For the longest time I have been wanting to explore the beautiful city of Portland. I love coffee and the outdoors and this image in my head that Portland would be the mecca of both. While I knew it wouldn't be a super expensive trip I still wanted to save money anyway I could. I had always hear that if you book a flight six Tuesdays before your departure that you'd save a few dollars, well here I am to say that is true, at least in my case it was. I had already had a friend who was up to on this adventure with me so now we needed to find a place to say and hotels aren't always cheap so shout out to Air BnB specifically our wonderful hosts Brad and Becca they were super helpful and had so many great recommendations!! But seriously if you to Portland you should stay at their place, everything is nearby!
So now I will share my favorite three places. Please beware that this trip was what I like to call a food tour... Portland is basically foodie heaven. There were sooooo many places I ate at and explored but I don't want to take too much of your time.
Every time I go someplace new I have to hit up a local ice cream shop, because hello I love it so much it's an essential part of my diet. So after dropping our stuff off at our cute place which we stayed we ate at Shutup and Eat (read about it after) and then decided we wanted dessert, dessert is also always a must. So like anyone new to an area Yelp helped us find ice cream spots. Don't get me wrong I love Salt & Straw but I can get that here in LA. So we decided to go to Cloud City Ice Cream, and OMG best idea ever. Let me not forget to share that it was a half-mile walk. Doesn't sound bad, right? Well of course we chose to go to Portland during the rainy season and to get that full experience it rained, and boy did it rain hard. After a 30 minute walk in the rain I enjoyed sea salt cookie dough ice cream and yes it's as good as it sounds. And did I mention the ice cream is homemade?! Loved it so much we went there once again before heading home!
Located in SE Woodstock, PDX
Shut up and eat
Normally I am not a sandwich eater but clearly I had never been to Shut Up And Eat. The first thing I had there was their buffalo chicken sandwich with some fires. It as so yummy, obvi had buffalo chicken, some bomb bleu cheese dressing topped with slaw..... ugh my mouth is watering. The second visit was for breakfast the day we headed home and I got a breakfast sandwich. It was a butternut squash and maple sausage sandwich made on a homemade parmesan-herb biscuit
.Located in SE pdx
I donut what I love more doughnuts or ice cream (see what I did there) but thank God I'll never have to choose. Shoutout to that super nice Uber driver who recommended a ton of places including this local gem. Pips Original not only makes fresh doughnuts as you order but also makes their own chai (which I forgot to order). These doughnuts were too good to describe. So the place is super cute and cozy. When you order doughnuts you don't just get one, because they are mini! So I got eight, 2 salted Nutella, 2 cinnamon sugar, 2 candied-maple bacon (i think those were my fave) and 2 of the seasonal flavor, lemon-pear jam (not my favorite). They were so warm and delicious!! I highly recommend checking them out if you're ever in that area.
Located on NE Fremont St.
Thank you for reading this far!!
Lots of love,
At the beginning of the year I went on the trip of a lifetime, I spent 10 days in Costa Rica with two of my best friends!
Lets rewind a little bit. So Amanda, Kristen and I all met about 10 years ago at dance. We danced at the same studio for a few years and ended up becoming friends. Once we started high school we went our separate ways and did cheer and song at our high schools. Through that time we remained in contact, only seeing each other about once a year.
Recently we've made it a point to get together more often. For the longest time we talked about taking a trip together. We didn't know where to go, and were unsure if its safe for 3 girls to travel in a foreign country alone!!!
After discovering EF College Break we figured it would be the best option for us. We'd get the most for our money, it would be stress-free planning and it would be safe!
In June we met at Starbucks and we all signed up for a trip to Costa Rica!! I was like omg how exciting, we couldn't wait. I was also like crap how am I gonna afford this?!
Anyways we all paid our trip off in time and had the best time.
When most people think Costa Rica they think palm trees and beaches, well at least that's what I thought. Turns out theres a whole lot more than just that.
Coming from Los Angeles we were part of the first group to arrive, we had a whole day to do whatever we wanted! We figured we'd check out the capital, San Jose. If you've never been there you aren't missing out on much the prettiest thing was the cathedral but it was sort of a rundown area.
EF is meant for group trips, so our group was made of about 40 college aged people (18-28yrs) from all over the US!
One of the first things we did as a group was explore the Doka Coffee Plantation, it was very interesting to see how coffee is made.
The typical Costa Rican dish consists of white rice, black beans, chicken and fried plantains. Fried plantains are super yummy I wish I could them everyday, but I'm assuming that wouldn't be too healthy!
During the trip we went on so many thrilling adventures like horseback riding, zip lining, walking through the jungle at night, walking through a cloud forest (who knew that existed?!), and of course got to enjoy some of the best beaches.
Honestly I had never been horseback riding and I absolutely loved it, we did it in the area of Monteverde and oh my goodness the views were amazing, so much greenery and clear skies. My horse was a little crazy and at times I was like "I'm gonna fall off this cliff" but obviously I'm writing this so I survived (PTL). But ya, we rode for 2 1/2 hours, like I said it was my first time so I was SOOOOO sore I literally felt bruised. But when will I ever do that again (probably never).
We also went zip lining and if you're a thrill seeker you need to experience this. I honestly got a little nervous at times but it was definitely a great adrenaline rush, just be sure to cross your legs while on the zip line, hahahah!
The beaches are so amazing, like we think California has nice beaches but no these were incredible. The water is crystal clear and its amazing to see the forest and beach meet.
There was a ton of stuff that we did and I can go on for days but I won't.
The best part was experiencing everything with close friends. And I want to encourage everyone to take a friends trip. If you think you don't have the money, just save and stop spending money on stupid stuff.
I can't wait to take my next trip!!