Good morning everyone! Yesterday was a fun day! We started a bit later, because Kim was tired and slept in….wow! That’s a new one for her!
We spent the day in Yoho National Park, which is about 50 kms east of here and Kim said one of her favourite places ever! She has been here lots, mostly hiking with her bestie Bern 😉❤️
First stop, the small town of Field BC, where we stopped at an amazing restaurant called Truffle Pig. Us furry kids can’t go in there, but that’s okay, we ordered takeout and sat at a picnic table and enjoyed sharing Kim and John’s food….I know, we are spoiled. I like to think well 🥰. John had the purple burger and Kim had the Mezze platter….. check out the menu….if you are in Field, you have to go here!
And, no trip to Field is complete, Kim says without a stop at her favourite pottery place, the Velvet Antler. The nice man in there let me browse with Kim and gave me some treats! Paws up I say! Kim bought 2 really nice bowls, no surprise there!
Next stop was Takakkaw Falls. Here’s some info from Wikipedia
“Takakkaw” translates to “magnificent” in Cree. The falls are fed by the meltwater of the Daly Glacier, which is part of the Waputik Icefield. The glacier keeps the volume of the falls up during the warm summer months, and they are a tourist attraction, particularly in late spring after the heavy snow melts, when the falls are at peak condition.
Kim and John sure like taking pictures of us! Here we are at the falls, they were cool….wear a jacket 😉
And, off to Emerald Lake. This was amazing…the colours are spectacular….and Miss Molly sure loved going in the water. I don’t think she’s really a Sheltie……Levi and I will put our toes in the water but that’s about it. Except for this time….Levi chased a kayak into the water…..I think he thought it was a bike, because he loves to chase bikes…boy did he get a surprise when he got all wet! Lol
We topped the night off with time at the off leash park. We give golden and area paws up! Today we head to Kamloops….still making our way to Tofino!
“Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it”. Ferris Bueller
Hi all! Well today we headed off to our next stop ….Golden BC. We are pretty excited, because Kim told us we are going to the mountains, and we are taking our time! She wasn’t lying, our 4 hour drive was done in about 8 😀. Why rush when you are on vacation? Now I understand what it means to be all about the journey…..
Kim said you can’t leave Drumheller without one last early morning walk. Can you believe this was only a couple of blocks from our Air B&B? Wow! Look at the view. See ya next time Drumheller, we will be back!
First stop….lattes at the local Black Mountain Roasters…Kim and John sure love their coffee😋
We made a pit stop at the Canmore Info Centre, which has an awesome green space for us kids…..then another coffee stop? 😆 Starbucks it is for an Americano and some egg bites…..where to stop for a picnic? Johnson Lake in Banff National Park. We tried to stop at Lake Minnewonka, yikes! Busy….. so we found this other little place and saw some friends along the way! Check out these sheep. We should “herd” them!
Next stop Lake Louise. wow 😮 this is a pretty amazing place! We walked around the lake and spent a couple of hours here. Pretty special I think. We spread the love and joy. Gave lots of people smiles yesterday and saw another Sheltie named Jasper ❤️
Next destination is our cabin just outside Golden. We are staying at Moberly Lodge and we love it! It has everything we need…check it out! More pictures to come…
Well, Kim and John realized at the end of the day that we were pretty restless and needed to burn off some energy, John googled off leash dog park and wouldn’t you know it? Golden has one….yippee! And….here’s where we get to learn a life lesson. You know how sometimes we compare things and say that this is better than that? Well…..the first thing Kim and John thought was, this is definitely not as good as our parks back home……see what I mean?
But, then we realized that all we need is a wide open space, our buddies, our family and maybe a 🎾……how could life get any better than that? Every day there is something to be grateful for….we sometimes just need a new perspective.
Life is pretty great. Have a pawsitive day! We are here for another day, ready to explore! Stay tuned….
Hi folks! Well today was another fun day in Drumheller! I should let you know that I have Kim wrapped around my little paw…..I know that when I whine I get to do stuff 😉👍. So after she fed us breakfast, we went for a 7 am walk. She didn’t mind, because we wandered around downtown and did some window shopping. Molly even stopped to read the writing in the art gallery window….isn’t she smart!
After we came home and John and Kim had their coffee, it was time to hit the road. First stop was Horseshoe Canyon. Kim put the location in her gps and off we went! She thought we must be going the wrong way because it was nothing but farmland for miles around, but all of a sudden there was a canyon in the middle of nowhere. Very amazing….I think it might be a mini Grand Canyon! We went for a walk…don’t tell anyone, Kim and John might have let us run around off leash…..shhhhh…..no one else was there, so I think we are okay. I had lots of fun chasing Molly!
Next stop…horse thief canyon lookout. It was pretty special too! We didn’t go to the bottom this time, just took some photos up top.
Back home….nap time for the kids! Kim and John went for lunch to the whiskey tap and restaurant. They said it was okay…pub food….I’d love it for sure! Then they went to the Royal Tyrrell Museum to see more dinosaurs!
Next stop….they went to pet value to get us chewies…..we are very spoiled! Kim said we deserve it, I think so too!
They also stopped at a local coffee shop…they said it was delicious. Kim had a Carmel latte and John had an espresso with cream and vanilla. You must try this place when you come here.. Black Mountain Roasters😋
And….this is how we finish off an awesome time in Drumheller….jumping for joy. Life is good, sometimes we forget to appreciate all the little things! ❤️ and 😘 Freddy
Hi everyone! Well, here goes, my first blog. This is going to be fun!
We left Saskatoon at 10:30 and headed to our first destination…Drumheller. Now, this is a place where most people pass through on their way to Calgary, but someone told Kim a few years ago that they would come here every year for an extended long weekend….really? Well, Kim and John figured we should check it out, and they were right!
All sunny here in the good ole badlands. We found our air b & b …..we didn’t know what to expect, but it’s pretty good! Dog treats were a surprise! I love treats! And there were human treats too….I may have got some Doritos. Lol, I’m a food hound 🐶 Kim and John like it…it’s pretty big, has a backyard for us kids, and John loves the big surprise….a pinball machine. Lol!
And…..you can walk to the red deer river and the historic downtown….so that’s exactly what we did! Time for a walk!
Wow! This place is full of dinosaurs, they’re everywhere…..you just have to look!
Kim loved their downtown, and we did too! Lots of old charm she says….and music is piped in to speakers by their lampposts, Dino art installations, murals, Adirondack chairs to sit, and cool shops….too bad they were closed for the holiday…. But maybe tomorrow 😉👍
Kim said one of the best things about travel and having no expectations is you stumble onto things. We loved the small Miners Memorial Park dedicated to the coal miners. We learned a bit about the history of this town…
We headed home, had supper…..did I tell you I like to eat? And then headed out for a drive.
Off to the town of Wayne…where the sign said previous population 2450, current population 25 😀. You cross 11 small bridges between Rosedale and Wayne and end up at the Last Chance Saloon. You can stay at the hotel, and there is a pretty cool restaurant beside. Check out where you “saddle right up” for a beer! Lol! It was closed when we got there….but the patio is dog friendly…maybe Kim and John will take us tomorrow?
Well everyone, we have another day here….we will catch ya later!
Hi everyone! Well it has been a long time, too long in fact if you ask Kim! We are heading on a road trip to Tofino! And we are taking our sweet time to get there. 3 weeks in fact! Today we head to Drumheller for 2 nights, and all us kids are coming along. Kim has sure missed travel, with all this darn pandemic stuff. It’s been a tough year, both Teddy and Frazier are over the rainbow bridge and boy do their humans sure miss them! So, I’m going to do my best to blog for Teddy……wish me luck! My name is Freddy and I’m a small bi-black Sheltie. I’m just about 7 months old and was named after Frazier and Teddy…❤️🐶🐶❤️ my official name is Freddy Mercury at Heart. Lol, Kim’s a big Queen fan. I live with 2 furry kids….Levi, my bestie who has been here for 4 years and Miss Molly, who is 5 years old and has been here for a year. She’s fun and a little crazy! So folks, stay tuned….we leave today!
Well folks, Kim and John’s amazing Colombian trip is coming to an end. They have spent 18 days travelling in this amazing country, with the last 3 spent in the beautiful historical area of Cartagena. They love this old historical place. Everything is walkable, and there was a lot to do!
On the first day, they had a guide take them on a walking tour around the old center, where they learned about the history, saw some beautiful parks, and maybe a couple of animals.
A bit about this city….
Cartagena is a port city on Colombia’s Caribbean coast. By the sea is the walled Old Town, founded in the 16th century, with squares, cobblestone streets and colorful colonial buildings.
The next day, they had a tour of the market, followed by a cooking class at a great restaurant called Siepre. This is a highly recommended restaurant on trip advisor that opened a year ago. The chef owner was their teacher! They made ceviche and coconut Continue reading Last stop…Cartagena, Colombia
Well, no moss grows under their feet! Kim and John moved on from Medellín to spend a few days in the northern part of Colombia along the Caribbean coast. They flew in to the city of Santa Marta, and spent one night there, enjoying dinner at a seafood restaurant and wandering the historic center.
The next morning they were picked up by a driver and headed to Minca, where they spent two nights at a cool spot, Minca Ecohabs. These were 2 storey “huts”. They enjoyed this spot…it had a beautiful view of Santa Marta, along with a forest view. They loved the outdoor hammocks in the second floor, and spent a relaxing time watching the birds.
Here’s a bit about Minca….
Minca is 600m up in the Sierra Nevada above Santa Marta, Minca is a small mountain village famous for its organic coffee, incredibly varied birdlife and a bit cooler temperatures than on the scorching coast below. Minca has been recognized as a biosphere reserve – It is surrounded by thick cloud forest and mountain peaks.
The next morning they were picked up by their tour guide in their off roading vehicle. They spent the day exploring the countryside, looking for birds. Boy, was the road bumpy! Kim said the holy sh*t handle came in handy! They saw a lot of birds that day….but Kim said it was really hard to take pictures of them. She still loved taking photos of the scenery….she and John think Colombia is very beautiful! They did see a Caribbean Toucan 🙂 – Yellow, red and blue….also a lot of hummingbirds, hawks, and birds that are endemic to Santa Marta. Colombia has over 2000 different birds, the second most, only behind Brazil….and folks, Brazil is much bigger….so maybe Colombia wins? 😉👍
They also heard some ghost sounds…..howler monkeys! They didn’t see them though…..you can hear their sounds up to 5 Kms away.
After Minca, Kim and John moved on to a Finca very close to Tayrona National Park….along the Caribbean Coast. They both agree that the Finca Barlovento is their favourite stay so far…..they have beautiful views of both a river, and the sea. The people here are amazing! Very friendly….Kim and John said the coffee is awesome, and the food is delicious. Their first day here was a free day…they walked along the beach and might have had a massage….tough life they lead! They also met the pets there…..Roberto and a baby parrot….they said they were pretty awesome.
The next day they met up with their guide to explore Tayrona National Park. They walked 16 kms, and visited 5 beaches. It was very hot for these Canadians! 31 degrees….yikes! Kim is looking pretty red😉. They enjoyed the day….they saw fire ants, bats, a woodpecker…..and howler monkeys! That’s the first time John has seen 🐒 and he was pretty excited.
A bit about the park….
Tayrona National Park, in northern Colombia, is a large protected area covering the foothills of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta as they meet the Caribbean coast. It’s known for its palm-shaded coves, coastal lagoons, rainforest and rich biodiversity. At its heart, the Pueblito ruins are an archaeological site accessed via forest trails, with terraces and structures built by the Tayrona civilization.
That’s it for now everyone! Kim and John move on to the city of Cartagena tomorrow. It’s a 5 hour car ride! They have some pretty cool things planned…stay tuned!
On their second day in Medellin, Kim and John took two tours. In the morning they went n a graffiti tour, and the afternoon was a Pablo Escobar tour. Both tours focused on the violent history of this city, and how people and social projects turned things around. Medellin is now a vibrant, innovative, progressive city. Kim said the people are amazing and resilient and they are still working towards building a strong inclusive community.
This was a surprise, Kim said, because they got more than they bargained for. While they saw a lot of amazing graffiti, they also learned about the violent history of Comuna 13 (Pablo Escobar played a huge part of this), and they learned about how the hip hop, rap, art, and music culture influenced change.
A bit about the area….
Only a few years ago, the Comuna 13 neighborhood was the most dangerous community in the city of Medellin but today it’s the most colorful and vibrant communities in the city. After the government and private sector invested in social and youth programs the local residents and artists reclaimed the neighborhoods and contributed to the miraculous transformation which we see today, the streets filled with incredible street art, music, street performers, and vendors.
Surprisingly, escalators are one of the innovative transport solutions that have helped transform life in a place once known as one of the world’s most dangerous cities.
Its 12,000 residents had to hike the equivalent of 28 stories home after scraping their living in the city. Steep roads made it impossible for vehicles to access this poor neighborhood, leaving the community isolated and impenetrable.
A 384-meter orange-roofed escalator, opened in 2011, scales the mountain, with a journey taking just six minutes. The development has become a model for urban planning around the world. This simple innovation is credited with helping to bring peace and pride to a community once plagued with violence.
Pablo Escobar Tour
When Kim and John started working with travel agents to book their Colombia tour, one of the companies wouldn’t book Escobar tours, because they didn’t want to support promoting this part of the history. There are different tours, some seem to idolize him, but the one Kim and John went on focused on the history of narcoterrorism, with a balanced view from the many victims.
From the NY times..
The drug lord’s legacy has cast a shadow over Medellín, driven in part by new documentaries, television shows like the Netflix hit “Narcos” and books that have focused on Mr. Escobar’s life.
In death, he has become something of a folk hero, for his meteoric rise from the working class to billionaire, and for his generosity to some, building houses and hospitals for the poor.
Medellín, called the world’s most dangerous city by Time magazine in 1988, has seen violent crime plummet and has increasingly become a tourist destination. Some have capitalized on the city’s history as a narcotics hot spot.
But the tourist narrative often leaves out the impact of his bloody rise to power and the bribery, kidnappings and killings of anyone who dared defy the cartel.
The mayor of Medellín, Federico Gutiérrez, told the local news outlet El Colombiano ahead of the demolition that knocking down the structure was an important symbolic step forward for the city and the country.
Kim and John’s tour…
They started by seeing the house where Pablo was trapped and killed, followed by the cemetery where he, his family, and members of the cartel were buried, and ended with the memorial park.
inflexion Park remembers the 46,612 victims of the narcoterrorism that affected the city and country between the 1970s and the beginning of the 21st century. It is on land that previously was the home of Escobar. The government demolished his home and created the memorial.
Inflexión Memorial Park is Medellín’s place to remember the victims of drug trafficking, and to come together. It is a place to remember history, to give it a new meaning from the perspective of those who died in the war between the drug cartels and to make a joint commitment for it to never happen again.
In the middle of the park is the path of heroes. Stone engravings capture messages of the victims who faced the horror of drug trafficking and focus on values such as honesty, good judgment and justice.
Kim andJohn enjoyed their visit to Medellin and are now waiting at the airport to head to the north coast. Have an awesome day and hug your family and friends. Everyday is a day to be grateful for living in a safe place, and having the privileges that we have. Hugs and kisses 💗❤️💕Teddy
Well folks, Kim and John arrived in Medellin and their first day was filled with tours of the city and Arvi Park.
They told me that Medellin is an interesting city. Once the most violent city in the world (narcoterrorism) it is now a vibrant, innovative city that has been changed by the people, through social projects.
Here is a bit of information about Medellin..
The position of Medellín as the second industrial city in Colombia has been the main factor in overcoming its crisis of the 1980s and 1990s. The Medellin metro, a massive urban transport service, is the pride of the city. The metro system is very unique and has connected the communities. The metro consists of trams, gondolas, bikes, and buses.
During the city tour, John and Kim’s guide Francisco took them on the tram, and then up the passenger gondolas. They went up the steep hills of the city and were surprised as the city disappeared and they were over Arvi park.
Arvi Park is huge! It covers 16,000 hectares, 1,760 of which are in the state of natural forests. It has over 54 miles of walkable trails. It is a major tourist attraction, known for its wildflowers, butterflies and trails. Kim and John thought it was amazing and wish they had more time to explore. Next time 😉
They headed back down to the city on the gondolas and headed to the botanical park of Medellin. The botanical garden covers a big area and it has 4,500 flowers and 139 recorded bird species. Oh….and they had iguanas and turtles too!
Next stop was Plaza Botero, home of the statues of Fernando Botero Angulo – a Colombian figurative artist and sculptor. Born in Medellín, his signature style, also known as “Boterismo”, depicts people and figures in large, exaggerated volume, which can represent political criticism or humor, depending on the piece. Kim wishes they had time to go into the museum as well…..next time 👍
And last but not least….they went for a supper at an amazing restaurant called Carmen. Their guide recommended it. Kim and John thought they had one of their best meals ever….it might have beaten their favourite restaurant Maido, in Peru ;). They treated themselves to the 10 course chef tasting, complete with wine pairings….they also may have had a cocktail….they paid for it the next day with a bit of a wine headache. 😆. Kim said she died and went to foodie heaven. Lol
Sounds like they are having a great time! One more day in Medellin….a graffiti tour and a Pablo Escobar tour are planned….then they head to the north part of Colombia.
Today Kim and John continued to explore the coffee triangle region. Their guide Sergio picked them up at 9:00 am and they headed to their first stop….the coffee “theme park” of Recuca.
At RECUCA visitors take on the role of a Coffee grower, learning the coffee process from the seed to the cup. It’s a working farm that diversified into an educational experience. Kim and John learned a lot….and participated in some of the activities….a bit cheesy, but who doesn’t like a little cheese once in a while. Lol 😀👍. There are pictures to prove it.
So, what did they learn about Colombian coffee?
It’s all hand picked…the terrain is so hilly, machines can’t be used
Coffee at higher altitudes taste sweeter
It takes 18 months from seed to first harvest
The coffee that is exported is not roasted…countries roast according to their taste.
Coffee in Colombia is milder…..John prefers stronger Canadian coffee
Their guide likes to say “good coffee doesn’t need sugar, bad coffee doesn’t deserve it”. Lol
Coffee production in Colombia has a reputation as producing mild, well-balanced coffee beans.Colombia’s average annual coffee production of 11.5 million bags is the second total highest in the world, after Brazil, The beans are exported to United States, Germany, France, Japan, and Italy. In 2011, UNESCO declared the “Coffee Cultural Landscape” of Colombia, a World Heritage site.
Next stop….the Jardin Botanico Del Quindio. This is a non profit conservation area that has over 600 species of plants, including many different palms, and orchids. It also has a butterfly house with over 1500 butterflies, representing 50 different species. Did you know that Colombia has the 2 nd highest number oF butterfly species in the world? First is Perú 🙂
Kim and John also loved seeing all of the birds here…Colombia has the highest number of bird species in the world. Kim said it’s so beautiful….lots of different colours and sizes….they are everywhere. They’ve seen egrets,ibis, hummingbirds, toucans, blue jays, warblers……too many to name, and they couldn’t if they tried! Kim wishes she had the right camera lens to take pictures….but the birds are also pretty fast….they are hard to take pictures of!
Well, looks like their time in the coffee region has come to an end. They said to give this region paws up. 🐾
Tomorrow is a travel day and they fly to the city of Medellin. Stay tuned folks!