Posts tagged: spring

Amazing Hiking Destinations in the U.S. for Spring

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By , March 23, 2016 7:34 am

With warmer temperatures and flowers blooming all around, this is the perfect time to get outside and active with a spring hike!

Going hiking, whether for a short day trip or a multi-month backpacking trip, is one of the best ways to get in touch with nature and get your body moving at the same time. Some hiking destinations are perfect for spring, and here are some of our all-time favorite trails in the U.S.

Upper Yosemite Falls, California

It’s no secret that Yosemite is one of the most amazing places to hike on the planet, and the Upper Yosemite Falls trail is at its peak in spring. On this trail, you’ll be rewarded for challenging terrain with panoramic views and get the opportunity to look down on the falls once you reach the top.

Photo credit: Phil King via Flickr

Photo credit: Phil King via Flickr

Cascade Mountain, Upstate New York

New Yorkers sometimes need to escape the crowded city life and put their boots on some rocks and dirt. In the spring, one of the best places to do this is Cascade Mountain, which is in the Adirondacks in Upstate New York. This is a family-friendly hike that is about 4.8 miles round trip and takes a couple hours to complete. Just remember to look around while you’re hiking for scenic views of the Algonquin, Colden, and Marcy Mountains.

Eagle Creek, Columbia River Gorge, Oregon

Deep in the Pacific Northwest, the Columbia River Gorge is known for its towering waterfalls and lush forests. You can get a taste of the epic Pacific Crest Trail when you take a hike along the Eagle Creek Trail, which is an alternative PCT route and passes by several lovely waterfalls. This is an out-and-back trail that has plenty of shade and lots of places to stop and enjoy a picnic.

Amicalola Falls State Park, North Georgia

Most people don’t think of Georgia when they’re looking for a memorable hike, but the North Georgia mountains are a truly stunning place to hit the trails. One of the best areas is Amicalola Falls National Park which is in the Chattahoochee National Forest and home to the tallest waterfall in the state. The route to the top of the waterfall involves a large set of stairs to climb. Or for an extra challenge, do the 10-mile Hike Inn Trail, and there is a rustic inn you can treat yourself to once you’re done. The trillium, dwarf iris, and other wildflowers are beautiful here in the springtime.

Photo credit: Alyssa L. Ochs

Photo credit: Alyssa L. Ochs

Angels Landing Trail, Zion National Park, Utah

The Utah desert gets incredibly hot during the summer months, so spring is a perfect time to hike Angels Landing in Zion National Park. This is a hike that requires you to be okay with heights because the end of the trail leads up a moderately steep rock face and a pinnacle that overlooks the park. It really is one of the most remarkable views of Zion. Round trip, the hike is about five miles and ascends 1,488 feet.

Regardless how far you are willing to travel for an epic hike, there’s sure to be plenty to do at your destination once you arrive. Keep the adventure going with active experiences from FunSherpa, or rest those tired muscles with one of our spa and wellness gifts. Happy trails!

Beautiful Places to Visit This Spring to See Wildflowers

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By , March 9, 2016 11:06 am

In many places around the country, the temperatures becoming more pleasant, the birds are chirping, and flowers are starting to bloom. Lots of cities put a great deal of time and effort into preserving and maintaining their parks and gardens for locals and visitors to enjoy.

However, flowers are blooming in other more unexpected places, and humans have very little to do with it! These are some of the most beautiful places in the U.S. to visit this spring to see wildflowers.

Coachella – California

California is much more than the beach, and the Coachella Valley proves it. It’s near Joshua Tree National Park and known for bright yellow, pink, and purple wildflowers in the springtime. The best time to see wildflowers here is between February and April, including the Dune Evening Primrose and the Creosote. There’s even a free and family-friendly wildflower festival in Coachella Valley that you can check out if you visit in early March.

Photo credit: ActiveSteve via Flickr

Photo credit: ActiveSteve via Flickr

Fraser Preserve – Virginia/Maryland

The cherry blossoms aren’t the only things blooming in the D.C area in the spring. Frasier Preserve, which spans a large tract of land in the Piedmont region and in Virginia and Maryland. There are over 300 species of wildflowers growing here and hiking trails where can get out in nature and see them up-close. One wildflower highlight here is the Virginia bluebell. There are also about 110 species of birds here, so it’s a great spot for birdwatchers.

Nachusa Grasslands – Illinois

Illinois used to be a vast prairie before it was transformed into agricultural land, but wildflowers are still abundant in some areas across the state. Some of the best wildflower viewing opportunities exist in the Nachusa Grasslands, where wildflowers bloom in the early spring. It is also home to sparrows and turtles, and bison were reintroduced to this region in 2014! The grasslands are located near the towns of Oregon, Dixon, and Franklin Grove.

Enchanted Rock State Natural Area – Texas

If you’re planning to visit Austin in the spring, take a little detour to see the Enchanted Rock State Natural Area. Some wildflowers that flourish here are the Bluebonnet and Indian Paintbrush. Enchanted Rock is a large dome-shaped summit that rises 425 feet above Big Sandy Creek near the town of Fredericksburg.

Bluff Preserve – Georgia

The state of Georgia has a surprising number of beautiful state parks and natural preserves that are teeming with life and color. One great place to visit here is Black’s Bluff Preserve, which is locally known for its beautiful wildflowers that typically bloom in March. Here you can see wildflowers like Hepatica, Dutchman’s breeches, Toothwort, and Trilliums.

Long Pond Preserve – Pennsylvania

Visit the Long Pond Preserve to see wild Rhodora that’s native to this part of Pennsylvania. This is a very unique natural preserve area that’s worth visiting in the spring. It’s marked by swamps, bogs, shallow ponds, marshes, and woodlands with red spruce, and balsam fir trees.

Photo credit: Rockin'Rita via FlickrPhoto credit: Rockin’Rita via Flickr

To find unique experiences at your travel destinations, make sure to browse through the exciting options available at FunSherpa. From experiences ranging from gourmet to romantic, spa, airborne, and tours, there’s always something new discover in your favorite places.

Springtime in Boston: Top Things to See and Do

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By , April 22, 2015 8:44 am

Spring is a wonderful time to plan a trip to Boston. The flowers are in bloom, baseball games are picking up at Fenway Park, and restaurants and bars are opening up their patios for outdoor seating.

Boston offers locals and visitors a unique blend of old and new, with historical sites, trendy restaurants, and lots of green space to run and play. So if you’re planning a springtime trip to Boston, or just live in the city and are looking for fun things to do, check out these exciting offerings from FunSherpa!

USS Constitution Cruise 

The city of Boston is full of historic landmarks, but one of the most unique is the USS Constitution. We’ll set you up with a 45-minute narrated tour to learn about this famous ship and even check out the Naval Museum. You’ll see other top sites like the Bunker Hill Monument, the Old North Church, and the Boston Tea Party Boat along the tour, which runs between April and November.

Photo credit: Nathan Lanier via Flickr

Photo credit: Nathan Lanier via Flickr

Boston Jet Boat Ride 

But if you’re looking to get on the water with a little more action and excitement, consider booking a Boston Jet Boat Ride to explore the natural beauty of Boston Harbor. Jet boats reach speeds of 40 miles per hour, providing 40-minutes of fun for the whole family. Enjoy a crisp spring day in Boston with the wind in your hair and upbeat music in your ears. This adventure runs (weather dependent) between May and September.

Boston Freedom Trail Photographic Safari

Boston is an ideal city to begin perfecting your photography skills, and our Boston Freedom Trail Photographic Safari provides a unique combination of a city tour with a professional photography lesson. Your guide will take you to popular tourist attractions and low-key sites that only the locals know about to capture the essence of the city and create memories to last a lifetime. This experience takes you to the Boston Freedom Trail, Boston Common, New State House, Park Church, Faneuil Hall, Paul Revere House (just to name a few sites) and runs Wednesday through Friday from 1-5 pm.

Boston Ghosts and Gravestones Tour

As with many historic destinations, Boston’s history is steeped in ghost stories and sinister tales from days past. Book a spot on the Boston Ghosts and Gravestones Tour to experience the scarier side of the city…from the safety of a trolley! Picture this: your host is a 17th century grave digger who’s been cursed with eternal damnation and has plenty of stories to tell. You’ll be walking about half of the tour, which runs year-around and lasts about two hours.

Photo credit: Navaneeth KN via Flickr

Photo credit: Navaneeth KN via Flickr

Rock Climbing Introduction in Charlemont

You’ll need to venture just a little outside the Boston city limits to partake in this adventure, but the Rock Climbing Intro in Charlemont experience is definitely worth the short journey. Starting in June, professional rock climbing guides take adventure-seekers out on one and two-day novice rock climbing trips to this beautiful outdoor region. You’ll learn everything from knot tying to belaying, bouldering, climbing techniques, and safety precautions with friendly guidance every step of the way.

 

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