Day Trips from Portland, Oregon

Portland has so much to offer in terms of outdoor recreational activities. Moreover, there are some popular attractions—natural and artificial—just around the city borders. We’ll be describing 3 top destinations and the time it would take to get to each of them. Read on.

  • Columbia River Gorge
  • Cannon Beach
  • Mount Hood

Columbia River Gorge

The Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area is east of Portland. It would take just 30 minutes to get there by car from Portland, so you can be sure of a journey without stress. That’s if you take it easy on how you move around, of course. Here, you’ll be able to view the very wide canyon of the Columbia River. It’s the ideal site for sightseers, hikers, water sports enthusiasts, and others. What about the zip line tour through the forest? 

The beauty of Columbia River Gorge does not stop there. There are more than 70 waterfalls—with the highest being close to 200 meters high! Its name: Multnomah Falls. It’s the most famous one. Look it up. There are a good number of wineries, restaurants, shops, and other features waiting for you. You won’t be disappointed. Keep in mind that Columbia River Gorge is Oregon’s top tourist attraction!

Cannon Beach

Cannon Beach has long-distance hiking trails and vast sandy beaches to make your day. A nice ocean view is just ahead of Ecola State Park which has an ancient vegetation for your sightseeing pleasure. To get a better view, you could move to the huge rock formation at Haystack Rock. If you’re lucky to be at the waterside during the cooler periods of the year, you’ll be able to see the migrant gray whales swimming past.

Do you know Lewis and Clark—the two famous adventurers who were able to put their name in the history books? Well, you can take the same path they took during their expedition. The route is known as Tillamook Head Trail. Keep in mind that it takes 90 minutes to get to Cannon Beach by road from Portland.

Mount Hood

Mount Hood graces such a high height that it can be seen from many locations in Portland. The only downside to getting there is that it can take 3 hours to arrive at the site from Portland depending on your chosen routes.

What’s cool about this mountain is that it’s covered in snow at any time of the year (See what we did there?). You don’t need to wait till winter in order to get there for some skiing passion fulfilment! The Timberline ski area is always open, unlike the five other ski areas which are closed at certain periods. 

Hiking trails at the Mount Hood Scenic Byway Area and Mount Hood National Forest await you. The latter has a golf course for lovers of the sport. It also has meadows, creeks, and other natural attractions.

Hopefully, the three places described here are inviting enough to you. Why don’t you plan with your loved ones for these fun-filled trips that promise to be an endless thrill?

Things to Do at Night in Barcelona

Night time can be a tourist’s favorite time of the day, especially in a city. This is because some cities never “sleep”, and that means there will be lively activities going on in various places. If you are a tourist in Barcelona, the origin-city of the famous Futbol Club Barcelona, then you should read this guide. Readers will discover some amazing ideas to help them while away time during the period between sunset and sunrise.

La Pedrera Night Experience at Casa Milà

Casa Milà is a white-painted museum with Gothic balconies and other architectural attractions. It is one of the houses (casas) of the famous architect Antoni Gaudi. The best area to be is the roof which holds some unique statues. You can have access to this part of the house by using the elevator. Climbing the stairs is an alternative. Look out for the animated light display that takes place on the roof at night.

La Sagrada Familia

If you are going to visit this basilica during the summer, then keep in mind that they would be closing by 8pm. This is another one of Gaudi’s casas. One visit may leave you with the desire to go again. The structure will be completed by 2026, so you should look forward to that.

Why is it a great place for your nighttime adventures in the present? You will have a lovely sightseeing experience by admiring the works of Gaudi such as the story of Jesus Christ depicted in concrete. Tourists will find these sculptures in the interior and exterior of the building.

Tourists are advised to make reservations because the basilica is usually busy throughout the year. Summer is the busiest period for La Sagrada Familia. Book a time slot ASAP to avoid getting disappointed.

Sunset Beach Fun

The city never sleeps, so does its beaches. You can have fun at either the Barcelona Beach, or the Sant Sebastià Beach. These are the most popular beaches because of their nearness to the tourist attraction, Port Vell. You can go to any one of them to relax after a long day of touring other destinations in the city. Splash away all that weariness.

Night Shopping

If you don’t mind going on a late-evening shopping spree, then the Portal del Angel will be the perfect place to splurge. It has more than 200 meters of shops that generally close late in the evening. Other notable shops are situated at the Gothic Quarter, Born District, and the Passeig de Gracia.

Hop-On/Off Open-Top Bus Tour

There are hop-on/off buses that conveys tourists around Barcelona in order for them to have access to various popular attractions. You can board any of these buses and alight at any place that catches your fancy.

Hopefully, the ideas presented in this guide were interesting enough to you. Tourists can try to spice things up by having the right combination of the aforementioned ideas. Barcelona’s nighttime delights are waiting to be experienced to the fullest, so start planning your trip!

4 Types of Souvenirs Worth Buying

Souvenirs are an invaluable part of your travel experience. The urge to take home mementos comes naturally to most of us as we want to hold onto memories of a special time and place. Here are ideas of souvenirs you can take home with you.

The Inexpensive Knick-Knacks

These are the readily available tourist souvenirs that are found at markets and road-side stalls. They make good giveaways and will be appreciated by friends and relatives. 

These include:

  • Fridge Magnets – For example, available in London are magnets of Big Ben, red double-decker buses, and Buckingham Palace. In Japan, popular magnets feature fake food images like sushi.
  • Dishcloths – In Madrid there are dish towels available with motifs of popular sites such are Puerta de Alcala.
  • Aprons – In Spain, you can obtain aprons with local recipes on them
  • In most countries, you will find key chains, t-shirts, and postcards that feature famous landmarks

Souvenirs That Are Decor Items

Many travelers source for souvenirs that will add interest to their decor and even choose their destination specifically with that goal in mind. Items that make great decorative pieces include:


Trunks and chests that you pick up on your travels are a real showstopper. You can use them as a coffee table. In addition, you can paint or embellish them to fit in with the existing decor. Best of all, they are great for storage purposes.

Tribal Masks

African and Mexican masks have become collectibles and they make a bold statement when up on the wall. The colors, patterns and textures add an element to your decor that tells a story of its own.

Woven baskets and bowls

 A great idea is to group different sizes of woven bowls and hang them above a sofa to create a striking wall feature. Woven baskets can also be used as hanging plant holders and bathroom organizers.

Food Items as Souvenirs

Food is an essential part of the travel experience and specialty food makes great souvenirs and gifts for friends back home. Along with food, you may also choose to carry along some of the ingredients, such as spices, special herbs, and sauces.

The following destinations are well known for specialty foods:

Spain – A large percentage of the world’s olive oil comes from southern Spain, hence this is a good place to obtain your extra virgin olive oil.

 Singapore – Carry home some exotic Kaya Jam which is made from coconut milk, sugar, and eggs.

Italy – A perfect souvenir to take home with you is Italian cheese such as Pecorino Romano (Roman sheep milk cheese) and Parmigiano Reggiano.

Wine and Liquors as Souvenirs

Portugal – Obidos is home to a liquor known as Ginja, made of sour cherries and alcohol, a great memento to take home with you.

London – Freya Birch Spirit made from sap obtained from birch trees is a drink with a very unique taste, often compared to that of peach schnapps.

Paris – Chambord – This is a cognac based raspberry liquor that is flavored with blackberries and vanilla. 

Whatever your budget, it is possible to carry home a memento of your memorable experiences from somewhere special. By doing that, you will also give local artists and small business people your valuable support.

Ljubljana, Slovenia Travel Guide

Ljubljana is the capital of Slovenia and it lies right in the center. It is almost an equal distance from Croatia, Hungary, Austria, and Italy. Ljubljana is a small but innovative city with a mythical history, a hip attitude, and a car-free heart. You will see images of dragons wherever you go in this city. Legend has it that a dragon once lived in the Ljubljana river many centuries ago, preying on locals until it was defeated by a Greek hero.

It serves as a symbol of this charismatic town that is very protective of its people, its environment, and its history. Once you are in the town center’s narrow streets, you will hear bicycle bells instead of traffic and you will find riverbanks lined with historic architecture, pubs, and cafes, instead of gridlock. The city banned cars in 2007 and it has been churning out sustainable programs since then. Here are the top must-see attractions in Ljubljana, Slovenia.

Ljubljana Castle

Take the gentle stroll or ride the funicular to the Ljubljana Castle. It is one of the city’s beloved landmarks and has been standing for over 900 years. Apart from being a Window into history, this castle is also part of daily life and is sometimes used for art shows, concerts, and weddings. At the Museum of Puppetry, you can also discover the tradition of puppeteering or simply enjoy the spectacular views over the city.

Ljubljana River

On the east bank of the river lies the old town while the more recently built galleries, parks, and buildings lie in the West Bank. The Triple Bridge links the two. The Triple Bridge is one of the many iconic masterpieces designed by architect Jože Plečnik, the city’s favorite son.

Preseren Square

This oval-shaped square is the city’s heart and a popular meeting point. This Square was named after France Preseren. His poem “A Toast” became the national anthem of the country. Enjoy a pastry and a coffee on the steps of this square’s statue, meet the locals or watch as the city goes about its activities.

Franciscan Church

The Franciscan Church is another great place you should explore. It had a dramatic staircase that faces the Preseren Square. It was originally painted red, but it has now faded to salmon pink.

Congress Square

Congress Square was built on the site of a ruined monastery. You can see the main building of the University of Ljubljana from here. Many political hard hitters have used the balcony of this building to address the crowds.

Slovene Philharmonic Orchestra Building

This is one of the oldest musical institutions in the world. It has connections to composers such as Brahms and Beethoven. It is still a delight of many music lovers today.

Ljubljana Central Market

The Ljubljana Central Market is another great place to catch up with the Town Square and locals. This city also offers free bicycle rentals that you can easily pick up to further explore the city.

Planning and Optimizing a Vacation With Your Friends

Vacation season is one of the most anticipated times of the year. Regardless of how old are you or whether you work or not, it is safe to say that you – just like everyone else – are looking for your next vacation, aren’t you? There are many different reasons why we love holidays so much, and if you have the ability to go on a vacation every now and then, you should consider yourself lucky, because not everyone can do that.

Although planning a vacation brings many different benefits, it can also be a pretty boring and painful process. This is especially true if you cannot realize your plans because you don’t have enough money. It takes time to decide where you want to travel, which route to choose, where to spend the night, and even who to go with. That being said, let’s try to optimize this process together, shall we? Let’s go!

Vacation With Your Friends

Choose the Right Destination

When it comes to planning a vacation, the first thing that you need to do is decide where you want to go. There is a lot of beautiful places in the world that choosing just one can be a pretty hard thing to do sometimes. That is why you need to be realistic when it comes to choosing your destination. With this in mind, you should choose a destination that your current money situation actually allows you to travel to. This will make the rest of the process much easier not just for you, but for your friends as well.

Choose Your Company

If you want to have a great travel experience, you need to choose your company wisely. After all, you don’t want to bring someone who will just ruin the whole experience, do you? You certainly don’t, which is why you need to choose someone you trust, love, and care about. Bring that one friend who you never get tired of.


Many people find packing to be the worst part of vacation planning process. Although packing can be pretty annoying, it needs to be done before every road trip. Make sure not to overpack though. Only take the things that you will actually need during the road trip.

How To Stay As Safe As Possible When Traveling

Generally speaking, travel is always a fun experience. It is all about seeing new places, meeting new people, escaping from your personal problems, and simply having fun. However, it is not all fun and games when it comes to traveling, because there is one major downside to it, and that downside is the fact that travelers are usually main targets of crime. Although this can happen anywhere, the biggest chances of it happening are in tourist areas, since these places are usually filled with all types of people, including thieves and criminals.

By educating yourself about different types of crimes on the streets today, the chances of you becoming a victim of such crimes become much lower. That being said, here are some of our best tips for keeping both you and your loved ones, as well as your friends safe during a road trip. Please sit back, relax and enjoy the ride to your amazing destination!

Don’t Forget To Bring Your Safety Gadgets With You
It is always a good idea to have a couple of safety gadgets in your backpack during a road trip, and spending a few dollars to get them is always a money well spent. Not only are safety gadgets relatively inexpensive, but you get get them pretty much everywhere these days as well. These gadgets can really help you out when it comes to defending yourself, as well as your loved ones from criminals.

Separate Valuable Items From All the Other Items
Make sure to only carry what you need with you. This will make everything a lot easier for you. Once you have taken the items that you need, take the rest of your stuff and lock everything in your hotel room. Using fake phones and wallets in crowded areas is a great way to trick thieves.

Bring Printed Copies of Your Documents
Bringing printed copies of your documents with you is very important when it comes to traveling. Of course, digital copies work too, but having printed copies ready is always a good idea – just in case something unexpected happens and you need to show them to someone. The next time you want to travel, remember these tips, and everything should be okay.

How To Fly With a Toddler

Are you feeling stressed out about being in an airplane with your baby? Well, we are more than happy to inform you that you shouldn’t be. Of course, just thinking of being in an airplane with a baby is probably more than enough to make you scared, but there are always some things that you can do to make the whole experience a little bit better.

In order to help you cope with all the disadvantages that flying with a toddler provides you with, we decided to put together a list of some things that you can do to make your trip as pleasant as possible. Not only should these tips help you and your baby have a great flight, but they should help all the other passengers as well. Enjoy the ride!

Plan Your Seat Ahead of Time
When the time for making reservations comes, make sure to let the agent know that you are going to bring your baby with you. This would enable the company to place all the necessary child safety equipment where needed. Also, try to keep away from the back of the plane, since it is usually louder than the front of the plane. By sitting in the first few front rows, not only will you have a great flight, but your baby as well.

Protect Your Baby’s Ears
During both the descent and takeoff, make sure to give your baby something that he or she can suck on. It can be either a bottle, or a plastic seat back safety card. Not only will this protect your baby’s ears, but it will be a fun experience for the baby as well.

Always Bring a Safety Seat With You
Buying a ticket for your baby and bringing a safety seat with you is one of the most important rules that you need to follow when it comes to flying with an infant. Although kids that are less than two years old usually get to fly for free, it is still a good idea to buy an extra ticket for them, just in case you need it. Better safe than sorry, right? And one more thing – make sure to keep your baby strapped in as much as possible during the flight.

Keeping Your Luggage Safe When Traveling

So, you are going on a road trip soon, but you are not feeling sure about the safety of your luggage? Don’t worry, because you came to the right place. Basically, when it comes to keeping your luggage safe when traveling, there are two basic things that you need to know – what to bring with you, and how to use the things that you brought once you hit the road.

Packing everything yourself is probably the safest way to ensure that everything is in the right order, and that everything is actually there. What this means is that you always know what is in your bags, which means that passing through Customs, crossing borders, and catching flights should all go smoothly.

Good Travel Insurance
If another passenger offers you to carry something across the border for them, don’t do it. If you, however, do accept the offer, it could be a way longer road than you expected. That being said, the best thing to do in this situation is to just refuse the offer. Better safe than sorry, right? Also, before actually hitting the road, make sure to get the best travel insurance that you possibly can. You never know what could happen to you during a road trip, which is exactly why having a good travel insurance is always a good idea. Seriously, those guys can get you out of some really nasty situations.

Protect Your Day Pack
First of all, take everything that is valuable out of your bag, and put it into your daypack. Okay, let’s assume that you have already done that. Now, what you need to do is secure your daypack as good as you possibly can. Don’t leave the pockets wide open or zips undone, because if you do, it could be very easy for a person that is sitting next to you to reach into your daypack and take something out of it.

Don’t Leave Your Bag Unattended
Regardless of where you are, make sure to never leave your bag unattended. Either bring your bag with you everywhere you go, or ask someone you trust to protect it while you are away. Also, don’t forget to close all the pockets and lock all the zippers.

Five Reasons to Travel in a Group

There is a huge difference in traveling alone and with a group. Each type of travel has its benefits. When you are alone, you get more space and privacy. But, there are many perks to traveling in a group. Here are top five reasons to travel with a group.

  1. Planning the trip

When you travel in a group, you will not have to do all the planning alone. Many believe that group travel is difficult and complicated. It is not the case. When you travel in a group, you will not do all the panning by yourself. You may divide the planning task among the group members. For example, you may plan the food; another may plan the accommodation, etc. It also becomes easy to plan the entire trip.

  1. Less Cost

Traveling in a group is less expensive. Just like you divide the tasks for traveling among the group members, you can divide the cost too.  When the cost is less, you can plan a long trip which you cannot do if you are traveling alone. If you’d like to stay in a really nice, big Airbnb rental complete with a pergola and terrace, much like what Awnings And More provides, traveling with a group is a great way to afford it.

  1. Experience new things

When you travel in a group, it may give you a new experience. It will bring new and more opportunities for you. When you are in a group, you can travel with a local guide. You may visit places which you cannot visit alone.

  1. You’ll bond with your group

You may not know, but when you travel in a group, it creates a great bonding environment between the group members. Even if you are traveling with your friends, it will create a stronger bond.  The group travel allows you to share your life experiences with others. You can sit together and share your stories at night. It also allows you to learn more about the group. You will learn about them and their lifestyle, and they will learn from you.

  1. You’ll make new friends

It is another great reason to travel in a group. When you travel in a group, it is not important that all the group members are your close friends. You may have a friend of a friend in a group or others. It will allow you to know them and make new friends. According to the studies, the friends that you make while traveling will have a strong friendship bond.  When traveling n a group, you will also get new opinions and perspectives. It will be a learning experience.