Thursday, 10 April 2014

Day Tripping | California Dreaming

What can I say, California has blown my mind, such incredible scenery, great people and all day sunshine. Life on the road has been pretty sweet this past 9 days although we didn't quite appreciate how vast a place it really is - we've gone from walking miles in NY to driving miles and miles here. One things is for sure though 2pac wasn't lying when he said "it's all good from Diago to the Bay." Yes we've been listening to a themed playlist! 

Here are a few pics from when we first arrived. It would appear I was really into this "edgy" filter at this stage of the trip, apologies and you will be pleased to hear I'm over this now, well sort of. 

    Blazing Saddles Bike Hire

    Biking the Bridge 

    Golden Gate Bridge 

    Weiner Dog | Sausalito Dock | The very     Dock Otis Reading wrote "dock of the bay" 

    Shrimping & Pimping | San Fran 

    Sea Lions 

    Funfare | Santa Cruz Beach 

    California's equivalent Blackpool     

Treebones Resort | Big Sur | California

Big Sur radiates positiveo vibeos with a laid back culture that just draws you in. What's not to love about sandy white beaches, sea air, expansive clifftop views and towering Redwood Trees? Naturally, we had to stay another night to soak up the great atmosphere and pop into a couple of local cafés/restaurants. 

We said farewell to Don and Rainbow House - he had no availability for a second night :( but we'd read good things about an eco yurt glampsite called Treebones Resort just south of Big Sur. It made sense to move on, making our way south and we both felt truly blessed to have stayed here, even if it was for one night. 

We managed to book the last yurt available at Treebones. They usually have a three night minimum stay policy but i hammed up the English accent playing that slightly awkward, overly polite, apologetic Brit, channelling Hugh Grant in every role he's EVER played and it worked! 

Treebones has a great reputation and I can see why, each yurt is finished to a high spec, there's a pool overlooking the sea and an excellent restaurant on site that serves quality meals made with locally sourced produce. 

We ate in the restaurant that evening and had by far the best meal we've had in California. The menu is created around what's in season with produce from the kitchen garden. The garden was bursting with goodness; herbs, lettuce, beets, artichokes, avocados, limes and lemons. Each course was light, healthy and wholesome making a refreshing change after weeks of American sugar filled, processed food. Don't get me wrong I bloody love a good burger and sugary treat from time to time but even the porridge we had was made with cream and loaded with added sugar, I seriously needed to rein it in! 

Aside from a fantastic restaurant and organic garden the site also has a treehouse, camping space and The Nest. The Nest is probably the most adventurous glamping option I've ever seen but not for the faint hearted. It's a collection of wood created to form a human nest structure. Its not waterproof, there's no electric or heating, you rock up with a sleeping bag and nestle down for the night. The structure offers the perfect place to fall asleep under the stars in the most natural environments. Quite something really, well providing it doesn't rain of course!  

We enjoyed our stay here but neither of us were wowed by it. They crammed A-LOT of yurts in a relatively small space and were building more. I believe their aim was to create an eco community but it lacked authenticity creating more of a summer camp vibe. The "resort" element screamed cheesy American glossiness that detracted from the natural beauty it could be.  

Here are the snaps. Enjoy! 

    The yurt

    Our view

    The Yurts

    The Nest

    The Kitchen Garden

    The Potting Bench 

    The Treehouse

     Big Sur Bakery | Amazing Coffee 

    Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park 

     Big Sur Coastline 

    Camper loving 

Sunday, 6 April 2014

Urban Oasis | Manhattan | New York

Okay, the idea of this blog was to share with you our glamping experiences as we trot around the globe so I'm cheating slightly here. Strickly speaking the Urban Oasis isn't a glampsite at all. However, our stay here in midtown Manhattan deserved a mention. This relaxed loft style hostel was the perfect bolt hole in the city close to all must dos and in a good location to explore both downtown & uptown. The clean interior in the communal space creates a chic look, but manages to still be comfortable with giant bean bags placed for guests to jump into after a busy day walking the city. We've walked miles so I feel less guilty about each dining experience which has felt like an episode of man vs food - Breakfast at Katz deli nearly finished us both! We've eaten some incredible meals over the past few days and discovered Brussels sprouts are going through a renaissance trending as a bar snack or side on lots of menus. We've drank cocktails at some excellent watering-holes Smith & Mills being the best and adventured across the city soaking up the atmosphere and seeing the sites. 

For those who want to see what we've been up too, here are some snappy snap snaps...

    Urban Oasis 

    The Loft 

    A lotta love for the loft


    Empire State Building 86th Foor 

    Grand Central Station 

    Times Square 

   John Lennon Memorial | Central Park 

    Smith & Mills | TriBeCa | cocktails 

    Chelsea Market | Foodie Heaven 


    Pen St 

   Brooklyn Bridge 

    Brooklyn Bridge Park 

   Boozy Shakes | Williamsburg | Brooklyn

    Light shop | Dumbo | Brooklyn 


    Pickling around