I asked the readers of Active Outdoor Journal to share their favorite outdoor destination (so far). Here’s what they had to say…
The outdoors is such a gift. One thing all those who responded have in common: It’s hard to pick just one favorite!
You can probably relate to that! I know I can
Most managed to narrow it down to one destination, but I allowed two answers for those who just couldn’t choose 🙂
Here’s how readers like you answered the question: What’s your favorite outdoor destination and why?
I’ll start with the furthest away from my home state of Minnesota:
The Serengeti in Tanzania
Krista chose Tanzania as one of her two favorite outdoor destinations for several reasons: “The VAST number of wild animals, the African beauty and the wonderful Maasai people” (people do make a difference!)
On the other hand, it wasn’t hard at all for Karen to choose her favorite spot:
“My all-time favorite outdoor destination is, hands-down, Homer, Alaska. We went to visit our daughter and she took us to many different scenic places in Alaska. All of that was absolutely opening our eye-gates to the majestic wonder of our Father’s grand creation.
“However, after all the traveling about, our daughter drove us down the Kenai Penninsula to Homer.
“As we stopped at the scenic overlook of the Kachemak Bay and the Homer Spit, my breath was taken away at the beauty—the glacial sea-green body of water and glacier mountains in the background. Alaska will never disappoint. It should be on everyone’s bucket list!!”
San Juan Islands, Washington
In Puget Sound in northwest Washington are the San Juan Islands, one of two favorite outdoor destinations of Laura’s:
“The San Juan Islands are a Jerusalem for wildlife enthusiasts and boaters alike. I have sea kayaked the entirety of the islands and had close encounters with sea lions, seals, humpback whales and barnacles.
“Kayaking this section of Puget Sound gives you a front row seat to nature in all of its glory!”
Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona
Alison said: “My favorite outdoor destination is probably Grand Canyon National Park. It is so vast and the views are incredibly astounding. I have been there four times (different areas each time) and am planning to go back again!
“It was in Grand Canyon National Park that I discovered my love of hiking.”
Glacier National Park, Montana
Kathleen chose Glacier as her top outdoor destination. Here’s why:
“The beauty of the mountain peaks to the valleys. The seemingly endless number of trails, lakes and wildlife available to explore and enjoy. The smell. Nice campgrounds within the Park as well as inexpensive and quaint lodging within 45 minutes outside the Park.”
The Rocky Mountains, American West
Mountains were also the destination of choice for Vicki—the Rocky Mountains, specifically:
“For me it’s always the Rocky Mountains. The mountains just fill my heart and soul. I feel so close to God when I am there—His presence is always tangible to me when I go to the mountains. Not to mention the breathtaking beauty, the adventure to be had and all the fun little towns to visit.”
Isle Royale, Michigan
Laura’s other favorite outdoor destination (besides the San Juan Islands) is Isle Royale National Park:
“I love that on Isle Royale you can fish, hike, canoe, sea kayak or camp. Isle Royale boasts over 32 species of orchids, and the neo-tropical bird migrants that nest there are amazing to see if you’re a bird nerd.
“Plus, if there was ever a place to see moose or wolves for the first time, you have so many opportunities as they’re rather a “captive audience.” It is one of my favorite places in the Upper Midwest to travel and camp.”
Boundary Waters, Minnesota
The Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness made the cut for two of you: Krista and Diane. Krista chose it, along with Tanzania, “for the seclusion, serenity, and breathless beauty.”
Diane said: “My all-time favorite outdoor destination is still the Boundary Waters because of the pristine beauty and cleanliness—and the remote quietness.
“I lived and traveled in the Himalayas for 6 years. The mountains and rhododendron forests are spectacularly beautiful. But just when I think this is so remote and quiet, some Nepali runs past wearing flip flops and carrying a kerosene powered refrigerator! I like Minnesota’s wilderness better!”
Munsinger/Clemens Gardens, Minnesota
Sally’s favorite outdoor destination is a cultivated garden in an urban area, rather than a wilderness area.
(That’s a good reminder that we can and should enjoy nature and the outdoors wherever we are! We don’t always have to travel across the country or the world to find it.)
“Munsinger/Clemens Gardens along the Mississippi River in St. Cloud is a favorite one that I try to go to at least once a year. I love walking the pathways and the peacefulness of the gardens. I also love the story of Clemens Garden.”
The Gardens’ website explains that William and Virginia Clemens constructed these formal gardens one at a time. Mrs. Clemens suffered from multiple sclerosis, but was able to enjoy the beauty of the gardens from their home.
The family eventually donated the entire property with these fabulous gardens to the City of St. Cloud for everyone to enjoy.
Hopefully these gorgeous destinations gave you some ideas for future treks
You’ll also like…
- The Best Short Hikes in Glacier National Park
- Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness
- Camping at Havasu Falls in the Grand Canyon
Sharon is the founder and administrator of Active Outdoor Women. She loves getting outside in beautiful places to hike, paddle, camp, snowshoe, ski, ride—and encouraging others to come along! Besides maintaining AOW and her other blog, Twin Cities Outdoors, Sharon writes and designs websites, newsletters, blogs, emails and other marketing tools for clients.