Flying into Kelowna, I couldn’t contain my excitement as I saw white peaks through the clouds and I knew I was almost in the mountains. Coming from Eastern Ontario, where it’s fairly flat, the change in elevation and scenery was a breath of fresh air and brought on the anticipation of new places to discover and adventure. This was my first trip out west in the winter months to experience my first big snowboarding trip!
Last year I was unable to make it out due to a knee injury but this year I was determined to travel out west to see friends and to hit up the world renown slopes of British Columbia. To say the least, it did not disappoint. The week was filled with fun times laughing with friends and a lot of fresh powdery snow that we never seem to get back home. A week was more than enough time to take in all the views that Kelowna had to offer and maybe… just maybe… next year, I’ll be ready to hit up other famous mountains. Once you get the taste of that fresh powder you just can’t wait to go back.
Read on for some great spots to check out if you’re ever in Kelowna, British Columbia!
Whenever someone mentioned the desert I pictured the old Midwest. Barren and desolate, with the occasional rolling tumble weeds and ghost towns. When I finally traveled to Arizona to start my roadtrip, my mental picture of the state proved to be false. There was so much more to the landscape and a lot more greenery than expected. It was the first time travelling I’ve truly felt small and tiny in the world with the views provided by Mother Nature. The scale of the rock structures and vast landscapes reminded me that although the internet has allowed us to think we live in a small world, there are still so many wonders out there waiting to be discovered! Every turn on every hike was just more jaw-dropping sweeping views of desert landscapes.
We had a 10 day trip planned out and it was quite the adventure waiting for us. We flew into Phoenix, Arizona and embarked on our road trip heading to Sedona bright and early the next morning for the first stop of our Arizona road-trip. From there we made our way to the Grand Canyon and Page, and ended off in Las Vegas. Read on to see my must sees at each location!
The last installment of my Kauai travel series takes us to the Eastern and Southern shores of the Garden Isle. There is definitely plenty to see and to explore on both coasts. Though I did prefer the North and the West parts of the island more with their adventure appeal, but that isn’t to say that there isn’t plenty to do in the East and South sides of the island. We stayed in Kapaa, which is located on the Eastern side of Kauai and it served as a great home base as it was central to travelling to all sides of the island. One hour each way at the constant speed of 50 miles/hr, you just get use to island time and nothing seems like a rush anymore. Read on to see what’s not to be missed in the Eastern and Southern coasts of Kauai!
In today’s post we go westwards to the sunniest and driest part of the Garden Isle of Kauai. A general rule of thumb and recommendation from locals we encountered, was to head westwards in times of rain or cloudy weather. The western side of the island gets the least amount of rain and tends to stay relatively sunny all year round. It takes approximately an hour to get to the town of Waimea from Ka’paa (eastern side of the island) via a car. It’s a beautiful road trip with beaches along the way, tall grass and the occasional look out as you drive on over to the western side of the island. One of the biggest landmarks out in the western side of the island is Waimea Canyon State Park. We liked it so much that we went twice so we could hike two different trails and do all the outlooks off of the State Park’s main road. I recommend arriving early to beat the crowds and the fog up at the peak lookouts, as parking tends to get quite busy and fog can obstruct views in the afternoon when the clouds rise up. There are quite a few unofficial lookouts along the roads, but be wary and don’t get too close to the cliff edges and explore with caution.
Apart from the Waimea Canyon State Park, there are a lot of beautiful coastline beaches that stretch for miles for everyone to enjoy. The most remote beach being Polihale Beach which exists at the very end of the road that traverses around the whole island. It’s a bumpy ride but you’ll be greeted with untouched sand dunes and Napali Coast cliffs with the rare person here or there as you explore this beach. Read on to see what other beaches and places are not to be missed on the western shores of Kauai!
Back at the end of April, I finally took my first trip to Hawaii. Hawaii has always just been a wishlist item, a faraway dream from the youth of my past. People have this notion that Hawaii is this super luxurious getaway location (which it is!) but I’ve learnt that it’s so much more than that. My boyfriend and I decided to explore the island of Kauai, the smallest of the four most popular islands and also the oldest island of Hawaii. It’s known for being the most lush, with its nickname being the Garden Isle; it boasts of a laid back vibe with less tourists and an abundance of adventure. I would do almost anything to go back right now.
The island of Kauai houses many roosters and chickens which you will see in abundance, it adds the cutest charm to the island. They will be right there in the mornings calling you awake at daylight and the chirping falls away as the sun fades beyond the horizon during sunset. Kauai can be split up in terms of directional shores when looking into exploring and sightseeing. You can comfortably drive around the whole entire island in about 2-2.5 hrs. It’s a beautiful drive along the coast and inwards through some jungle forests with a leisurely speed; all the while make sure you don’t have any chicken roadkill as the birds tend to like to wander where-ever. Technically you can’t drive around the full island since one of the prized gems of Kauai – the Napali Coast – creates a roadblock. The Napali Coast stretches around the North-Western part of the island with sheer cliffs, which you can only see via hiking, boat or air. These posts will break down the island shore by shore and highlight must sees, food and activities!
May long weekend, I took a family road trip to the famous New York City! The place where people go to find success, rub shoulders with millions of others from around the world. New York City is in one word… BUSY. There’s never a dull moment, so many things are always happening in the city that there is an abundant endless list of events and activities to keep oneself entertained. Granted while we were there we did do more of the touristy sites because it was my brother’s first time in the city, but it was still a lot of fun! If you have never been to New York City then here’s a quick break down for any short trip you have planned for the future! This post has you covered for activities to keep you busy in New Jersey, Manhattan and Brooklyn!
Going through photos and files on my much loaded down computer, I came across trip photos I have yet to share on this blog. With summer right around the corner, I’m sure many people are busy thinking of what they can do to make their summer memorable. In light of that, I thought I would share how my friends and I did Tofino, British Columbia in less than 24 hours making it a worthwhile short but sweet trip that will have you begging to go back to experience it all again.
Everyone wants to capture picturesque moments on vacation and I’m not any different. I want to be able to capture candid moments, grand scenes and textural details that can take me back to any memories of a trip, to evoke the feelings I had in that moment and to share it with others back home. As I’m packing for my trip to Hawaii, I thought I would share with you guys how I pack and take care of my camera equipment.
Shooting equipment wise, I like to take photos primarily with a DSLR. I find it gives you the most versatility with different lens options and a more professional outcome. For more action packed items I like to use my GoPro as it’s more compact and can take on water and impact better than a heavy DSLR camera. For video purposes, I will usually shoot with my phone primarily, but I will also use my GoPro and DSLR to supplement footage, it really depends on what I have on hand in the moment. As it has been said before, the best camera is the one you have on you. All three yield different footage quality but it’s good to have similar settings across the board to get smoother transitions.
If you want to know what I have in my camera bag, keep on reading!