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Travel Blog

As a traveler, I spend my time collecting memories and experiences around the world. As a writer, I get to share those experiences with other adventure-seekers. It’s my privilege to welcome you to this, my travel blog, where you can find personal stories, honest reviews, essential travel tips, and informative tutorials, all centered around living life to the fullest in as many places as you can reach.

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Please feel free to reach out with any questions or requests for content that you’d like to see. Meraki Travels is a blossoming part-time business, and the goal is to make it bloom full-time. With your sharing and support, readers, I can pour all of myself into creating stunning content about your favorite places. Meraki Travels is all about turning daydreams into destinations. Are you in?

La Conner and the Rainbow Bridge Photo Credit Richard Schmitz
Small Towns of Skagit Valley, Washington: Your Insider Guide to La Conner and Edison

Looking for the perfect Washington state weekend getaway? Then try these two captivating, off-t…

Boyer House - Front
Treat Yourself to a Stay in The Boyer House in Walla Walla, WA

If you’re traveling to Walla Walla, WA, you’ll want to book yourself a stay in They Boye…

Kasey and Cameron Davenport Kinhaven Winery
Get to Know Kinhaven Winery & Vineyard in Walla Walla, WA

Setting the Scene Behind Kinhaven Seated comfortably in the high desert of Walla Walla Valley is Kin…

Piano in Tulip Field - Fraser Valley
Field Trip to Floral Paradise: An escape to BC for tulip treasures

Do you love tulips and need more of a flower fix? This article is for you! A road trip to the floral…

Flourishing Lavender Fields in Washington - MaryRose Denton - Meraki Travels
Best Lavender Fields Found Around the Sound

Who Needs Provence, France? Summer in the Pacific Northwest isn’t just about clear skies and b…

Serine Mountain View at Skamania Lodge: A set of comfortable outdoor chairs overlook green grass leading to a gorgeous sunset above the mountains on the other side of the water.
Skamania Lodge Lifts Your Spirits and Fills Your Cup

When I think about wellness or my work/life balance, a walk in nature might be my perfect prescripti…

A pink suitcase sits open on a blue, flat surface. It' s filled with pink and lavender colored clothing, stylish women's shoes, and a pair of sunglasses.
Best Packing Tips for Any Trip In 2024

Packing Tips For All Kinds of Travel Best Packing Tips of 2024 My first trip to France, many years a…

Two red-barn-style buildings, comprizing the Index Town Hall, sitting in a small field surrounded by lush mountain forest.
Soak in the natural beauty and rich history of Index, Washington

The small town of Index, Washington is just about 50 miles northeast of Seattle and packed with scen…

A blue-green river flows through a wooded valley.
Index Cabins in Washington Review: A Weekend in the Trees

A wooded retreat is a place to relax and recharge your body, mind, and soul. An hour north of Seattl…

A lighthouse stands on it's coast in the San Juans.
Exploring the Rich History of Burrows Island Lighthouse in Anacortes, Washington

Since time immemorial, people have canoed, kayaked, and sailed around the waterways of what is known…

The entrance of the Palace Hotel
A haunting history at the Palace Hotel in Port Townsend

In the heart of historic Port Townsend, where Victorian buildings stand stately along Water Street, …

Mountain Road surrounded by trees.
Top Travel Trends of 2024: Your Ultimate Travel Forecast For the Year Ahead

During the last few years, travel has experienced its share of ups and downs. With travelers joyfull…

A man smiles with delight as he get's a sky-blue ebike ready for a trip around town.
E-bikes are a blast at Sun-E-Land Bikes in Bellingham

Matt Holmes is the owner and resident bike aficionado at Sun-E-Land Bikes. His big, yellow shop is l…

An idillic scene, autumn colors the ground flora red and yellow amid Skagit Valley's evergreen mountainsides.
3 Fantastic North Cascade Trails to View Fall Leaves in Skagit County

The vibrant colors associated with autumn need two main components – sunny days and cool, chilly nig…

A break in the brush reveals the blue waters of Hood Canal, WA.
5 Best Things To Do In Port Gamble, Washington

Tucked away from the bustling spotlight of popular destinations, underrated towns emerge as hidden g…

Hand-packed bread products and strawberries sit on a picnic table inside Skagit Valley Genuine.
At Genuine Skagit Valley, They Are Growing an Agricultural Heritage

In 1853, the lush, fertile farmlands of the Skagit Valley produced their first commercial harvest. I…

A stately manor is nestled among beautiful greenery and evergreen trees under a blue sky.
Willowbrook Manor and Farm Stay’s SWAN Reaches Into the Community

Have you ever considered an afternoon cup of tea as caring? Terry Gifford does. She is the owner and…

View of a pier on the coastline with a row of mostly white buildings and a red building along the docks.
Bridging the Atlantic: The Sisterhood of Galway City, Ireland and Seattle

Sister City: the concept instantly conjures up a sense of unity, and for good reason. Born from our …

A red canoe hangs upside down under wooden rafters, commemorating Betty Lowman's 1937 journey to Alaska.
In 1937 Young Betty Lowman Headed to Alaska by Canoe

Hanging from the rafters, inside the Anacortes Museum and Maritime Heritage Center is a traditional …

A couple walks on the dock attached to a red building on the pier in La Conner, WA.
LaConner, Washington and White Rock, British Columbia, Sister Cities at Heart

Coming into the quaint, waterside town of LaConner one of the first things you might see is the “Wel…

An idillic, rustic building with a sign saying Eagle Haven Winery stands against a beautiful blue sky.
Fall Date Night Ideas in Skagit County and Surrounding Areas

Some roads are better traversed by driving to soak in all their autumn splendor. The trees lining Ch…

To-go containers from a vegan restaurant sit on a table, containing salad, sweets, healthy smoothies, and health drinks.
Anacortes Vegan Restaurant Cosmic Veggies Serves up Smoothies and Sandwiches

What happens when a beet, several stalks of celery, an apple, a dash of lime juice and a pinch of fr…

Beautifully wrapped peanut butter chocolate candies, sitting in a gold box with an elegant bow.
Creating Memorable Moments With Chocolate at Forte in Mount Vernon

Karen began her infatuation with chocolate while a student at the Art Institute of Seattle’s Bakery …

Arriving by boat into Friday Harbor in the San Juans, picture taken from the boat as it enters the harbor filled with other boats, trees, and buildings making up the scenery.
Go Wine Tasting in the San Juan Archipelago

ANYTIME of year is perfect to visit the San Juan Islands and take the pace of life down a few notche…

Two men stand back to back in the middle of a bustling city street. Captured with a fish eye lens.
An Evening With the Dublin Literary Pub Crawl

Dublin, a city steeped in literary history and rich cultural heritage, has long been a haven for wri…

Packing a suitcase with a computer, your favorite sunglasses, cloths, and other accessories.
Pack Like A Pro: 13 Strategies for Effortless Travel to Ireland

Dreaming of strolling through rolling hills of green or standing on the edges of towering, rocky cli…

The bow of a sail boat sits atop the serene waters of Hood Canal, low mountains in the distance.
The Hood Canal Bridge: A Link Across Time and Water

On a recent sailing trip, we untied from the docks of Bellingham Bay at sunrise on a Sunday morning.…

Willowbrook Manor serves delightful tea on a scenic farm in Sedro Woolley

Is staying in an English manor (think Downton Abbey) on your bucket list? If so, the best-kept secre…

Three tall beverage cans with the brand, "Hello my name is Odd Water" sit on a table in a black environment with bluish accent lighting.
Sober October? PNW brewers tap into tasty hop water

Opting out of alcohol consumption is a personal and multifaceted decision. Whether it stems from hea…

Puget Sound to Pinot: Perfect wine weekend in the Willamette Valley

Whatcha doing in four hours? If you hopped in the car now and head south, you could be winding …

ETIQUETTE OF IRISH PUB LIFE

Push open the heavy wooden door and enter the snug, dimly lit interior. It welcomes you like an old …

An Amtrak passenger train makes a stop at a station under blue and pink skies.
Choo-Choose Amtrak Cascades for your next PNW adventure

It’s a misty morning in the PNW as the Amtrak Cascades train rolls into the station.…

A modern-style building with plenty of windows and a pleasant shade of tan paneling. It is a cloudy day on San Juan Island.
A stay at Friday Harbor’s Island Inn is ‘Off the Coast of Ordinary’

An eco-friendly trip to Friday Harbor on San Juan Island begins by leaving the car and walking or bi…

How to be carefree and CAR-free when you visit the San Juan Islands
How to be carefree and CAR-free when you visit the San Juan Islands

Heading to the San Juan Islands? Consider leaving your vehicle behind and go carless. Park at the An…

A romantically lit hotel lobby hosts it's guests, who sit at a table and on a sofa, enjoying each other's company.
Cozy up to the heart of Bellingham at Hotel Leo

Bellingham is home to craft brews, artisan fairs, and a plethora of activities, from mountain biking…

Aran Islands Ireland - The Traditional Music Shop
Exploring Ireland’s West Coast: Travel Guide to the Aran Islands

My Journey to Ireland The islands off the west coast of Ireland have captivated travelers with their…

Wide view of an outcrop of land leading into the water of the San Juan Islands. On the land are 4 house-like structures near a pine forest on a sunny, peaceful day.
Preserving history (and a lighthouse) on Stuart Island

Imagine the most beautiful place in the world. Not hard to do, living here in the PNW. Now imagine a…

An old, rust colored sign that says "finnriver" and features 3D metalic leaves. The sign hangs on the side of a silo.
Celebrate the Beauty and Bounty of the Earth at FinnRiver Farm and Cidery

Several weeks ago a slender, glass bottle of golden liquor was gifted to me. It was not the elixir o…

A close-up view of three yummy macaroons, a pink one, a green one, and a blue one stacked on top of each other.
Alexandra’s Macarons: A French neighborhood bakery, right in Seattle’s Central District

Meandering through an arrondissement (aka neighborhood) in Paris, you will inevitably stumble upon a…

Guests enjoying a tranquil private soak at Doe Bay Resort
Doe Bay Resort: What to Do, Where to Stay, and What to Eat

There are places we return to because they feel like reuniting with old friends, picking up right wh…

Wide, high view of the San Juan Islands from a mountainside courtyard.
5 Fantastic Reasons To Visit The San Juan Islands During Shoulder Season

Go with the slow is a phrase used in the San Juan Islands referring to kicking back, taking the…

Sunset at Agate Beach on Lopez Island, Washington, USA
Why This Laid-Back Washington State Island Makes The Perfect Romantic Getaway

Lopez Island serenely sits nestled in the San Juan Island archipelago of Washington State. A picture…

Wide-angle view of Adare Manor and it's beautiful, lawns, garden, and courtyard with a circular flower bed display.
An Afternoon Tea At Adare Manor

Some say tea is gentle. Indulge in an afternoon tea inside the great estate of Adare Manor, and you …

A mural saying "Greetings from Bend Oregon" with scenery and flora from the area.
4 Amazing Experiences In Beautiful Bend, Oregon

Bend, Oregon, is a small city in central Oregon recognized for its outdoor recreational activities s…

E-bikes on the trail in Walla Walla E-Biking in Walla Walla
E-Biking in Walla Walla

A road trip into wine country I look in the rearview mirror and see the image of our bikes. They roc…

Day Trip Cruising Leads to Fine Dining in these Port Towns
Day Trip Cruising Leads to Fine Dining in these Port Towns

Boat travel is slow travel. By its very essence it requests the traveler to breathe deep and languid…

Your next romantic weekend begins with Edenwild Boutique Inn on Lopez Island
Your next romantic weekend begins with Edenwild Boutique Inn on Lopez Island

Here in the PNW, we do not have to travel far to find a little piece of paradise to relax, unwind an…

A delightful spread of food including fruit, finger sandwiches, and cookies.
How To Spend A Long Weekend In Beautiful Victoria, British Columbia

As originally published in TravelAwaits.com on Feb. 11,2022 Victoria, British Columbia, is located o…

Eritage Resort
Your Travel Guide to the Best Walla Walla Wineries, Restaurants, and Shops

Planning a trip to Walla Walla? If you’re a wine-lover, you’ll find yourself returning there wheneve…

Discovering Wine & Tulips in the Skagit Valley

SOME FOLKS call it paradise on earth as the usually green and lush agriculture fields of the Skagit …

Patos island Lighthouse on Patos Island in the San Juans: A lighthouse on the edge of a cliff overlooking the water.
3 Lesser-Known Islands To Visit In Washington State’s Beautiful San Juan Archipelago

The San Juan Islands may arguably be the most beautiful place on earth. With their rolling fjords an…

Thank you for reading! It’s such a pleasure to share these stories and I hope you find them helpful in your own adventures.

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