Posts tagged with "fishing"

Kaelen Felix illustrates Elkhart Lake for 360 magazine

Elkhart Lake WI

By Elle Grant x Vaughn Lowery

As summer winds down and fall arrives, many find themselves itching for one last summer getaway, or rather, that first autumn weekend away. 360 Magazine was able to take advantage of such a trip, visiting Wisconsin’s Elkhart Lake this past September. Located in the heart of Moraine State Forest, Elkhart Lake is the ideal natural getaway, being home to lake activities as well as canopied hiking and biking trails.

Elkhart Lake, located on the East side of Wisconsin, is both a stunning sojourn into nature and also a historical destination. With a population just under one thousand, the village maintains a cozy quality, with local shops, restaurants, and activities maintaining a small-town, yet polished feel. Yet during the summertime, the town swells and comes to life. First inhabited by the Potawatomi Indians, the name Elkhart stems from the description Native people had of the area, that the lake resembled the shape of an elk’s heart. Native American culture can easily be explored in the area through local tours and at the Henschel’s Indian Museum. Elkhart is also a significant historical definition in terms of its relationship to racing, reaching its peak in the mid 1950s.

Our stay at the Shore Club was nothing short of superb. The new owners, Tom and Kristin Pagel, have done an incredible job renovating the hotel. Renovations including adding updated technology to enhance guest stays: Netflix, Alexa, a digital concierge through the Whisper app, Peloton bikes will soon be available, and luxury motor sports for those interested. Furthermore, the site also boasts an indoor pool, a game room with ping pong tables and vintage arcade games, and a gym. For those interested in seeing Elkhart on two wheels, free bikes are available for guest use at the front desk. The restaurant on site, the Cottonwood Social, offered consistently well-done meals, including the perfect weekend brunch.

We began our lake escape with a pontoon cruise on the namesake of the area, Elkhart Lake. Before departing, we sipped and snacked on the Osthoff’s signature cocktails and hors oeuvres. On the pontoon boat, we were able to view the lake’s crystal-clear lake waters and receive a tour that included information of the area’s history, legends, and folklore. The evening air aboard the boat made this the perfect way to begin a stay. Following the pontoon ride, dinner at the Osthoff Resort’s newest restaurant, Concourse Restaurant and Lounge, proved to be a unique culinary experience. With specialties such as the honey balsamic trout, seared scallops with sweet pea risotto, and the veal schnitzel with pickled cucumber relish, there was a delicious and refined option forevery set of tastebuds. The restaurant’s décor, a tribute the area and Osthoff’s vintage racing roots, also deserves special note.

Elkhart lake is famed for its historic roots as a racing circuit in the 1950s. During this decade, the village of Elkhart Lake transformed into an open-road race circuit where top sports car drivers traveled from all around the world to take on the unique terrain. Likewise, thousands of fans were drawn to the area, eager to see the athletes and vehicles alike. The racing today is focused at Road America,but the historic circuit is marked with signs denoting Wacker’s Wend, Kimberly’s Korner, and Dicken’s Ditch. This auto focused tour of the area isn’t to be missed. Road America also offers an opportunity to join in on the fun with options such as go-karting and ATVs at this world-acclaimed facility.

Road America and Elkhart Lake are famous as one of the oldest, largest, and most iconic tracks in the world. Currently, its original course is registered on the National Register of Historical Places, emphasizing its significance. Gaining popularity in the 1940s and 1950s, the post-World War II economy spurred on the influx of sporting luxury automobiles. For Elkhart specifically, the notable Sports Car Club of America were the main organizer of their races. Incredibly popular races such as the RoadAmerica 500, SCCA National Sports Car Championship, the United States Road Racing Championship and the IMSAGT Championship. Today, it continues to host luxury races and draw motorsports fans and can even be found in numerous racing video games!

Following a wild time racing, time winding down at the Aspira Spa was well-needed. Inspired by local Native American practices and traditions, but fused with modern technology and science, the spa offers the ideal treatment for any interest party. The inside space of the Aspira is thoughtfully designed and embraces the concept of Feng Shui as well as the natural elements. Personally, we enjoyed the Element Facial; this facial is a mask focused in traditional Chinese medicine representing the five elements. These five elements are wood, fire, earth, metal, and water. Harmony can be restored through the combination of colored light and essential oils inspired by these elements. By exalting the healing practices of indigenous cultures around the world, Aspira is able to provide a holistic, organic, and thorough approach to healing and relaxation.

Traveling back in time once again, visiting the Carriage Museum at Wade House transported us even further back – back to the 1860s stagecoach era located within this Wisconsin Historical Site. To get a full experience of the period, we were able to travel in that manner: horse-drawn carriage! The museum also features Wisconsin’s most diverse collection of transportation of this manner with over 100 horse-and-hand drawn vehicles. For the transportation enthusiasts, this isn’t to be missed.

When one thinks of wine country, Wisconsin might not exactly spring to mine. Yet award-winning sommelier Jaclyn Stuart operates Vintage Elkhart Lake, a charming shop where she hand-selects all wines available. The tasting at her bar came paired with cheese plates, potato chip flights, and other delectable pairing bites. The shop, beyond wine unique to the area, also sells other local delicacies for those interested in bringing home a taste of Wisconsin.

It would hardly be a trip to the lake without time spent on the lake fishing. Elkhart Lake is 119 feet deep and 292 acres wide, providing the perfect home to a variety of fish species: musky, walleye, northern pike, largemouth and smallmouth bass, yellow perch, bluegill and crappie all inhabit the lake. Going with a licensed guide like Jay Brickner will aide in explaining all those numerous species. Below the surface isn’t the only place to find remarkable species – a variety of endangered bird call this estuary home including bald eagles. Whether or not fishing is an interest, time spent on this beautiful, blue lake is worth taking a boat out for. A little closer to shore also boasts the best of the lake’s charms. From the time when Native Americans lived along its banks, Elkhart’s pristine quality has been appreciated. Taking advantage of more advanced activities like a hydrobike or other watersports can be a more adventurous way to embrace lake life. Other options including standup paddleboard, jet skis, and speedboats. Even taking a walk in the sand along the shoreline is another greatway to take advantage of all the lake has to offer.

The natural beauty of Elkhart Lake region is its most obvious draw, but the culinary seen isn’t to be underestimated. Lake Street Café, serving California Bistro style fare, also offers Wisconsin’s third largest wine list ensuring the perfect pairing for any dish. Quit Qui Clubhouse features classic pub and grill fair with a Wisconsin twist, including homemade soups, chili, sandwiches, burgers, and more. Siebkens Resort and 67 Saloon are also phenomenal dinner options reflecting inspiration from the area.

Elkhart Lake proved to be a much-needed September getaway. The natural beauty paired with the historical aspects of the Native American culture in the area as well as the history of luxury racing makes this an incredibly well-rounded destination.

OSTHOFF RESORT TURNS 25!

2020 marks the quarter-century birthday of the The Osthoff Resort! Opening May 19, 1995, The Osthoff Resort was constructed on the same location as the historic Osthoff Hotel, a popular resort destination from 1886 to the 1950s. Throughout its 134-year history, the resort has hosted travelers, locals, and industry professionals, with its historic past, beautiful scenic location and local amenities.

In 1995, the newly opened Osthoff Resort consisted of the main building, and a year later, the south building was added providing additional guest rooms and amenities. In 2005, the north building was built featuring additional guest accommodations, world-class Aspira Spa, a 100-seat restaurant with panoramic views of Elkhart Lake, and a state-of-the-art conference center beautifully designed for groups of up to 1,000 people.

Today, The Osthoff Resort is known for its lakeshore setting on crystal clear Elkhart Lake, a total of 245 spacious suites, award-winning Aspira Spa, and an impressive collection of amenities that include two lakeside restaurants, gift boutiques, indoor and outdoor pools, and elegant ballrooms and meeting venues. “As part of our year-long celebration, we are thrilled to announce that we have started to invest in renovations and enhancements across our Resort,” said Jamie Skelton, Marketing Manager of The Osthoff Resort. “In the near future, we look forward to delighting our guests and members of the community with exciting enhancements to guest premiere suites, dining areas, lobbies and public areas.” The Osthoff Resort looks forward to the next 25 years of making memories, and to help kick off the celebration is offering new overnight promotions:

Anniversary Package

Continuing to celebrate its quarter-century mark celebration, The Osthoff Resort is offering anniversary promotions on behalf of the original room rates from the year it opened, with rates starting at $199.50, and additional milestone promotions all year long. For all anniversary specials, visit Osthoff.com/25th-anniversary. To make a reservation, consumers can call 844.566.4392.


Autumn Overnight Package

September 2 – October 29, 2020: Stay one night in an elegant guest room from $236 in September and $210 in October and receive a $25 dining credit and 25% discount at Aspira Spa (Sunday – Wednesday only).

About The Osthoff Resort
The AAA Four Diamond Osthoff Resort is a Wisconsin tourism landmark featuring elegant suites and guestrooms, a stunning lakefront setting, two restaurants, Aspira Spa, year-round recreation, spa and gift boutiques, and grand conference rooms and meeting spaces. It is located just one hour north of Milwaukee, less than two hours from Madison and approximately three hours from Chicago. For additional information about The Osthoff Resort, visit www.osthoff.com, call 844.566.4392, or follow The Osthoff Resort on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

DOOR COUNTY

By Robin Mosley × Vaughn Lowery

In Door County, Wisconsin you can expect a luxurious stay where you’ll get the best of both worlds — nature and an artisanal experience featuring exceptional food and beverage options, as well as artistic features. Door County has always been a welcoming place to visitors since the beginning of its inception. 

Historically, it’s been home to Native American tribes such as the Potawatomi, the Winnebago, the Ojibwe, the Sauk, the Menominee and the Ottawa. European settlers also were a part of the Door County community. But the peninsula has always had residents with many dating back 12,000 years ago. This is to say, Door County, Wisconsin is welcoming to people from all walks of life.

Book a stay at Glidden Lodge Beach Resort in Sturgeon Bay. The property has everything you need to enjoy your stay as a family, a group of friends and as a solo traveler. Their one, two- and three-bedroom units all offer stunning views of Lake Michigan and beachfront access. Other properties in Door County include bed and breakfasts, campgrounds, cottages and houses, hotels, log cabins, resorts and wheelchair accessible lodging to fit your needs. 

Your stay can begin at Sturgeon Bay, where you can visit an array of museums, nature sites and rustic food businesses such as Sturgeon Ship Bay canal, Potawatomi State Park and the preserves. 

If you are looking to shop and dine, then Door County’s historic shopping districts have an array of dining and beverage options. One such place is Renard’s Cheese, a family owned, and operated business ran by third generation cheesemakers. You can then follow that up with a stop at Door County Candy, which will satisfy your sweet tooth with handcrafted chocolates and treats. 

After if you’re interested in the art scene, then check out the Margaret Lockwood Gallery, featuring Lockwood’s award-winning abstract paintings, which highlights the beauty and landscapes of Door County; or go see incredible art from over 198 artists spanning drawing, printmaking, and photography mediums at Miller Art Museum. After enjoying a fully packed day, you can finish your day off with dinner at Crate Restaurant with some of the best food — a mix of fresh seafood, steaks and high-quality sushi.

Sister Bay is known for Seaquist Orchards where the cherries are tart, and apples are crisp. With over 1,000 acres of cherries and 30 acres of apples and acres of apricots and pears, you’ll be around nothing but beautiful nature and artisan treats. To keep the orchard experience going, have brunch at Al Johnson’s Swedish Restaurant, where the goats grazing on grass the roof in the summer will fit the bill. 

The Norwegian and Moravian roots of Ephraim are part of its modern life. At the Ephraim Historical Foundation, you can learn about the Moravian religious community, founded by the Reverend Andreas Iverson as well as see some of its historic sites such as The Moravian Church, the Pioneer Schoolhouse and the Anderson Store. The Hardy Gallery is located on Ephraim’s historic Anderson Dock and features local and regional artists. The Blue Dolphin House and BDH Studio contains a gallery located in an 1860s renovated farmhouse surrounded by pine trees and a beautiful garden. 

Ellison Bay has an artsy vibe. The Clearing Folk School founded by architect Jens Jensen is a 128-acre school surrounded by forests and meadows which overlook the Green Bay shoreline. All year round, the school provides classes and workshops following folk traditions of fine crafts and natural sciences. From painting, writing, quilting, birding, wood carving, rustic furniture making and more, you will have an incredible time. Before your departure, you should stop by Rob Williams Studio to witness unconventional landscape paintings.

If you’re looking for old Swedish traditions, you should stroll down the marina, play in the parks and beaches and dine on the finest goods in Fish Creek. Fish Creek has the largest single store retailer of olive oil and balsamic vinegar, The Oilere. Or you can visit the Swedish-American bakery, Fika Bakery & Cafe and Lautenbach’s Orchard Country Winery & Market, where during the summer you can purchase freshly picked Montmorency cherries. Around dinnertime, the Fish Boil at Rowley’s Bay Resort in Ellison Bay serves freshly caught Lake Michigan whitefish that is cooked over an open fire. Finally, end your evening under the beautiful night sky at Northern Sky Theater located in Peninsula State Park.

To end your time in Door County you can look at the waterfront in Egg Harbor. You can also visit the Cappaert Contemporary Gallery, or the Plum Bottom Gallery where you’ll see handcrafted porcelain and stoneware first-hand. Harbor Ridge Winery is a great place that makes award-winning wines in a fun atmosphere. Then head next door to Wisconsin Cheese Masters which sells only the finest Wisconsin produced cheeses. Finally, have dinner at Glacier Ledge which celebrates cheese through their small plate menu. 

There’s a lot to do in Door County and anyone who’s looking to enjoy nature, art and artisanal goods will find every part of this trip worth their time. This location would be great for anyone who prefers a more elegant and rustic stay. For more information on what Door County could provide, visit www.doorcounty.com

Social Media

Twitter @mydoorcounty

Facebook @DoorCountyWisconsin

Surfing x Morro Bay

SURF’S UP TODAY IN MORRO BAY!

First-Ever World Surf League’s SLO Cal Open at Morro Rock Qualifying Series Event Starts Today Though March 1, 2020

Some of the biggest names in surfing are at Morro Rock Beach today through March 1, 2020 to compete in the first ever men’s and women’s qualifying series event SLO Cal Open at Morro Bay. Competitors include Conner Coffin from Santa Barbara, currently rated # 20 on the World Surf League’s Championship, along with the next biggest name in the sport, 24 year old Kevin Shulz from San Clemente. Shulz, pictured here, just won the SLO CAL Open at Pismo Beach last week and placed 2nd the year before. Cory Arrambide is also competing. He won the Pismo Beach title in 2017. Locally there are have two really good central coast boys competing: Austin Neuman and Braden Jones both from Pismo Beach.

On the Women’s side, it is a very young field with 34 confirmed surfers including 14 year old Sawyer Lindblad. She’s from San Clemente and just won the SLO CAL Open at Pismo Beach, her first professional surf contest. She is competing in Morro Bay along with local Sydney Beckett, who is a standout surfer from the MB High School Surf Team. More information about the event can be found here. More info about Morro Bay can be found here, www.morrobay.org.

About Morro Bay
A true #outdoorgoals destination, this active seaside fishing village with bustling waterfront offers a fun and funky getaway for travelers who seek great wine, seafood and outdoor adventures filled with wildlife. Located along coastal Highway 1 in San Luis Obispo County just south of Big Sur, midway between Los Angeles and San Francisco, Morro Bay offers year-round activities in an unspoiled slice of California. From ocean-side golf, kayaking, sailing, hiking, fishing, surfing, biking, and bird watching, to kite flying, shopping, dining, wine bars, local craft brews and miles of unspoiled beaches, there is something for everyone. Sitting majestically between the beach and the harbor lays the iconic and historic landmark Morro Rock, welcoming travelers from miles away as they approach Morro Bay. Located just minutes from world-renowned Hearst Castle, historic missions, breathtaking Montana de Oro State Park, and surrounded by vineyards from Paso Robles to Edna Valley, Morro Bay is a destination designed to fit any style and budget for families, couples or groups. Morro Bay also offers a myriad of year-round events including food, wine and music festivals, art fairs and car shows unique to the town. For more travel information visit www.morrobay.org or follow Morro Bay on Facebook, Instagram, twitter and Pinterest.

Morro Bay, Surfing, California, Vaughn Lowery, 360 MagazineSurfing, Morro Bay, California, Vaughn Lowery, 360 Magazine,

JA RESORTS, 360 MAGAZINE, TRAVEL

JA Manafaru Resort Team Cleans Up Nearby Island

in Support of Parley Maldives Initiative

JA Manafaru Resort in the Maldives collaborated with local partners, guests and the community to undertake a plastic removal and sustainability initiative on a neighboring island

JA Manafaru Maldives recently collaborated with a local school and their ocean activity partner, Best Dives Private Limited, to collect more than 23 jumbo bags of waste from a neighboring island and Marine Protected Area; Gallandhoo for recycling through Parley Maldives. 

Parley Maldives is the Maldives branch of Parley for the Oceans, a global collaboration network with a new approach to environmentalism. The mission of Parley is to end today’s major ocean threats through creativity, collaboration and eco-innovation. The private island resort of JA Manafaru itself is spectacularly beautiful and unspoilt, sitting in the crystal-clear waters of the most northern point of the Haa Alifu Atoll. Although the ocean and beach areas surrounding the award-winning resort are pristine examples awe-inspiring nature, other islands in the Maldives have issues with waste, particularly non- biodegradable materials like plastic.  

Best Dives Maldives, a local diving, excursion and ocean activity company partnered with the JA Manafaru Resort and a local school – Hoarafushi School, to undertake a monumental task in cleaning up the western coastline of Marine Protected Area (MPA), Gallandhoo. The JA Manafaru Environmental & Sustainability team planned the clean-up with Best Dives, informed guests and arranged resort boats to collect volunteers heading to the island to clean the area. Together more than 50 staff, guests, students and parents filled over 23 jumbo bags of waste in one hour. Marine biologists asserted that Gallandhoo Island looked strikingly different after the team efforts and considerable potential damage to marine life was averted. All the plastic waste collected will be sent to Parley.

To address the fast-growing threat of marine plastic pollution, Parley have devised a strategy that can be scaled across private households, schools, businesses and governments: Parley AIR — Avoid, Intercept, Redesign. Guided by these pillars, they advocate avoiding the use of single-use plastics and promoting responsible disposal of single-use plastics. The goal in the Maldives is to boost the protection of the marine ecosystem through collective change. In collaboration with plastic interception partners, Parley has now exported 48 containers of plastic waste from the Maldives, preventing over 800 tons of plastics from entering the oceans. These plastics are recycled and upcycled to help create a new economy of eco-innovation and collaboration, beginning with reducing the use of raw virgin plastics in production processes.

School students and guests were presented with certificates of appreciation for their participation in the JA Manafaru event, and when asked why there was such an issue with plastic waste on Gallandhoo, the students explained there are low levels of understanding for many people regarding the disposal of plastic waste and of the environmental damage it causes. New General Manager, Karen Merrick commented;

JA Manafaru in collaboration with our ocean activity partner Best Dives is committed to improving upon and reducing our environmental footprint here in Haa Alifu, one of the most uninhabited atolls in Maldives. We are honored and humbled to live and work as custodians of this beautiful part of the world and assist with such initiatives whenever/wherever we can.  Every day we continue our internal mission to ensure education and awareness play a part of life here at JA Manafaru’.

In order to preserve the coral reef, beautiful beaches and sea life, the JA Manafaru team has an ongoing commitment to environmental awareness and sustainability. The hotel no longer uses plastic bottles for drinking water and instead have their own glass bottling plant, which results in a huge reduction in plastic waste. The JA Manafaru ‘House Reef Cleaning’ also invites guests to give back in a fun snorkelling and underwater reef-cleaning exercise, which certified divers can join. All items collected are logged so that any notable pollution can be immediately addressed. Other initiatives in planning at JA Manafaru include upgrading the water desalination plant for residual water to be used for landscaping, solar panel installation and a campaign for associates that raises awareness about reducing energy consumption.

JA Manafaru Maldves Hosts Island Clean Up.jpg
Plastic debris in the protected area.jpg

About JA Manafaru

JA Manafaru is an idyllic 5-star luxury island resort fringed with exquisite powder beaches in pristine, lagoon-ringed Haa Alifu Atoll, at the northern tip of the Maldives. Accessed by private seaplane, the chic tropical hideaway features 84 luxurious beachfront and over-water villas and bungalows, each with their own private plunge pool. Seven scenic dining destinations provide a culinary journey with traditional Indian Ocean cuisine, international fare and seafood feasts. China’s most renowned chef, Da Dong, brings his Michelin acclaim to White Orchid Asian restaurant with a collaborative menu launched in 2019. World-class recreational facilities include Calm Spa, a fully equipped dive, water sports and excursion centre, plus a Marine Research Centre to conserve local ecology. Once-in-a-lifetime wedding and honeymoon celebrations are also a specialty at JA Manafaru, which has been recognised as the Indian Ocean’s Leading Honeymoon Resort (2019 World Luxury Hotel Awards). ‘Legend’ hotels by Preferred Hotels & Resorts are the ultimate collection of extraordinary properties in the world’s most remarkable destinations and JA Manafaru is the only property selected in the Maldives. Ranked among the World’s Ten Best Hotels (TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice Awards 2019), JA Manafaru is a tropical paradise where unique experiences can become unforgettable memories.

For more information on JA Manafaru, please visit;

http://www.jaresortshotels.com/en/maldives/ja-manafaru

About JA Resorts & Hotels

A legacy UAE brand, JA Resorts & Hotels was born in 1981 and has a widely recognised reputation for excellence, in the management and operation of award-winning resorts and hotels. Taking its name from the original Jebel Ali (JA) Beach hotel, JA Resorts & Hotels portfolio now features 8 distinct properties across the UAE and Indian Ocean, each dedicated to curating unique experiences and creating unforgettable memories. Tropical escapes include JA Manafaru, the idyllic luxury island resort in pristine, lagoon ringed Haa Alifu Atoll, at the northern tip of the Maldives and JA Enchanted Island Resort, an ultra-luxurious hideaway of 10 exquisite villas on a private island, in the middle of the protected Saint Anne Marine Park. Within the UAE, guests can choose from the five-star JA Ocean View Hotel, as well as the deluxe hotel apartments of JA Oasis Beach Tower, both located along ‘The Walk’ in Jumeirah Beach Residence.  Other attractive options include the acclaimed JA The Resort – Dubai’s largest experience resort, with 1 million square metres of thrilling activities and 3 unique hotels offering 795 suites and rooms between them– JA Beach Hotel, the all-suite JA Palm Tree Court and JA Lakeview Hotel, a stunning new Golf Course adjacent property due to open in September 2019. The JA Hatta Fort Hotel completes the portfolio as Dubai’s only mountain resort, a secluded getaway amidst the stunning Hajar Mountains landscape. JA Resorts & Hotels is a member of the Global Hotel Alliance (GHA), the world’s largest alliance of independent hotel brands, bringing together more than 30 brands with over 550 hotels in 78 countries.

For more information on JA Resorts & Hotels, please visit;

www.jaresortshotels.com 

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/jaresortshotels

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/jaresorts

Instagram: http://instagram.com/jaresorts 

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/JAresorts

Portugal’s Paradise: Madeira

Welcome to Madeira- a wonderful destination that has a warm year-round climate, dramatic volcanic landscapes, world-class wines, incredible hiking, a wide mix of lodging and so much more. Now closer than ever to the United States – is a the prefect warm weather winter/spring destination. All the wonders of Europe, the landscapes of a semi-tropical volcanic island, and as close as the Caribbean.

The Madeira Islands, an archipelago 750 miles southwest of Lisbon in the Atlantic Ocean, have a nearly perfect climate—warm in winter and never too hot in summer.

Ancient volcanic cliffs that rise dramatically from the sea dominate Madeira’s fascinating landscape. When Portuguese explorers came upon the Island of Madeira in 1420, they thought its dark cliffs signaled the gates of hell. Nothing could have been further from the truth. The steep rise creates six unique climate zones, each with its own beautiful flora and fauna that contribute to comparisons of Madeira with Hawaii.

The US and Madeira have long had strong bonds. Back in 1665, the British said all goods sold to its American colonies had to be shipped on British vessels from British ports, except products from Madeira. So, Madeira became the wine of America. America soon imported one-fourth of Madeira’s production of wine. George Washington supposedly drank a bottle a day. His inauguration was toasted with it, as was the signing of the Declaration of Independence and the launching of the USS Constitution. And, it became a popular destination for wealthy Americans, including US President Franklin Pierce, who spent three months on Madeira after leaving office in 1857.

Today, visitors come for the natural beauty, and they stay to experience the climate, cuisine, hiking, fishing, surf, and the old world charm of its cities and small towns. Madeira is the authentic jewel of European charm, where a visitor can experience fine wines, mountain hiking, or city culture—or easily all three in one day. Madeira has more than 200 years of hospitality traditions, famous visitors in the past included George Bernard Shaw and Winston Churchill. And, let me add that Madeira is a real value too, especially on the high end – with affordable lodging options, a wide range of dining, and overall very fairly priced.

American travelers are looking for a new destination. One that has a warm climate, history, wines, sun, great food, and a mix of the cosmopolitan with nature – that is Madeira. Please let me know if we can get you any additional information, or news about Madeira.

The Madeira Promotion Bureau promotes Madeira as a unique travel destination, with a focus on the travel trade. The Madeira Promotion Bureau is a non-profit association founded in August 2004 by a public entity and a private entity – the Regional Tourism Board and the Funchal Chamber of Commerce and Industry. www.apmadeira.pt/en

Getting to Madeira

Madeira is a Portuguese archipelago in the Atlantic on the 32nd parallel north. It lies southwest of Lisbon, and several hundred miles west of the coast of Morocco. It is made up of the islands of Madeira and Porto Santo, as well as the Desertas and the Selvagem Islands.

Madeira has never been easier to get to. TAP Portugal offers easy connections from Lisbon – and with non-stop service to Portugal from 9 US cities on five airlines, getting a connection is easy. TAP now has a 1 stop from Boston, DC, New york and Newark, Miami, Chicago and San Francisco. It is a 1.5-hour flight from Lisbon, Porto or the Azores and it takes about 15 minutes to fly between the two islands in the group—Madeira and Porto Santo. Madeira’s Cristiano Ronaldo International Airport and the Porto Santo Airport serve the archipelago. The airport on Madeira is about a 30-minute drive to Funchal, the archipelago’s capital. Madeira has also become a major stop for cruise ships.

An overview

Madeira is a semi-tropical island rising from sea level to over 6,000 feet. Its steep pitch gives the island six distinct climate zones. The ancient Laurissilva cloud forest at the highest elevations is classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In fact, 2/3rds of Madeira is conservation land. It has mountain plains, valleys, high peaks, streams, rocky coastlines, and tidal pools. The island has a unique landscape accessed by a modern roadway system of new tunnels, and the older mountain roads they replaced that wind along the hillsides.

The south coast is sunny, and home to the cultivation of bananas, sugar cane, and grapes. Quaint fishing towns rise off the coast, where small hotels and villas welcome guests. The east coast is home to the historic towns of Caniçal, Machico and Santa Cruz. The wild Ponta de São Lourenço reserve snakes out into the ocean with great hiking and impressive views. The north coast is rugged, and features small towns and great surf. Santana is known for its straw roofed homes and great hiking and Sao Vincente has a series of lava caves. Inland, the massive peaks of Pico Ruivo and Areiro make for wild valleys and cliffs, with lots of grazing sheep and sweeping views. To the west lies the massive flat mountain plain of Paul da Serra, which feels like the surface of Mars, and the crater valley of Curral das Freiras. The sunny west coast runs from the tidal pools of Porto Moniz to the cliffs on the point at Cabo Girão.

Some 30 miles from Madeira is the smaller island of Porto Santo, famed for its long sandy beach, dunes, and vineyards. Porto Santo was where Portuguese ships first landed in 1419. Today, it earns the nickname the “Golden Island” from its undeveloped beaches and features a handful of hotels. Porto Santo’s beach is said to be one of the best in Europe, and its golden magnetized sands are famous for healing sore aches and pains. A new set of spas has recently opened to feature the sands, joined by a new golf course. Dry and sunny Porto Santo gets very little rain, perfect for a relaxing beach getaway any time of the year.

The uninhabited Desertas and Selvagens Islands are southwest and south of Madeira. The Desertas Islands’ three small, volcanic islands are a nature reserve. They serve as the last refuge of the Mediterranean monk seal (Monachus monachus), the rarest seal in the world. Another 180 miles south of Madeira are the Selvagens Islands, two groups of small islands also serving as a rich nature reserve for some of the rarest plants on the planet. Ideal nesting conditions make the islands a perfect bird sanctuary. Boat trips can be arranged, but environmental laws limit visitor numbers.

The City of Funchal

“The sea on one side, the mountains on the other, and between these two majestic splendors, the city smiles like a child sleeping, safe and warm, between its parents.” – Júlio Dinis

Funchal is a bustling city that rises from the Atlantic like an amphitheatre. It boasts forts, an historic old town, well-preserved churches, inviting museums, and regionally crafted wines. It is a walkable city with a pleasant harbor and a medieval cathedral more than 500 years old. Funchal is also perpetually sunny, but when the sun goes down, it’s easy to find entertainment, fine cuisine and music in its nightclubs, restaurants, and casino. The black cliffs surrounding Funchal are dotted with world-class hotels. There is an art museum, wicker toboggan rides, wineries, an open market, seaside parks… and so much more. The Lavradores Market features the colors, aromas, flowers, fruit and fish of Madeira. On the Rua de Santa Maria, a Painted Door Project has highlighted the oldest part of the city and its historic streets. Santiago Fort is the home to the Museum of Contemporary Art. And the Madeira Story Centre offers an interactive look at the archipelago.

According to Condé Nast Traveler, the Monte Palace high above the city, is one the most beautiful botanical gardens in the world. Alongside the flowers inspired by them, the island is known for its embroidery. Unique, handmade pieces come form a team effort that includes designers, perforators and skilled embroiderers.

Wines and Hiking

Madeira is famous for the wine that bears its name and, today, is produced in a number of varieties. Funchal is the center of wine production. Madeira can be a dry table wine, a sweeter dessert wine, or a classic after-dinner drink. Its production is part of the social and economic life of the island. Each September, festivals celebrate the grape harvest. Along the warm south coast, grapes are grown on tiered terraces.

From its earliest days as a producer of wine, the island built a system of water channels, called Levadas that brought water to the vineyards. Today, they also serve as a vast network of hiking paths that run passed waterfalls and spectacular views.

Declared World Heritage in 1999, the Levadas lead to amazing scenery that includes valleys, mountains and ocean views. The most famous include: Caldeirão Verde, 25 Fontes, Risco, Balcões, and the one that goes to Pico do Arieiro from Pico Ruivo, the highest point on the island, which rises to 6,100 feet.

If you go..

Madeira is an Autonomous Region of Portugal. The archipelago has two main inhabited islands, Madeira and Porto Santo, and two groups of uninhabited islands, Desertas and Selvagens. With a total area of 310 square miles, its capital is Funchal.

Madeira has a population of 255,650, which represents 2.5% of the total Portuguese population (10.5 million). The majority of the islanders live in and around Funchal. Santa Cruz, Câmara de Lobos, and Santana are the next biggest cities.

From the United States, direct (1-stop) flights are available out of cities including Boston, New York, Newark, Providence, Philadelphia, Washington DC, Miami, and Atlanta. Azores Airlines and TAP are the main Portuguese operators flying directly and at the best rates. United, American, Delta, Norwegian or British Airways also fly to the island via connections.

Traveling from the mainland, Porto, Lisbon and Ponta Delgada airports all have non-stop flights to Funchal. And, the low-cost airlines Easyjet and Transavia also offer good deals and service.

Memphis, Tennessee, Vaughn Lowery, 360 MAGAZINE

Memphis × West Tennessee

By Shelby Barbour × Vaughn Lowery

The Tennessee Department of Tourist Development held the Memphis and West Tennessee Media tour March 19th-23rd. This trip was filled with amazing food, noteworthy experiences and monumental moments.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019 journalists arrived bright and early at the Memphis International Airport and were met by Geiger & Associate staff, and were shortly off to lunch. Lunch was held at The Beauty Shop, which is a hip spot located at the center of the Cooper-Young Entertainment District. The name of the restaurant is the theme. 1940’s beauty dryers are scattered around the salon. Along with this old-fashioned décor, the trendy restaurant also serves amazing, American cuisine. Grilled peaches with blue cheese and balsamic vinegar, herb-crusted trout, cheese grits, and succotash are just a few of the delicious bites they have. After breakfast, the groups split for afternoon activities. The journalists were able to choose between three different activities.

First day activities include taking a tour of Graceland – Home of Elvis Presley, visiting Cooper-Young Entertainment District and Overton Square, and taking a tour of the Memphis Botanic Garden.

Dinner was held at Blues City Café, located on Beale Street. Their ribs have been featured on many food channels and in Bon Appetit’s barbeque issue. Then after, having the options to go out for the night.

The following days were very similar to this one. Starting the day with a delicious breakfast, then continuing to do some fun activity. A lot of the activities include touring Memphis’ popular attractions like The Rock ‘n’ Soul Museum, the Blues Hall of Fame, Shelby Farms Park, the National Civil Rights Museum, and the Peabody Hotel; just to name a few.

Beale street is known for its music, and soul so it’s no doubt that was a must-see on this trip.

This trip was full of opportunity. Tennessee has so much culture, soul, and influence that it’s a no brainer why people fall in love with it. Although the trip mainly focused on food and sight-seeing, some history was thrown in there as well. Tours of the National Civil Rights Museum were given. The museum was established in 1991 and is located at the former Lorraine Motel, where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated. This museum offered the visitors a full immersion experience through the American civil rights movement.

When exploring Tennessee, it’s hard to not eat everything that comes into view. Luckily on this trip, it offered multiple foods. This trip was all about the food and travel destinations, so without a doubt, there was going to be some great food options. Food varied from fried chicken sandwiches to impossible burgers which are made from plant-based meats and even deep-fried oysters.

What’s a good trip, without good alcohol? Wine tasting, beer tasting, any alcohol tasting you can think of, Tennessee has it. Century Farm Winery is a family-owned and operated winery that is located right on a working farm. Journalists were able to tour the winery and enjoy a selection of handcrafted and award-winning wines. The wine wasn’t the only alcohol being tasted, good olé’ moonshine was available for taste as well. Samuel T. Bryant Distillery was a hot stop on this tour as well. Just like with the Winery, the journalist was able to have a tasting and tour at the Distillery. Samuel T Bryant Distillery tries its hardest to use locally grown produce in their products. The berries in the Blueberry Moonshine and the Blackberry Moonshine come from local farms and the corn they use comes from Madison County farms. They even use local Sorghum Molasses to make a very unique rum product.

The Memphis and West Tennessee Media Tour was filled with so much culture, inspiration, passion, and warmth. Journalists were able to put their creative skills to the test; write and visit places they’ve never been before. When traveling it’s important to try new things and always think outside the box. New foods, drinks, experiences, and great times are what make a trip unforgettable.

Memphis is definitely a place that needs to be on everyone’s travel list. It’s full of so much culture, experiences and food. Memphis is the definition of an affordable visit, foodie town with tons of music history.

Diamond Valley Lake Super Bloom

Biggest Super Bloom in Over a Decade Expected at Diamond Valley Lake Wildflower Trail Opens March 2

On the heels of record rains, officials at Diamond Valley Lake anticipate the biggest super bloom in over a decade in the coming weeks. The most jaw-dropping views will be from the Wildflower Trail, which opens March 2 and is accessible from the Diamond Valley Lake Marina.

“This is the payoff from all that rain,” said Kelly Lam, director of marketing for Basecamp Hospitality, which operates concessions at Diamond Valley Marina, Lake Hemet and 20+ parks across the western U.S. “We’re already starting to see flowers, and by mid to late March we anticipate this super boom to be way better than it has been in over 10 years. The lake is higher than I’ve ever seen it, too, and the fish are thriving, so it’s a great time to plan a trip out here.”

The seasonal Wildflower Trail, located in the Southwestern Riverside County Multi-Species Reserve protected area, and open Wednesdays through Sundays, will soon burst with color, from red Indian Paintbrush flowers and yellow Tidy Tips sunflowers to deep pink Red Maids, orange California poppies, blue arroyo lupines, purple Canterbury bells and white Forget-Me-Nots. The flowers should last through April along the hillsides of the lake trail, a 1.3-mile loop that is considered easy to moderate.

Basecamp recently made improvements to the lake for visitors to enjoy, including new, permanent marina restrooms and may soon include longer hours for approved activities in early mornings and evenings. Entry fees into the marina are $10 per car, and trail access costs $3 per person—and includes a map of the wildflowers and wildflower guide. You can also view the flowers by renting one of the bass or pontoon boats, for fishing or relaxing, at the marina. Get started at the Diamond Valley Lake Visitor Center, home to the bones of Max, the largest and most complete adult mastodon to be uncovered in the western United States. So many mastodons were found here that the area is known as “the valley of the mastodons.”

The visitor center is open weekends from 10 am to 4 pm and also features information on what it took to build three dams the size of those at Diamond Valley Lake, including videos and photos of the astoundingly large equipment used on the project.

Morro Bay Bike Ride

Public Invited to Ride across Amgen Tour of California Stage 4 Finish at the Morro Bay Bike Ride Pre-Event and Party at the Pro Cyclists Meet & Greet

Cycle through the Stage 4 Finish Line on Race Day, Meet Former Professional

American Cyclist and Author Bob Roll and other Pro Cyclists at The Siren, Volunteer and Watch the Race Front and Center, Book Race Day VIP Lodging Packages or Hotels along the Race Route

The public is invited to participate in Amgen Tour of California Stage 4 race day fun in #cyclingmecca Morro Bay. The 2019 Amgen Tour of California announced Morro Bay will host the Stage 4 Finish of the men’s race on May 15, 2019 following the scenic route the Amgen Tour took in 2017, when Peter Sagan won the sprint finish. After passing through picturesque Morro Bay State Park, where riders get their first glimpse of iconic Morro Rock, Morro Bay’s busting waterfront before sprinting uphill into downtown Morro Bay for the big finish.

“Of all sports, it is cycling that has the most beautiful stadium and this ocean front Stage 4 Finish in Morro Bay is a stunner,” according to Bob Roll, former professional American cyclist and author. “With perfect year round riding weather, the world will get its chance to experience what the locals have enjoyed for years: varied terrain, wide open roads, first class dining and drop dead views. Can’t wait to be there!”

Morro Bay Bike Ride Pre-Event: Ride Across the Amgen Stage 4 Finish Line

Join event producer RaceSLO on race day for the Morro Bay Bike Ride May 15, 2019 from 1:30 to 2:30 pm. This ride ends with a sprint through the Amgen Tour of California Stage 4 Finish line on Harbor Street! All levels are welcome to this celebratory cycle pep rally with three participation options: kid-friendly, recreational rider or seasoned cyclist. Enjoy vendors, food and beverages as the crowd awaits the professional racers to start crossing the finish around 3:40 pm. Participants receive a collectible event t-shirt and free bike valet. Ride proceeds go to local non-profit partner Bike SLO County.

Pro Cyclists Meet & Greet at Siren Rhythm & Booze

Stick around after the race and head to the FREE Bob Roll Pro Cyclists Meet & Greet Event at The Siren May 15, 2019 at 5:30 pm, produced by RaceSLO. Get some cool cycling swag and raise some cold craft pints while helping raise funds for Bike SLO County during a LIVE Auction. Enjoy live music and catch a glimpse of Amgen competitors up close and personal. The event is over 21 only and FREE, but seating is limited so you must pre-register and present a ticket at the door.

Volunteer at Amgen Tour of California Stage 4 Finish

Amgen Tour of California is a Tour de France-style cycling road race created and presented by AEG that challenges the world’s top professional cycling teams to compete along a demanding course that traverses hundreds of miles of California’s iconic highways, byways and coastlines each spring. Tour officials say the 2019 race will be the longest and most challenging in its 14-year history. Many volunteers are needed to make this event a success. You don’t have to live in Morro Bay to participate. Click here to sign up and see the race up close!

Book Lodging Along the Race Route or Amgen Tour of California VIP Packages

Book your stay at a hotel along the Amgen Tour of California route to get a front row seat as the riders pass by. Or, book a suite or waterfront room in one of the participating Morro Bay hotels and receive exclusive access into the Amgen Tour of California VIP tent filled with perks and goodies! Hospitality Passes provide exclusive access into the main VIP Hospitality Tent located adjacent to the FINISH Line. VIP Hospitality Includes:

    • Swag bag of goodies that you’ll receive upon check-in
    • Premium Viewing Location right at the finish line
    • Gourmet foods catered from local restaurants throughout the area
    • Open Bar (includes beer and wine)
    • Lounge Style Seating with closed-circuit tv viewing
  • Live Race Coverage (last two hours of the broadcast)

For additional information on hotels in Morro Bay check out our booking engine here. Recently named one of the Best Small Towns in CA by Country Living Magazine, Morro Bay offers year round mild weather, perfect for epic outdoor adventure all year long. For more information on visiting Morro Bay, go to www.morrobay.org. #multisportmecca

About Morro Bay

A true #outdoormecca, this active seaside fishing village with bustling waterfront offers a picture-perfect getaway for travelers who seek food, wine and outdoor adventures found in nature. Located along coastal Highway 1 in San Luis Obispo County just south of Big Sur, midway between Los Angeles and San Francisco, Morro Bay offers year-round activities in an unspoiled slice of California. From ocean-side golf, kayaking, sailing, hiking, fishing, surfing, biking, and bird watching, to kite flying, shopping, dining, wine bars, local craft brews and miles of unspoiled beaches, there is something for everyone.

Sitting majestically between the beach and the harbor lays the iconic and historic landmark Morro Rock, welcoming travelers from miles away as they approach Morro Bay. Located just minutes from world-renowned Hearst Castle, historic missions, breathtaking Montana de Oro State Park, and surrounded by vineyards from Paso Robles to Edna Valley, Morro Bay is a destination designed to fit any style and budget for families, couples or groups. Morro Bay also offers a myriad of year-round events including food, wine and music festivals, art fairs and car shows unique to the town. For more travel information visit www.morrobay.org or follow Morro Bay on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest.

Boardshorts with integrated bottle opener

BBO (Boardshort Bottle Opener) is a men’s swimwear line with a bottle opener attached to the inside of the pocket flap. Made from 2-way and 4-way stretch fabric, BBO shorts are durable and lightweight. Available in several different styles, the Mano and Reel styles have a plier pocket that is perfect for fishing. 

Worn by professional surfer Pancho Sullivan, the shorts are great for any kind of water sports, BBQ’s and beach days. The bottle opener is made out of Stainless Steel and will not tarnish in the water. 

The shorts are all $48 and available online at www.bboshorts.com