Favorite Travel Experiences of 2014

It has been a wonderful year of travel, both for family and solo trips. I’ve captured many of my favorite travel moments through Instagram, (including the one above on the west coast of Vancouver Island, near Sooke).

Though it was tough to choose from so many photos, I’ve picked a few shots that I think capture a lovely travel year in review 2014.

Snowboarding at Big White, British Columbia

Snowboarding with my youngest son and friends at Big White near Kamloops, British Columbia was epic. I’ve been riding for twenty years now, and I still prefer boarding to skiing. The champagne powder snow at Big White is soft and fluffy, and makes for amazing ski days, especially in bluebird skies.

It's the Snow at Big White Ski Resort

Sailing away on a Caribbean Cruise + visiting Miami, Florida

I grew up in eastern Canada (Ontario), but never visited the Caribbean until this spring. At the behest of our travelling teen, we chose a Carnival Cruise with ports of call in St. Thomas USVI, Puerto Rico, the Bahamas, and Grand Turk islands. All of the destinations were different and we enjoyed every one. The colours, blue skies, historical places and food (on ship and on-shore) were fantastic.

The calm waters of St. Thomas, USVI on our Carnival Cruise

The colorful old town of Puerto Rico

We also spent a few extra days in Miami and Bal Harbour, Florida. Our stay at the St. Regis Bal Harbour was luxurious in the extreme. Now I know how the 1% of the 1% live, and fear that I’ve been spoiled forever.

Glorious white sand beach at the St. Regis Bal Harbour, Florida

Living the high life of the 1% of the 1% at St. Regis Bal Harbour, Florida

Weekend away in Whistler, British Columbia

I was a bit nervous to try SUP (stand-up paddle-boarding) for the first time in Whistler, but was pleasantly surprised at how fun and relaxing it is. I was just happy to stay on the SUP board and not get soaked! (I think the dog was happy about that as well.) Sabering a bottle of bubbly and experiencing the Belvedere Vodka Room at the renowned Bearfoot Bistro was highly memorable too. Recommend!

SUP! Giving paddle-boarding a try in Whistler

Sipping ice cold vodka in style at the Bearfoot Bistro Vodka Ice Room

Enjoying Summer Fun at Harrison Hot Springs

The boys and I spent a wonderfully hot summer weekend at Harrison Hot Springs in the Fraser Valley, east of Vancouver. The water sports, hot springs and a memorable meal in the Copper Room of the Hotel were lovely ways to reconnect with the kids.

Flying high in the Harrison Hot Springs Watersports Park

Summer sunset splendor on Harrison Lake, Harrison Hot Springs

Solo Travelling Mom Fun in Boise, Idaho

I love visiting a destination that people don’t really know, but have preconceived notions about, like Boise, Idaho. What an amazing place! I spent a few days there in July on my own, roaming around town, enjoying an amazing craft wine and food scene (look out, Bend), loving the freakishly-friendly people I met, and doing all manner of awesome activities, like the Turkey 2000 zip line and white water rafting on the Payette River. Life is good in Boise, and no one is asking me ‘Why Boise’ anymore!

Floating down the Boise River in summer

Zipping down the Turkey 2000 zip line in Idaho

A white water rush on the Payette River, Boise, Idaho

Discovering Magic in the Jungle and Waters of Costa Rica 

I had the absolute pleasure and privilege of visiting Costa Rica in September. I spent a few nights at the Rio Perdido eco-lodge in the jungle near Bagances, dipping into volcano-heated mineral waters, zip lining, mountain biking and canyon rafting. I fell exhausted into my comfy bed in my own little bungalow-on-stilts, and can’t wait to return. I also headed to Playa Conchal for a beach-side conference, met some incredible and generous women, and was surrounded by magical phosphorescence in warm Pacific waters. Pura vida!

An individual jungle bungalow awaits at Rio Perdido resort, Costa Rica

Test your mettle on the intense mountain biking trails at Rio Perdido

Discovering marine magic in the waters of Playa Conchal, Costa Rica

Home Sweet Home: Vancouver, British Columbia

I love living and raising our family in Vancouver, Canada. We like to work hard (writing, designing, at school, rowing), play hard, and have fun too. It’s always a joy to return home after a trip, and I’m grateful for living in such a magnificent place. Happy Holidays!

Rowers passing through False Creek and the West End, Vancouver

Spinning round the Vancouver Christmas Market Carousel

What were your favorite travel moments of 2014? Share your comments below.

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