Adventure and Anchovies

Not all beaches boast tropical drinks and palm trees. But all beaches have one thing in common; a front row view of the big, beautiful ocean. While hiking from Monterosso to Vernazza of Cinque Terre in Italy, we had just that—front row, on top of the world panoramic views of the Ligurian Sea.

This postcard view was one you had to work for…and it was worth every step and drip of sweat. It took us about an hour and a half to hike to Vernazza where we rewarded ourselves with an ice cold Birra Moretti upon arrival. We arrived about an hour before sunset and discovered this picturesque, little town turns in early. However, before the sun set on our adventure, we discovered a little slice of paradise before the restaurants closed—fresh anchovies drizzled in olive oil and freshly squeezed lemon juice. And thankfully, we found one bar to stay open late for us to continue our celebration of our day’s feat on foot.

Over the next few days as we ventured from Vernazza to Manarola and Riomaggiore, two other towns of Cinque Terre, we sampled more anchovies, local wines, limoncello, pesto, and pastas.

Just Breathe...

It was our first night dive. We were in Kona on the Big Island doing a 2-tank dive with Jack's Diving Locker. Our first dive was right before sunset, so we got a lay of the land while it was still light out. Back on the boat, we patiently awaited dusk. The sun finally sets and we prepare for our second dive...the night dive with underwater giants. It was like a ritual, as we silently gather in a circle on the ocean floor, each with our own flashlight.

We wait. Patiently. Hoping the giants would come to feed that night. Hoping our eager underwater seance would summon the Mystical Manta Ray.

And then they came. One... Three... Eight... Twelve starred in our own private show that night. 

The Manta dance was magical. A symphony of flips and swirls. Silent poetry. Just your breathing, and your utter awareness of how vast and intricate our planet is. You feel small. You feel connected. You feel blessed to be on this planet with such grace and beauty.

Manta Ray Night Dive -- Kona, Hawaii with Jack's Diving Locker

Manta Ray Night Dive -- Kona, Hawaii with Jack's Diving Locker

Count Me In

How else do you prove you're an island princess, but to jump? The Big Island of Hawaii is magical with the drastic contrast of blue waters next to giant cliffs of black lava rock. The colors are absolutely beautiful... And as any native would do, you must jump right in to completely appreciate all of the island. We were on a kayak tour here where we stopped off to eat fresh pineapple and to jump...but only if you dared!

Cliff jumping, Big Island, Hawaii

Cliff jumping, Big Island, Hawaii