• Pamela Froman

Take A Trip

Want to get away? There are so many places to explore. Take a train ride, relax on a luxurious cruise, or just hop in your car. It's all there, ripe for the picking.

Experience the serenity of the Rocky Mountains on the Coastal Passage Explorer Train Trip. You'll start your eleven-day vacation in Seattle. Explore the waterfront, Chinatown, Pioneer Square, Pike Place Market, and the Space Needle. Next is Vancouver. Enjoy a six-hour sightseeing tour with must-see attractions like the Aquarium, Stanley Park, or Granville Island. Travel to the heart of British Columbia with dramatic scenery. Continuing, you'll reach the Canadian Rockies and Alberta where you can explore Jasper National Park. Stop at Athabasca Falls before arriving at the Columbia Icefield to ride on an Ice Explorer. A half-day tour takes you into Yoho National Park and continues with a sightseeing tour of Bow Falls, Lake Minnewanka, Surprise Corner and the Hoodoos. The tour ends in Calgary.

Mexico offers scenic coastline. Lounge on the beach, kayak, explore Mayan ruins or dance the night away. Get there on The Ruby Princess from Princess Cruises for a seven night Mexican getaway.

Head to Avila Beach, on California's central coast. Avila features greenery, spas, amenity-laden hotels, oceanfront restaurants, wines, and shopping. Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort and Spa rests atop hot mineral springs and spans more than 100 acres.

Blue Moon Over Avila is a French Wine Bar and Bistro that offers wines from around the world and expertly prepared dishes. Chef José Dahan offers a rotating food menu that compliments.

Don't forget to go wine tasting at wineries such as Morovino, Kelsey Key Canyon and Peloton Cellars.

Head to Shasta Lake – perfect for fishing and water sports. Don’t miss the spires at Castle Crags State Park. McArthur-Burney Falls Memorial State Park is home to the 129-foot, fern-draped Burney Falls. Finish at lovely, placid Lake Almanor, which neighbors bubbling mud pots and geysers of Lassen Volcanic National Park.

Located in South Placer County, Rocklin is characterized by rolling hills with 360-degree panoramic views of the Sierra Nevada mountains and the Sutter-Butte mountain range. Rocklin was a destination along the transcontinental railroad in 1864 and was incorporated during the heyday of granite mining.

The Rocklin Historical Society provides a glimpse into the lives of Rocklin residents with an entertaining and educational tour of the cemetery featuring roles acted by society members.

A new adventure awaits as a 160-year-old granite quarry in Rocklin is transformed into a premier entertainment destination.

Choose your adventure on the Cliffhanger, The Bullet or the Rocklin Express, the three side-by-side zip lines. The zips total over 1,200 feet in length and propel to speeds of 30 miles per hour.

Rocky Point aerial adventure course will generate hours of entertainment. The three-story high ropes course has over 60 elements. Traverse around the park on granite walls 40-feet above the quarry floor!

The Coachella Valley is home to the world’s most popular festival. Coachella (April 13 - 22), has set trends and broken records with wildly popular performers, emerging artists, and highly anticipated musical reunions. A fitting backdrop, the El Morocco Inn and Spa offers the opportunity to decompress with ambiance, hot-springs-warmed pool, and decadent spa treatments.

There are approximately 326 Indian reservations. Navajo Nation is the largest in the United States, spanning 16 million acres throughout Arizona, New Mexico and Utah. Observe powwows, tribal dances and select ceremonies.

Cherokee Nation is located in Oklahoma. Purchase the Cherokee Compass for $15, and gain admission to the Cherokee Heritage Center, Cherokee National Prison Museum, Cherokee National Supreme Court Museum and John Ross Museum. College students from the Cherokee, Yuchi and other tribes lead visitors on guided tours of a reconstructed Cherokee village.

In addition to showcasing the biggest names in indie rock, alternative rock, hip hop, and electronica, the Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival (August 10 - 12), is a famed Bay Area celebration of food, wine, beer, art, comedy, and eco-friendly living.

The Monterey Peninsula is home to an eclectic mix of events – classical music, classic cars, jazz. Attend the Carmel Bach Festival (July 14 - 28), Concour d’Elegance/Monterey Car Week (August 18 - 26), or the urbane Monterey Jazz Festival (September 21 – 23). Stay at the oceanfront Seven Gables Inn to maximize indulgence.

Step back into the 1850s in Columbia State Historic Park. Costumed docents lead tours, live and work in period-appropriate shops and trades. Ride a stagecoach, order a sarsaparilla soda, or feel the heat in a blacksmith's forge.

The Mendocino Music Festival (July 7 - 21) brings musicians from all over the world to the edge of the Pacific Ocean. The festival features two dozen concerts, from blues to bluegrass, symphonies to opera, and jazz to Celtic and African.

Mendocino County is also a fun place to take your dog, with nearly 100 dog-friendly lodging options, dozens of dog-friendly wineries, the dog-friendly Skunk Train, Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens, coastal hikes and Catch-A-Canoe, where you and your dogs can paddle up Big River Estuary in a redwood outrigger canoe.

Truckee, the heart of the Sierras, boasts big city offerings in a charming mountain town. Truckee’s backyard is ski resorts, hiking, water sports, and biking trails while downtown offers a variety of restaurants, art galleries, music, and parks. The Truckee Railyard is the future of expansion. This development features an eight mile scenic paved river path.

"The Truckee Railyard development is intended to redefine mountain living. The mixed-use, walkable development will extend Truckee’s strong sense of community and historic downtown area, filling major voids in the region’s marketplace with the addition of artist lofts, a movie theatre, new restaurants and retail,” says Colleen Dalton, brand marketing director for the Truckee Chamber of Commerce.

Erected to honor the immigrants who passed through Truckee en-route to the West, the Pioneer Monument has stood at Donner Memorial State Park for 99 years. At its dedication on June 6, 1918, thousands of people and three Donner Party survivors gathered. June 9, 2018 is the re-dedication, centennial celebration, and restoration kickoff.

California’s sunniest destination is San Diego. Explore Little Italy, North Park, South Park, and the East Village. San Diego offers delicious food, a stunning art scene, and craft brews on tap. Rent stand-up paddleboards or kayaks and finish up with dining and dancing in the Gaslamp Quarter. Splurge on a night at the Hotel del Coronado, located on idyllic Coronado Island.

Venture off the beaten path in Santa Maria. Explore grapes in style! The Santa Maria Wine Trolley route is approximately 75 minutes and takes you to tons of amazing wineries. The wine trolley runs Saturdays and Sundays, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Syrah are the specialties.

“The Santa Maria Valley Wine Trolley is an innovative, affordable and safe way to experience our beautiful wine country. Because it’s a public transportation system, we are able to create a consumer friendly route at a $10 ticket price,” says Jennifer Harrison, Director, Santa Maria Valley Chamber & Visitors Bureau. “Santa Maria Valley is known for its affordable hospitality, and I think the trolley is representative of both. Plus, there’s nothing better than exploring wine country on a beautiful wine trolley.”

Located moments from Santa Maria is Casmalia, a picturesque western town. One of the most authentic restaurants you will encounter is The Hitching Post. This is California-style barbecue to perfection.

There’s always something to celebrate in Santa Cruz. With 29 miles of sun-splashed, fun-filled beaches, you're sure to find your sweet spot. The Santa Cruz Surfing Museum, is housed inside a quaint lighthouse. and includes photos, vintage redwood surfboards, and surfing history.

The Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk is recognized as the best seaside park in the world – operating since 1907! The Giant Dipper wooden roller coaster thrills riders and the Looff Carousel's unique ring toss provides a challenge. And the food! Choices include corn dogs, deep fried artichokes, chocolate covered bacon, and deep fried Twinkies!

Hidden amidst leafy, green expanses is the historic town of Watsonville with killer food, cool sites, beaches, and farms. Start at the Agricultural History Project Center and Museum. There are activities like driving a tractor and milking a wooden cow.

Experience the bounty at California Grill, a restaurant whose organic produce is sourced direct from the owner's farm.

2018 officially marks Watsonville’s 150th anniversary – a sesquicentennial! This community is a hotbed for craft food and drink producers.

SIDEBAR – DogTrekker Mobile App – What does “dog-friendly” really mean? co-founders, Roxanne and Dave Kendrick, have been traveling with their Labrador retrievers for over 30 years. Traveling with dogs has gained in popularity. More and more hotels, B&B’s, vacation rentals and others offer dog-friendly rooms and amenities. was founded to assist dog owners in finding their perfect accommodation, and safe and fun things to do with their pups. is a collaborative effort by dog lovers, writers, editors and travelers who share what they’ve learned during 200 combined years of on-the-road adventures. delivers local and accurate listings, engaging content, all with a focus on animal welfare. There are over 8,000 dog-friendly listings, broken down into categories such as lodging, dining, dog parks, hikes and beaches, water activities, wineries, trains, local dog businesses and emergency services, for over 750 cities, 58 counties and 18 regions within California. As well, there are over 1,800 stories written by travel writers. also offers over 2,000 events that dog parents and pups can attend, with over 300 rescue/adoption agencies and a Vet Buzz Blog featuring tips. On the app, all of the listings, stories and events can be found in both a Nearby mode (up to 75 miles) and Explore mode, perfect for travel. You can also sign up for a monthly DogCation where one lucky couple and their dogs will be treated to a two-night stay at a luxury California hotel.

SIDEBAR – Roadie Roadie

Roadie Roadie is an app-based shipping community that launched in 2015. Roadie was founded on the notion of southern hospitality – neighbors helping neighbors. The idea struck founder Marc Gorlin when he needed custom tile from a warehouse a few hours away to finish a bathroom renovation, but had no way of getting them the same day.

He was inspired. After all, there’s always someone going somewhere, and surely someone already headed in that direction would be willing to transport the tile for him. Roadie was born.

Roadie connects people and enables efficient, low cost delivery for senders. It also rewards drivers for trips they were already taking. It’s becoming the go-to delivery solution for large, awkward or delicate items. From patio furniture to pets, Roadie makes ‘out-of-the box’ delivery as easy and convenient as ordering a pizza. Roadie delivers what people need, same-day, next day, and even on weekends. Both the sender and receiver can track deliveries in real-time and goods are automatically protected up to $500 with the option to purchase additional coverage up to $10,000. Pricing is determined by distance and urgency, in addition to size. Most local Gigs will cost between $8 and $50, and long distance Gigs with oversized items can cost up to $650. The Roadie app is available for download.

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