As a monthly guest on the Well-Traveled with AAA podcast, AAA Member and PBS travel show host Samantha Brown shares insights, stories and tips for exploring beloved destinations around the world. Let these hidden treasures from her own trips inspire you as you start dreaming about travel again.

Miami, Florida

Where to go: Cubaocho Museum and Performing Arts Center

Why: “When you walk in, it looks like a restaurant. But you’ll notice that every square inch of the walls—even the ceilings—is covered in art. The restaurant itself was started by a man named Roberto Ramos. He escaped from Cuba and came to Miami on a boat. He saved these pieces of art that he knew Fidel Castro and his men were going to destroy. He just knew that the history of Cuba would be erased if these paintings would disappear or be destroyed. It became his mission to recover books, magazines, newspapers, artwork—to save the history of Cuba.”

Top of the South Island, New Zealand

Travel comes back: See Samantha Brown’s thoughts on COVID-19.

Read Her Story

Where to go: Mills Bay Mussels in Havelock

Why: “As a born and bred New Englander, I love my seafood. But I’d never seen anything quite like the Greenshell mussels of New Zealand. The best place to enjoy them? At Mills Bay Mussels, mere steps from the waters where they were harvested. Big, briny and fresh from the sea, these Marlborough delicacies are hand-graded, packed and prepared by the family that grows them in the sound. Visit their tasting room and eatery in the Havelock Marina.”

Vienna, Austria

Where to go: House of Music

Why: “One of the most family-friendly things you can do—it’s also the best thing you could do alone as a solo traveler and the best thing you can do with your partner—is to go to the House of Music. Because Vienna, of course, represents music. Beethoven and Mozart and Strauss—so many musicians, whether they were Austrian or not, came to Vienna to create. And you have that beautiful history of music within one building, under one roof. You really get absorbed by it.”

Phoenix, Arizona

Listen: Apple Podcasts | Spotify

Where to go: The Farm

Why: “One of my favorite places that was just an oasis in the middle of the desert is called The Farm. It’s about 14 acres of tall trees, of gardens, organic gardens, and on the property are three restaurants. There are gift shops and art studios. It’s just a beautiful place. You want to talk about one of the most romantic places to be in Phoenix, this is it. What I loved about it is it was in this area that was traditionally an agrarian area but through modernization has become more industrial, and so it’s going back to its roots but it’s also showing us what could be our future.”


This story was featured in the
May/June 2020 issue of AAALiving Magazine

Connect with Samantha Brown

Find out how to watch her PBS show, Samantha Brown’s Places to Love, and even travel with her.

Keep reading in: