When we think about traveling we immediately start to paint a luxurious picture in our heads. All of the sudden you're strolling the streets of Paris with a hot French boy who has an accent to die for, jet setting to Greece to stay on a hilltop near the bright blue ocean water, or you're planning some touristy stops around Italy to see all the beautiful churches and jaw-dropping architecture. If you haven’t noticed, there is one thing in common between all these travel fantasies...you need to leave the country to fulfill them.
The good old U S of A, land of the skyscraper. We don’t have ancient castles, pyramids, coliseums, or thousand year old churches. Yes, we have some exciting metropolitan areas, we have the Grand Canyon and the Statue of Liberty but it all seems so stale. When we travel we want adventure, you want to see the beauty of other places across the globe. What we haven’t realized is, there ARE beautiful gems here in the place we call home. How can you live in the United States and talk about how boring it is, when you haven’t been exposed to its full potential?
Let me take you on a trip, to see the beauty this country has to offer:
1) Antelope Canyon, Arizona
Located on Navajo land east of Page, Arizona, Antelope Canyon is a beautiful natural wonder. It was formed by the erosion of sandstone mostly because of flash flooding. Rainwater rushes through the extensive basin above the slot canyon sections and picks up speed. The water catches the sand as it rushes into the narrow passageways. Over time the passageways eroded away, making the corridors deeper and smoothing the hard edges to create the flowing rock we see today. The vision is most definitely worth the trip!
2) Thor's Well, Oregon
Nestled on the edge of the Oregon coast Thor's Well seems to be a giant sinkhole that never quite fills despite the unbroken stream of sea water that drains into it. This natural wonder is not bottomless, but is in fact very dangerous. The well is actually only around 20 feet deep even though it seems much grander. Despite not being as impressive as it appears Thor's Well manages to create beautiful sights. The site is noted to be most spectacular during storms or at high tide when the sea water rushes violently over the rocks and falls through the hole. As you may imagine, you are running the risk of being swept away with the water and survival seems unlikely. This trip is definitely for us adrenaline junkies!
3) Hamilton Pool, Texas
Hamilton Pool is located about thirty miles west of Austin. The relaxing Hamilton Pool and grotto were formed when the dome of an underground river collapsed due to massive erosion thousands of years ago. With a 45 foot water fall that creates a huge swimming hole, there are a good amount of locals who show up in the summertime to swim. There are also great hiking trails around the pool to take a stroll on if you are feeling more active!
Some of these trips will not just be a drive away and may be more convenient to access via airplane. If you opt to travel through the air to get to these awe-striking destinations GRACESHIP has some fashionable travel accessories for you! Maybe you want to stretch your trip and spend a long weekend, our trolley bags are perfect!
4) Palouse Falls, Washington
Located in eastern Washington, the breath-taking Palouse Falls is a magnificent sight! At the end of the last ice age the glacial Missoula Floods carved out the unique landscape we can see today. Palouse Falls is one of the only remnants of these ancient floods. It's the only major waterfall left among the thousand of years old glacial flood path. At a height of 198 feet and surrounded by outstanding basalt cliffs, the waterfall lies on the Palouse River. Definitely an amazing sight to see in the US and for the athletic traveler there are plenty of challenging hiking trails to see the true wonder of Palouse Falls!
5) Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico
Carlsbad Caverns offers natural beauty both above and below. Treasures above ground in the Chihuahuan Desert include: giant ancient sea ledges, cactus and desert wildlife, and deep rocky canyons. Just when you are already in awe by the natural wonders, hidden below the surface there are more than 119 caves. The caves were all formed when sulfuric acid dissolved the surrounding limestone leaving behind caverns. Again a magnificent sight to see within our home borders.
6) Haiku Stairs of Oahu, Hawaii
Also known as the “Stairway to Heaven”, the Haiku Stairs are a steel staircase made up of 4000 steps that ascends a ridge up from the Valley of Haiku near Kaneohe, Hawaii. Originally the steps were built so the military could access a radio station antennae during World War II. The amazing views and the sheer drop offs on either side of the ridge make it one of the most memorable trails in Hawaii. This is not for the faint of heart, you are allowed to hike at your own risk. The breath-taking views seem worth it! Now that we all snap photos on our smartphones, you will want to make sure you are fully charged before taking on this trip. You will surely want to snap pictures as you ascend on this lengthy hike and having your phone battery run out would be the worst. GRACESHIP has the perfect solution to this travel catastrophe: power wallets! Never worry about your phone running out of charge and missing out on capturing memories!
7) Skagit Valley, Washington
Located in northwestern Washington the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival is one we believe everyone should see. Held April 1-30th thousands of tourists show up to watch as millions of colorful tulips burst into bloom. Straight out of a scene from the Wizard of Oz, except with tulips instead of Poppies, you are surrounded by acres and acres of gorgeous photo opportunities!
8) Mendenhall Glacier Caves, Alaska
The magic in the Mendenhall Ice Caves is that you can view every stage of the water cycle at one time.The Mendenhall Glacier is a 12-mile-long glacier in the Mendenhall Valley, located only 12 miles from downtown Juneau in Southeast Alaska. The Ice Caves are found inside the glacier and are only accessible to those willing to kayak there and ice climb over the glacier. While it seems like a lot of work, it is most definitely worth the outcome! If this interests you, you need to hurry to see it because the glacier is retreating increasingly fast as global warming heats the oceans and the temperatures rise. The glacier has already receded two miles since 1958. Hurry up and go see one of natures wonders before it is too late!
9) Northern Lights, Alaska
Alaska is one of the best places on earth to see the northern lights.If you don't know already the northern lights, also known as aurora borealis, occur about 60 or 70 miles above the earth’s surface and can extend hundreds of miles into space. The most common color displayed is a brilliant yellow-green, but the aurora borealis can also produce red, blue and purple patterns that dance in the sky. The best time to catch this stunning display is in the winter. At hotels, guests can even ask for northern lights wake up calls so they don't miss out on the beauty. Seeing the Northern Lights is a scientific marvel and the United States provides one of the best places to catch it, so we should all take advantage of that.
10) Devils Tower, Wyoming
Devils Tower stands at more than 1,200 feet above Wyoming’s eastern plains and is a one-of-a-kind natural wonder. The flat-topped volcanic formation is found amongst some of the state’s most beautiful country. So when you are done walking to see the wonder of Devils Tower there is plenty left to do. If you are more of an adventure seeker or an avid rock climber you can climb up Devils Tower and really revel in the beauty of the natural landscape.
Before we go jet setting across the globe we should all consider the breathtaking beauty that our home soil has to offer. There are dozens of hidden travel treasures that you simply need to search for and we have only named a few. Stay tuned to see what other travel accessories GRACESHIP has to offer for our traveling fashionistas!
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