Adrenaline Adventure Dallas – We Would Have Stayed for Several More Days

I just spent about 3 days in Dallas with my wife, and boy they weren’t kidding when they said that everything in the “Big D” is, well – big! I live in a small suburban town, so I’m not used to seeing an almost endless line of skyscrapers and high-end retail shops in one block. So, what were the missus and me doing in Dallas, you ask? The honest answer is we just decided to take a random vacation and chose Dallas as our destination.Yeah, we know Dallas isn’t a coastal city like Miami and Venice Beach, but does it even really matter when it has a lot of other sights and sounds? Me and the missus also happen to be huge football and basketball fans, so this trip to Dallas gave us an opportunity to watch both the Cowboys and Mavericks in person.

We came to Dallas during the fall so the weather was pleasant all around. It was sunny, but the heat wasn’t unbearable. Being the foodies that we were, we spent days searching for the best restaurants in the Big D. We also wanted to try authentic Texas BBQ and our sights set on this placed called Lockhart Smokehouse.

Besides the food we were also looking forward to visiting their botanical gardens and go to the top of Reunion Tower. I’ve read and heard stories about how grand the view is of Downtown Dallas from the top of Reunion Tower and I wanted to experience this for myself.

When we arrived at Dallas, we were blown away by how lovely their airport looked. It felt like we had just walked into a luxury mall with all of the high-end shops that were in in. But we didn’t come here to see the airport though. No, no we came here to tour Dallas and enjoy its attractions, so our first order of business was to rent a cab that would take us to our hotel.

We booked a hotel that was only about 10 minutes away from the heart of the downtown area, so our spot was pretty good. After we were done unpacking our stuff at our hotel room, we immediately set out to walk around Downtown Dallas. Let me just say that they probably have the biggest downtown area that I have ever seen.

After snapping some photos of ourselves, our stomachs started grumbling and you know what that means – time for some Texas BBQ. We went to Lockhart Smokehouse and man, was it crowded. The aroma of their homemade BBQ sauce and the sight of people eating briskets and pulled pork sandwiches made us even hungrier, but we figured that it would be worth waiting another 10 minutes to get a vacant table. After what must have felt like forever, we were finally shown to our seats and made our orders.

The food here was beyond awesome. Me and the wife couldn’t stop sucking the sauce from our pork ribs, and their beef brisket is to die for. Oh, and did I mention that they’re located in the Bishop Arts District of Dallas? After lunch we headed over to the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden where we walked while admiring the lovely scenery around us.

We then went to the Dallas Museum of Art so we could brush up on our culture. After the museum, it was off to Reunion Tower. It was already close to sundown when we got there and tickets were $17 per head, but we didn’t mind because the view alone made it worth it. Looking at the skyline of Downtown Dallas from more than 500 feet up was an experience of a lifetime for us.

The view became even more amazing once it got dark and the skyline was on full display. There weren’t that many people when we went up there, so the atmosphere was a little more relaxed. For dinner, we decided to eat at the Cloud Nine Café. Their meals weren’t that expensive plus we also got to enjoy a great view while eating some fine cuisine.

We stayed at Reunion Tower until 10 in the evening because we just wanted to relax after a long day of walking and just being in awe of the city. The next day we went to Dealey Plaza aka the place where President John F. Kennedy was assassinated. The exact spot where he was fatally shot has been marked with an “X.” Being there made me feel a sense of sadness knowing it was where one of the most infamous moments in American history happened.

We then headed to the Dallas Aquarium and man, were we acting like a couple of kids in a candy store. My wife and I were pretty amazed by all of the marine life they had there, and it gave me a newfound appreciation for nature. After eating lunch at a restaurant called “Aw Shucks”, we then headed over the American Airlines Arena to catch a Dallas Mavericks game. We got tickets close to the nosebleed sections, but we didn’t mind because this was a chance for us to see Dirk Nowitzki play before he hangs up his sneakers for good.

On our last day in Dallas we both felt like there were plenty of things that we could do if we had more time. We were seriously considering staying for a few more days, but we didn’t have enough money. However, me and the wife are seriously considering coming back to Dallas soon. We might even book an adrenaline adventures Dallas, TX tour next time because we really want to enjoy this city to the fullest.

Adirondack Adventures White Water Rafting – My Buddies and I Loved It

It had been a while since me and my buddies had gone on a nature trip together, and we all felt like we could use a long break from work and life in general. We all got together and talked about where our next nature adventure trip was going to be, and we all agreed to head to the Adirondack regions. We had heard a bunch of stories about the place such as how awesome it is for nature lovers and how everyone who goes there should try doing some white-water rafting.

Living in New York City can be stressful because it always feels like you’re in a hurry. I honestly couldn’t wait to leave for Adirondack Park because my stress levels were already reaching a boiling point, and my buddies all felt the same way as well. We planned on getting away for the weekend and just forget that the words “work” and “problems” even existed.

My buddy, Jalen, was kind enough to offer his pickup truck for the trip because it takes about 4 hours and 40 minutes to get to Adirondack from New York City via car.  We left early Friday morning and brought enough food, water, camping equipment, and just about everything else that could help us survive for the next few days.

We had a lot of fun making that drive to upstate New York and time really went by quick because we weren’t even aware that we were already about halfway to Adirondack Park when we stopped at a gas station to refuel car. It felt good to get away from the fast-paced environment of the Big Apple, and for the first time in what felt like forever, all of us were feeling loose and stress-free.

After filling up the car I decided to take the wheel so Jalen could catch a nap. Fast forward a couple oh hours later and we finally arrived at our destination. It was more beautiful than I imagined. I saw photos and videos of the region, but I never expected to be awestruck by it in person. And the air in the area was so clean and crisp that I had practically forgotten what it was like to live in an area without pollution.

My buddies were all feeling euphoric about the whole thing as well and couldn’t wait to setup our tents.As we headed towards the camping village, we couldn’t help but to stop every now and then to admire the scenery and snap a few photos. The camping village was great because we were surrounded by trees and had a great view of the nearby lake.

After setting up our stuff we took a quick nap because we were about to have a long day ahead. Being the fun-loving nutjobs that we were, we all wanted to spend our first day doing some white-water rafting. We had already reserved some slots for an Adirondack adventures white-water rafting a couple of weeks prior and it was the one thing that we were most looking forward to doing.

Our guide, Alex, was very knowledgeable and friendly and carefully laid out the safety instructions before we could begin. I felt a little nervous because I was about to do something that I had never done before, but at the same time I felt secure because I trusted my guide. We started our adventure on the Indian River en route to the Hudson River Gorge.

This was a 17-mile journey that was full of adrenaline, screams, and beautiful Adirondack scenery that gave me a newfound appreciation for nature and life outside of the big city. For me and my buddies, the whole thing felt like a rollercoaster, but man was it fun. The current was intense and gave us all the excitement that we could handle. According to our guide, this sort of thing was normal during the Spring.

And speaking of our guide, he was an awesome storyteller. He told us a lot of entertaining stories (mostly about his own experiences in the area) during the smoother parts of the journey. We could have listened to him narrate tale after tale for hours on end. Props to you, Alex!

At the end of our trip we returned to the base and were shown pictures of our journey. They also had some delicious chicken BBQ waiting for us, so naturally we stayed behind to eat this feast. We were tired, a bit sore, and drenched but mostly importantly we were all happy and having fun. We were all spent when we returned to the campsite and we couldn’t wait to hit the sack and catch some z’s.

When we woke up the next morning all we could talk about was the white-rafting adventure that we experienced. It was easily the highlight of our entire trip. I don’t know when we’ll be able to do something like this again because of our hectic schedules, but you can bet that Adirondack will be high up on our list of places to go to for vacation. Trust me, the experience is going to be worth the travel going there.…

My Girl and I in Active Adventure Camp San Clemente

Me and my gal are two adventurous spirits who are always looking for new places to explore. Last month we celebrated our 4th year anniversary as a couple and we wanted to do something different. Our last 3 anniversaries all involved eating dinner, watching movies, exchanging gifts, and sleeping. For our year 4, we decided to take a trip to San Clemente so we could enjoy a bit of sun, sand and sea. Living in Minnesota, we often deal with brutally cold winters so a trip to Sunny California was just what we needed to not only do something different for our anniversary, but also to escape from our busy schedules.

So, with all the other tourist spots available in California, you’re probably wondering why we chose San Clemente.Well to tell you the truth, we both wanted to go somewhere that wasn’t too “mainstream.” We wanted a place where we could relax, enjoy our anniversary, and have fun without having to compete with a crowd of tourists, and San Clemente just happened to be the right destination for us.

And that’s not to say that San Clemente isn’t a beautiful location because in my opinion, it is one of the loveliest hidden gems in California. When we made our reservations for a hotel, we made sure to get one that was within walking distance of the beach. We don’t have beaches in Minnesota and any chance we get to walk along the shore in romantic corniness is like heaven for us.

We both had 5 days of leave each meaning we had plenty of time to really explore this place. Our first stop was at Del Mar Street because my girl wanted to do some shopping, and me being the faithful and ever-loving man in her life obliged to her request. As we were strolling through Del Mar, my mouth went slightly agape because there were so many boutiques and shops to choose from. This was heaven for my girlfriend, but hell for my wallet (I bought her a gift here!), but it didn’t matter because it was our anniversary and I wanted to make her feel special.

I purchased a pair of espadrilles from Chanel for her and she was smiling and giggling like a toddler in the middle of Toys-R-Us. She asked me what I wanted for our anniversary and I told her that I was happy as long as she was happy, and that was more than enough (corny line, I know). But she insisted that I ask her for a gift, and so me being the obedient beau obliged to her request and asked her to buy me a Batman shirt.

After shopping, we ate at lunch at this place called “Nick’s San Clemente”, and man was the food there good. After eating lunch, we strolled around Del Mar for a little bit longer while checking out the other shops and doing some window shopping. It was already close to sunset when we headed out to the San Clemente Pier which is only a short distance from Del Mar Street.

The relaxing walk we took at the pier is a memory that will stay with me for a lifetime. It felt really good being able to watch the beautiful view of the sunset from the pier. The glistening waters of the Pacific Ocean made it feel like were on the cover of one of those romance novels with Fabio in them. To all my readers out there – do yourself a favor and visit this pier during sunset when you get the chance. I promiseyou won’t regret it.

We also rented a couple of bikes and rode along the coastal trail the following day. It was a great way for us to get some exercise and enjoy the view of the beach at the same time. And since we were close to the state beach, we decided to do some swimming and had a little picnic after. It felt great being able to swim in the ocean again because the cold temperatures back home often robbed us of that delight.

And of course, no trip to San Clemente would ever be complete without doing a little bit of surfing. My girlfriend is a bit of a risktaker which is the exact opposite of me. She was the one who suggested that we try looking for active adventure camp San Clemente reservations, and lo and behold we found a couple of surfing camps that caught our interest.

As Minneapolis natives it felt weird for us to try and learn surfing even though we live in a state that doesn’t have a single beach in it. But nevertheless, it was a fun experience and our instructor was professional, friendly, and very knowledgeable. We both got wiped out several times during the training session, but boy did we have a lot of fun doing it.

When we left to head back home, we both felt a bit of sadness because we had fallen in love with the place. San Clemente might not have the glitz and glamor of L.A., but it displays its beauty in its own unique way. Come to think about it, we might end up going back there again and maybe even live there when we retire (a guy can dream).

What a Day: Adventure Camp Massachusetts

Whenever you think of Massachusetts, the first thing that comes to your mind is the rich history that it has. This is where the American Revolution started and is also the site of some of the country’s most famous historical monuments and locations. I went on a tour of Massachusetts with a couple of my friends about two years back, and it really made me appreciate its history that much more.

Now, truth be told I’m not that much of a travel junkie, but 2 years ago my best friend convinced me and another one of our close friends to go on a tour of Massachusetts during the summer. I figured that since I had no other plans at that point, why not go on a tour and try the world-famous clam chowder (or “chowda” as the locals like to call it) that the New England area proudly promotes?

Besides the food, I was also interested in exploring Freedom Trail and Quincy Market in Boston. The thought of visiting the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield was also on my list, so I now had a couple of good reasons to go to Massachusetts.

It was a good idea that we decided to go there during the summer because the winters in New England can be unforgivable. We booked a hotel that was in the downtown Boston area. The view from our room was nice especially at night where we could see the city’s skyline on full display.

Before I went there, most of the stuff that I knew about Boston came from the movies, TV, magazines and books. I had always known that this place has a ton of history to it but seeing historic buildings and monuments up-close opened my eyes to how special this city really is. I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t getting goosebumps when I saw the outside of Faneuli Hall. Seeing it on TV and in magazines is completely different compared to seeing it up-close in person.

We also got to visit Paul Revere’s house and were amazed at how well they were able to preserve and maintain the property. Walking inside the home where Paul Revere once lived was an unforgettable experience for my friends and me. Even as I’m writing this down, I still find it hard to believe that I was standing in the living room and bedroom at the home of one of the greatest figures of the American Revolution.

We had a lot of fun strolling around Freedom Trail and learning about the various historic structures still standing there. I think it’s really cool how Boston takes pride in its history by preserving many of the structures that highlight the state’s heritage. We also saw the mural dedicated to Larry Bird and the statue of Red Auerbach at Quincy Market.

Speaking of Quincy Market, you haven’t tried true New England cuisine until you’ve eaten at one of the joints in the Fanueli Hall Marketplace. The place has dozens upon dozens of options to choose from, but we all decided to go with Boston Chowda. I had a bowl of their New England clam chowder with a side order of shepherd’s pie while my buds ordered a couple of Rockport lobster bisques and crab cakes.It was the best chowder I ever tasted, and the price was reasonable, too.

Up next on our list was Fenway Park – the home of the Boston Red Sox. We aren’t baseball fans, but we all agreed that we had to take a tour of this historic stadium. It’s located right in the heart of Boston and is the oldest baseball stadium in the country. Even if you aren’t a fan of baseball, you can’t help but feel in awe of this magnificent ball park.

The tour must have taken an hour to complete, but we got to learn a lot about the park, its history, and memorable moments. My favorite would have to be the lone red chair located at row 37 section 42. According to legend, former Red Sox superstar Ted Williams once blasted a homerun right through a fan’s strawhat on the exact same spot where the chair is located.

After touring Fenway Park, we headed back to our hotel to catch some sleep. The next day, we finished off our Massachusetts trip by going to Springfield to visit the Basketball Hall of Fame. It felt great to be in the building that not only pays tribute to the man who invented the game of basketball, but also to the legends who made the game what it is today like Michael Jordan, Larry Bird, Bill Russell, and Wilt Chamberlain.

Overall, my trip to Massachusetts was amazing and turned out better than I expected. I enjoyed walking through Freedom Trail, eating clam chowder, and just basking in all the historic sites surrounding me and my friends. My trip might not have been adventure camp Massachusetts levels of exciting, but it was more than enough to convince me to come back there again soon.…

My Adria Adventure in Dubrovnik

Ever heard of this place in Croatia called Dubrovnik? If you haven’t heard about it yet, I strongly implore you to Google it because it is a criminally underrated vacation spot in Europe. I won’t lie because up until last year, I had no idea that Dubrovnik even existed. I only found out about it after catching a random article on Facebook. I was curious about Dubrovnik and decided to do some research on it.

A few articles and about a dozen YouTube vlogs later, I became enchanted with the place and decided to make it my next holiday destination. The lovely scenery and attractions weren’t the only things that made me fall in love with the place. Its rich history – namely the historic Old Town – also piqued my interest in it as well.

I told my best friend Abby about the trip I was planning, and she was down with it and was as excited as I was. It took almost a year of planning and tight budgeting for the both of us, but it was worth it once we finally booked our tickets and managed to find an affordable hostel located close to historic Old Town.

Even though we booked our tickets months in advance, me and Abby were counting down the big day with plenty of anticipation. When the day of our trip finally arrived, the two of us were literally giggling like a couple of toddlers as we went to the airport. Our flight from Toronto to Dubrovnik took nearly 10 hours, but we did manage to get a few hours of sleep on the plane.

We landed at Dubrovnik Airport at around 530 in the afternoon local time. We were both tired from the long plane ride and all we could think of at that time was to sleep. I connected to the airport’s wi-fi hotspot and booked us an Uber ride to take us to our hostel. It cost us about 190 Croatian Kuna (25 Euros). It was a bit expensive, but me and Abby were tired and just wanted to sleep, plus we had enough money for our holiday, so we really weren’t that concerned about the cost.

Our hostel had a lovely view of some of the buildings in Old Town, but alas we didn’t have time to appreciate the scenery because we were drawn to our beds upon entering our room. We slept for what felt like forever, but when we woke up, we felt a bit revitalized and hungry. Our first order of business was to eat some breakfast, and fortunately for us, there was an affordable restaurant not too far from our hostel that served some amazing black risotto. Their seafood platter was also phenomenal.

After breakfast, we decided to do a bit of exploring. We both had fully charged Go Pros, phones, and power banks in our bags because we wanted to take as many photos and videos as possible. Dubrovnik is easily one of the most beautiful places that I have ever been to. The old 16th century walls that surround Old Town really gives you an insight as to how much this place values its history.

The heat was bearable throughout the day, so we really didn’t have that much of a problem staying out in the open while we were walking the walls. The view of the Adriatic Sea from the walls is breath-taking. We also walked around the medieval streets of the Old Town before stopping for some lunch at this restaurant called Pantarul. Let me just say that there is nothing like eating authentic Mediterranean cuisine for a reasonable price.

After lunch, we rode the cable car going to Mount Srd, and despite being a little pricey, getting a bird’s eye view of Dubrovnik made everything worth it. We even paid a visit to the medieval pharmacy at the Francisan Monastery. I was really amazed at how this pharmacy was still in operation more than 700 years later.

We had spent almost the entire day exploring the Old Town and its nearby attractions, and we were both spent at this point, so we decided to grab some dinner and call it a day. The next day we wentkayaking in the Adria Sea and explored the nearby Elaphite Islands. This was a much-needed getaway from the long lines that were everywhere in the city.

Bathing in the azure waters of the Adria Sea helped the two of us relax and enjoy our vacation more. The photos that I saw of this place on Google do not do it justice because it is a truly beautiful sight to behold in person.

The last 2 days of our trip were spent walking along the Stradun, visiting Fort Lovrijenac (Game of Thrones fans should Google this place), and wine tasting. Croatian wine, is awesome and I’m a bit mad that our wines here in Canada can’t seem to come close to the ones they have in Croatia.

Anyway, me and Abby really enjoyed our little holiday in this majestic part of Croatia. My Adria adventure in Dubrovnik was truly one for the books, and I seriously plan on going back there again in the future.