Portland Japanese Garden

Portland Japanese Garden

Before heading to the Oregon coast, I decide to revisit the Portland Japanese Garden. The last time I was there was 2002, it will be nice to see it again.  It’s a beautiful sunny warm Saturday, in mid April, as I venture out from the tiny home. I find parking…

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Tiny Homes: 6 Month Solo Road Trip

As a Designer. one of my passions is designing & building tiny homes. During my 6-month solo road trip, I rely on Airbnb to stay at interesting properties. I love unique homes, it’s part of the travel experience. Oregon seems to be the state of tiny homes. One can find…

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Sea Lion Caves: 6 Month Solo Road Trip

 

Sea Lions Caves Coast

Looking up the coast from the Sea Lion Caves

After staying a few days in Eugene, I say goodbye to my gracious hosts of the Airbnb Robin’s Nest. I’m on the road again, checking out mid-coast Oregon on my way back to Portland via Route 101 aka Oregon Coast Highway.  First stop, Sea Lion Caves, 91560 Highway 101, Florence. I find it very easily since it’s on the cliff overlooking the ocean. I find a parking spot and pay the $14 admission fee. The ticket saleswoman tells me that this is one of the largest sea caves in the world. I’m impressed. One would never know that fact from the road since it’s 300′ below the highway.

Sea Lion Cave Stairs

Stairs lead to the Sea Lion Caves below

I can hear the squawking of seals as I make my way to the elevator, which will take me down to the cave far below. Years ago before there were elevators, people hiked down the stairs. I guess going down isn’t as bad as going up but I’m glad for elevators. The elevator door opens to a dimly lit platform with stairs leading to the dark cave below. As my eyes adjust to the darkness, I see jail cell bars which separate the humans from the wildlife.

Sea Lions Cave Florence Oregon

The famous Sea Lion Caves

Boy! The sea lions are talkative! Their voices echo throughout the cave. What an amazing sight to see, hundreds of sea lions in their natural habitat. I watch taking video and photos with my iPhone, careful not to have the flash on. After a few minutes, I head back up. As I reach the top, I once again refocus my eyes to the sunlight.  Thank goodness for sunglasses. I follow the cliffside path which leads me to a viewing station. Close to the craggy coastline the water is a magnificent turquoise blue. Sea lions frolic in the turbulent waves. They must be strong swimmers to avoid getting pummeled by the powerful waves and rocky cliffs. It’s close to high noon as I get into my trusty Prius and head north on Route 101 to check out other sites.

Sea Lion Caves ocean

Turquoise waters Sea Lion Caves

Silver Falls State Park, Oregon

I’m 5 months into my 6-month solo road trip and I still have so much to see and do. I feel as though I’m in the movie European Vacation when they are rushing through all the sites before their vacation ends. At the same time, I like to relax and…

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Horseback riding Sauvie Island Oregon

I love Portland, Oregon: The beauty, the culture, the diversity, the architecture, the people, and the recreation. I could go on and on, gushing about it. It’s one of my favorite US cities. In 1990 and 2002, I briefly explored Portland, but not in detail. This time it’s different. On my…

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Mount Hood, Oregon: 6 Month Solo Road Trip

Historic Route 30 Columbia River Gorge: 6 Month Solo Road Trip

6 Month Solo Road Trip: After spending two weeks with Mark in southern California I say goodbye and I drive the long road trip to Bend, Oregon for a doctor’s appointment. From there, I drive through the beautiful Hood River where cherry trees are in full bloom. For a week…

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Koosah Falls: Solo Road Trip

Koosah Falls, Oregon

Sunday, March 8-14, 2015, My solo road trip is not just about self discovery but a search for a reason to stay. I like Bend since it offers many activities but I’m not thrilled with the high desert aspect. I’m searching for lush greenery, sun in the summer, snow in…

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6 Month Solo Road Trip: Bend, Oregon

  March 4-7: In The Company of None: Joys of Traveling Solo Now that I’m the nomadic wanderer, searching for a reason to stay I’m checking out Bend, Oregon. I research it and the sun and fun seems plausible. Bend is the Gateway City to outdoor recreation. Located east of the Cascade…

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Painted Hills, Oregon: 6 Month Solo Road Trip

The Painted Hills, Oregon

After a few days just kicking back in Bend, Oregon, I’m off for another adventure to see the Painted Hills at the John Day Fossil Beds National Park in Mitchell, Oregon. One of my goals on my 6 month solo road trip is to visit all the seven wonders of…

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Hiking Smith Rock: In The Company of None

Smith Rock State Park

March 3: The morning sun is streaming through my windows as I open my eyes to a beautiful day. I dillydally in the morning enjoying my laziness. By 10am, I’m finally on the road to check out Smith Rock State Park another of Oregon’s 7 wonders. The temperature is in the…

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