Hello! We are still vacationing in California and I am happy to say that the last few days were so much nicer than our initial day here. We did two completely different things and got to explore a bunch of new places – some of my favorite things to do while on a trip to a new place. And today we are off to do what I have been most excited for since we planned this trip back in the beginning of 2017, but more on that later in the week….. 😉
On Monday morning we woke up and got ready to head out on a day hike at a nearby state park – Mt. Diablo. First of all, I just have to say that I am so envious of those of you that live near beautiful things in nature like this. We have nothing even close in Michigan, and I really, really wish we did. Anyway, we drove the 30-ish minutes to the top of the mountain and passed a ton of bikers on the way up. I give them a ton of props for riding the 4,000 ft. elevation. I could never. It was making me tired just driving it. Just kidding..kind of.
Once we got to the top, we went to the lookout point and took some scenic pictures, because you obviously have to.
Then we (by we I mean Chris and his uncle) took a look at a map of the mountain to decide on a few small hikes that we wanted to do throughout the rest of the morning. We settled on two, and they ended up being completely different which was really nice. One was just around the top perimeter of the mountain, which gave us some amazing views. It was a super easy hike, too. It was kind of hazy out so we couldn’t see as far as you could on a clear day, but the scenery was still fantastic.
The other hike took us about halfway down the mountain to a big rock that we climbed up on to get some different views. This hike was much more challenging than the first one, simply because it involved climbing up and down a bunch of big rocks. I definitely preferred this one to the first one.
By the time we were done with all of that, we were more than ready for a late lunch. We went to a cute little nearby town and although I wanted a huge sandwich and fries, I decided to be good and get California’s version of a “garden salad” with chicken, which I was so pleasantly surprised with. In Michigan we get some iceberg lettuce, shredded carrot, a grape tomato, and maybe some red onion if we are really lucky. But in California, you get a whole garden in a bowl. It was a delicious salad and a really good lunch choice. I was quite proud of myself. 😉
The rest of the afternoon was spent swimming in the pool, taking naps, and having a delicious home-cooked meal from Chris’s aunt. I love a meal at home when traveling. Although it is fun to eat out a lot, sometimes a healthy meal at home is so necessary. Later in the evening we all headed to a local brewery, Calicraft, for a couple of beers. The atmosphere was so cool – we were able to sit out on the lawn in big chairs and just enjoy the cool, summer evening with some good drinks. It was the perfect way to end our day.
We were able to start off Tuesday morning with a good workout before we got in the car to head to a little beach-y area on the south side of San Francisco for the day. Our first stop was in Sausalito – an adorable town right on the water with gorgeous views of the city, cute shops, and delicious restaurants. We wandered around for a while, took some pictures, and ate a yummy Italian lunch before getting back in the car to go to our next destination.
Next, we drove up the hill behind us to stop at a couple of lookout points to get great views of the Golden Gate Bridge. I have never seen it in person before, and it really is as beautiful as it seems to be in the pictures. Like I said earlier, it has been hazy with a ton of fog since we got here, but still gorgeous. You can kind of see Alcatraz in the background, which I am really hoping we have a chance to go to. At night and during a storm would be preferable and so cool….
Once we were finished there, we drove to another cute town called Tiburon for some more exploring and a few cocktails on the water, looking out at the boats. After walking around for a while and working up an appetite again, we went to a total Yelp recommendation on our way back home – Beso Bistro and Wine Bar. And oh my gosh. This place was SO GOOD. We were all just raving about the dishes we ordered – mine was a blackened salmon salad. We enjoyed them with a delicious bottle of Cabernet, that just so happened to be 1/2 off of Tuesdays. A total win! We were so happy with this random restaurant find.
Then we drove home to relax for a bit, pack our overnight bags, and call it an early night. I know it’s a really good thing we have been so active on this trip, but it has really left me exhausted at night! But better to feel tired than like I did nothing and laid around all day. I have been sleeping like a baby here, exercising a lot, walking even more, and making decent food choices for vacation, and I am really looking forward to getting home and jumping right back into our regular routine without feeling like I need to play catch up for a few days.
And now we are off on a new little adventure for the next two days. I’ll be sure to fill you in on that when we get back on Friday!