Seeking travel inspiration.

I’ve got the itch to travel again.

Last September was a whirlwind of beautiful places and loved ones’ faces. After a little pre-wedding girls’ night out with my friends from Cali, my best friend and I traveled up the coast to spend a magical weekend in Carmel-by-the-Sea. Glorious gardens. Quaint little shops. Amanda’s first raw oysters. And the stunning central California coastline as the backdrop to it all. Such a special time!

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Less than a week later, I was tucked into the steep mountains of Ridgway and Ouray, Colorado on another girls’ getaway. The golden aspens were going off– autumn in the San Juans is serious business. There was hot tub soaking and a gorgeous hike and a very large sombrero. There were margaritas and spa treatments and let’s not forget our mascot, Pancho. I left these trips inspired by not only the beauty around me but also the company of some really incredible women.

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The following weekend, John and I spent time in what has become one of my favorite towns: Charleston, South Carolina. Our dear friends, Ali and Bright, are generous hosts and we always have a ridiculous amount of fun together. This visit started with a fundraising party with all of their friends. There was girl time shopping and sipping wine, and boy time fishing.  An afternoon on their boat, scouring the shore of Shark’s Tooth Island with their twin boys. The endless Bloody Maries and mimosas at High Thyme with friends and a gaggle of kids. John and I splurged on a night at the Wentworth Mansion, and took a bike taxi through downtown Charleston to possibly one of the best meals of my life at McCrady’s.

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And this was all before the love-fest of our wedding week!

This year, we’ve stayed close to home, finding local adventures. But I’ve got the green light to skip town for an upcoming weekend, and I think I’ve got a partner in crime on board. All I need now is a destination. I’m seeking inspiration for a fun girl’s weekend, somewhere new- nothing too exotic, nothing requiring a passport.

Maybe these funky cottages in Healdsburg’s wine country.

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Maybe retro desert fun in Palm Springs.

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I’ve been hearing amazing things about this bohemian escape in Ojai.

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Jackson Hole, Wyoming? Austin, Texas? Having so many fabulous options makes it hard to pick just one. I want to relax, rejuvenate, soak in a little adventure, and be inspired by my surroundings- and, of course, by my company.

Do have a must-visit spot that would be perfect for a girls’ weekend? Have you stayed somewhere fantastic and can’t wait to go back? Help me out! Please share your suggestions here, or email me at amber@theusualbliss.com.

Check out more of our traveling adventures here!

17 replies »

  1. You have to check out Portland, Oregon for a Girls’ Getaway! Beautiful Captures – you are inspiring me to ESCAPE!!! If I could I would take the months of September and October OFF and EXPLORE the West Coast, especially wine country. Happy Tuesday:)

  2. I vote for Ojai. I spent a day there a few months ago and found instant clarity and peace. For a town I used to visit so frequently in high school, I hadn’t been there in probably ten years and it was simply lovely. There are plenty of outdoorsy things to do and spas to pamper yourself with massages and facials. As an added bonus, the weather here (I don’t live too far from Southern California Sangri-La) has started to turn colder so that a weekend getaway won’t be too hot.

    Also, you could head further north to San Luis Obispo and stay at the Madonna Inn. A friend and I did a weekend getaway to SLO and Morro Bay and had the best time. There are plenty of wineries for tastings or lunching, Hearst Castle is always fun to see, and the Madonna Inn has the BEST pink champagne cake you shall ever try.

    Whatever your plans end up being, have a wonderful time, Amber!

    • I grew up going to visit some of my parents’ friends in Ojai pretty often, but I was young. I’d LOVE to go back. it sounds semi-ideal for a girl’s weekend.
      It’s so funny that you mention the Madonna Inn- my folks went there on the first night of their honeymoon, I think, on their way to Tahoe. That was 40 years ago! They lived in Nipomo until recently and we have friends who live in that part of California. Interesting idea… Especially because of the pink champagne cake. What????
      Thanks for the suggestions, Jessica!

  3. I’ve never done any of this but a trip back east to see the fall colors sounds like fun, but then so does a trip through wine country or even a skip down to Santa Fe to check out art and restaurants.

    But, I know that no matter what you decide to do it’s going to be fun and you’ll take some amazing pics!

    • *SIGH* I just love the East Coast. I think that may be a bit far for this particular trip, but now I’ve got that on my radar!!
      Santa Fe is a great suggestion- I haven’t really spent any time there and there is a fabulous spa called 10,000 Waves nearby. Hmmm….

  4. My good friend and neighbor was telling me about a girl’s weekend she took to Austin, TX. They had a marvelous time dancing, pampering, shopping, and enjoying loads of tasty meals and drinks. Can’t wait to hear where you decide to head off to!

    • My BFF has recently gotten into country music, and she’s dying for a pair of cowboy boots… I think we’d have an absolute blast there, eating and drinking and scootin’ our boots! Good idea.

  5. I love Santa Barbara! Perfect weather, beach, and excellent Mexican food. I went there twice, by myself, and it was so peaceful…probably similar to Ojai. I can’t wait to get away this winter to somewhere warm. Not sure where yet either.

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