I love the outdoors and everything there is to find and explore. Years ago I started my bucket list of things I'd like to do and see before I die. I quickly realized the best way to display my list was a map of the world. I want to see all of it! The whole world! Well, most of it anyway. The highlight of my travels is finding the unexpected hidden gems. I do extensive research and prep-work to prepare for my big adventures. But I always leave flexibility for the unexpected finds along the way. However, when you're traveling within your own country you never have to go too far to stumble upon one here and there. 

     A few years ago we took our kids on a 16 day road  trip down the 1 freeway on the Pacific Coast from Seattle, WA to the Redwood Forest. It's become one of our all-time favorite family vacations. We found a few places that most people don't know about. One of our favorite unexpected surprises was Hidden Beach in Klamath, CA. We were taking a walk from our campsite to the Paul Bunyan Store just up the road when we happened upon an inconspicuous trail. Coincidentally, the trail led to Hidden Beach. Just walking the trail that led to the ocean was enough to make my heart pitter-patter. It was green, lucous, and quiet. We were the only people there and we played for hours. 

     I've been doing research to find some of those hidden gems around our country. This world has so much to offer. So many beautiful places to see and explore. The best part is you DON'T NEED A PASSPORT to see these breath-taking places! I'll definitely be adding these to my itinerary. 

Minnehaha Falls, MN

Fly Geyser, NV

Apostle Islands Lakeshore Caves, WI

Rainbow Bridge in Watkins Glen State Park, NY