As we take road or business trips in the US, we always seek local and authentic places to drink and dine. We have discovered some impressive finds in our travels and will share them with you. Our order has no rhyme and reason, just random cool places we discovered.
Our favorite place to travel is overseas, as our blog shows. That said, we travel quite a bit in our homeland. Ryan has traveled for work and in the army, and Joelle travels with some volunteer work she does. Of course, we travel to visit family and friends regularly, Joelle the most often. In 2020 we took a road trip to New England to work on the blog since Covid kept us from traveling overseas.
Ryan attended an army school before Covid and spent his free time visiting several Kentucky Whiskey distilleries. Therefore, he has some fun places he plans to be writing about. Joelle has been to all fifty states, mostly on business and for speaking engagements over the years. She was always amazed at all the beautiful surprises this country offers in the most unexpected places.
We seek authentic and genuine local places with unique and memorable travel experiences. We will share the ones we enjoyed the most, those funky memorable ones you come to love and tell stories about.
What can you expect from Random Finds?
When traveling, food and drink are very much part of the cultural experience, especially in Europe and the US. There are some incredible unique foods and traditions throughout the US. We firmly believe you should seek local food and drink even on business trips. Hey, you worked all day; the evening is made for fun.
We are wine connoisseurs and love visiting wineries in the US’s best and not-so-good regions. We plan to write posts on our favorite wineries, the more fascinating ones that made our visit extra special. For example, Joelle had a business trip near Napa Valley, California, right before Covid. Once the workday was done, there were some fantastic meals and drinks with her colleagues every night! Many tasting rooms stay open quite late there.
We have visited distilleries in the US and overseas. As noted, Ryan enjoyed lots of whisky tasting in Kentucky during his business trip there! He brought along some of his classmates and made it fun for everyone.
But wine and whisky are not our only interests.
We seek local craft brews, especially in the family of dark beers, in any place, whether together or separately. Joelle loves to bring two gifts home to her husband; hot sauces and local specialty beer.
As we find these incredibly unique gems, we will bring them to you here on our Random Finds page.
As always, if you have exceptionally great places you discover as you wander this country, let us know, and if we are in the area, we will check them out. Maybe, as a result, they will appear on our Random Finds page!!
Our Random Finds Posts
Red Shed Brewery and Taproom Cooperstown, NY
As we travel through our great homeland, we encounter some fantastic gems. We came across the tremendous Red Shed Brewery and Taproom in Cooperstown, NY. Handmade fresh craft beer made with local ingredients, pride, and passion.
Frederick, Maryland: Where Craft Breweries and American History Make for the Perfect Getaway
As we travel through our great homeland, we encounter some fantastic gems. We came across the tremendous breweries in Frederick, Maryland. Handmade fresh craft beer made with pride, and passion.
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Our Top Recommended Travel Products and Resources
Our favorite travel insurance site!
If you book a trip, don’t forget to get travel insurance within 14 days of your first booking. We could not be stronger advocates of being well-insured. Not just for the little stuff but the big things like medical emergencies. We never leave home without it. Over the years, we have used many sites but have now found our go-to place. Squaremouth.com does a fantastic job; it has a user-friendly interface, uses top-rated and reputable insurance carriers, and most policies cover COVID-19 medical issues and cancellations. They also mediate on your behalf if you have problems with your policy.
To empower you as a consumer, we suggest you read our blog post on the importance of travel insurance and how to get the best coverage from top-rated companies for an affordable price.
Medical transport back home from anywhere in the world
They are the premier global air medical transport. One caveat to travel insurance is that medical evacuation usually gets you to the closest facility to care for you. Medjet gets you back to the U.S. to the hospital of your choice once you are stable enough to fly. They cover COVID-related transport as well.
Medjet carries its own policies. The policy is only for transport and no other aspects of travel insurance. They have individual trip policies starting at $99 and annual policies for around $300. Most of their policies limit the age to 74 and younger. Prices are not based on age below that.
To learn more about how Medical Evacuation membership with Medjet Assist works, check out our blog post for a more detailed review.
Hotels, home rentals, BNBs, flights, and other transportation & tours
Expedia is a US-based company whose mission is to power global travel for everyone and everywhere. Whether planning a family vacation, booking for business, or organizing the trip of a lifetime, they are a fantastic resource. Wanderers Compass focuses on independent travel, and using sites like Expedia makes that possible. Every aspect of travel you need, from airfare, accommodations, rental car, and cruises to activities to do at your destination, can be booked on Expedia.
Hotels, Home rentals, BNBs, Flights, and other Transportation & Tours
Booking.com connects millions of travelers to memorable experiences, various transportation options, and incredible places to stay – from homes to hotels and much more. It is one of the world’s largest travel marketplaces for established brands and entrepreneurs of all sizes.
We always check Expedia and Booking.com to verify prices. At times, one is sold out of rooms while another at the same place has rooms. As well we often find some European hotels, especially smaller ones, on Booking.com but not on Expedia. It could be they are a Europe-based company. Try both before booking accommodations.
Are you traveling with a family or having an extended stay at your destination?
With over 2 million bookable vacation rentals, VRBO connects homeowners with families and vacationers looking for something more than a hotel for their trip. The VRBO community offers families or groups various rental property types such as condos, cabins, lake rentals, beach houses, etc.
VRBO is under the Expedia group ownership now, which many were worried about, but it hasn’t panned out to be a concern. It is a massive network with access to all lodging forms should issues arise. Joelle has used VRBO for many years with her family with no problems.
As the leading marketplace for travel experiences, Viator believes that making memories is what travel is all about. And with 300,000+ experiences to explore—everything from simple tours to extreme adventures (and all the niche, interesting stuff in between)—making memories that will last a lifetime has never been easier.
With industry-leading flexibility and last-minute availability, it’s never too late to make any day extraordinary. This one site has it all and has experiences throughout the world. We use them often during our travels, especially for food tours. We especially take the time to read the reviews provided.
An excellent source for travel essentials and guides
We now have our own Amazon Storefront with all our favorite travel accessories and gear in one place. Check out our travel store at the link below.
Amazon is one of the most comprehensive online shopping sources in the world. On behalf of their customers, teams worldwide provide lower prices, better selection, and rapid delivery. They offer a vast inventory, and their 1.7 million small and medium businesses worldwide selling on Amazon.com offer extensive options to customers.
We buy most of our travel books, accessories, and luggage from Amazon. We have ordered up to two days before travel and get what we need.
(Airport and sightseeing service)
A global leader in ground transportation for travelers. They help hundreds of companies worldwide enhance their services and boost their revenue with our 5-star ride experiences and hassle-free automation.
Founded in 2015 in Athens, Greece, Welcome Pick-ups goes above and beyond the standard transfer service as the first company to deliver a holistic, in-destination travel experience. From the moment a traveler arrives at a new destination until they return home, Welcome accommodates all their travel needs (transfers, travel products, things to do, information) as the easiest, friendliest, and most personalized solution.
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When traveling, you often need to apply for official documents such as a passport, ID, and different kinds of licenses or cards. Those applications require a picture that must meet specific conditions to be accepted, depending on the country. Now, it is possible to take this picture at home without the help of a professional photographer. PhotoAiD allows you to take the perfect biometric photo that will be approved by you without leaving your home.
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