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About Pilar Clark, The Offbeat Travel Mama

Pilar Clark and travel have been besties since slap bracelets and tight-rolled jeans were a thing. Planning geek-inspired adventures around film and fiction has taken her throughout the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Central and South America, Europe and the Caribbean. Her professional background - award-winning writer and surgical technologist-in-training - is just as eclectic. Pilar lives in Chicago with her husband, two children and rescue pup, Haggis. She is also the gypsetting storyteller behind pilarclark.com. Say hello to Pilar on Instagram @pilarclark #explorewanderland.

Universal Orlando Resort Tips for First Timers (+ Discounts for Everyone!)

Universal Orlando Resort has something for every pop-cultured kid and kid-at-heart. But with so much to see and do, planning a visit can be overwhelming. Universal Orlando Resort is made up of three theme parks: Universal Studios Florida, Islands of Adventure, and Volcano Bay, which opens on May 25, 2017. A fourth venue, CityWalk, is […]

Geek’s Guide to San Francisco and Beyond for Star Wars Fans and Comics Lovers

San Francisco may be primarily known for its cable cars, historical landmarks, and cuisine culture. But it’s also a friendly refuge for geeks seeking adventure inspired by film and cartoons. (Think Star Wars, the Peanuts comic strip, and all things Disney!) My husband, Jeff, and I first started traveling as a couple in San Francisco. […]

Basic Invite Makes Sending Holiday Cards Merry, Easy and Bright

‘Tis the season for snowflakes, hot chocolate, twinkling lights, and mailboxes bursting with photo holiday cards. For those of us who have our address books at the ready to tackle our own festive mailings, Basic Invite makes it easy to send customized Christmas, Hanukkah, and New Year cards, as well as holiday invitations. Don’t be fooled by the name, though, […]

Why You’ll Love Puerto Rico’s El Conquistador Resort with Kids

El Conquistador beckons travelers from its perch atop a seaside cliff above the sleepy fishing village of Fajardo. This 500-acre Waldorf Astoria Resort is situated between the converging waters of the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean. It looks like something straight out of a maritime fairytale. Tempted? Read on to discover why you’ll love […]

Take a Surprise Vacation with Pack Up + Go

Ready for an adventure? Want to escape for a few days but don’t have time to plan a vacation? Then you’ll love a surprise vacation with Pack Up + Go! Don’t fret over choosing the right destination, finding the best prices for transportation and accommodations, and developing an activity itinerary. Instead, let Pack Up + Go do the […]

5 Ways Disney’s Aulani Makes You Feel Like ‘Ohana

At Disney’s Aulani, families bask in an elusive blend of cultural enrichment, relaxation and all-out fun. As parents, we pride ourselves on doing a good job preparing our kids to leave the nest someday. But when they grow from sweet-cheeked babies to big kids and then pre-teens seemingly overnight, it can be hard to let them stretch their […]

Tips for Traveling with Kids on the Autism Spectrum

By definition, vacations are a break from the predictability of our work, school and home routine. But for children on the autism spectrum who thrive on structure, the idea of venturing outside their familiar framework can be overwhelming. While traveling with kids on the autism spectrum presents challenges for parents, the overall benefits are worth a few […]

Tips for Traveling with Children with Life Threatening Food Allergies

Travel is awesome. Food allergies are not. Vacations should be about relaxation, exploration and connection. With one in 13 children under the age of 18 facing life threatening food allergies, however, close to 15 million parents worry about how to handle a severe allergic reaction while away from home. I don’t let my children’s allergies keep our family from seeing […]

5 Reasons to Geek Out About Going to Springfield, Illinois

Once home to Abraham Lincoln, Springfield played witness to Lincoln’s rise from lawyer to politician to one of the most beloved and well-known Presidents in U.S. history. His roots are deeply planted and carefully cultivated in Springfield, making it an ideal trip back in time for families interested in all things “Land of Lincoln.” My suggestions for visiting Illinois’ […]

Explore Edinburgh, Scotland in One Day

Exploring Scotland’s capital could easily take an entire week. But, if you only have 24 hours to spend in Edinburgh, you’ll be glad to know the city offers plenty to see and do no matter the time frame. My suggestions will keep you busy from dawn till dusk, with a whirlwind of historical landmarks, popular […]