Travel on the Side

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Getting up early for the sunrise was just part one of an amazing day cruising through Glacier Bay National Park. Part two was the actual glaciers themselves. We got our first glimpse of a glacier shortly after 9am: Reid Glacier. Sailing through Glacier Bay, we were treated to beautiful scenery: At around 9:30am we arrived at Margerie Glacier. The captain stopped the ship and we got to observe for about an hour…. Read More

After leaving Skagway, it was off to Glacier Bay National Park for a day of scenic cruising amid the glaciers. But first, I did something out of the ordinary for me. I got up early. Like way early. To catch the sunrise. Oh, and because we’re so far north and it’s summer, the sun rises at 3:59am! So I set my alarm and was out on the upper, open decks of the ship… Read More

The previous day when we left Seattle, the weather was gorgeous: blue skies, sunshine, and around 83F/28C. Ahh, but that was to change as we headed north! Woke up to overcast skies and 54F/12C. We were out on open water now. Today was a sea day. Being our first cruise, we weren’t sure what to expect. First thing? Sleep in and have a leisurely breakfast. Check. Then we explored the ship some… Read More

I will freely admit: I wasn’t sure about a luau–I thought it was too “touristy.” But, then again, am I not a tourist?! Well, it turned out to be one of my favorite experiences of the Hawaii trip! But it didn’t start out that way. I had originally booked a luau in Wailea, near where we were staying. A couple of weeks before the trip, it was canceled and our money refunded…. Read More

Danger and romance in Maui! From Lahaina, drive north on Highway 30 (Honoapi’ilani Highway)  through Kaanapali. After leaving the resort areas (and the traffic!) continue on Highway 30 for some spectacular scenery–you’re literally hugging the side of the cliff. The road goes up. The road goes down. Beautiful ocean views abound. At Nakalele Point you can walk to the Nakalele Blowhole and a rock that looks like it has a “heart” cutout…. Read More

After three nights in Honolulu, it was off to Maui. We made Kihei, in south Maui, our home base for the next four nights. Only about 30 minutes from Kahului Airport – Maui’s main airport – Kihei is on the dry side of the island, has nice beaches and restaurants, and is just north of the Wailea resort area. We stayed at Maui Coast Hotel. It was close to everything, including good… Read More

Honolulu was great, but then it was time for Maui. We got to Honolulu International Airport (by cab, around $40 with tip from Waikiki) and checked in for our Hawaiian Airlines interisland flight to Kahului Airport. Then we relaxed in the lovely airport garden. The flight is only 30 minutes, but the wonderful Hawaiian Airlines flight attendants still managed to serve juice during the flight. The highlight was flying right past Diamond… Read More

Diamond Head is a must-do when in Honolulu! It’s on the other side of the Waikiki resort area. You can walk, but it’s a bit far. You can take a taxi, but that can get expensive. We opted for the public bus. It was convenient–we picked it near our hotel in Waikiki and were dropped off at a community college near Diamond Head. The cost is $5 round trip per person. From… Read More

Relaxed in Waikiki for three days after arriving in Hawaii. While it may not be a “quiet corner” of Hawaii, I enjoyed the beautiful stretch of beaches, watching the surfers, and visiting the upscale shops and restaurants. A few tips: Hotels: Do you really need an on-the-beach oceanfront view? If you’re like us and you usually just use your hotel room to sleep, you’re better off booking a room a couple blocks… Read More

After getting up early to see the Golden Gate Bridge on Mother’s Day, mom and I drove the rental car north on California Highway 1 – a beautiful twisty-turny drive – to Point Reyes National Seashore in Marin County. Our first stop was in the town of Inverness, along the Tomales Bay (part of the San Andreas fault) to see the Point Reyes shipwreck. There were lots of professional photographers out that… Read More

Cannon Beach is the perfect little Oregon coast town. Walkable, cute shops and galleries, good restaurants, and nice hotels. Oh yeah…and it’s home to Haystack Rock and breathtakingly beautiful views. I spent three nights here just relaxing, walking around town, visiting some of the area’s state parks, hiking the beach, and exploring around during low tide. I opted to stay at the Inn at Haystack Rock which put me within easy walking… Read More

The Pacific coast has many “must see” spots. Ecola State Park near Cannon Beach, Oregon has to be in the top 10. Visitors are treated to sweeping views of the Pacific Ocean at Ecola Point and Indian Beach, plus lots of great hiking. I did the 2.5 mile Clatsop Loop Trail with stunning views of large trees and breathtaking views of the ocean. There’s also the Oregon Coast Trail that traverses the… Read More