#FriFotos: Some of My Favorite Sky Shots.

Today’s #FriFotos theme on Twitter is “Sky”. It got me thinking of sunrises, sunsets and other beautiful views of the sky I have had while out on the open road and traveling. Well without further ado!

FriFotos - Sky - Toronto Skyline

Lucky cloud cover fills the sky over downtown Toronto.

FriFotos - Sky - Wanaka, New Zealand clouds

The sky is as scenic as the view straight ahead in Wanaka, New Zealand.

FriFotos - Sky - South Island, New Zealand, dusk

Out on the open road in New Zealand, watching the evening sky take hold.

FriFotos - Sky - Punta Gorda, Florida sunset

A colorful Punta Gorda, Florida evening sky.

FriFotos - Sky - Phoenix, Arizona skyline

Up in the sky I go, waving at the Phoenix, Arizona skyline.

FriFotos - Sky - Foggy San Francisco

The fog that was hiding the sky and San Francisco skyline is lifting.

FriFotos - Sky - South Haven, Michigan sunrise

The colorful sky and clouds at sunrise in South Haven, Michigan.

FriFotos - Sky - St. Pete Beach, Florida sunset

Another day, another beautiful sky, sunset in St. Pete Beach, Florida.

FriFotos - Sky - Alaskan Sea, Canada

Checking out the evening sky over the Alaskan Sea in Canada.

FriFotos - Sky - Capitola, California

Unique clouds cross the sky in Capitola, California.

FriFotos - Sky - Chicago Skyline uptop Willis Tower

The blue sky matches the blue water of Lake Michigan in Chicago.

FriFotos - Sky - Chicago, Lake Michigan sunset

The Chicago sky turns colorful at dusk.

Edgewater Park In Cleveland is My Skyline Viewing Template.

What do I always seem to be looking for when viewing and capturing a city skyline? This past weekend at Edgewater Park in Cleveland, I realized my skyline viewing and capturing template was right in front of me.

Head to the western entrance of the Cleveland Metropark, where you will find the upper area and Perkins Beach. Once in the park you will head up-top by taking Upper Edgewater Drive that veers off to the right.

Upon parking walk into the park, head towards the shoreline and the Cleveland skyline will quickly come into view. I’m up-top check.

Edgewater Park, Lake Erie, Cleveland, skyline

Edgewater Park, Lake Erie, Cleveland, skyline

There is a romantic park bench and/or picnic table up-top to soak in the views. Check.

Edgewater Park, Lake Erie, Cleveland, skyline

The body of water the city sits along is easily in view. Check. In this case how could you miss the vast Lake Erie.

Edgewater Park, Lake Erie, Cleveland, skyline

Lots of sand and beachfront straight ahead, check.

Edgewater Park, Lake Erie, Cleveland, skyline

Blue sky aplenty along with trees and other objects to capture unique views of the city. Check.

Edgewater Park, Lake Erie, Cleveland, skyline

The ability to head down from up-top and get a closer look. The final check. In this case you are able to walk on the beach, along the shoreline and on the dirt trails that run alongside.

Edgewater Park, Lake Erie, Cleveland, skyline

Edgewater Park, Lake Erie, Cleveland, skyline

Edgewater Park, Lake Erie, Cleveland, skyline

While at the park make sure to take the time to capture the Great Lake. It is beautiful no matter the season and time of year.

Edgewater Park, Lake Erie, Cleveland, skyline

Edgewater Park, Lake Erie, Cleveland, skyline

Edgewater Park, Lake Erie, Cleveland, skyline

It was a fun afternoon at Edgewater Park in Cleveland. The realization of what my skyline viewing template is became more clear. Oh yeah! There is one more piece to that puzzle. It has to be a place where the blue shoes can easily lay down and soak everything in. :)

Edgewater Park, Lake Erie, Cleveland, skyline

Edgewater Park, Lake Erie, Cleveland, skyline

We will see which of the things I said check to will apply at my next skyline viewing endeavor. I’ve set a standard for myself.

What things do you look for when viewing and capturing a city skyline?

What Does “Wanderlust” Mean To Me.

Wanderlust. One that has a strong desire to travel. Wanderlust. Someone that can’t sit still and stay in one place. Wanderlust. A constant longing for wandering near and far. Wanderlust. A person that is always looking for adventure, to explore and to checkout something new.

Wanderlust, Sydney Harbour Bridge, Australia

I’d say wanderlust is a term that can apply to me on a daily basis. Goosebumps appear just at the thought of traveling whether right down the street or to somewhere far, far away. The daydreaming never seems to stop. I am always on Google Maps, reading blogs and looking at the pictures of others. Whenever a trip is confirmed, plane tickets have been secured, an excursion has been booked or I have arrived in a new city or at a coffee shop for the first time, a big smile on my face usually follows.

Wanderlust - Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada

Niagara Falls view from up-top the Skylon Tower

I’ve had this feeling ever since I was a kid. Lots of time was spent out on the open road with the family. My face was usually stuffed in an old-fashioned atlas or pull-out map telling my parents we should go this way, that way, we should stop here, etc. My eyes were always wide open and wanting more.

Wanderlust, Juneau, Alaska

Mendenhall Glacier, Juneau, Alaska

Wanderlust has led me to see quite a bit, but there is so much more of this world to capture and see up close. Do I want to be cured of this feeling? No, thank you. Back out on the open road I go!

What does “wanderlust” mean to you?

Riding the Whirlpool Aero Car in Niagara Falls.

Looking for something to do on the Canadian-side of Niagara Falls off-the-beaten path and away from the touristy downtown? About fifteen minutes north along the Niagara River is the Niagara Whirlpool.

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Aero Car adventure, Ontario, Canada

The natural whirlpool sits along the U.S.-Canadian border within the Niagara Gorge and is home to multiple surrounding parks and excursion opportunities. One such activity is the Whirlpool Aero Car.

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Aero Car adventure, Ontario, Canada

Head across the whirlpool, turquoise water and gorge and back in an antique cable car suspended by six cables. The ride is approximate one kilometer, about twenty minutes long and you’ll be hundreds of feet up in the air.

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Aero Car adventure, Ontario, Canada

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Aero Car adventure, Ontario, Canada

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Aero Car adventure, Ontario, Canada

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Aero Car adventure, Ontario, Canada

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Aero Car adventure, Ontario, Canada

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Aero Car adventure, Ontario, Canada

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Aero Car adventure, Ontario, Canada

Look straight ahead to see the beauty and shoreline of the Niagara River as it enters and exits the gorge. Before the return portion of the trip begins, you will suspended for a bit.

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Aero Car adventure, Ontario, Canada

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Aero Car adventure, Ontario, Canada

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Aero Car adventure, Ontario, Canada

Glance down to see the natural phenomenon that was formed thousands of years ago. You might catch a jet boat or two taking people on a different excursion to get up close and personal.

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Aero Car adventure, Ontario, Canada

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Aero Car adventure, Ontario, Canada

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Aero Car adventure, Ontario, Canada

The Whirlpool Aero Car is open mid-April through mid-November and is easily accessible via the Green Line on the WEGO bus system from the Falls. Parking is free.

Cost wise it is currently $13.95 for an adult, $9.10 for children, but you can get it for cheaper if your riding as part of the Niagara Falls Adventure Pass Nature.

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Aero Car adventure, Ontario, Canada

Riding the Whirlpool Aero Car in Niagara Falls was a scenic and breathe-taking way to spend the afternoon. It is a recommended stop when in the area.

What other excursion opportunities would you suggest around Niagara Falls on either side of the border?

#ExploreTheElements: A Photo Challenge.

It had been awhile since I took part in a travel photo contest, so my face it up when Francesca of Working Mom Travels nominated me to take part in the Thomas Cook Explore the Elements photoblogging competition. Thank you! :)

I have to choose photos, one that represents each of the four natural elements of earth, water, fire and air.

If my photo wins any of the four categories I will receive either a MacBook Air, a Fujifilm X-T1 camera or an iPhone 6 with Bose noise cancelling headphones. There will be a best photo chosen between all of the categories, with the winner receiving a £5,000 travel fund.

Well without further ado my choices with a New Zealand twist:

Earth

Represents the hard, solid objects of the earth. Associated with stubbornness, collectiveness, physicality and gravity.

Explore the Elements - Earth - New Zealand

Kia Trail, Mount Cook Village area, New Zealand

Walking or hiking on the Kia Trail, you just want to stop and stare at the scenery in front of you, in awe of all the natural beauty that exists on this Earth.

Water

Represents the fluid, flowing, formless things in the world. Associated with emotion, defensiveness, adaptability, flexibility, suppleness, and magnetism.

Explore the Elements - Water - New Zealand

Owharoa Falls, New Zealand

There is something about water and relaxation. Watching water flow from one spot to the next no matter the sound, puts the mind at ease, even in the case of a waterfall.

Fire

Represents the energetic, forceful, moving things in the world. Associated with security, motivation, desire, intention, and an outgoing spirit.

Explore the Elements - Fire - New Zealand

Kerosene Creek, Rotorua, New Zealand

A natural hot thermal pool, like at Kerosene Creek, can get hot in a hurry like a fire, depending on whether it’s raining a lot or not.

Air

Represents things that grow, expand, and enjoy freedom of movement Associated with will, elusiveness, evasiveness, benevolence, compassion, and wisdom.

Explore the Elements - Air - New Zealand

Piha, New Zealand

Being up-top somewhere, like here overlooking Piha Beach, leads to lots of air between you and the ground straight ahead.

As part of the challenge, I need to nominate five other travel bloggers to take part. Below are some great travelers whom I invite to share their photos representing each of the four natural elements.

Anis of Five Foot Traveller
Amanda of UnrestingSea
Cheryl of CherylHoward.com
Holly of Holly Dayz Travel
Arnette of Round The World Girl

Road Tripping the SoCal PCH Around Malibu.

Are you around Los Angeles, looking for a quick road trip option to get a feel for what the Pacific coastline has to offer? The roughly forty mile stretch that starts in Santa Monica, goes through Malibu and ends at Point Mugu offers the road tripper a taste of that beauty and a lot more.

You can easily hop onto the PCH (also known as the Pacific Coast Highway and California State Route 1) either directly off westbound Interstate 10 or anywhere along Santa Monica State Beach.

California Road Trip - PCH - Santa Monica

As you head west you’ll pass by numerous vista and other random stopping points where you can soak in the coastline, walk the beaches and take one photo friendly shot after another. I’ll let the pictures tell the story.

California Road Trip - PCH - Malibu

California Road Trip - PCH - Malibu

California Road Trip - PCH - Malibu

California Road Trip - PCH - Malibu

California Road Trip - PCH - Malibu

California Road Trip - PCH - Malibu

California Road Trip - PCH - Malibu

California Road Trip - PCH - Malibu

California Road Trip - PCH - Malibu

California Road Trip - PCH - Malibu

California Road Trip - PCH - Malibu

California Road Trip - PCH - Malibu

California Road Trip - PCH - Malibu

California Road Trip - PCH - Malibu

After checking out the beautiful SoCal Pacific coastline, stick around for sunset and you might run into a scene like in Photo of the Week: A SoCal PCH Sunset.

Returning to the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk.

When I think back to my child years, one of my favorite places to go in the summer was the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk in Santa Cruz, California. Sitting alongside Monterey Bay, it is the states oldest amusement park, providing fun for families and people of all ages since 1907.

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, California, Monterey Bay

The Boardwalk is free to walk around to soak in the atmosphere whether the park is open or closed. If you don’t have much time, you can purchase a ticket for just an individual ride. The ride to go on is the Giant Dipper. It is one of the oldest wooden roller coasters in the world running since 1924 and recognized as a National Historic Landmark.

dwalk, California, Monterey Bay

dwalk, California, Monterey Bay

My feet as a child always gravitated to the Sky Glider and Logger’s Revenge. Beautiful panoramic views of the park, ocean and surrounding area await up-top the glider. Nothing like cooling down to a big splash on a warm summer day on a log ride.

dwalk, California, Monterey Bay

dwalk, California, Monterey Bay

dwalk, California, Monterey Bay

dwalk, California, Monterey Bay

The Casino Arcade alongside the amusement park contains hundreds of video games, new and old school. You’ll find plenty of spots outside to enjoy the carnival food of the boardwalk or have a picnic.

dwalk, California, Monterey Bay

Lots of beach awaits to soak in some sun and/or go for a dip. Straight ahead is…

dwalk, California, Monterey Bay

the Santa Cruz Wharf where you will find shops, souvenirs, seafood opportunities and you might even spot a sea lion or two.

dwalk, California, Monterey Bay

While walking down the wharf, look back to get beautiful views of the beach, palm trees and the half-mile long boardwalk. I got goosebumps returning to the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. Hope to relive more fun memories and make new ones there again soon.

dwalk, California, Monterey Bay

dwalk, California, Monterey Bay