If you want to try llama trekking, Montana is the place to do it!
With soulful, chocolate brown eyes, silky soft hair, and a passion for food, nature, and daydreaming, Raffi sounds like the perfect man. And I can certainly attest to the fact that he is! Furthermore, legends about handsome, strong, capable Montana ranch men are indeed true... provided that you don't need all said men to actually be human. Raffi, after all, is a llama. Yes, you read that correctly. A llama! And a devilishly handsome one at that. We spent one blissful day together, sharing our hopes and dreams as we hiked up the side of a mountain. But I know that it's only a matter of time before another girl catches his eye. After all, if you're into llama trekking, Montana is the best place to be! Find out why this is one of the most memorable micro-adventures I've undertaken.
We have 21 suggestions for Ottawa travellers to discover the city's cozy side, one microadventure at a time.
I am not adventurous. Nope, not one bit. Sure, I talk a good game and occasionally do things which other people might consider a bit daunting, like walking across Victoria Falls Bridge or kayaking in the Saguenay Fjord, but I think we all know the truth. Deep down, I'll always be the girl who caused a commotion in the Athens Meat Market and braced for an attack from non-existent wild pigs in Hawaii. I'm scared of adventure and (...I like to think...) adventure is a bit scared of me. However, a conversation with a friend has completely re-framed things for me. I've been introduced to the world of microadventures!
The phrase microadventure has been popularized by Alastair Humphreys in his book Microadventures: Local Discoveries for Great Escapes. The book describes a microadventure as something "close to home, cheap, simple, short and 100% guaranteed to refresh your life. A microadventure takes the spirit of a big adventure and squeezes it into a day or even a few hours."
Hang on a second. That sounds like what I do. That sounds like what I do ALL. THE. TIME. I like things that are cheap, simple, short, and refreshing (aka COZY things!). Could it be that I've been an adventurer - and a trendy adventurer at that! - all along? Since the spirit of Humphrey's microadventures focus on this close to home, here are my favourite microadventures to recommend to Ottawa travellers.
While in Botswana, safari camping was at the top of our travel list. But it wasn't without challenges, like how to stay clean.
This picture of me, taken after one day of Botswana safari camping, says it all. I'm wide-eyed and smiling but you can see the worry in my eyes. You can also see plenty of sweaty hair and a cooling, wet handkerchief draped around my neck. And that was my northern Botswana and Chobe safari experience in a nutshell: awe-inspiring, monumental, a bit overwhelming, and really, REALLY sweaty.
In so many ways, I was ill-prepared for the rigors of Botswana wilderness safaris. I had done exhaustive research. I had been camping dozens of times. Heck, I had even lived in southeast Africa before. But the heat, sand, dirt, and sweat hit me like a ton of bricks. It wasn't that I was unhygienic, per se. I was just out of my element in so many ways and feeling cruddy sure didn't help.
Ryan, I suspect, was absolutely in his element. But I was at the outer limits of my comfort zone. And, trust me, life does NOT begin there, no matter what the philosophers say! This is the blog post about keeping clean on camping safaris I wish I could have read before my trip.
In Ellicottville, New York, one of the most popular ski destinations in the United States, I faced my own mountain challenge.
Participation in the press trip that brought me to Ellicottville was part of the Travel Bloggers Exchange (TBEX) conference. This post may contain affiliate links, which means if you make a purchase through said link, we'll be paid a small commission and we thank you for your support.
If you love watching CSI marathons as much as I do, you'll no doubt have picked up on a particular habit of shift supervisor Gil Grissom. When the introverted, cerebral, bookish Grissom needs to unwind, he heads to one of Las Vegas' spectacular roller coasters and lets the breakneck speeds and thrilling loops clear his head.
Like Grissom, I too love bees and books (dead bodies, not so much...) Could I possibly love roller coasters as well?
The answer is a resounding NO! If you follow my Facebook page, you'll know that roller coasters are one of the many "nope" activities for me. Bungee jumping, hang gliding, mountain climbing, roller coasters - they're all "nopes". They terrify me!
But what about a mountain coaster?
Saguenay is the best place to go kayaking in Quebec - even if there are a few misadventures along the way.
Brimming with confidence and cutting a dashing, athletic figure, I nimbly slid into the stern of my sea kayak, ready to embrace the elements and be one with nature.
Wait a minute.... that's not me! I've never been nimble at anything I do, let alone anything to do with boats! But when I had the opportunity to kayak the Saguenay, Quebec, Fjord - and specifically be in the Saguenay St Lawrence Marine Park, adjacent to Fjord National Park- I WAS truly ready to be one with nature. The chance to navigate a fjord here in Canada was a rare travel experience I couldn't miss.
As for the confidence.... well... let's just say that I was about as confident as I was nimble. But it didn't take me long to hit my stride, with only a few minor mishaps. And it was all worth it to be better acquainted with an absolutely incredible corner of the world. Here's why I think sea kayaking is among the best things to do in Saguenay (even if there were a few awkward wetsuit moments along the way).
Beluga whale watching in Quebec is an exhilarating travel experience - but what would a queasy girl like myself think about it?
Vomiting. Vomiting on people. Toppling over furniture. Quietly crying. Some of my most woe-begotten travel moments have involved motion sickness and many of those have involved boats. Who can forget when I had motion sickness while on the Houseboat Museum of Amsterdam? I'm not an adventurous girl and, on the rare times that I am, that adventurous spirit does NOT involve boats. But all that changed when I had the chance to go beluga whale watching in Quebec; Tadoussac to be exact. "Whale watching: Quebec" has been on my travel bucket list for a long time, and for good reason. Whale watching in Tadoussac is reputed to be among the best in the world and there was no way that I was going to miss it - no matter what my stomach wanted to do!
All roads really DO lead to - and from- Rome. If you're interested in biking in Rome, this post about cycling the Appian Way is for you.
Julius Ceasar, Saint Peter, Spartacus, and now the team from Turnipseed Travel.... there's been more than a few legends who've walked, rode, and peddled their way down the Appian Way. This ancient highway, nearly 400 miles of engineering marvel, connected Rome with southern Italy and the sea, forming a critical trade and communications link with Greece and Egypt.
Considered the world's first super highway, everyone who was anyone traveled along the Appian Way, along with over two thousand years of worth of anonymous citizens too. We were happy to start our first day in Rome by following in their footsteps!
In Stockholm's Archipelago, an RIB is the best way to travel.
My list of enemies may not be long, but it is firm. And boats have been at the top of that list for my entire life. I am a seasick, motion-sick mess at the mere thought of boats. I have thrown up in public. I have nearly thrown up on people. I have inadvertently taken too much anti-nausea medication and have fallen asleep on the floor of a whale watching vessel. I have taken too little medication too late on an overnight ferry and have cried myself to sleep.
I even felt queasy on the Amsterdam Houseboat Museum. A docked vessel in an inner city canal designed for human habitation. I take my ginger capsules with a hearty dose of shame.
Needless to say, had I really known what an RIB was and what it did, I never would have gone to the dock in Stockholm. I hate boats. I hate speed. Sometimes I even think I hate fun. I’m an absolute scaredy cat, the saddest wimpiest traveler to ever tentatively hit the road.
Who on earth would have thought I’d have one of the best experiences of my life?!
I love the water and I couldn't wait to try submarine tours in Hawaii. But how would I feel about hanging out on the ocean floor - in a tube? It was time to take a trip with Atlantis Adventures Kona.
Submarine tours in Hawaii have been on our travel bucket list for a long time. There's absolutely no way you can go to Hawaii and not explore the ocean! The water is lovely, the scenery is great - and what lies under the surface is even better! The snorkeling and scuba diving in Hawaii is fantastic. The Big Island is arguably less famous for underwater activities than the other islands but we have always enjoyed ourselves and have several beaches we call our favourites. There's great ocean experiences there - don't let anyone convince you otherwise!
But not everyone is comfortable in the water and fortunately there's a great alternative for those who prefer to keep dry while they explore the ocean depths. We did a submarine tour of the Kona harbour with Atlantis Adventure Kona Tours and we really enjoyed our experience. But what was it like stepping on board a submarine for the first time? And did the tour offer good value compared to other things to do in Kona? Read on to learn more about our adventures (from the anti-adventurist herself!)
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