Travel the world on a dime

Posts by serendipitytrips

Versailles

Versailles

Our great Paris home exchange location near Versailles gave us a wonderful opportunity to explore and enjoy in detail the amazing 2000 acres of gardens designed by Andre Le Notre for King Louis XIV in the 1600s. Royalty of that time viewed their gardens as a demonstration of man’s conquest of nature, with tightly controlled […]

Giverney: Monet’s Home

Giverney: Monet’s Home

Just outside Paris, we spent a day at the wonderful gardens of impressionist painter Claude Monet in Giverny. This lovely spot (designed by the artist in the late 1800s) is a totally different experience from the formality of Versailles. Smaller and more intimate, in perfect relationship to the charming pink and green house, this garden […]

New Zealand

New Zealand

Kea Ora: greetings from New Zealand! What a wonderful country with such a unique set of plants! You are probably familiar with some of their great garden plants: the New Zealand flax (phormium) and New Zealand tea tree (leptospermum) are pretty commonly grown in our area. It is fun to see them in their native […]

Packing Hacks

Packing Hacks

There are few strategies to make you packing easier. Compressing Things One space saving strategy is rolling your things, but there are other ways you can compress your clothes. Compression bags can be a great way to save space In a pinch giant ziplocks work almost as well. Organizing Your bags. You can split a […]

Travel (Clothes) Shopping list

Travel (Clothes) Shopping list

We travel a lot and have a lot of practice packing for all kinds of adventures from a summer long trip through Europe with only a backpack to a full-on safari. Here are some of our recommendations: Convertible pants Being able to switch from pants to capris/shorts when the day warms up suddenly makes this […]

Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens

Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens

Consider spending a wonderful long weekend on the Mendocino Coast: just a couple hours north of San Francisco, it is a great place for relaxing and seeing great gardens! The Mendocino Coast Botanical Garden in Fort Bragg is always the centerpiece of our visits to the coast, with so many rhododendrons, heathers in all shapes, […]

Loire Valley

Loire Valley

While visiting the Loire, we enjoyed the hospitality at the delightful B & B Le Clos Rabelais, in the charming little town of Langeais. Clean and quiet, and walking distance to excellent French bakeries and restaurants, we found it the perfect place for us to relax. Check out their details at bedandbreakfast.com We particularly enjoyed […]

Washington State: Tulips & Lilacs

Washington State: Tulips & Lilacs

We drove north into Washington State to visit the tulip fields at Holland America Bulb Farm in Woodland: what a delightful outing! Row upon row of amazingly bright and beautiful tulips: all labeled so that you can buy your favorite varieties. I’m afraid I went a little crazy and ordered over a 100 bulbs: they […]

Alcatraz Island, San Francisco, California

Alcatraz Island, San Francisco, California

Alcatraz, San Francisco, California, USA We had the rare opportunity this month to join the Quarry Hill volunteers for a special tour of the gardens of Alcatraz: what a unique gardening experience!        While you may think of Alcatraz as a prison, the island was also home to many families who did their best to […]

Gilroy Gardens

Gilroy Gardens

Photo by Richard Reames. Wikimedia Had a great visit recently to a place we’ve been wanting to see for years: Gilroy Gardens. You probably don’t know about the “Circus Trees” lovingly grown and tended by a real one-of-a-kind gardener: Axel Erlandson. A Swedish immigrant to California, in 1925 he began to shape trees as a […]