Our Top 5 Favorite U.S. Sights and Cities (West & Southwest, 2018)
If you've been following along on our Instagram, you've probably seen that this year has been pretty travel heavy. Most notably, a very long road trip in our camper Rosie, where we went all over the Southwest and West Coast and lived in campground after campground and, in some gay miracle, didn't kill each other.
People have been asking us what the best thing we did was, and since "barricading ourselves in our camper during a snow storm in Arizona and listening to Lana del Rey while day drinking wine" doesn't feel like it'd be exciting to most people, here's a list of other stuff! Just short recaps about why we loved each spot, and links for you to plan your own trip.
We had few expectations of Zion National Park, as it doesn't really get talked about as much as other nearby national parks like the Grand Canyon. But once we were in Southern Utah, everyone who knew we were visiting asked "did you go to Zion yet?!" So we did! We didn't spend enough time here, like, at all, and we're itching to go back. There are plenty of trails through the mountains ranging in difficulty from casual to intense, so it's pretty much perfect for anyone.
We're not tour guides, so check out the website to plan your own trip, but this one is #probablythis approved, okay?! If you're on a road trip and have time to spend in the area, plan to also check out The Grand Canyon, Antelope Canyon, and Horseshoe Bend, which are all between 2 and 3 hours away. We've also got a full post about our time in Southern Utah right here!
Marfa, Texas, is a tiny little weird art city with a million cute things to do. We've visited twice now, and can't wait to go back! Basically, it's in the middle of nowhere, and you'll see stars and get an awesome West Texas experience but also get to explore several art institutions and galleries, adorable vintage shops, and delicious hip restaurants. Check out our full post about Marfa right here!
I don't think either of us were prepared for how much we were going to love this little 70s throwback of a city in Southern California. We liked it so much we went back a second time on our road trip! If you're a fan of laying out by the pool, midcentury architecture and design, and love the gays, this is a great spot to spend a few nights. The general population here skews a bit older, but every weekend it seems like the young gays from LA invade and there's a somewhat younger vibe. We love it all!
The photo above is from La Serena Villas, which was a fancy boutique hotel that was a joy to stay in. Another popular (and more affordable) hotel is The Saguaro, where we spent a great afternoon with cocktails and pool time. Check out our full post about Palm Springs right here!
So, Santa Fe is probably about as opposite as you can get from Palm Springs. It's a solid 30 degrees colder, the architecture is much older, and instead of a pool party you can expect an afternoon over quiet conversation and wine, or a day spent exploring the art museums and home decor stores.
The entire downtown area is extremely walkable, and you'll feel like you're in a totally different world. We went to the Georgia O'Keefe Museum and the IAIA Museum of Contemporary Native Arts and were stunned by both. And if you just spend the day shopping around downtown you're going to find some incredible clothes, accessories, blankets, etc. to take home. Check out our full post about Santa Fe right here!
Central Coast, California
We had no clue what to expect from the strip of coast between Los Angeles and San Francisco, but it quickly became the place we talk about the most. From Paso Robles to San Luis Obispo and Cayucos to Carmel-by-the-Sea, it had so many varied landscapes and cities and experiences. There were grassy rolling hills that felt like we were in Ireland, coastal beach towns that looked like a Nora Roberts book cover, tons of vineyards with incredible and affordable wines in Paso Robles, and tiny little towns with alleys and cute dog-friendly restaurants.
It was such an amazing area, and if you go and spend about a week you can hit up several different parts of it for a well-rounded vacation! Check out our full post about it right here!
Thanks for stopping by, and happy travels!
xoxo Beau & Matt