a roadtrip down the coast...

Washington

 

The city of Seattle is such a cool place, and it was incredibly beautiful! Apparently that never happens, so I must just be lucky!

We did touristy things and funky local things- as I always try to do. But the coolest part of the trip was not Seattle...

I experienced all that nature has to offer while in roadtripping through northwestern Washington. It was truly breathtaking. It was bright and sunny with a gorgeous blue sky... then it was misty, then raining, then there was a crazy hail storm... and then as we ascended into the mountains it started to snow! Atop the mountains we saw people snowboarding and it was suddenly a beautiful winter's day. And then as we drove back down, it got sunny and 70 degrees again, and amidst the rain, we saw a full rainbow!- and all that was in one single day! It was amazing. In addition to the precipitation changes, we saw the ocean, rivers, lakes, streams, mountains, forests, hills and flatlands... we spent a few days exploring and it was an amazing time with Mother Nature.

Oregon

 

Portland quickly became one of my all time favorite cities when I realized they were not only home to some of the best Thai food, but also home to the original Salt and Straw (aka the best ice cream in the world!).  My literal two favorite foods in the entire world.   So thus began my love of Portland. I stayed with friends in the charming 23rd street neighborhood, much like Nashville's 12th South, and couldn't get enough of the charming shops, book stores, cafes, and donuts! But that wasn't all. 

California...

 

Lake Tahoe

 

We began our week-long safari out of Arusha, Tanzania with our wonderful guide Charles.  I suppose, at the time, he was just our guide Charles, but I can say this now because we have just spent 8 days with him, Charles was the most knowledgeable, friendly, wonderfully caring, and most go-getter guide we could have ever asked for!  And these pictures are just the beginning.  We thought we were going to see a few animals. Boy, how we were mistaken!  A few... more like a few THOUSAND.  And no exaggeration there. Like I said, this was just the beginning.

Yosemite National Park

 

We began our week-long safari out of Arusha, Tanzania with our wonderful guide Charles.  I suppose, at the time, he was just our guide Charles, but I can say this now because we have just spent 8 days with him, Charles was the most knowledgeable, friendly, wonderfully caring, and most go-getter guide we could have ever asked for!  And these pictures are just the beginning.  We thought we were going to see a few animals. Boy, how we were mistaken!  A few... more like a few THOUSAND.  And no exaggeration there. Like I said, this was just the beginning.

San Francisco

The city of hills, trolleys, and the wonderful Golden Gate Bridge. Yes, welcome to San Francisco.  I thought I was in good shape until I tried walking and biking around San Fran... how do these people do it?  Usually if it says on google maps that it's a mile away, I don't think twice about walking. But here, phew! Plan for 2 - if not 3 - huge hills in between.  Despite being a bit winded at times, I found San Fran to be an absolutely spectacular city!  The weather had some mood swings while I was there, but I guess that gave me a pretty accurate taste of the city. I went for a stroll one evening to see the bridge at sunset and on my way back, walked by what looked like another country.  The Palace of Fine Arts Theatre. Wow.

Although I didn't bring my Nikon, I was able to borrow a friend's Canon for a days to get some fun shots! Thanks Bryan :)  I even woke up at 5am to go shoot the bridge at sunrise. Well worth it in my opinion.  A beautifully serene and peaceful morning walk. We also had a lovely visit from Karl the Fog - as the locals call him - on our day trip to Battery Spencer. Fortunately I was able to get up there again for the breathtaking city view, but as it turns out, I think the fog made it much more spectacular. (photo below)

We of course had to stop by and see "Painted Ladies" - the Victorian houses across from Alamo Square park. Although it's talked about a ton, the opening scene of Full House is actually not here, but instead filmed on the Warner Bros studio lot, but it's a fun sight nonetheless. Plus it's sometimes known as "Postcard Row" so I had to get in my traditional "postcard shot" of the city! 

Oh and definitely ride the trolley! Touristy, yep. As you can clearly see from the photo. But way fun.

Los Angeles

City of Angels.  and Entertainment.  We did hit LA next on this trip back in 2016, but I'm not going to tell you about that.

I've now been to LA countless times – literally, I spent 5 years splitting my time between Nashville and LA, going there every month. That said, there's something about the ocean breeze and the swaying palm trees that will always take my breath away. If time allows, when I land, I always get my rental car and head straight for the ocean – just to see it – before heading to any meetings. It calms me. There is so much more to LA than these 3 photos, but they are a few of my favorites. 

Colorado

 

Alright, so this isn't technically the west coast, but it was the next stop immediately after LA on the tour that started out as my "west coast run" and it was yet another place I had never been to!  We started in Denver, which I surprisingly really liked for a big city, but the rest of Colorado is definitely where it's at.  I got to explore Boulder and see Red Rocks Amphitheater and even made my way out to Aspen and Vail!  I'm sure winter is even more scenic, but the fall foliage was breathtaking! 

Utah

 

I've been going to Utah for the last 20+ years... my brother moved out to Park City in the late 90s and my parents bought a place out there soon after and we went to the 2002 Olympics! You're right, Utah is definitely not the west coast either, but I decided to group all of these west ish places into one post since I probably won't share them anywhere else.  And the state of Utah is truly beautiful – especially all of the incredible national parks! (If you haven't been to Zion, you must go! And Lake Powell – magnificent!) And as small town charm goes, Park City is one of my favorites! It's beautiful in every season, but here are a few of my favorite winter snapshots: 

© 2020 Liz Rogers Travel Photography