Laura Hill

  • Relax in Alamo Park with the Iconic Painted Ladies

    If you’re ever in San Francisco, you’ll definitely want to spend a bit of time in Alamo Square gazing at these stellar examples of San Francisco history.   This is a beautiful and popular green space, where you have uninterrupted views of the icon...

  • Visit the Leaning Tower of Pisa

    The Leaning Tower of Pisa is renown worldwide for its almost four-degree tilt, the result of being built with an unstable foundation. This is perfect stop on your Italian vacation, with lots of great shops and restaurants (I had the best pizza of ...

  • Exploring Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco

    Wanting to spend some time walking around San Francisco?  The world-famous Fisherman’s Warf is a great place to get some steps in! The Wharf has everything from shopping, restaurants, farmers market, drinks, parks and more. There is basically some...

  • Explore Sedona Wind Caves

    These beautiful caves are located mid-way through a short 0.5 mile hike, rated moderate.  And if you weren’t looking, you would never know they were there…  note that they are before the end of the trail, on the right as you hike. The caves are we...

    0.5 miles

  • Visit Devils Kitchen in Sedona

    Great spot for photos, and is at the beginning of one of the best trails in Sedona.  The parking lot can get full easily, since this is a very popular trail.  The sinkhole is close to the trailhead, but I encourage you to continue on down the Sold...

    0.5 miles

  • Explore Slide Rock State Park

    This beautiful State Park, which is the original location of the Pendley Homestead, is a historic apple farm (the apple trees are still there!). This is a favorite stop for families in the summertime, so if you come then, make sure to arrive early...

  • Dispersed Camping on Mogollon Rim (FR 9350)

    Dispersed camping with a view! With no site fees and no reservations, this camping spot is incredibly popular.  Note that several campsites are bordered by a 200' vertical drop. This area is not recommended for families with young children or peop...

  • Hike to the Birthing Cave

    The hike is an easy one, flat and not too long.  In the spring you'll see lots of flowers. Note, the popularity of this Sedona cave has grown in the past year, so you will most likely encounter other hikers and mountain bikers.  You start from the...

    2 miles 291 ft gain

  • Walk Forrest Park in St. Louis

    Perfect for getting steps in or spreading out a blanket and having a picnic.  The grounds are beautifully manicured, with lots of vibrant flowers and greenery.  The park boasts multiple water features which are lovely to sit out and relax by. This...

  • Hike to Praying Hands in Lost Dutchman State Park

    Begin your hike in the Cholla parking lot, and start Treasure Loop Trail (this is the north side of the loop, heading east).  Once you get to the base of the main cliffs, and the trail starts to veer to the right, this is where you branch off.  In...

    4.3 miles 954 ft gain

  • Kayak the Lower Salt River

    It's not an Arizona summer without time spent on the Salt River!  And there's no better way than by kayak.  Summertime on the Lower Salt is full of people, mostly in tubes and on SUP's.  Getting on the river in the early hours of the morning help ...

  • Hike the Bass and Dry Lake Loop

    This is a moderate trail, that gets a bit steep at times.  Great views of the lake and has lots of spots to stop for a quick snack.  Trail is well maintained, and there is a fun waterfall, which is great to splash around in.   The trailhead is sup...

    6.3 miles 518 ft gain

  • Spend a Day at Silver Strand State Beach

    A day at the Silver Strand State Beach is a must, playing in the surf and searching for seashells. Parking can be challenging, as all beaches on Coronado Island are very busy.  I recommend coming early in the morning and planning to stay all day. ...

  • Taking a Jeep Tour of Sedona

    I can’t get enough of those magnificent red rocks!  Sedona is an outdoor enthusiasts’ playground, and a wonderful way to start off your adventure is with a jeep tour! Experienced local guides know all the insider information about Sedona, includin...

  • Hiking in Hells Canyon Wilderness

    Spanning 9,951 acres of backcountry a few miles northwest of Lake Pleasant and about 25  miles north of Phoenix, Hells Canyon Wilderness area offers a quick way to escape into an untamed swath of desert that’s more paradise than purgatory.I have t...

  • Hike Echo Canyon Trail in Chiricahua National Monument

    This is a moderate trail, with a good amount of up and down.  But you won’t mind one bit, because you’ll be so awestruck with the scenery.  The distinct unique green coated rock formations of Chiricahua National Monument are on full display for th...

    3.5 miles

  • Horseback Ride in the Sonoran Desert

    This picturesque location is truly unique; featuring Saguaro Lake, the spectacular Bulldog Cliffs and the Salt River winds through the Ranch property, and you’re able to experience it all on horseback. What I loved most is that the horses were wel...

  • Photograph the Wildflowers at Picacho Peak State Park

    If Arizona is lucky enough to have a rainy winter, we will most certainly have a beautiful bloom come spring.  One of the best places to see the beautiful golden blooms is on a hike in Picacho Peak State Park. Blooming season typically begins in m...

  • Drive the Scenic Loop in Saguaro National Park East (Cactus Forest)

    The Cactus Forest scenic drive is one of two scenic drives in Saguaro National Park (the other is in the West district location).  The drive in Saguaro National Park East is a paved eight-mile one way loop that runs through the heart of an extensi...

    8 miles

  • Hike the Oak Creek Trail

    Great, short hike in Red Rock Crossing. Make sure to check out the hundreds of cairns at Buddha Beach. Beautiful views of Cathedral Rock.  Lots of places to relax and have lunch, with picnic tables near the parking lot.  Lots of parking, good amou...

    1.1 miles 26 ft gain

  • Hike Woods Canyon Lake Loop Trail

    This hike is a ~4 mile heavily trafficked loop trail that circles Woods Canyon Lake, on the beautiful Mogollon Rim.  Peaceful and easy, this trail is suitable for all skill levels, and is great for families looking to spend a bit of time in nature...

    3.7 miles 154 ft gain

  • Hike on Rim Lakes Vista Trail #622

    This heavily trafficked, easy trail leads along the edge of the Mogollon Rim, with spectacular views.  There are lots of places for photos, but make sure to be very careful, as it’s more than a 200 ft drop! The first ½ mile of the trail is paved, ...

    3.5 miles

  • Kayak Saguaro Lake

    If you want to enjoy some paddle time on the beautiful Saguaro Lake, launching from Butcher Jones Recreation Area is your best bet.  If you don’t have your own kayak, you can rent from the nearby Saguaro Lake Guest Ranch and they’ll bring the kaya...

  • Hike Inner Basin Trail #29

    When the golden fall color is at its peak is when this trail (and Locket Meadow camping) is the most popular.  I recommend getting there as early as possible, because parking goes FAST.  And note that the drive up to the trailhead is a bit sketchy...

    3.2 miles 757 ft gain

  • Experiencing Castle Hot Springs

    The grounds of this location are absolutely incredible – food is amazing, and the hot springs are magical.  Each hot spring boasts its own naturally occurring hybrid mix of minerals, which vary from place to place depending on the geology of the a...

  • Explore the Ruins of the Coliseum

    Incredibly impressive, no trip to Rome would be complete without a visit to this amazing structure.  There are lots of tours that take you around the inside, and down into the depths of the ruin.  Wonderful spot for photography, and great for adul...

  • Hiking Kisva Trail in Red Rocks State Park

    This easy hike features a lovely creek and the beautiful red rocks of Sedona! This is a flat, shady, 1.3 mi hike and follows Oak Creek for a portion.  Beautiful spots to stop and have a picnic or just relax and watch the birds.  Lots of signage, a...

    1.3 miles 62 ft gain

  • Get Active at the City Museum

    If you're in St. Louis, make sure to add the City Museum to your to-do list.  This indoor-outdoor space features incredible slides, hidden stairways, and the craziest most random playgrounds. Here's what their website has to say – “Expect the u...

  • Wander the Ancient City of Ephesus

    Spend a day wandering the ancient city of Ephesus, and you'll be transported back to ancient Greece.  The ruins that are everywhere you look speak to a long history of the location being the trade center of the ancient world.  This is a very popul...

  • Hike Marcus Landslide Trail

    Named after a landslide that scientists say occurred over 500,000 years ago, this interpretive hiking trail in the McDowell Sonoran Preserve is a perfect easy outing for families and nature lovers alike.  It begins from the Tom's Thumb trailhead (...

    4 miles 528 ft gain

  • Stroll Pine Creek's Lavender Farm

    The building was built in the early 1900’s by the first settlers of Pine, the farm was turned into a lavender farm.  There’s a little shop, and the owner also does cooking classes!  Wonderful way to spend some time in the northern Arizona sunshine...

  • Kayak Woods Canyon Lake

    Is there any better way to spend a Saturday, then paddling on a glassy, peaceful lake?  You can rent kayaks at the Woods Canyon Lake Marina, or bring your own (if you’re bringing your own kayak, make sure you bring a PFD too, as it’s Arizona law)....

  • Photograph Cactus Blooms at Lost Dutchman

    And there is no better place to experience this beautiful display than at Lost Dutchman State Park. The State Park website shares that visitors can find "chuparosas, poppies, fiddle necks, globe mallow, chuparosa, brittle bush, desert evening prim...

  • Wandering Through Pier 39, San Fransisco

    So many activities!  If you're taking a down day from more strenuous adventures, then this a worth-while walk through during your visit to SF. Whether you want to hunt for trinkets in souvenir shops or photograph sea lions, this is a great place t...

  • Ride the Kuranda Scenic Train in Australia

    Experience beautiful waterfalls, lush greenery and explore the village of Kuranda at the end of the trip (so many cute shops and places for delicious food & snacks).  Truly, a unique and beautiful experience. When visiting the village, you can...

  • Fish Woods Canyon Lake

    You can rent a charming metal fishing boat at the Woods Canyon Lake Marina, or bring your own (if you’re bringing your own boat, make sure you bring a PFD too, as it’s Arizona law).  Note that gas motors are NOT permitted on boats (only trolling m...

  • Experiencing The Beautiful Ghirardelli Square

    If you’re looking for a wonderful spot to spend an afternoon while in San Francisco, make sure to visit Ghirardelli Square! There are all sorts of delicious food options, amazing little shops and the people watching is exceptional.  I highly recom...

  • Visit Parson Jones and Colonial Armstrong Redwood Trees

    The Parson Jones Tree is the tallest tree in the reserve, measuring more than 310 feet (94 m) in height. This is longer than the length of a football field!  Named after a lumberman who chose to preserve this portion of the park in the 1870s, the ...

  • Experience the Whakarewarewa Thermal Valley in Rotorua

    Geyers and hot springs and silica formations, oh my! Te Puia is the site where you can see these amazing wonders up close (but not too close!), while learning about the location history, Maori culture and scientific details.  Great experience ...

  • Go Horseback Riding in Cairns, Australia

    It's a wonderful way to experience the region and will be a memory to last a lifetime. There's a whole host of tours available for riders of all ages and abilities with some tours lasting all day and others just a few hours. Definitely a must do w...

  • Experience a Dinner in the Arizona Desert

    If you’re looking for a special place to experience a delicious dinner, and you love being outdoors, a community dinner with Cloth and Flame is simply perfect. Aside from the spectacular locations and the delicious food, I love what this company s...

  • Hike Big Moose Trail

    Beautiful trail! We never saw another person, and unfortunately didn’t see any moose.  The trail is an easy one, and everything is an incredible vibrant green.  Make sure you bring bug spray, they will eat you alive! Directions to the trailhea...

    5 miles

  • Hike and Swim Burntside Lake in the BWCA

    You know that they say, Minnesota is the land of a thousand lakes. Well, Burntside Lake, located just outside of Ely, MN in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW or BWCA), is one of my favorites to visit. The BWCA is a 1,090,000-acre wi...

  • Glamp Under Starry Skies in Northern Arizona

    If you’re looking to find a spot to stay while seeing the Grand Canyon, I highly recommend a glamping adventure with Under Canvas.  The tents feature a full bathroom (and hot shower!), a super comfortable bed.  And if you can, make sure to get the...

  • Adventure Off-Road in the Arizona Desert

    Exhilarating and a perfect way to spend a morning (or afternoon, if it's not summer) in Arizona.  There are many companies that offer this type of adventure, but I’ve done it with Green Zebra, and the experience was stellar!  The vehicles we drove...

  • Wander the Desert Botanical Garden's Trails

    Wildflowers abound during this season at the Garden.  Quail families scurry across trails, hummingbirds hover from flower to flower.  If you're lucky, the Butterfly Pavilion will be open and you can stop by to see hundreds of these colorful butter...

  • Hike and Photograph Canyon Lake

    This is a very popular lake, with the weekends seeing the most visitors.  The drive out to Canyon Lake is a destination in and of itself.  Especially in early spring when either side of the roadway is blanketed in wildflowers.  If you're in the Ph...

  • Raft the Salt River in Arizona

    There are a ton of companies offering half, full and multi day tours.  I did a half day tour and it was a wonderful way to spend a spring morning in Arizona. We saw bald eagles, and our tour guide was so knowledgeable about the area.  Just enough ...

  • Visit the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, France

    The Arc de Triomphe is one of the most famous monuments in Paris, located at the western end of the Champs-Élysées. When on a walking tour of Paris, we stopped here to relax a bit in the shade of the arch.  It is so beautiful, and so huge when you...

  • Visit Auckland's Sky Tower

    The structure stands 1,076 ft tall, as measured from ground level to the top of the mast, making it the tallest freestanding structure in the Southern Hemisphere and the 27th tallest tower in the world. The clear bottomed viewpoints at the top are...

  • Glamping in Tuscon

    What experience can be more magical than sleeping outdoors and under the stars?  Bordering the Sagurao National Park in Tucson, Arizona, this glamping experience is like no other! With a bed, full bathroom and wood fueled stove, this is glamping a...

  • Explore the Village of Kuranda in Australia

    Whether you want to check out giant crocodiles, feed kangaroos, see an Aboriginal performance learn about the history of the area and Aboriginal culture, or just explore the rainforest, this is a great place to spend the day. For more information ...

  • Touring the Australian Reef From Port Douglas

    So many options!  Whether you want to snorkel or stay dry, this catamaran tour will be a highlight of your visit to Australia.  The tour leaves from Port Douglas, and the ship is amazing!  Make sure to do the underwater sub experience too, it’s...

  • Cruise Sydney Harbor in Austrilia

    With views of the city and Sydney Harbor Bridge, a cruise on the harbor is hard to beat.  A quick search will bring up a ton of options (lunch cruise, dinner cruise, etc.) and honestly, you can't go wrong.  I was able to do a fun, hour long genera...