Sydney Opera House dressed in Vivid Sydney colors

Sydney Opera House dressed in Vivid Sydney colors

Our trip coincided with the very beginning of the Vivid Sydney Light Festival that occurs every winter. This was it’s 10th year, and there was so much to see! There is a good list on the official Vivid Sydney website.

I wrote up a quick entry about our visit to the Taronga Zoo as well.

We were there for opening night, and it seems like everyone else was too! Foot traffic became so congested that by the time we got back from the Taronga Zoo police officers were directing people to move in one direction to keep the flow of people going. Fortunately, our hosts had access to the Amex viewing platform and that is where I was able to get some shots of the Sydney Opera House dressed in Vivid colors!

It is difficult to pick my favorite so I included all those that I think turned out decent.

Vivid Sydney at Taronga Zoo

Vivid Sydney at Taronga Zoo

Vivid Sydney at Taronga Zoo

During our visit to Sydney, Australia we were fortunate to be able to visit the Taronga Zoo to experience their contribution to Vivid Sydney, a three week event held during the winter months in Sydney to encourage tourism. A huge part of the city was lit up for it’s first night on May 25th – and we were able to experience a little more of it by riding a ferry over to the Taronga Zoo:

Step inside a world of scientific discovery and become a Light For the Wild. Vivid Sydney at Taronga Zoo is shining a light on conservation and the wonders of wildlife with a spectacular display of light sculptures. Alongside the festival favourites from last year, you’ll meet a whole new mob of awe-inspiring animal light sculptures.

Each of these incredible installations and light sculptures tells a fascinating tale about conservation. Discover the stories about these beautiful animals and learn how Taronga is working to help save 10 species from extinction over the next 10 years.

I added a gallery of my favorite photos from the night. To capture the different colors I used these settings:

  • ISO 6000-8000
  • f/16-f/20
  • 1/30 shutter speed
Vashon Island

Vashon Island

Lately I’ve been trying to explore areas that are easier to travel to. I’ve been intrigued by Vashon Island and the numerous photos I’ve seen taken on the island. Vashon Island can be reached by ferry from either Port Orchard, West Seattle, or Tacoma which is where we departed from. The ferry ride itself only took about 30 minutes which wasn’t long enough in my book because the scenery is of course gorgeous!


After a short drive we headed to Spicy Sisters for some brick-over pizza. HIGHLY recommend the California Club! It was some of the best pizza I have ever had! Not to mention the owners and employees were great. For dessert we walked across the street to this cute ice cream shop Glass Bottle Creamery.

Our main destination was Point Robinson Park. Here there was a beach with a great view of Mount Rainier and of course Point Robinson Lighthouse. The best part of the night was watching the sunset reflected off of the mountain! There were a few other people here, but overall it was a nice and serene evening.

The ferry ride back had quite a few cars but nothing like an Edmonds or Seattle sailing. Vashon Island made for a quick and fun trip!

Sol Duc Falls, Marymere Falls, and Lake Crescent

Sol Duc Falls, Marymere Falls, and Lake Crescent

To celebrate an occasion my husband and I traveled past Port Townsend to Lake Crescent and set up camp. The campground itself is a lot of fun and comes with running water, bathrooms, established fire pits, dogs allowed, and an area to get your kayak in the water! We absolutely loved camping here. Lake Crescent is beautifully opaque at both sunrise and sunset with vivid colors throughout the day.

We took the quick drive up to see Sol Duc and hiked the short trail leading directly to the falls. The Sol Duc Falls are absolutely stunning! There were several people there, and a couple even decided to skip onto the middle rock to get pictures. Please don’t do that. A week later someone fell from there, went over two falls, and had to be rescued at the bottom of a cliff by search and rescue. The falls were constantly changing in the light because of all the tree coverage and the spray made it somewhat difficult to get a decent shot without getting my camera wet as well. I also wish my tripod was about six inches taller! But I would love to come back to these falls, considering they were so easy to get to and deliver many photographic opportunities.

On the way home we stopped at Marymere Falls. Storm King Ranger Station is on the bank of Lake Crescent and the trail to Marymere Falls begins there. A flat hike, we made good time and made the short incline to the falls. They don’t impress as much as Sol Duc, but the hike is serene and gentle and would make for a good stroll and picnic at the falls. There is a higher vantage point but of the two the lower is more conducive to a good waterfall shot.

I highly recommend a trip with these destinations. If we had more time we could have easily gone to the coast, Neah Bay and Rialto Beach. Next trip up there I want to spend some time at Hurricane Ridge!


Skagit Valley Tulip Festival 2016

Skagit Valley Tulip Festival 2016

Tulip Town and Roozengaarde Gardens

For Easter Sunday we drove up to Mount Vernon, Washington in Skagit county to see the annual Tulip Festival. It was a little early so some of the tulips were not blooming yet, but it’s hard to say we missed out. The weather in the South Sound was gorgeous, but of course once we drove up I-5 through Seattle and past Marysville the weather deteriorated into a cold rain shower. It still being lunch time we stopped and enjoyed some delicious pizza at Skagit River Brewery.

Fortunately during the time it took for us to eat the rain stopped and the sun came out! We got in the car and followed the signs to the tulip fields. We discovered Tulip Town first, and enjoyed the many rows of tulips in their fields. We are no strangers to the Tulip Festival, however we had never been to Tulip Town and it was a nice change to see more established buildings and more offerings from vendors. No pets allowed but very kid friendly. Here we bought our yearly potted tulips, this year they are a gorgeous pink frilly variety. I get new ones each year to add to our garden.

The arrangement and variety of tulips at Roozengaarde however, is unparalleled. We headed there next and were able to get in right away because of only a small crowd of people. We took our time, enjoyed some fudge, and took advantage of the moody skies effect on the colorful tulips. Eventually we got too cold and as the rain started to fall again we headed home. We have gone every year for several years now and each experience is different. I hope you’re able to make it there this spring! If not, here are some of the images I was able to capture. Enjoy!

(Click the photos to see them larger)

error: Content is protected
wordpress visitor counter