traveler, explorer, adventurer, photographer

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195 sovereign nations

7 summits

north + south poles

50 united states

Rachael Jerahian, Lady with a Passport is a traveler, explorer, adventurer, and photographer currently completing 4 major travel expeditions. Following along with her adventures, and support her on her journey.
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North Carolina: Where to Explore!


North Carolina was actually one of the first states that I have ever visited alone. I was 30 years old and my mother just passed away. Between grieving, expenses, and planning the after match I knew it would be a long road of stress and aggravation. So I decided to head to the Outer Banks for a long weekend just to relax and be alone. I still remember Sam Smith’s music was playing on my cell phone since his album was just releases not soon before my trip.

The Outer Banks is not on this list since I decided to try visit places where I haven’t been before. However, that doesn’t mean that it shouldn’t belong on this blog. The Outer Banks is beautiful and quaint just like you think a southern beach town should be.

After visiting North Carolina again and not having great weather I have come to the conclusion that the two most visit areas are on either coast of the state. The Eastern side where you have the mountains and the trendy city of Asheville. The western side you have the ocean and the beach towns. There are of course places to visit in the middle but I do think that both coasts of the state have such an amazing charm to them.

Where to Eat- Sleep – Explore

Great Smokey Mountains National Park

I was so excited when I was able to head to the Great Smoke Mountains National Park. It was cloudy, however, I didn’t think that it would be almost unrecognizable during this weather. I stopped by the Welcome Center to speak with a Ranger which suggested not head into the park as the visibility was at about 10 %. Since I would be driving over the mountains I would be gaining elevation and in turn that’s where the fog will get worse. If I came this far I wasn’t going to leave without at least trying to see something. I was also heading to Tennessee afterwards and that was on the other wise of those mountains. So I drove EXTREMELY slow and took my time and snapped¬† a few photos along the way. As you can see how strong the fog was here. I don’t think I have ever driven through fog so dense before. Just make sure if you are planning a trip to the mountains that you check the weather. You want to make sure you have as much visibility as possible.

Duke Gardens

I was crossing through the state and decided to spend a night in Durham. Although, the weather was awful and there was just a snow storm I still looked into places to go here. I came across the Duke Gardens. These Gardens are located at Duke University and are FREE for anyone who decides to visit. Even though the trails were filled with snow it made the garden even more beautiful. To watch the snow outlining bushes and trees and it was a sight to be seen. I would definitely add this to your list if you are looking for something to do alone or with the family.

Rocky’s Hot Chicken Shack

This was one of the go to places to eat in and around the Asheville area. It was affordable and a great places to families and people of all ages. It was a Nashville style fried chicken restaurant which would make it’s chicken to whatever spice level you decide to choose. I decided to go with the Rocky’s Hot level which is the second hottest only next to Extra Hot. It was delicious! If you are craving some southern food and some fried chicken then you better head to Rocky’s as you will not be disappointed.




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