Journalist since 1997, degree in education, Oregon Publishers Association awards. Specialties: outdoor travel (U.S. mostly), nature, health, environment, animals, green living, human rights.
"Unless you're on the beach after sunset in winter – when average lows dip to 65 degrees Fahrenheit – Honolulu, with its daytime temperatures averaging in the 80s year-round, is almost always pleasant. Sometimes, though, rain in Honolulu and its Waikiki, means more than soft sprinkles on one side of the street and a rainbow on the other. Rarely in summer, but always in winter, the city and its beaches get a good soaking. When a storm hits, beachgoers can head to a dryer side of Oahu. If, however, you want to stay in Honolulu, you're not destined to while away the hours in your hotel room. In fact, by the end of the day -- you may be glad it rained...."
"Hawaiian rain to most visitors means a light afternoon shower quickly chased by rainbows. Oahu’s south shore with Waikiki and most of Oahu’s hotels receive most of its rain from occasional winter storms. Rain waters Windward Oahu's abundant greenery and tropical flowers almost daily, usually beginning at night with loud drumming on tin roofs. By afternoon, the sun almost always appears. Because of Oahu's microclimates, the rain may pour in once place, while the sun shines in another, just minutes away. Even if it rains all day at Waikiki or an island-wide storm hits, you don't need to let rain wash out your vacation...."
Private Snorkeling in Hawaii | Getaway Tips - azcen...
"Hanauma Bay, formed by two craters near Koko Head on Oahu's sunny south shore, is one of the world's most popular snorkeling spots. Approximately 3,000 people per day, mostly tourists eager to don masks and view colorful fish in the turquoise water, descend on the narrow, 2,000-foot long sandy beach. Unlike other Hawaiian beaches, there's an entrance fee, albeit a small one. But if you think this bay is a tourist trap, reconsider. Since the marine life conservation district implemented plans to protect the bay, such as regulating commercial tours, closing on Tuesdays and charging non-residents of Hawaii an entrance fee, the number of daily visitors dropped from 10,000 to 3,000. When it comes to seeing lots of fish and in a wide variety near any of Oahu's shores, Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve delivers...." For Insider Tips, read more.
"As you float in translucent turquoise water -- nearly pristine in Hawaii -- you enjoy the warm sun on your back while cool, but not cold, water refreshes you. Your mask and snorkel provide admission to an underwater world where sounds from above fade, replaced by the soft clicking of shrimp. Hovering over the blue, pink and peach coral, you get a sneak preview of the community’s goings on. Spiny urchins cling to the coral, as shells creep along its surface, tropical fish swim among the branches and dart in and out of miniature coves and caverns. Many of Hawaii's beaches lead to snorkeling spots, but some of the best snorkeling is reached by boat off the coasts of Hawaii Island and Maui...."
"While it's easy to find family-friendly beaches in Hawaii, it's not as easy to find beach campgrounds with the security, amenities and potential for fun that make a campground family-friendly...."
"The second largest city in the United States, Los Angeles, has world-class museums, astounding performing and visual arts and a great climate. L.A. also has smog, crowds, rush hour traffic and, well, rush hour everything. The megatropolis has just about anything you can ask for in a city -- except the slow pace and fresh air that Angelenos look for outside the city. You needn’t drive far, or even leave L.A. County, to retreat to a campground where the only pressure is finding the right sized stick for your marshmallow."
"As one of the U.S. states but with a distinct culture created by a rainbow of ethnic groups in the middle of the Pacific, Hawaii is both familiar and exotic. Nuances of cultural values, language and lifestyle may go unnoticed by those visiting for only a brief while, but tourists may want to understand certain standards of etiquette to smooth the way for fewer misunderstandings and more enjoyable encounters with the host culture...."
"If you seek outdoors adventures, unique sights to see and cultural enrichment, Oregon will surely satisfy.The Pacific Northwest state attracts more anglers, bicyclists, campers and hikers than any other U.S. state. After environmental interests felled the Oregon's timber industry's place as the main economic provider, the state's tourism industry has with a new fervor, courted those visiting the state's forests, coastline, lakes and rivers. Cap your visit with a bottle of wine from one of Southern Oregon's award-winning vintages, and you'll certainly return...."
"The sustainability of the planet and its inhabitants depends greatly on the waters that make up almost 70 percent of its mass. The health of the oceans that contain two-thirds of the planet's water depends on their coral reefs, as do coastal areas that the reefs protect from surges. Marine ecotourism helps protect the oceans and their reefs, while providing adventure and education to the tourists...."
"The kerplunk of a weighted hook, the soft swoosh of a paddle rippling through calm water, and the occasional call of a bird create the soundtrack of Green Valley Lake. In summer, add the laughter of children at the swim beach. In California's San Bernardino National Forest, Green Valley Lake provides tranquility and a big breath of fresh air to visitors such as those who live in cities at the foot of the mountains -- and without the jet skis and motorboats of nearby Big Bear Lake. Perched at 7,000 feet elevation, the nine-acre, trout-stocked lake attracts anglers and those desiring to row, paddle or pedal a boat without motorized crafts roaring by. While camping isn't permitted at the lake, nearby campgrounds accommodate campers from May through October...."
"As winter nears, approximately 10,000 humpback whales follow their ocean trails from Alaska and Canada to the warm waters of Hawaii. The size of a bus and weighing about 40 tons, a humpback cruises gracefully at about 3 to 7 miles per hour. At the end of the month-long journey, many give birth and mate in the sanctuary of Hawaii's waters, relatively free of large predators such as orca. After the calves grow substantially, the whales return to their chilly but nutrient-rich feeding grounds. Winter is whale-watching season in Hawaii...."
"A little bit more than an hour's drive north of San Francisco, horseback riding dreams can come true at Bodega Bay on the scenic Sonoma County Coast. Beginning and experienced equestrians ride trails overlooking the bay and on the sand, splashing through shallow rivulets of seawater, as the sunset sparkles gold on the Pacific ocean. Horseback riding options at Bodega Bay also include trail rides with special interests such as exploring the wetlands or wildlife viewing."
"A California vacation can be wonderful any time of the year. Even though climates vary widely by region and season, there is something exciting to enjoy in each region during spring, summer, fall and winter. The task of narrowing choices down to the best places to visit during a given season is subjective and objective. Considering some of the many big attractions in the state and what are known to be the prime times for fully enjoying them is a start...."
Volkswagens, including VW vans, were all the rage in Hawaii in the 1980s. A new van trend takes place there now, but not among the locals. Camper van rental businesses have popped up on all four main ......