As I sat down to write this post, I was feeling a bit grumpy about 2017. In comparison to other years, for whatever reason, I kept telling myself that 2017 just hasn’t felt as special or as fulfilling. However, a powerful and somewhat surprising thing happened as I went through my photos from 2017. I realized that I was focusing on a handful of tough/hard things that I went through in 2017 and not the bigger picture of the many amazing moments and accomplishments that also happened. Going through this exercise gave me so many reasons to feel grateful for the life I have and what I accomplished in 2017. It also gave me the motivation I needed to keep going and striving for my goals in 2018. Here’s why.
After a wonderful hike on the Ochre Trail, it was time to explore the town of Roussillon. Earning the designation as one of the most beautiful villages in France (Les Plus Beaux Villages de France), Roussillon is located in Languedoc-Roussillon region and dates back to 600 BC. Today, the village is known for its charming architecture and the colorful buildings in the hues of the ochre pigment famous in the region.
The town of Roussillon
Google Provence and you will be flooded with gorgeous images of lavender fields and historic villages artfully carved into mountains. However, what you might not see unless you scroll back a very long way are the stunning orange and yellow cliffs and quarries found in the Ochres of the Luberon. Inspired by their beauty, I ventured to the lovely town of Roussillon to take a hike on the Ochre Trail, or Le Sentier des Ocres.
The Ochre Trail in Roussillon
Driving down the Oregon coast has been on my travel bucket list for some time now – and for good reason. With a number of beaches and state parks not too far from one another, this beautiful stretch of coastline is filled with incredible scenic vistas, wide stretches of beach and an array of sea stacks (large rocks jutting out of the ocean!).
However, if I am honest, another major inspiration for this trip was to visit and spend time with my dear friend, Ekaterina Walter, who lives near Portland, Oregon. Ekaterina and I co-wrote our book, The Power of Visual Storytelling, together. We are also dear friends with a shared passion for travel and try to meet up for a few trips annually.
For this trip, we decided to take one day on a Thursday in late July and start in early in the morning (arriving around 10-10:30 am?) at Ecola State Park with stops in Cannon Beach, Haystack Rock, Arcadia Beach State Recreation Site and the Neahkahnie Viewpoint in Oswald West State Park, before heading inland through Tillamook State Forest and then back towards Portland.
While it’s often said that London is the perfect international hub for hopping around Europe, I think many travelers take for granted how many wonderful UK destinations are a relatively short train ride away. Inspired to see more of this beautiful country that I now call home, I recently took a daytrip to Bath.
Just 1.5 hours by train from London’s Paddington Station, Bath is said to date back to AD 60-70, when a bathing complex was constructed as a result of the region’s natural hot springs. Today, Bath has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage site and the city’s rich history, numerous cultural attractions and charming 18th-century Georgian architecture have resulted in a whopping 3.8 million daytrip visitors annually.
After spending a day soaking up all that Bath has to offer, I cannot say that I am terribly surprised. Here are my recommendations and experiences following a very fun daytrip to Bath!