

British flags in the cathedral to remind the world where St Patrick was born photo courtesy of Hugo Morel

So some of you are wondering, “Who was St Patrick?” “What was St Patrick known for?” “Where was St Patrick born?” “Was Saint Patrick real?” His story is very interesting. Where St. Patrick was actually born was somewhere in Roman Britain. Scholars are not too sure of exactly where. He was one day captured by Irish pirates. Forced into slavery and became a shepherd. During his years as a slave, the saint became a christian. He eventually heard a voice in his head saying he should run away. He followed that voice and escaped from his master. The saint eventually returned to his family. After some time, he saw a vision and went back to Ireland to spread Christianity. Which he eventually converted many Irish to believe in his faith.  He later became a priest that lead the Christian community in Ireland. How did St Patrick died is actually something we all have to think twice about in our lives. He died of working too hard. He lived 40 years in poverty teaching and traveling to spread Christianity. The day Patrick died is actually when is St Patrick’s day is marked on everybody’s calendar. March 17 is when St Patrick passed away. Crazy thing is on St Patrick’s day 2019, I had no idea I would end up in Ireland several months later. You never truly know, what the future has in store for you.

Another beautiful painted glass window photo courtesy of Hugo Morel

The further you go into the cathedral, the more it leaves you in awe. This truly charming cathedral with it’s classy arches and wonderful atmosphere. It is very hard to put in words how I really felt about this place. The St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin makes all the other replicas look like horrible imitations. Nothing beats the original. Something about the one in Dublin, really captures that special feeling. It’s as if, Ireland the country put it’s heart into creating this masterpiece. Knowing that this is the place where the saint became famous and did his work. That is something that the imitators can never copy. I truly suggest coming here on your trip to Dublin. I promise you will leave with a smile on your face and another level of respect for Mr. St Patty. He much more than just the drinking, partying and the St Patrick’s feast day. His legacy and what he did for Ireland is something worthy of having his own day. Truly makes you enjoy the color green in another way.

Thank you so much for reading! Much love and safe travels!

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Taking a breather at St. Patrick’s Park

On the outside of the world famous cathedral, lays a very elegant park. One that might get over looked if you not careful. The St. Patrick’s Park has a charm that is hard to match. A sense of peace mixed with a classic atmosphere. No crazy person running around asking for hamburgers or something. It is truly a place for a quick breather from the urban Dublin.

Inside of the park photo courtesy of Hugo Morel

When you first come into the park, it’s hard not to get distracted by the cathedral being on the right hand side of the entrance. Luckily for me, I saw a beautiful display of nature and I had to take a look. If you have been reading this blog for a while, I’m sure you know that I love going with the flow. You notice things more that you might had overlooked because you were so focused on the destination. A wise man once said, ” It’s about the journey and not the destination.” That is something I believe more people should take to heart. In the short life I have lived, the more I was happy with the process or journey, the more I valued the people around me and enjoyed things most people often overlook. It’s better to live in the moment, than to live in the what could be. Just trusting the process let’s all the stress disappear. Even in hard times, gives you a reason to smile brightly.  Which is the reason why I love going to parks.

The beautiful colors of nature and the reason why I visited the park photo courtesy of Hugo Morel


The further I walked into St. Patrick’s park, the more I saw what I came here for. The way nature is displayed and placed, I almost forgot about any negative thoughts. The peace this park displayed made me jealous. I wish New York could have more peace in their parks. Sadly, there is constantly a white background noise that is a result of all the chaos going around. Can’t be mad at that, since that also gives New York City it’s charm. However, despite Dublin being one of the largest cities in the E.U (even with brexit, Dublin is a City in the E.U). This city’s doesn’t have a strong background noise presence. You hear birds chirping like at the time of sunrise. The noise of birds dominating the airways because most people are still asleep. The type of feeling you get in rural areas. For a minute, I forgot I was in the Irish capital.

St. Patrick’s cathedral photo courtesy of Hugo Morel

The history of this park is very interesting. It is believed that this is the site where St. Patrick baptized the first Irish Christians. So, it’s the place where Christianity was believed to have started in Ireland. I had no idea about the importance of the place when I was there. I swear, I really need to research the places I go to. It would gave anybody a better level of appreciation of the place they travel to. Sometimes, I feel like I’m taking travel for granted.

The beautiful garden at the park photo courtesy of Hugo Morel

I sat on the bench and people watched. I was comparing the two cultures of the USA and Ireland. The Irish in Dublin are just more cheerful and easy going. I truly enjoy the atmosphere of Dublin. People here are so friendly. Couldn’t wait to see more of this city and of Ireland. Of course, St. Patrick’s cathedral was calling for me.  Luckily, I was not too far away.

Thank you so much for reading! Much love and safe travels!

Check out our eBook “How to Travel for Dirt Cheap” by Hugo Morel for ways to make your dreams of traveling come true without breaking the bank.
For videos about cultures of the world and to see our travels, subscribe to our youtube channel!
For my underwater photos, I use the gopro hero 7 white.

We have partnered up with and working on TripAdvisor. Here are some links for each hope you all enjoy!

Here are links to hotels and other deals.

For Hotels, make sure to click here. For apartments make sure to click here. For Resorts click here. For villas click here. For bed and breakfast and for Guest houses, make sure to click the links!

Who are the Belizean people

As my time in Belize was coming to an end, I kept noticing the mixture this country has. I mentioned this before in another post. However, I never really went in depth.

The people of Belize Photo courtesy of belizing

With a country with a little over 350,000, the people living within it’s borders are very mixed. The people are mixed with African, Native Mayans, European or east and south Asian. Most Belizeans have some mixture of one those ethic groups. There are recent immigrants that are not mixed. However, by the next or the following generation, they would mix with the majority of the population.

Women of belize Photo courtesy of

Growing up in California, there were so many descendants of the Mayans that were my friend. From the Salvadoran to the Guatemalan and Mexican, I was very familiar to the Mayan facial features. Coming to Belize completely shocked me. It was like seeing all my Mayan descendants friend speak English with Caribbean accent. All this was so surprising and it was a little hard to believe.

Another photo of the women of Belize Photo courtesy of

When I first saw the Belizeans, I expected them to speak Spanish.  After seeing the people at my hostel, you could tell they had some African roots. This mixture is really interesting to me. I had a few friends growing up that were half African American and half Mexican. The Belizeans I met at my hostel could pass as my friends’ siblings.

Traditional Belizean food Photo courtesy of

The food in Belize is amazing! You can taste the diversity of this country. It was like eating Mexican food mixed with Caribbean dishes. The rice had the flavors of Jamaican/west Indian. The rice and beans were spicy. You can taste the Indian curry in the meal. I almost felt like never coming back to the USA, after eating a few dishes here. My family comes from a Caribbean island. So eating this food reminded me of my childhood. Bringing Mexican food from the restaurants then mixing it with the home cooked Caribbean meal my mother used to cook me. The sweet plantain made the memories even stronger. All these flavors reflected the people of Belize.

Mennonites women with their children photo courtesy of

Lastly, the funny thing about Belize, there is an ethic group of Europeans that speak German as a first language. They are called the Mennonites. The majority of the Mennonites have been historically white European. However, in recent years there have been some converts from all the racial groups of Belize. Yet, the white European are still the majority within that ethic group. Also, the Mennonites are a form of Christians. Think of them being similar to the Amish of the United States. I didn’t get to see them because I spent most of my time on the islands. The Mennonites are usually on the main land of Belize.

Photo courtesy of

As you can see, Belize being the tiny country it is has a lot to offer. With so many ethic groups and so much diversity, it’s hard to come back home as the same person. Coming to Belize has really opened my eyes. From North to South America, the countries in them are enriched by immigrants and the culture they bring. All that mixture is what makes the western hemisphere so interesting. Glad, I got to spend my time in Belize. I wish I could had stayed longer.

Thank you for reading! Much love and safe travels!

To start your own adventures, check out the link below.

Check out our eBook “How to Travel for Dirt Cheap” by Hugo Morel for ways to make your dreams of traveling come true without breaking the bank.

Inside Cairo’s Coptic community

Now, this is something not many tourists get to see. I’m truly excited to be sharing this with you all. Unfortunately, some of these sites and buildings have been destroy due to bombings. So, these are photos that are hard to come by.

Greek Orthodox church taken by Hugo Morel

The Coptic Christians are actually descents of the Greek settlers, since ancient times. They eventually mixed with the general population; however, they maintained their religion and culture. That’s why you see a lot of greek letters in the Coptic alphabet.

Another church in old Cairo taken by Hugo Morel

Walking around and you really feel a sense of community. Similar to most minority communities, there’s a sense of togetherness. Everybody knows everybody, or knows your family.

Taken by Hugo Morel

As we explored the churches, it was hard not to notice the diversity. You see muslims in the churches viewing where Jesus was believed to go in hiding. What my local friend told me, Jesus is actually an important figure in Islam. Also, a lot of Muslim Egyptians have relatives that are Coptic Christians. There’s really no “bad blood” between the Coptic Christians and the average Muslims. Unlike, how the media loves to portray it. Some of my Muslim friends I met in Egypt, celebrate Christmas with their Coptic friends.

The well where Jesus was believed to drink water from taken by Hugo Morel

Learning all this from locals, made it hard not to love this country even more. It’s so interesting seeing this in person. Everyday in Egypt, has made me grow into a better person. One of the more humbling experiences in my life.

Coptic priest and a follower taken by Hugo Morel

In the Coptic traditions, the priests should not shave their beards. It’s a sign of respect, showing the wisdom of Jesus. At first, I thought they were Muslim. Then, I saw the cross necklaces and I knew the beards must be a tradition.

This is why I love traveling! It truly opens your mind and helps you experience being in the moment.

A hidden hole where Jesus was believed to hide in when the Romans were looking for him taken by Hugo Morel

Sadly, some of these places have been destroyed due to terrorist groups. I learned this from my local friends. So much history lost, due to false teachings of hate. If we were to learn more about each other, there would be a lot less conflicts in this world. Hopefully with my posts, you will learn to love others different to you. Learn to accept and appreciate people’s differences. However small, that will be the first steps to world peace. Love always shine!

Thank you for reading. Much love and safe travels!

To start your own adventures, check out the link below.

Check out our latest e-book “How to Travel for Dirt Cheap” by Hugo Morel for ways to make your dreams of traveling come without breaking the bank:

Exploring old Cairo: the Coptic Christians and Egyptian Judaism

Now, when someone thinks of Egypt, they don’t really think about Christians or Jews. However, it’s time to change that. Let’s spread some light to cultures and societies that are often overlooked, when speaking about this beautiful African country.

A Stairway in old Cairo taken by Hugo Morel

Getting into old Cairo just takes a simple train ride. It’s about a 20 min ride from the main square in downtown. When my friend told me where we were going, I had no idea what to expect.

Coptic Christian getting a cross tattoo. Brought to you by google.

As we arrived, I noticed that there were several people getting tattoos. The narrow alleyways were filled with tattoo parlors. That’s something I didn’t expect in a somewhat conservative Middle Eastern country.

Coptic Christian tattoo brought to you by google

My local friend told me, that the Christians in Egypt get tattoos. Also, learned the meaning behind the cross tattoos. Many centuries ago, the Egyptian government did not accept Christians; nor, any other religion that was not Islam. Until this day, the national Egyptian Ids tell you what religion a person belongs to.

The coptic language alphabet brought to you by Google.

As a way to differentiate from the Arab conquerors, the Coptic Christians tattooed themselves. In modern times, they wear their tattoo with pride. Since, it shows they were in Egypt before the Arabs.

As I was later told by my Egyptian friends in the usa, the Coptic language is the direct descent of the ancient Egyptian language. The hyroglifics were eventually turned into the Coptic alphabet, as seen in the photo above. One of the few alphabets that are native to Africa. An once almost forgotten language, many activists fought to keep the language alive. Now, it’s the main language for the Coptic Christians. Crazy to think, at one point Coptic was once an official language of Egypt.

Sign pointing out the different houses of worship taken by Hugo Morel

The further up you go through the alleyways, you eventually get to this sign (as seen above). When I saw this, I was in complete disbelief. Never would I thought a synagogue would be in Egypt. Yet, it was there in front of my eyes! When I took this picture, I knew it will probably shock you all too.

A sign of the jewish community taken by Hugo Morel

Now, the Jewish community in Egypt is very interesting. Since the ancient times, the Jewish had a presence in this country. In more modern times, the Jewish community moved to Egypt from different parts of the Ottoman Empire. Majority were the Rabbanites Jews. Most later moving to Israel, once it became a Jewish state. Sadly, not much is left of this community. The population is at most in the 200’s. Here is a link, if you want to learn more about this topic.

Thank you for reading. Much love and safe travels!

Next week, we will be explore more of old Cairo!

To start your own adventures, check out the link below.

Check out our latest e-book “How to Travel for Dirt Cheap” by Hugo Morel for ways to make your dreams of traveling come without breaking the bank:

Entering the smallest country in the world

Vatican city, the home base of the Catholic Church. A country of about 1000 people and the place where the Pope lives. Do not let the name confuse you, it’s actually a country.

St. Peter’s square taken by Hugo Morel

Although, it’s not recognized by the United Nations as an actual country; Vatican city is self-governed. Besides speaking Italian, the Pope’s home is not apart of Italy nor Rome; even if it’s in the middle of Italy’s capital.

St. Peter’s square at sun rise taken by Hugo Morel

Entering this country feels more like an airport than immigration. You have to go through a metal detector. If someone acts up, they will have to deal with these guys.

The guards of Vatican City taken by Hugo Morel

To be honest, these guards I think are just for show. They aren’t really frightening nor to be taken seriously. Just look at those colors!

The entrance to Vatican City taken by Hugo Morel

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. Much love!! Have an awesome weekend and stay healthy! Next time we will be exploring more of Vatican city.

The saint of Assisi, Italy

After our experiences in Florence, the crew started it’s way to Assisi. At the time, I never really thought much about this city; however, it would be an unique experience.

Arriving to the city was actually exciting because we were very hungry. The crew thought it was best we did not stop to eat and just drive straight there to save time. Well of course, we got stuck in traffic. So we feed on light snacks. Once we got to Assisi, we ate like Kings and Queens.

So this city is actually the place where Saint Francis is from. My home town San Francisco was named after this Saint. It was a weird experience that is truly hard to put into words. I could see the similarities in the city and the Saint. Saint Francis to the Catholic Church is the saint of animals. San Francisco has a lot of vegans and animal rights activists. I found that to be very interesting.

Assisi itself is just a normal sized city. The buildings were nice. The narrow alleyways reminds you are in an european town; yet, the mountains in the background, reminded me of the mountains on the Californian countryside.

The city was so beautiful in a classic European way. No big skyscrapers, just beautiful Italian scenery.

The shops had everything in them. From assassin’s Creed gear to soap. It was weird to see soaps being sold right next to coats with hidden blades. There’s a joke hidden in there but I’m not going to touch it (pun intended).

As we explored more of the city, we were shown where Saint Francis was locked up by his dad. His dad was a very rich man and was angry that Francis wanted to become a priest. So he locked him in a small room similar to a dungeon. Eventually, Francis became a clergyman and later, one of the most well known saints.

(All photos were taken by Hugo Morel)

Thank you for reading, enjoy your weekend. Next time, we will finally go to Rome!!

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