Open Road

photo 2 (6)photo 4 (5)photo 4 (4)photo 1 (6)photo 3 (7)photo 2 (7)photo 2 (5)photo 1 (7)photo 1 (8)photo 3 (8)

Although there might be a few bumps in the road and the path leading to happiness isn’t always easy, life is a journey worth taking.

From my travels along the Great Ocean Road in Victoria, Australia; a much-needed adventure and reconnection with the universe.

The Bay

photo 3 (3)photo 2 (2)photo 2 (3)photo 3 (4)photo 4 (3)photo 3 (5)photo 1 (5)photo 2 (4)

“One travels more usefully when alone, because he reflects more.” —Thomas Jefferson

From this past week in Byron Bay; beaches, hammocks, espresso, hang ten and parks.

Sydney

photo 4 (1)photo 1 (1)photo 2photo 3 (2)photo 1 (2)photo 2 (1)photo 5photo 3 (1)photophoto 4 (2)photo 3

Staying  just under a week in Sydney, I found myself roaming the city streets in search of something meaningful to take from my travels in New South Whales. Besides a glimpse at the iconic opera house, touring the renowned zoo, walking through a handful of museums and relaxing on one of the many beautiful beaches, I traveled to the dynamic cultural hub to see more than just that.

And what I took from Sydney was a casual, friendly and multicultural city mixed with European traditions and lifestyles. It was like the new meets the old in some articulate kind of way. It was truly mesmerizing.

The laid back lifestyle at the beaches seemed worlds apart from the busy streets of the city. But the mixing of the different lifestyles and cultures is what made Sydney come alive. Its intensity is contagious and its liveliness is attractive.

Culturally, creatively and artistically, Sydney, and the energy it exudes, is thrilling to be a part of.

NZ

photo 4 (1)ImageImageImageImageImageImagephoto 4photo 1 (3)photo 2 (2)photo 3 (2)photo (1) photo (2)

I only spent two weeks touring New Zealand, but what I saw of it has me wanting to go back and climb even taller mountains and see even more impressive natural world wonders. The country is not only electrifyingly green, its hues of blues from the sky down to the streams, gives it a sense of utter cleanliness. But this sense is not only seen, it can be felt through the positive energy running through the environment and tasted in the delicious food served daily.

It was refreshing to see the earth as it was transformed over the course of millions of years from the Ice Age to the volcanic activity from which the country was built. And what makes New Zealand an even greater prized possession is that humans have yet to destruct its natural beauty. Its preservation is more important when comparing profit and loss to the residents of the country.

New Zealand is truly nature at its best.

Portland

photo 3 (10)photo 1 (13)photo 2 (13)photo 2 (12)photo 1 (12)

Portland, Oregon was green and sunny and changing. Morning dew blanketed the city, while falling leaves covered the streets. The lush abundance of the season filled Portland and autumn never felt so good as the rising sun warmed me inside and shined down outside.

It was settling, coming from the concrete jungle that is Los Angeles, to sit on the green grass and admire downtown Portland from the Tom McCall Waterfront Park and then take a stroll through the Saturday Market.

Outside of the city, I made my way into the countryside to witness the biggest rush—Multnomah Falls. The awe-inspiring cascade of roaring water is a natural phenomenon. The fresh air from way up there was satisfying and the spray from the falling icy water was exhilarating.  It was exactly the rush I needed for the changing of seasons in this ever-changing time.

Brooklyn

photo (18)photo 2 (11)photo 1 (10)photo 3 (9)photo 3 (8)photo 4 (5)photo 2 (10)photo 1 (11)

Brooklyn rocked my world during a recent stay in the most populous borough of New York City. The hip lifestyle, electric energy and progressive environment makes Brooklyn one of my all-time favorite places to visit.

Taking ferry rides on the East River, walking through tree-lined streets of Fort Green and eating at the best of the best in Williamsburg were just a few of the ways I explored the neighborhoods of Brooklyn.

With so many different people living in the city, diversity spreads to all corners of Brooklyn and creates a cultural atmosphere unlike any other.  It’s a melting pot for all walks of life. And its beauty and positive vibe truly sets it apart.

British Columbia

photo 1 (4)photo 2 (5)photo 2 (4)photo 5 (2)photo 4 (2)photo 3 (3)photo 3 (4)photo 4 (3)photo 1 (6)photo 2 (6)photo 1 (5)photo 5 (3)photo 3 (5)

Sometimes my trips come together at the last-minute, but workout to be amazing experiences, which is what happened on my recent travels to Okanagan Valley in British Columbia. I spent four days touring the region’s impressionable beauty with Travel Penticton and fell in love with The Okanagan’s organic makeup and the cultural and historic bond that tie the people to the land.

I met fifth generation farmers and first generation wine makers living in The Okanagan who have an unconditional love of nature and a burning passion to share their craft. They put their hearts and souls into their work and have developed a true relationship with Mother Nature, which in turn provides them with the fruits of their labor. They work in unison with their neighbor to protect The Okanagan’s natural bounty and help support each other through life. Many of their lives consist of working on the land, eating from the land and living off of the land, but each person has a true appreciation for and connection with the Earth and the life it provides them.

During my travels, I was fortunate to experience a true farm to table culinary experience—within minutes, after picking fresh food, I was eating it off my plate. I tasted some delicious wines from wine makers who are part of one of the region’s most vital industries. But overall, I learned the true meaning of sustainability at the hands of others and I left with a great insight into organic farming and even greater appreciation for The Okanagan’s culture and history.

These were just a few of my favorite experiences while in The Okanagan: touring Howling Bluff and La Frenz Winery in the Naramata Bench, walking through rows of growing grapes at Okanagan Crush Pad, picking Macintosh apples in Penticton, tasting fresh honey and eating ripe raspberries at Penticton Resort’s farm and dining in the backyard of Harker’s Organics family farm.

Simplicity

ImageImageImageImageImage20130904-225442.jpgImage

This week I took some time to regain my focus on sustainability and rework my attempts at living a simple life. Because I ‘m learning about how human diets have changed so drastically in the 20th century and strongly questioning why humanity abandoned its symbiotic relationship with the Earth and its cycles.

I am passionate about cultivating a simple life inside my tiny apartment in the middle of Los Angeles by gardening, eating locally and using traditional methods of cooking and baking.

I crave simplicity.

When on the road of travel, I seek out a similar lifestyle from which I can learn, grow and adopt some of the practices into my own life. I strive to witness the simple life that other people from different cultures living in various countries around the world live out each and every day. Gardens flourishing in small yards, chickens freely roaming the land, freshly bottled milk lining the kitchen counter … homesteading completely fascinates me.

Country girl at heart, I carry on with my attempt to live a simpler more natural life in this city that I love. Because urban agriculture is next season’s motivation.

Simplicity from this week: nurturing homegrown succulents, home-made bread, a few freshly picked apples from a local orchard, produce growing on my patio, cooking in my kitchen and an epic sunset.

Life

ImageImageImageImageImage

I find it hard to step right back into my routine after traveling. Don’t get me wrong, I love to come home to my own space and the people that love me and who I adore that much more—my friends and family I get excited to share my stories with. Because it is the people that I surround myself with that give me the support to live out my dreams and welcome me home even as time passes us by. But, where I seem to struggle are the days after I’ve been home. I push aside my daily routine and instead long for the road of travel, which stirs up the wanderlust inside me.

I wouldn’t change this lifestyle that I am happily leading and desperately seeking. I instead teach myself how to find a comfortable balance that works for everyone involved. Because I am extremely grateful for the places I’ve been, the friendships I’ve made and the lessons I’ve learned while traveling, but then again, I am absolutely in love with my home base, the person I share it with and the memories we make.

So, I was patient with myself this week. And, I gave myself the time I needed to settle back in—slowly but surely. Because I must admit, even the traveler inside me has some homebody tendencies I would never want to change.

Croatia

photo (3) photo (4) photo (5)photo 5photophoto 5 (1) photo 4 photo 3 (1) photo 2photo 4 (1)photo 2 (1) photo 1 photo (2) photo (1)

My recent travels took me to the Dalmatia region of Croatia when I was given the opportunity, through Traveldudes, to sail the Adriatic Sea with MedSailors. So last week I spent seven days at sea, island hopping in Croatia.

Picturesque and unique, I fell in love with the country. A Mediterranean influence paired with a modern flair enhances the overall beauty of the Croatian Adriatic. The region’s holiday culture is preserved through ancient ports, privately owned accommodations and local food and wine. Mixed with a contemporary approach, the southern Dalmatian islands left me with a lasting impression.

Crossing the Adriatic Sea by day, the insular exploration of small bays, charming fishing harbors, unspoiled nature and beautiful beaches makes me long to go back someday.

These were a few of my adventures from my week in Croatia; visiting the islands of Korcula, Vis, Solta, Hvar, Brac and Sesula, sailing across the Adriatic Sea, exploring ancient stone villages, swimming in the sea and watching the sunset.