Travel

Rejuvenation On The Oregon Coast

We decided to take a trip out to the Oregon Coast, to get away from the noise of the city. We arrived after sunset in Oceanside, OR. The anticipation of waking up to the panoramic view of the ocean...well it’s like the eve of Christmas. We awoke to the ocean serenading us, and a pastel sunrise like a painting but oh so real.

IMG_1736


It's a short walk to the beach and any of the restaurants in this friendly resort town. We had a Feta Wrap at the Blue Agate Cafe. The staff was very friendly and the food was delicious drawing us back in a few days later. This cafe is only open until 2pm, but they have a nice selection of food to choose from. Make sure you walk the beach on a low tide day, as there is a Tunnel through the rock that leads you to Tunnel Beach.
We mostly enjoyed the 180 view of the Pacific Ocean from our AirBnB, as we came here to rejuvenate and capture some astro pics. Though the Tillamook Creamery is only a 20 minute drive from Oceanside, along with Cape Lookout State Park.

QX7A8138


QX7A8138


QX7A8138

 

IMG_1729

Take0-Edit-6

The Orion Nebula


An Unexpected Place Of Tranquility

Near the town of Quincy, WA, resting on the cliffs of the Columbia River, you'll find an unexpected place of tranquility. We arrived after dark in late August, at Cave B Inn & Spa Resort. As we walked along the dimly lit vineyard to our room, the sky was a blanket of darkness covered in a mass of stars. Before we even set our luggage down, we looked at each other and said, "we have to come back!".  We were looking for dark skies for taking astro pics and this was the perfect place. This property has several different types of rooms to chose from. Individual Cliffehouses, Cavern rooms, Condo's and even Desert Yurts all in the middle of a peaceful winery.  

QX7A7994

If you are looking for quiet, this is the perfect place to grab a book and relax on your covered patio. A stroll through the vineyard, a hike down to the river, a dip in the pool or maybe a glass of wine while watching the evening sunset. There's really something for everyone. Including a fabulous restaurant along with wine tasting.  

A few miles down the road at Vantage, is the Wild Horse Monument, aka Grandfather Cuts Loose The Ponies. This is a must stop on either side of the interstate, with breathtaking views of the Columbia River.  

We enjoyed our stay so much that we came back again in October. This time taking the hike down to the river, which I highly suggest. Absolutely beautiful. October seemed to bring in some really strong winds, whipping through the gorge. Still an amazing place to get away.

Output-Edit

Grandfather Cuts Loose The Ponies

 

IMG_1279

DSC09375


IMG_1279


IMG_1279


IMG_1279

QX7A7937


QX7A7937


QX7A7937

QX7A8080


QX7A8080


QX7A8080


QX7A8080


QX7A8080

 


The Heart of Madrid

Arriving in Madrid, Spain in late November, we stayed at the Me Hotel Madrid Reina Victoria which was within walking distance to the train station, various plazas, museums, shopping, parks and amazing coffee. The hotel was a modern chic, with fun and quirky decor. All of the staff we encountered were welcoming and quite helpful with attractions to see. We started with breakfast there in the restaurant in the lobby. It was a sit down, with quite a few choices of freshly made plates, or you could choose from the buffet. 

The best coffee we found was at Zero Point Coffee. A quaint shop, serving the perfect cup of coffee. The gentleman there was so personable and friendly. Upon ordering a second coffee to go, my husband got to choose the coffee beans for the brew. We were struck by how passionate he was about his coffee and coffee in general. He spoke of the World Coffee Championships, though he thought he was too old to compete. The experience was quite memorable. 

We walked to El Retiro Park, one of the largest parks in Madrid. With monuments, water features, tennis courts, pathways taking you all over the 350 acre park. The sounds of the street musicians filled the air, never overlapping with the layout of the park. An outdoor eatery was a convenient stop overlooking a picturesque lake. A relaxing park, where you could spend hours or all day taking the sites in.

L1010441

There's plenty of shopping in Madrid, Primark, Mercado San Miguel and The Plaza Mayor all within walking distance from the Me Madrid Reina Victoria Hotel. The Centro Comercial Principe Pio, where the locals like to go, is a short Uber ride. Previously an old train station, turned into a mall, makes it a charming place to shop.

If art is your passion, I suggest the Reina Sofía Museum. This extensive museum houses a few Picasso's, and for 10 Euros admission makes it an inexpensive way to spend the day. This museum is part of the Golden Triangle of museums in Madrid.  

Madrid wouldn't be complete without making a reservation at Sobrino de Botin, the world's oldest operating restaurant. Dating back to 1725, where the flame in the oven has remained lit, never to be extinguished. Pretty impressive I'd say. Besides food prepared to perfection, served in courses, we were serenaded by a quartet. Earnest Hemingway mentions the restaurant in one of his novels. From the moment you pass through the doorway, down to the cellar where you enjoy some of the richest flavors Madrid has to offer, further down to the wine cellar for a peek at the aged wine. This place has you captivated in the moment even after you've long headed to your hotel.

We were left with the impression Madrid was a friendly, welcoming place to visit. Some of the best foods, affordable shopping, along with convenient to get around. Whether it was via Uber, walking or hopping the train on over to Barcelona. 

 

 

  L1010406

      ME Madrid Reina Victoria Hotel


L1010406         ME Madrid Reina Victoria Hotel

 

DSC00873

    ME Madrid Reina Victoria Hotel

 

DSC00921

   Zero Point Coffee

 


DSC00912

Zero Point Coffee

 

DSC01018

   El Retiro Park

 


DSC01018

El Retiro Park

 

DSC01032-Edit

   Puerta de Alcala

 


DSC01032-Edit

   Sobrino de Botin