Day 4 – Grand Canyon Nationalpark

Life is not measured by the breaths we take but by the moments that take our breath away

This day way the one I was looking forward to the most. It was the day I was about to stand in front of the Grand Canyon.

On this day we left Laughlin and on the way to the Grand Canyon Nationalpark we made a stop in Seligman. It is a small place on the historic Route 66. I loved that place as you feel like you have time-travelled back to the old days.

We drew to the airport from where we could start our helicopter tour to the Grand Canyon. It was my first time ever being on a helicopter and exciting enough we were about to fly to one of the world wonders. Arriving at the edge of Grand Canyon I got very emotional. I haven’t seen anything like that ever in my life. Every person will feel in a different way seeing such a wonder. It just made me realize again how amazing the nature is and what it is capable of. In front of the canyon we as humans feel powerless. I was amazed by the beautiful terra cotta colors and the beautiful structures while we were flying over the canyon. I started to think about so many different things and life in general. It was definitely a lifetime experience.

The whole day was about Grand Canyon. We enjoyed the canyon from different viewpoints and we sat on different edges to enjoy the view and take deep breaths.

We stayed at the Yavapai Lodge in Grand Canyon Nationalpark. It got so cold during the night. Two blankets were not enough for us but that made us sleep like a bear and dream about the beautiful Grand Canyon.

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Day 3 – Joshua Tree Nationalpark, Amboy, Laughlin

It was a a very early morning on this day. My husband was awake at 6 and his first thought was where to have breakfast. The breakfast at the hotel we were staying at was not the best one (cereals and white bread only). Subway was the only place near our hotel so we went there to grab a sandwich before we had to return to our hotel as the guide planned to leave at 8 o’clock sharp.

Our first stop on the way to Joshua Tree Nationalpark was Hadley Fruit Orchards. It’s a grocery store famous for it’s delicious date (banana) shake. They sell wholesome organic foods and as we like to consume organic groceries in our every day life we bought some fruits, nuts and veggies to have on the road. The Joshua Tree NAtionalpark consists two deserts (Mojave and Colorado) and is full of Yucca trees. We did a round trip at the park and enjoyed the views and different plant species.

On our way to Laughlin we made another stop in Amboy. It is a little town with only a few buildings and about 10 people  (according to our guide). Amboy is famous for the Roy’s Motel and Café which is a landmark for Route 66. Many years back Route 66 used to be the main street of America. Everyone doing a tour in the West Coast of USA will make a stop at Route 66 to take a legendary photo. Obviously we did that too and we tried the Route 66 root beer which is without any alcohol and made out of cane sugar. To be honest I didn’t like the taste of it. It was too sweet and not tasty (for me at least).

We stayed in Laughlin that night. It is a mini version of Las Vegas with many casino hotels. Our guide told us the story about how the town was founded by Don Laughlin. Listening to the history is really fascinating sometimes. We played a little but I am not a Casino girl and luck never knocks my door anyway (hehe).

After an italian dinner and a walk through the town we went to sleep so we could be all set for a new day.

Day 2 – LA, Beverly Hills, Hollywood, Universal Studio

Wow – I just realize how much we did on this day by recapping it. We started very early on this day (we did that pretty much the whole trip) at 8 o’clock. We went to downtown LA first and made stops at Disney Concert Hall and then Historic District.

There was a fruit stand in downtown LA. The lady made really good fruit salads by using fresh products and then she seasoned it with lemon and mexican chili seasoning (Tajin). I never tried the combination of spiciness with fruits like Watermelon or Honeydew. But let me tell you – it was delicious! We had it pretty much everyday on our trip and we also bought the seasoning to take home so we can remake it.

Afterwards we went to Beverly Hills. It was so exciting to finally go there. Which girl doesn’t want that right? We walked to Rodeo Drive which is a street in Beverly Hills with all the luxury shops like Louis Vuitton and Chanel. Most of the celebrities shop there so don’t wonder when you see very expensive cars there – it is normal.

One of the two highlights of the day was definitely Hollywood! You feel like you are in spotlight walking over the walk of fame (hehe) and obviously you got to take a picture in front of the Hollywood sign. How many opportunities like that do you get in life?

Second highlight of the day was Universal Studios. It is one of the major studios in the US and plays a big part in the movie industry. Many worldwide known movies were shot there and it was just an unbelievable feeling to be standing there. It also includes a theme park so you never get bored. I loved the universal tour itself. We were able to see different sets. One of them was that of Fast and the Furious. We also went to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter (although I got to admit I never watched a movie as I have not read the books yet; I know I should), Jurassic Park and oh I loved the King Kong 3D experience. It was far the best 3D experience ever which I have experienced until now.

The day was full of new experiences and emotions. We saw so many things in just one day and I still haven’t digested everything but writing about it helps a lot. Writing for me really helps to process things and my feelings. Its helps to recapture moments, memories and emotions I had at that specific moment.

West Coast USA – Day 1

Who doesn’t dream of going to California at least once in their life? Warm, sunny weather, nice people and just experience the Californian way of life.

I always wanted to go the west coast since my childhood and this year my dream came true. My husband and I went on a two weeks round trip with a tour guide and other people on a bus. We hesitated at the beginning as we never did a tour like that but it was so worth it and a great experience. Our guide was so experienced and had knowledge about everything and he knew the west coast by heart. He gave us valuable information as well as great tips.

In the next days I will share my (our) experiences with you guys and maybe it might help some of you who are about to do a trip like this.

DAY 1

After 12 hours of journey full of excitement and anticipation we landed on LAX. As expected there was a huge line in front of the US border control. It took us about 2 hours to get out and pick up our luggage.

At arrival our guide was waiting for us and then we got a shuttle to our hotel. We were exhausted and tired (I barely sleep on airplanes) but we still wanted to see as much as possible of Los Angeles as we only had 2 days in LA.

I always buy guidebooks before any trip and even on this trip although we had a proper guide I bought one. On this day the guide didn’t plan anything as other people needed to arrive first.

My husband was hungry and due to the fact he loves seafood we went to a place called Joe’s Crab Shack. If you love seafood especially crab and lobster that is a place to go.

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Sweet potato fries

I wasn’t hungry that much so I just ordered sweet potato fries. I have been wanting to try them in America for ages so I did. They were really crispy and yummy. Usually I’m not a sweet potato fan because they are too sweet for my taste.

According to my guidebook you should start with Santa Monica when you are in LA which we then did. Unfortunately it was already late in the evening and the weather was crispy so we didn’t enjoy much of the beach and pier. But we went to a really cool place called Urth Caffé. They have organic coffees and teas. I ordered Spanish Latte which was delicious. This coffee shop was so cosy due to the oil lamp.

After that we felt so jetlagged so went to the hotel and had a good night sleep.

Day 2 will follow soon.

TheSparklingLifestyle Blogger.

 

My travel essentials – Road trip edition

I am going on a two weeks round trip to the west coast of USA tomorrow and there a certain things I cannot leave without.

My travel essentials make me be prepared for any possible circumstances.

On this trip I will be on the road a lot so for this kind of trip a lightweight backpack is the best option. I chose the Longchamp Le Pliage one in khaki. The Le Pliage collection is so practical and I have a little collection of the shoppers. This is my first backpack from that series and I am really impressed. It is big enough for all my essentials but small enough to not look like a school bag.

The khaki goes pretty much with anything you wear and it is trendy too.

So here are my travel essentials round trip edition:

1. Wallet (obviously!; mine is by Michael Kors; choose a little one because you do not want to take every card with you)

2. Sunglasses (it is crucial to protect your eyes from UV light; my sunglasses are by Chanel)

3. Cleansing wipes (do not forget them; it is always nice if you have the possibility to clean your face; I chose one which is hydrating too)

4. Sanitary wipes (this is essential when you are on the road or airport; you want to make sure that things you touch are clean in order to prevent yourself from diseases)

5. Tangle Teezer (to brush your hair on the go)

6. Hand cream (you want to moisturize your hands after washing them)

7. Moisturizer for your face (to hydrate your face after cleaning)

8. Disinfection Spray with wound healing properties (in case you get wounded)

9. Lipbalm and a lipstick which is hydrating but gives you a little little of color too

10. Sleep therapy aroma roll on (I always have trouble sleeping on airplanes)

I also need to add a pack of tissues, band-aids,  little toothbrush and paste for on the go and hand sanitizer.

Oh and one important thing… my PASSPORT of course!

With these essentials you can happily enjoy your trip without any worries!

Hope this helped for your next trip.

Have an amazing day.

TheSparklingLifestyle Blogger.