Author: Penny Zibula


Penny Zibula is a freelance travel writer and blogger based in New Bern, NC. She has had a life-long passion for travel, and for learning as much as she can about cultures crafts, foods and wines through the people she meets in both nearby and far flung places. Along with her photographer husband, Simon Lock, and her guide dog, “Otto”, Penny has spent the last three years focused on making the most of what is supposed to be the couple’s retirement. Penny’s background is in public relations and community outreach, with nine years as a television talk-show host and producer. As her career progressed, she found herself writing a variety of copy: articles, newsletters, annual reports, press releases, etc. When Simon and Penny moved from Atlanta to New Bern in 2006 to start their business in auto repair, she began to cast about for opportunities to continue writing. Through her networking efforts, she  landed a part-time job as staff writer for The County Compass, a local weekly publication, where she learned that writing for a newspaper was a  niche unto itself.   When Simon and Penny decided to close up shop and retire early in 2013, they began taking online courses and live workshops in travel writing, web copy, blogging and, for Simon, photography, through Great Escape Travel (GEP) and American Writers and Artists Inc. (AWAI). Today, Penny writes regularly for her travel blog,, and is continuously expanding her freelance travel writing for newspapers and both print and online magazines, with Simon taking all the spectacular photos. Both Penny and Simon are members of the International Travel Writers and Photographers Alliance ITWPA).

The Main Entrance to the Basilica Notre-Dame-du-Cap - Our Lady of the Cape

Our Lady of the Cape Shrine: A Spiritual Treasure in Trois-Rivières, Quebec

The History of Our Lady of the Cape Casually dressed in an open-neck shirt and slacks, Father Bernard Menard looked

Copper Tanks St. Augustine Distillery

St. Augustine Distillery: Taste Their Vodka, Gin, Bourbon and Rum

In a Town Famous for History and Hauntings, This New Kid on the Block Holds Its Own What comes to

Statue of the Virgin Mary in the Original Church Our Lady of the

24 Hours in Trois-Rivières, Quebec

A Small Taste of This French Canadian City Will Leave You Hungry for More It was supposed to be a

Muriel’s Restaurant on Chartres Street as Seen from Jackson Square

Haunted New Orleans: The Ghost and Vampire Tour

Exploring the French Quarter’s Darker Side It wasn’t exactly a dark and stormy New Orleans night. It was more like

Lloret de Mar’s Maritime Museum

Paradise Found in Lloret de Mar (part 4) While experiencing a perfect Catalonia day in Lloret de Mar our guide

Decadent Chocolate Dessert at Restaurante POPS Lloret de Mar

Restaurante POPS – Respite in Lloret de Mar

Paradise Found in Lloret de Mar (part 3) Although a morning tour of Lloret de Mar, by midday we rested our feet

View from Santa Clotilde Gardens in Lloret de Mar Overlooking the Mediterranean

Santa Clotilde Gardens in Lloret de Mar

Paradise Found in Lloret de Mar (part 2) Santa Clotilde Gardens was our first stop in the seaside resort town

Iglesia de Sant Romà in Downtown Lloret de Mar

Paradise Found in Lloret de Mar

Let This Delightful Costa Brava Town Make Your Day On a recent trip to Spain my husband and I experienced

The Many Faces of the Ancient Art of Cameo Making

Neapolitan Artisans Employ Traditional Tools and Techniques to Create Timeless Beauty It has gone in and out of style, but

St. Francis Inn

Hospitality Takes Center Stage at St. Augustine’s Oldest Inn

“This has the feeling of going to Grandma’s,” said Joe Finnegan, innkeeper at St. Francis Inn Bed and Breakfast in