Top 10 lists are a great way to summarize some of our favourite places. In truth, we have not been disappointed yet with any destination that we have made a point of visiting. Narrowing down the list to ten is already hard enough so each list is in chronological order.
Top 10 Places of 2016:
- Grey whale watching in Baja, Mexico.
The two best spots for grey whale encounters are Ojo de Liebre and San Ignacio. I dont know if whale watching could possibly get any better than this. The guides are very respectful of the whales and if you are lucky you will get a “friendly” approach your boat. This female came right up to us, flipped over and gently swam, moving our boat.
2. Loreto, Baja Mexico.
Loreto is not only a lovely town but it is a great place to see a variety of marine wildlife. We went out first thing in the morning for two days with our guide hoping to see Blue whales, not only did we see Blue whales we also saw Manta rays, dolphins and Fin whales.
3. Death Valley NP, California
There is so much to see in Death Valley but we were particularly lucky in that we were there in a year with a super bloom.
4. Lake Louise, Alberta
We spent several days hiking in Lake Louise but the hike up to the top of Fairview Mountain was our favourite.
5. Glacier NP, British Columbia
The Canadian Rockies are truly a hikers paradise.
6. Grizzly viewing in Fish Creek Hyder, Alaska
Grizzlies in the wild, WOW, just wow. Fish Creek is far and away the best value for “almost” guaranteed grizzly viewing.
7. Kenai Peninsula, Alaska
What is not to love about the Kenai Peninsula; spectacular scenery, some of the most scenic drives in America, great hiking, fantastic marine wildlife viewing and glaciers galore!
8. Denali NP, Alaska
We were very lucky with our visit to Denali NP, not only did we get four nights in our desired campground-without reservations! but we also saw Mount McKinley and several brown bears.
9. Dinosaur Provincial Park, Alberta
Dinosaur PP is fantastic, it is a little Grand Canyon full of Dinosaur fossils!
10. Bisti Wilderness Area, New Mexico
Bisti is a little known gem in NE New Mexico aka Bisti Badlands. Really neat rock formations and petrified logs.
Top 10 Places of 2015:
1.Crystal River, Florida
Crystal River is a pretty area, we have visited twice now and we would happily go back. Snorkeling with the Manatees is amazing especially if you have an encounter with a friendly one. It was also nice to see that the volunteers ensure that the animals are not harassed.
2. Big Bend NP, Texas
We fell in love with Big Bend NP. Chisos basin campground is by far the most beautiful campground we have stayed in and the hiking is fantastic, especially the Window trail & The South Rim trail. We were blown away with the back country of Big Bend, private campsites in the middle of a stunning landscape and more fantastic hikes.
3. Carlsbad Caverns NP, New Mexico
The natural entrance at Carlsbad Caverns just left me speechless, WOW. Sadly we were not there at the right time of year to see the bat flight but that must be incredible.
4. Shenandoah NP, Virginia
We did a lot of hiking in both Great Smoky Mountains NP and Shenandoah NP but we particularly liked the Cedar Run-White Oak trail and Dark Hollows-Rose River trail in Shenandoah NP.
5. Steamtown National Historic Site, Scranton Pennsylvania
6. Labrador, Canada
If you visit Newfoundland we think it is absolutely worth your time to visit Labrador just a 30 minute ferry ride away. Red Bay and Point Amour are especially pretty and if you time it right there are icebergs everywhere.
7. Newfoundland, Canada
Newfoundland and Labrador alone could fill up my top ten list for 2015 but if I had to narrow it down to four must visit places within Newfoundland they would be; Gros Morne National Park, the whole Avalon Peninsula, Bonavista Peninsula (Elliston) and the South Coast.
8. Saranac Lake, New York
Hiking anywhere in the Fall can be spectacular but we particularly enjoyed hiking in Saranac Lake. We did not complete the Saranac Six, we hiked four of them and each of them had their own beauty.
9. The Field Museum, Chicago
As far as cities go, Chicago is one of our favourites so far. We really enjoyed our time in The Field Museum, as with most museums it would take several days to see all of it but what we did see was fantastic.
10. Valley of the Gods, Utah
Friends of ours told us about Valley of the Gods and WOW, we could not believe how beautiful it was and that we could camp for free!
We left Ottawa on November 4th and we covered a lot of ground between then and December 31st so I have compiled a top five list for those two months in 2014.
Top 5 Places of 2014:
5. Cape May, New Jersey
We loved walking around the town of Cape May, the Christmas decorations were starting to come out which made the already beautiful historic homes (Painted Ladies) that much more spectacular.
4. Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Universal Studios, Florida
When I was a child I really wanted to live in a world with magic, J.K. Rowling has brought that world to life for me and Universal Studios made it 3D and we loved it.
3. North Carolina’s Outer Banks
We really like North Carolina, there is so much to see, from the Great Smoky Mountains NP to the Outer Banks. We particularly liked Jockey’s Ridge State Park with its impressive sand dunes and the famous lighthouses along the coast.
2. Okefenokee Swamp, Georgia
Gators up close, what can I say? WOW.
1. Assateague Island National Seashore
The Assateague Island National Seashore is a beautiful area and we were thrilled to have seen the wild horses.