#CIJVacation – Memories Of A Lifetime

Contributor post by Michelle of EviesToolEmporium

We spent the month of August traveling the world on the first Christmas In July vacation! Since the CIJ team is worldwide we held a virtual #CIJVacation right here on our blog!

The Road Trip began on Friday – August 4th, 2017 and concluded on Thursday August 31st, 2017. As I mentioned the team is international and we went to visit many countries along the way!

We wanted to include as many of our talented team members as possible! The participation was fantastic! Our itinerary was filled as we traveled all over the world!

Each team member shared with us their favorite vacation spot. I personally made many new friends and the world feels smaller to me now! Please join me to enjoy vacation memories of a lifetime!

Here was our itinerary:

8/4: #CIJVacation – Valais, Switzerland With saxdsign
8/9: #CIJVacation – New Orleans, Louisiana, USA With WiReDBoutique
8/10: #CIJVacation – Corfu, Greece With DorothyLollipopKnits
8/11: #CIJVacation – Estes Park, Colorado, USA With ShellysSelectSalvage
8/16: #CIJVacation – Florida Keys, Florida, USA With 3DesignDimensions
8/17: #CIJVacation – Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia With alustrousjewellery
8/18: #CIJVacation – Taos, New Mexico, USA With LilacHouseFlorals
8/23: #CIJVacation – Crater Lake, Oregon, USA With OnSiletzBay
8/24: #CIJVacation – 1770, Queensland, Australia With SusySewandSew
8/25: #CIJVacation – Banff, Alberta, Canada With DesertDabbler
8/30: #CIJVacation – Kythira, Greece With OnceUponJewelsCo
8/31: #CIJ Vacation – Glacier National Park, Montanna, USA With MsPDesignsUSA

Please use #CIJVacation on social media as you visit all the favorite vacation spots we shared with you!

Thank you so much for joining us on our #CIJVacation!

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#CIJVacation – Glacier National Park, Montana, USA With MsPDesignsUSA

Contributor post by Michelle of EviesToolEmporium

Let’s take a vacation with Susan-Sharon Passmore from MsPDesignsUSA

Glacier National Park, Montana, USA

1. What is your favorite vacation destination and why? Where exactly in the world is it located?

Our favorite vacation destination is Glacier National Park, Montana. Located in Northwest Montana, Glacier is home to mountains, lakes, a variety of wildlife, and (obviously) glaciers! It is a beautiful place, and is close to the town where we grew up.

2.  What are several places everyone visiting this destination should see?

Must-see spots in Glacier National Park include Lake McDonald, the Avalanche Creek Trail, the Weeping Wall, and the Logan Pass summit on the “Going to the Sun” highway. All of these places are easily accessible, so don’t miss them if you plan to visit Glacier! I’m sure that there are many other must-see places, since the park is huge, but I’ve listed the ones that I visit almost every time I go there.

3. What special customs, traditions, geography, nature etc. are intriguing about this destination?

Glacier National Park is filled with mountains, and the Continental Divide passes through it. The photo ops are amazing, so don’t forget to bring your camera! Please heed the warning signs regarding the local wildlife- they are totally serious about the dangers of the grizzly bear.

4. Where are the hot spots to eat and drink?

Campground and picnic areas are my favorite spots to enjoy a meal or snack, but you can also choose to dine at the Lake McDonald Lodge instead. There are also eating establishments inside or outside the park.

5. Have you been to your favorite vacation destination more than once and will you visit again?

When I was growing up, a trip to Glacier National Park was in order every time our cousins came to visit from out of town. We’d usually picnic at Lake McDonald and then take a quick hike along Avalanche Creek. I went to the Park this summer, with my brother, and I’ll go again next time I visit the area. It is gorgeous!

6. What are your social media sites?

Facebook: www.facebook.com/MsPDesignsUSA

Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/mspdesignsusa/

Twitter: twitter.com/@mspdesigns

#CIJVacation – Kythira, Greece With OnceUponJewelsCo

Contributor post by Michelle of EviesToolEmporium

Let’s take a vacation with KATERINA ILIAKI from OnceUponJewelsCo

Kythira Greece

Kythira Greece

1. What is your favorite vacation destination and why? Where exactly in the world is it located?

Kythira is small island in Greece opposite the south-eastern tip of the Peloponnese peninsula and near to Crete. It is traditionally listed as one of the seven main Ionian Islands, It is the island where my mother is coming from and the place I spent all summers of my childhood.

2.  What are several places everyone visiting this destination should see?

It is a magic island and has so many places to go and things to see.

My personal favorite is Avlemonas village, a small fish village on the east side of the island, with scenic coves. A peaceful place with a beautiful seaside and seaside where you can swim like a pool!!

Mylopotamos is an other beautiful village…It has different personality from Avlemonas, with waterfalls and an amazing passage through the woods with 16 mini watermills that lead to an amazing beach.

Potamos village is the central village of the island with a traditional fair market every Sunday where locals sell their products and beautiful small bars and restaurants…

Chora is the capital of the island..Traditional island village with tiny white houses and a spectacular Venetian castle to dominate on the top!!

One of my favorite walking tours is the one for the Moudari Lighthouse,which is located at the northernmost point of the island, at Cape Spathi. It is a very well conditioned lighthouse which you can also visit inside and the view from up there is breathtaking!

3. What special customs, traditions, geography, nature etc. are intriguing about this destination?

To begin with,in Ancient Greek mythology, Kythira was considered to be the island of celestial Aphrodite, the Goddess of love.

Geographically, even it belongs to the Ionian islands, it is located at the southwestern exit from the Aegean Sea. This particularity, makes this island unique.. It has combines many different landscapes.. the green and rich in vegetation part of Ionian and at the same time the wild and without water landscape of Cyclades…A combination that every visitor can either love it or hate it. There is no middle situation in Kithira.

Near to Kithira, you can find a tiny tiny island, the Antikithira island.

Between these to islands, in April 1900 Antikythera mechanism was found by a group of Greek sponge divers. Antikithire MEchanism is an ancient Greek analogue computer and orrery used to predict astronomical positions and eclipses for calendrical and astrological purposes.It is consider to be a huge archeological discovery and the wreck that it is still at this location continues to reveal a lot of secrets to our archeologists.

4. Where are the hot spots to eat and drink?

The best place to eat on this island is Kaleris restaurant. It is a tavern on Agia Pelagia village on the north-eastern part of the island. It is a family business and the son of the owner is a great chef..He worked for years in European restaurants with success and he decided to come back and cook for Kithirians and visitors of this island!

In Avlemonas village there are two traditional fish taverns, both of them have delicious and fresh food!
For drinks, Araxtopolio is what you are looking for! It is also located in Avlemonas, on the old harbor. Stavros is there for you to make the best cocktails.

At Potamos village you will find Astikon. it is a bar-cafe with life music most of the summer.It is very cosy and graphical.

If you are looking for something even more mystic, Amir Ali bar in Karavas is your choice. You will spot it on the side streets of the village as you are going to find the water springs of Amir Ali. Romantic and out of this world.

And of course you should stop at Karavas Bakery in the entrance of the village. This is were the famous Kithirian paximadia are made and distributed all over the world. Pavlos, the owner has renovated his family old mill and can give you a tour to his bakery with pleasure!

5. Have you been to your favorite vacation destination more than once and will you visit again?

I was living there for five years, working on my jewelry shop, spent all my childhood summers and revisiting every time I have the chance!

6. What are your social media sites?

Etsy: www.etsy.com/shop/OnceUponJewelsCo

Facebook: www.facebook.com/OnceUponJewelsCo

Twitter: twitter.com/OnceUponJewels

Instagram: www.instagram.com/onceuponjewels

Pinterest: gr.pinterest.com/OnceUponJewels

and

Etsy: www.etsy.com/shop/BohemianSummerTales

Facebook: www.facebook.com/BohemianSummerTales

#CIJVacation – Banff, Alberta, Canada With DesertDabbler

Contributor post by Michelle of EviesToolEmporium

Let’s take a vacation with Desert Dabbler from DesertDabbler

Banff, Alberta, Canada

Banff, Alberta, Canada

1. What is your favorite vacation destination and why? Where exactly in the world is it located?

My favorite vacation spot is the Canadian Rockies, specifically the towns of Banff and Jasper. The people are friendly, and I love the beauty of the mountains and the wildlife. So far I’ve seen elk, moose, grizzly bear, and mountain goats. One of these days I hope to spot a wolf in the wild.

Banff is in the province of Alberta, Canada, and within Banff National Park. Lake Louise, which has its own beautiful hotel, is nearby. From there you can drive the Icefields Parkway to Jasper. It is also located within a Canadian national park.

2.  What are several places everyone visiting this destination should see?

The Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel is spectacular and not to be missed. It’s like a castle. Although I can’t afford to stay there, I love to look at the art, visit the specialty shops, and soak in its beauty. The last time I was there, a harpist was playing in the main hallway for everyone to enjoy.

The Icefields Parkway is a spectacular drive between Banff and Jasper. It has towering mountains and glaciers plus you might see mountain goats, elk or bears. It all depends on the season and how lucky you are. If you’re adventurous, you can take a tour and walk on a glacier!

For me, it’s all about getting out into nature. There are hiking trails for every ability level. Some, like the walk at Lake Louise, are paved and suitable for everyone. Others are very steep and strenuous. I usually avoid these harder hikes now and stick to easy to moderate ones. If you plan to visit here, I recommend buying a hiking/trail book, which will have lots of valuable information.

3. What special customs, traditions, geography, nature etc. are intriguing about this destination?

I don’t know about any special customs or traditions since I’m not Canadian. For me it’s the peacefulness I find there, the fresh pine scented air, and the wildlife that makes this place special. The people I’ve met have always been friendly and welcoming.

4. Where are the hot spots to eat and drink?

The Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel is my favorite place to have lunch in Banff. In summer you can dine on the patio, surrounded by beautiful flowers, the mountains and cool, fresh air.

In Jasper I recommend Becker’s Chalets for a great dinner. The food was wonderful when I was there a few years ago. There’s also a lodge in Jasper National Park that is smaller than the one in Banff but also a great place to go for lunch or dinner.

5. Have you been to your favorite vacation destination more than once and will you visit again?

Yes, I’ve visited there 4 or 5 times. Each time I stay a little longer and go a little farther north. I keep going back because I love the mountains and the wildlife. I’m planning to go again in September. I’m hoping to get good pictures of the elk and maybe a bear. Fingers crossed!

6. What are your social media sites?

Blog: DesertDabbler

Pinterest: DesertDabbler

#CIJVacation – 1770, Queensland, Australia With SusySewandSew

  1. Contributor post by Michelle of EviesToolEmporium

Let’s take a vacation with Sue Kenny from SusySewandSew

1770, Queensland, Australia

1770, Queensland, Australia

1. What is your favorite vacation destination and why? Where exactly in the world is it located?

My favorite is usually one of the last places I have been. The last good holiday was a town called 1770. Yep it is a number. That is because it was the year that Captain Cook stopped there when he discovered Australia. A lovely spot, halfway up the Queensland (Australia) coast.

2.  What are several places everyone visiting this destination should see?

At this town, they offer Larc Tours which are tours held in vehicles called LARCs which go over the land and in the water (ex-army vehicles). We did a day trip to a lighthouse which was just delightful as you can go inside and climb to the top of the lighthouse (a rare experience). The vehicles driving over land and water was also heaps of fun!

Nearby is Agnes Water which is a sweet township where the beaches actually has some surf (not usual at that end of the coast).

Bundaberg is a local town and good to visit to have a nice pub lunch or visit other beach areas.

3. What special customs, traditions, geography, nature etc. are intriguing about this destination?

Lovely geography – inlets, bays and high cliffs over-looking the sea. Go out on a kayak and enjoy the water and changing wildlife and scenery. We went out in our kayaks and stopped at a sandbank where we were lucky enough to see the birds taking advantage of the bait fish that were captured in a water hole while the tide changed. Magical!

4. Where are the hot spots to eat and drink?

We camped so didn’t eat out much, but did enjoy eating at our campsite which fronted the beach in front of the inlet where you could watch the sunset into the water (photo). Everyone gathers on the beach on the evenings to watch the sunset with their glass of wine.

5. Have you been to your favorite vacation destination more than once and will you visit again?

I have been there twice now. Once when the children were little (great spot for kids) and just recently the two of us. I would love to go back.

6. What are your social media sites?

Facebook: www.facebook.com/SusySewandSew/
Instagram: www.instagram.com/susysewandsew/
Blog: quiltsewsewsue.blogspot.com.au/

#CIJVacation – Crater Lake, Oregon, USA With OnSiletzBay

Contributor post by Michelle of EviesToolEmporium

Let’s take a vacation with Melody from OnSiletzBay

Crater Lake, Oregon, USA

Crater Lake, Oregon, USA

1. What is your favorite vacation destination and why? Where exactly in the world is it located?

Crater Lake, a National Park here in the Cascade mountain range of Oregon.

2.  What are several places everyone visiting this destination should see?

The historic lodge, built by the park service in 1915. If you want to stay there you have to make reservations months in advance, but the lobby and veranda are open to visitors. Driving around the rim is wonderful, and if you want to focus on the scenery you can take a trolley tour with a ranger guide, which includes stops for photos around the lake. You can also book a boat tour on the lake, which I have been lucky enough to do when my knees were up to it. It is a mile down a steep trail to get to the boat, and the return hike up is equivalent to 70 flights of stairs.

3. What special customs, traditions, geography, nature etc. are intriguing about this destination?

Crater Lake was formed when a volcano exploded about 7500 years ago and left a huge caldera, which over hundreds of years filled with water to create on of the purest bodies of water on the planet. No river flows in or out of the lake.

4. Where are the hot spots to eat and drink?

Food is managed by the park service, and so a lot of it is not very exciting – the exception was the fine dining in the Lodge was excellent. You can also order appetizers and drinks in the lobby and on the veranda overlooking the lake. A bottle of wine shared while watching the stars (incredible view of the milky way) makes for a special night.

5. Have you been to your favorite vacation destination more than once and will you visit again?

This was my fourth visit, once with young children, several times with teens, and this time with just my hubby. Each experience has been different, including the snow in late June, and the thunderstorm combined with the sunset on my birthday last week.

6. What are your social media sites?

Facebook: FreshwaterFibers

#CIJVacation – Taos, New Mexico, USA With LilacHouseFlorals

Contributor post by Michelle of EviesToolEmporium

Let’s take a vacation with Stacey from LilacHouseFlorals

Taos, New Mexico, USA

Taos, New Mexico, USA

1. What is your favorite vacation destination and why? Where exactly in the world is it located?

One of my all time favorite vacation destinations is Taos, New Mexico located in the southwestern United States. I love the big, blue skies and the beautiful western scenery.

2.  What are several places everyone visiting this destination should see?

 If you ever have the chance to visit, you should make time to tour the Taos Pueblo and go to the Rio Grande Gorge (maybe even go on a white water rafting tour). Also, it is fun to tour the many art studios on the Taos Square. If it is winter, the Taos ski valley is close by.

3. What special customs, traditions, geography, nature etc. are intriguing about this destination?

Taos is famous for it’s beautiful southwestern landscapes. You can see the tallest mountain in New Mexico, Wheeler Peak, from the town. It is known as an artists colony and people come from all over to paint the New Mexico sky.

4. Where are the hot spots to eat and drink?

The chile rellenos at the Taos Inn are delicious!

5. Have you been to your favorite vacation destination more than once and will you visit again?

We used to visit Taos almost every year but our life is pretty hectic right now so we haven’t been in a while. I hope to get back soon!

6. What are your social media sites?

Instagram: www.instagram.com/lilachouseflorals/?hl=en
Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/LHFlorals/