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Celebrity Travel: Go Away With Jeannie Mai

By Jae-Ha Kim, Tribune Content Agency on

It has been a busy year for Jeannie Mai. Besides co-hosting the talk show "The Real," she is a correspondent on Stephen Curry's ABC mini-golf competition series, "Holey Moley." Whenever she can carve out some free time, the on-air talent says she enjoys exploring new cities. One of her favorite memories is a childhood trip she took with her family. "We went to Yosemite and I absolutely loved it," said Mai, 40. "We lost my little brother for a second and set bear traps, thinking he was bear napped. But that story is for another time." Born and raised in California, where she still resides, Mai stays in touch with fans on Twitter ( and Instagram (

Q. What is your favorite vacation destination?

A. My ultimate getaway is Vietnam. It has a little bit of everything when it comes to culture, amazing food, beautiful people, exotic sights, sounds and profound history of love, bravery and resilience. Everybody must visit Vietnam once in their life. You haven't visited Vietnam if you don't sit along the side of the road and eat something from the street vendors!

Q. What untapped destination should people know about?

A. Sa Pa, Vietnam. Google it and you will understand once you see the land. It's untapped as of now, but I have a feeling it will change immensely in the next five years as one of my favorite hotel designers just put up one of his greatest locations there.

Q. What's the most important thing you've learned from your travels?


A. To appreciate the journey itself and not the destination. The wrong turns, the random strangers we meet and the conversations with another friend while brushing your teeth will be the lifelong memories you'll never have again.

Q. If you could only pick one place to eat, which would you choose: a casual meal at a food truck or fine dining at a nice restaurant?

A. Casual meal at a street cart! That is where you are in the thick of it -- the atmosphere, real authentic food and culture. If there were only one place to eat, I would pick anywhere in Northern Vietnam where you get the French and Vietnamese culinary fusion. And street cart ... always.

Q. Where are your favorite weekend getaways?


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