Wanderlust Blog Adventures
Have you wanted to travel over the past year, and couldn't? Maybe due to COVID, maybe due to work, maybe due to budget because of COVID? Well, now you can travel from home! Who knew?! Several places around the world have given you the ability to see the world, right from your home. Grab some popcorn, and check out the links and descriptions below, and go visit the world!
Scotland - If you have ever wanted to visit Scotland, now is your chance! Check out the beautiful views from the lighthouse, to the castles! You can also watch the Puffins of 2021, here Puffin Cam. VisitScotland.com
African Safari - These cameras are SO MUCH FUN! You do have to have a little bit of patience with these ones, because you have to wait for the animals to come around! It is very exciting to watch and then see an animal come around. These are great live streams for the family! AfriCam.com
San Diego Zoo - This is another great option for families with young ones! What a great experience to be able to see all of these animals up close and personal. These cameras are great and are such a fun way to see the zoo virtually. The San Diego Zoo also has other really great learning videos about their animals! SanDiegoZooLiveCams.com
The Louvre - If you are a art buff, and enjoy paintings and sculptures, and you have been wanting to go to the Louvre...now is your chance! The Louvre has put out an interactive virtual tours and it is quite amazing! I have been to the Louvre in person and it is JUST like being there. TheLouvre.com
Museums Around the World - If you love museums, and want to see the ones all around the world, here's your opportunity! Google has put together a really great collection of meseums, from the Van Gogh Museum to The Mint Museum in Charlotte. Enjoy these museums right from the comfort of your own home! Museums.com
What a great world we live in where technology can bring us together to be able to see everything just from the comfort of our own home. Enjoy these moments and bring the family together to do a tour, or go see some animals in Africa, we might not have a chance to.
Everyone has that favorite city that they have visited and when they return home, they just want to visit again and again and again. I have a couple of these cities that I could just visit every month and not ever get tired of going. Las Vegas is one, I LOVE going to Vegas. Every time I go there is a new thing I haven't done and every time I leave, I just say to myself how I can't wait to go back to do the things I didn’t get to do that trip. As much as I love going to Vegas, there is one city that tops all of those feelings, and that's Paris.
There are so many reasons why I love Paris, and this blog could be hundreds of thousands of words, but I will tell you just a couple of reasons of why I love going and my favorite parts about the city. If you have ever been to Europe you know the ambiance of the country is very mellow and laid back. This is one of my favorite things about Paris. The minute that you set foot into Paris, you can just feel a shift change in yourself, and in the atmosphere of relaxation. You feel this overwhelming sense of not needing to be in a hurry to do everything.
The bakeries in Paris are none to beat. The first time I was in Paris, my mom and I checked into our hotel and the first thing we asked was what was included with the breakfast, and of course they gave us a list and they included croissants. The next morning we were SO excited to get up so that way we could have our very first croissant in Paris. I will never forget that feeling or that taste of my first real croissant. There's no words to even describe how amazing it was. It was just the perfect crispy on the outside, but perfectly baked on the inside and the perfect amount of buttery taste. If going to Paris and eating a croissant is not on your bucket list…it needs to be.
At the time of while I was visiting Paris I was heavily into the hotel industry, and I was so intrigued to see how the hotels were operating in that country. Of course you had your big hotels, like your Marriott and your Hiltons, but we chose to stay in a little bed and breakfast right in the middle of town. This hotel was interesting, to say the least, as it was very small. If I had to describe it, I would say it would be like a five or six bedroom house that was being rented out, but half the size of what you're thinking. I was attracted to this hotel, because of how intimate it was. The hotel staff knew all of their guests and knew who was there for what and that was something I strived to be when I was in the industry.
EVERYONE and I mean everyone, were SO incredibly nice. There was not a single person I met when on either of my trips to Paris that I thought were rude or mean. As a tourist in a city you don't know, you get worried that you will not be able to find your way around…you don't speak the language, you don't know the streets, you don't where anything is, so you get worried that you will feel out of place. My mom and I decided to do the double decker bus, but we couldn't find the bus stop, and so I decided to ask someone in a store for help (even though I knew I was taking a risk of them not knowing what I was saying). The lady was SO nice and understood everything that I was saying, and she walked out of the shop and pointed us in the right direction of where we needed to be. It was like that everywhere, and everyone was so intrigued on where we were visiting from. You could really feel this sense of feeling like each person actually cared about us.
Besides the food, the hotels, and the people, Paris is general is such a beautiful city. There was one day that we just drove around for about half the day, just looking at all of the amazing and beautiful architecture around. The architecture is so unbelievable, and there is so much history behind all of it. I wish we had time for everything (Arc de Triomphe, Notre-Dame de Paris, Palace of Versailles…etc.) I've done the Eiffel Tower twice and will do it every time I go back, because of how amazing it is.
Just like with Vegas, I could go to Paris each and every month and find something to do that I haven't done the times before. Paris fills my heart every time I know I get to go, and I can't wait for more trips in the future to go, but for now, I will have to just daydream in my memories!
Whew! This summer has been HOT and it's only the beginning of July! We have had record heat hit Washington State in the last month or so. There are a lot of things to go and do while it is hot, but most of the time I just want to cool down and hang out at a lake, river or swimming hole. What I don't like to do is go somewhere everyone else is going to be. I don't like crowds and I like to be somewhere calming so I can relax! Here are some places that I recommend to go and stay cool this summer, that maybe not everyone is going to head to!
Whatcom Falls Park in Bellingham, WA - This little swimming hole is a hike in but not a difficult hike. This is a great spot to go if it's above 80 degrees. There is a pretty deep pool for some swimming, and there are 20-25 foot cliffs that are great for older kids and adults to be able to jump off of. There is no sandy beach, so if you are looking for something to put your feet into, this isn't a good option.
Matthews Beach Park in West Lake Washington - Although this is beach is in Lake Washington and it might be a little bit busier than other places on this list, but it is also a lot of fun. This beach has sand, somewhere to put your toes in, but no cliff diving and no hike in. You will want to get there early to get a good spot, but it's an easy drive to. This lake is like a wide open pool to cool off in. There is a floating dock with two diving boards, a playground, ice cream truck and a concession stand. Perfect for the entire family during the summer months.
Dougan Falls, Washougal River - If you are looking for a drive in the morning, and a refreshing, gorgeous scene and a break to take in the water, than this place is for you. Although, the long drive might not seem appealing, but what is at the end will be. There is no sandy beach here, but there is also no hike to get to these falls. Mid-week are great times to visit as the weekend gets a little crowded because of the nearby campground. There is a shallow end to set your lawn chair in and enjoy the cool waters, or you can go head in to the deeper end for a refreshing swim.
Devils Punch Bowl, Lake Crescent - This is a bit of a drive as well, being 3 hours from Seattle, but is the most rewarding view. This lake has unbelievably gorgeous blue water that is clear to the bottom. There is about a mile hike to get to this spot, but is an easy hike. There are several spots to be able to cliff jump, as well as other flat spots to be able to swim. This is the spot to go on a warm day to take a dip into this lake!
Lake Cushman, Olympic Peninsula - This lake is fun for the entire family for the day! Most of the lakes mentioned have only had cliff jumping or swimming, but this lake also has a hidden rope swing, boating, jet skiing, tubing, and more. You can also jump off the bridge! This lake is more than 4,000 acre lake and plenty of room for everyone who needs a dip! There are a few other hikes you can take if you are done swimming, and want to take a break. This lake is only 2 hours from Seattle and is a great little weekend, getaway!
Wherever you and your friends and family decide to go this summer, remember to be safe, wear life jackets if necessary, and clean up after yourselves! In order to keep these lakes accessible and open to public use, we have to do or due diligence and keep everything pristine. Happy Swimming!!!