This year I couldn’t have picked a better way to spend my birthday. I hopped on a flight with the intention of stuffing my face and loving on my niece and nephews. That’s always fun and usually by the third day, I’m exhausted. But it’s worth it. I also did a little research and realized we were in close proximity to the Paso Robles wine region. Now y’all know I love my wine!
We had limited time but I was successful in convincing my big sis to day trip with me for some tastings and just an all out girls trip. And we had a blast. Our first stop was LeVigne Winery in Paso Robles.
The grounds of this place were gorgeous. It’s also kid and pet friendly. My niece had her fare share of fancy fruit punch soda.
Also, she had a blast taking pictures with Aunt Trici.
But everywhere we turned, we were surrounded by bold and beautiful splashes of color. Having a glass of wine on the patio was the perfect way to end our visit to LeVigne.
For our next adventure, we trotted off to Jack Creek Farms in nearby Templeton. I wanted my niece to have some fun of her own. I had read online that they allow you to pick fruits from the orchard.
Once again, the colors y’all…
It’s like your brain goes through a range of emotions being surrounded by so much beauty. And I’m so glad I got to share this with my sister and niece. I’ve been to Napa/Sonoma a few times, but I think Paso Robles may be my new favorite.
I’ve often heard the many reasons why friends and family opt out of international travel. Costs are always a common factor, followed by time off from work and other obligations. In an earlier post, I mentioned how people don’t consider domestic travel as an option when making vacation plans. There are so many marvels waiting to be discovered with domestic travel! To date, I’ve been out of the country twice ( but that is soon to change!). However, I’ve visited 16 states since I’ve been traveling. Its amazing the varying levels of cultural differences and experiences you can find in your own backyard. It begs the question, ” why do people write off domestic travel as if its not really traveling?”.
There’s this underlying perception of domestic travel as not really counting as travel. Its almost as if people feel that international travel is real travel because you are paying that much more for a valid travel experience. Which is the furthest from the truth. I say this because, yes, while domestic travel can be cheaper than international travel at times, it can also cost just as much depending on where you go. A trip to Miami/Ft. Lauderdale cost around the same amount as my trip to Tulum. Costs aside, the experiences can be just as rich, no matter where you decide to explore. The varying cultures and ethnicities alone in Miami are enough to make it feel like you’re outside of the U.S. I got a kick out of just sitting on the beach people watching.
Some of my main reasons for embracing domestic travel include:
a) Quick weekend getaways- Turn that 3 day weekend into a fun filled, action packed exploration!
b) Inexpensive lodging and airfare (depending on where you go and the season).
c) No hassle with sifting through international customs and cultural differences (think language barriers and currency exchanges).
d) Unique landscapes across the country to explore- From mountains to beaches, skyscrapers to cozy main streets, we have it all!
There are so many “off-the-beaten path” type of destinations the U.S. has to offer, its almost overwhelming the amount of options. And the cool thing is, there is something to fit everyone’s personal interests. When people think of Texas, they usually think of flat lands with roaming herds of cows and cowboys. A lot of people are shocked to learn the multitude of terrains one may encounter within the entire state. There’s mountains to the west, plains and rolling hills to the north, miles of beaches along the southeastern coast to the south, and stunning hill country views and watering holes in the middle. When I start planning for trips, I try to incorporate as many domestic trips as I can, because I want to learn and see my own backyard just as much as I do international destinations.
If you’re reading this and are one of the people I’m referring to, stop placing limits on yourself! Get out there and explore, even if it is your own backyard.