White water river rafting is one of the most thrill water adventures one can experience in a river. Higher the rapids, more is the fun. I and couple of my friends went for white water rafting in Arkansas river earlier this year. We did the Class 3 rapids because none of us had real rafting experience and that was a good choice for beginners. We were trained to raft in coordination with each other in calm water before we hit the huge waves down the river. The waves were intimidating as they came through and we had to keep rowing strongly to get through them. We had a great time in the water and our guide was super nice to help us out every time we got stuck along the rocks in the river. We would all cheer up as a team as we passed through the rapids. We crossed about 7 rapids in all , the initial ones being class two and later ones class 3 I would definitely recommend this adventure for all the those who are fond of water sports and next time it is going to be Class 4 rapids for me 🙂
After my incident of toppling down while kayaking in Door County, I was quite adamant about giving it another shot. This time I tried my hands on kayaking in Lake Superior at Upper Peninsula in Munising, Michigan. I was a bit nervous about it in the inside, but definitely wanted to give it another try. This time round, to my surprise the kayaking trip was just perfect. It felt like all the elements of nature including pleasant weather, calm water and mild sunlight encouraged me in my venture.
We started to kayak from Miners beach towards the Miners Cave and Miners Castle. The water was beautiful and quite clear to look at. Our guide was very friendly and kept an eye on us through out the trip. We took photo breaks in between to relax our hands and this time being very careful with the camera and phone, keeping it all safe in the dry bag. The caves looked phenomenal and I could clearly hear the water splash the rocks, and the erosion it has caused in the past years is the actual reason of the formation of these caves. I loved my kayaking experience this time very much and I definitely learnt one thing in life “Never give up”. Travelling does teach us things that we always remember. I would love to read your travel experience that helped you learn and grow. Do share 🙂
My recent trip to Door County, Wisconsin was one of the most adventurous trip I had in recent years. Door County is about 4 hours’ drive from Chicago and is an absolutely beautiful destination to visit during the summer. Some of the places I loved there are Sister Bay, Egg Harbor, Fish Creek and Sturgeon Bay. All of these Bays and Creeks are small towns with their own little downtown surrounded by lake.
I always tend to plan for some activities especially when I take a trip in the summer when there is so many water activities to do. The plan this time around was to try out Sailing and Kayaking in the caves. Sailing in the calm water of sister bay was quite an amazing experience and went very smooth. We went sailing during the sunset and caught sight of the beautiful sun setting along the shores while the captain of the sail boat fired a canyon to salute the sunset. We also got to see the inside of the sail boat which was about 100 years old and had a small kitchen and few beds downstairs for the travelers who sailed long journeys in the boat and had to spent several days in it.
We headed out next day for Kayaking in the caves which turned out to be an incident that I will perhaps not forget for my entire life. We started to kayak and were struggling to kayak from the very beginning and the journey was 4 miles to the caves. The waves were huge and our kayak kept wandering in the direction of the wind. Our guide kept coming back to keep an eye on us while other all groups continued to move ahead. And then came the nightmare, guess what.. “Our boat toppled in the middle of nowhere” that too with our phones in the pocket :(. We ended up clinging to the toppled kayak waiting for our guide to come rescue us. I still remember that moment when my slippers slipped out of my feet into the deep lake and I could not even look if someone was coming to take us to the shore. Luckily, we had over life jackets on and also knew how to swim so ended up laughing at ourselves in the middle of nowhere. Thanks to the guide who finally came up to us and saved over lives. However the bad news was after all this drama, we were just sent back to the point we started. I so wanted to still see the caves so we just drove to see the caves in the water which was absolutely mesmerizing.
Here are the very few pictures of me in Door County that I transferred before our phones were water damaged. I will remember this trip forever and I will not give up on Kayaking until I am able to do it now. We are heading towards Munising in Michigan next month and going to go Kayaking again. After all you got to do what you want to. Have you ever had a mishap during one of your trips? I would love to read 🙂
The elegant little city Bruges in Belgium left me in absolute awe of it during my recent trip to Europe. Very laid backandintimate city, perfectly sized and easy to explore, Bruges has it all. The best way to explore the city is by walking around exploring the canals, bridges, cobbled streets, shops and galleries. A classic fairy tale could be easily shot in the midst of carriage rides, historical mansions and holy churches in Bruges.
One day is adequate time to explore the city in and out. We started our day walking towards the Market Square which is the center of Bruges tourist attraction. Within a minute of walk from the Market square is the Belfry Tower which is known for its rich historical heritage. The canals and bridges with colorful old buildings on each side provided a very picturesque view. Lake of Love was another spot in Bruges which was very scenic and surreal. We also enjoyed the 30 minutes canal boat tour which took us through all the canals under the bridges and was a great introduction to the historic significance and rich architecture of the city.
The specialties of Belgium are the Belgian chocolates, fries, beerandwaffles. I tried the chocolates and fries and just loved it. They are just more than delicious. I will recommend the Neuhaus chocolates which are just exquisite. I would definitely want to go back and enjoy the naturally small and beautiful city of Bruges if I ever get a chance again.
California is undoubtedly one of my favorite states in the US because of its lovely weather and scenic outlook. Located on the pacific coast of California, San Diego is a lively city with rich architecture and lovely beaches. My trip to San Diego in the winter was very refreshing because of the beautiful weather and warm people. It was a perfect blend of both urban city and natural beauty. My weekend in San Diego was very fast pace and here are some things that I enjoyed a lot.
Bask at La Jolla Cove
La Jolla Cove is an extraordinary beach in San Diego surrounded by marine life, sand cliffs and caves. The sea lions and the wild birds bask along the shore while the visitors enjoy this remarkable sight. Kayaking along the caves and snorkeling through the clear water is an amazing experience. If you are not a water lover, instead you can step into the caves by the shore to see the tiny fishes swim by along your feet. You can relax there for hours watching the gigantic waves hit the shore.
Watch sunset at Coronado Island
The best time to visit the Coronado island is during sunset. It is one of the best sunset views that I have ever seen in my life.Take a ferry or drive through the scenic Coronado bridge to the Coronado Island from San Diego to catch the spectacular sunset view from the shores. Walk along the famous extravagant Hotel Del Coronado across the ocean to watch the tourists enjoy the bonfire by their cottages. Go ice-skating in the arena by the hotel if you are in a mood for an adventurous evening. Wander in the streets to shop for souvenirs and grab a bite in the restaurants along the streets. Take Segway tours to explore the different parks in the island if you have the entire day.
Night Life in Gaslamp Quarter
Located in the heart of San Diego, Gaslamp Quarter is the historic downtown of San Diego. On your visit to San Diego make sure you plan to stay by the Gaslamp District to experience the rocking night life in San Diego. There are more than 50 night clubs and lounges there, few of them are roof top and offer fantastic night view of the city. Moreover all the eateries including brunch and lunch are at a walking distance and there is plenty of parking available as well.
Go Sea World
A day is Sea World is worth spending if you haven’t been to this theme park previously.Personally I love the shows in Sea world, the killer whale show being my personal favorite. Do not forget to hop on the cable car in the sea world which runs over the San Diego bay and offers a panoramic view of the skyline and the bridge.
A few things that I missed during my visit to San Diego are Balboa park,San Diego zoo and the safari park which I will definitely plan during my next visit. I am definitely going back as it is one of my personal favorite cities in the US. What’s yours?
My first city in the US as a tourist, Seattle will always remain close to my heart. Being surrounded by forest, lake, river and hills, it is a perfect destination for nature-lovers. The city just captivates you with evergreen trees, pleasant weather and clear sky(not so much).Be aware of the rain in Seattle, definitely plan your trip keeping weather constraints in mind as the evergreen trees also cause light showers every now and then. Here are some fun outdoor activities to do when you are out and about in Seattle.
Hiking Mount Rainier National Park
The drive to Mount Rainer National park through the hills and forest is very adventurous and scenic at the same time. After driving through a couple of hundred feet above the ground level, its time to hike the mountain by foot to explore the hills, valleys, waterfalls and meadows surrounding the cascade of mountains. The lovely view of the snow covered peaks of mountain makes it worth the visit.
Trekking the Snoqualmie Falls
A few hours away from Seattle, Snoqualmie falls is a massive 268 feet waterfall on the Snoqualmie river. Trekking along the forest trail to reach the bottom to catch a sight of the colossal fall is such an enjoyable experience. The flora and fauna on the trail makes it even more delightful. Once you are all the way down at the lowest point of the fall, you can step into the rocks, woods and water to enjoy it even more closely.
Exploring the Bainbridge Island
The best way to get in the water in Seattle is to take a ferry ride across the Elliot Bay to the BainBridge Island. While you are on your way, keep your cameras ready for the perfect skyline view from the ferry. Explore the island by foot, bike or car depending on what you like. The island is huge with trails by forests and lakes so the best way to explore it in and out might be by car.
Day in Downtown
The trip to Seattle is incomplete without a day well spent exploring Downtown Seattle. Stroll by the Pike Place market and relish the fresh fruits in the farmer’s market. Hop into the Ferris wheel to get a complete view of the skyline and the city. Enjoy a rickshaw ride along the shore and wander around enjoy smoky delicious cart food in the hilly Downtown.
Journey to Leavenworth
Few miles away from Seattle, Leavenworth is a small hilly city in in the middle of mountains. The Bavarian village there is a small shopping district with little unique boutique, art and gift shops. It is lovely place to stroll by and there are cultural dance performances by different countries in the streets. We were able to watch the England dance and music festivities where the men dressed as soldiers and women danced around them. The architecture of the buildings resemble the European design with domes and castles. It is a lively place full of happiness and fun, definitely not worth missing if you are in Washington.
If you happen to have a few more days in Seattle,explore the zoo,aquarium,lakes and museums in the city.There are just endless destinations for tourists to explore in the state of Washington.
The windy city Chicago is one of the finest metropolitan cities in the United States with a lovely architecture and design. Summer is definitely the best time to visit Chicago. I love Chicago and it has been my home away from home for the past few years. Here are the five most fun ways to discover the city in and out :
Take a Limo Ride around the city
The Limousine ride in the city takes you around the city and stops at four most prominent spots in the city. It stops by the Giant Bean in the Millennium Park, Buckingham fountain in the Grand Park, Museum campus by Lake Michigan and The Navy pier. Photograph the giant bean to capture yourself inside it. Stroll by the lively Navy Pier by the sailor boats and the cruises to get a perfect skyline view of the city.If you are lucky,you might get a sight of the summer fireworks showcased at the Navy Pier every Wednesday and Saturday.Watch the Buckingham fountain go high up in the sky and enjoy the lights and music that make the fountain even more spectacular.
Bike the trails by the Lake Michigan
Chicago city framework is pretty impressive in terms of biking trails. To explore the city even more closely, go biking by the Lake Michigan starting from the museum campus all the way to Navy pier and reach to the North Avenue Beach at the other end. Make stops in between to enjoy the view of the boats and ships by the harbor and the beaches on the way. Cheap rental Divvy bikes are available in all these spots which makes it very convenient.
View the city from the top
Chicago is just incomplete without its enormous Skyscraper which is a picturesque view especially at night. The Sears tower and the John Hancock tower are the two tall buildings which offer best views of the city from the top. The Signature Lounge at the 94th floor in the John Hancock tower is one of the very romantic restaurants in the city.
Shop Shop Shop
Downtown Chicago offers both extravagant and economical shopping choices depending on which you like to go with. The Magnificent Mile in downtown is the shopping hub and more economical than the Michigan Avenue which has flashy showrooms and more extravagant choices. The water tower place is another location to shop and is very lively to walk by and watch the busy city.
Stroll by the River Walk
The city of Chicago has canals and river running in the heart of the city. Stroll by the river walk and take architectural boat rides to indulge into the history of Chicago. Spring season welcomes the Saint Patrick’s Day when the water in the river walk turns green to signify Irish culture. In short the diverse city Chicago has anything and everything that a tourist wishes to explore.
Las Vegas is one of the cities that offers elite nightlife with some of the most popular night clubs and casinos. It is also called the ‘Sin City’. Being a day person, I was not very excited about Vegas at first.But the best thing about this city is it can be molded in the way you want it to. It is one of the prettiest cities that I have ever been to and there is just so much more than gambling and clubbing.
In the heart of the city resides the Vegas strip with all the casinos at a walk-able distance from each other. Catch a sight of the famous Bellagio fountain which goes as high as 460 feet with dramatic music, lights and the Eiffel tower Restaurant in the backdrop. Cross the street to canoe into the magnificent Venetian waters with the splendor of Italian serenade music.
Drive to the Hoover dam through the Lake Mead National Park which is a stretch of about 13 miles of mountain and lake. Cross the Hoover Dam bridge that runs over the Colorado river and manifests the Arizona Nevada border. I was very fascinated with the two huge clocks on both sides of the border which had time difference in spite of being a few meters away from each other.
Old Vegas is definitely something that you do not want to miss and has spectacular street shows and plays. Zip lining across the casinos is also one of the major attraction in Old Vegas which is also the Vegas Downtown.