I hope you’ve enjoyed following along my west coast road trip these past few weeks, whether it was via Instagram, Snapchat, Youtube, or the blog. I think this is the most thorough coverage I’ve done for any of my trips. I posted twice a day every day on Instagram. I was as active on Snapchat as ever. I created a vlog for each city. I recapped each city in snapshots on my blog, and then went into it day-by-day in individual blog posts. I wanted to take this moment to do a recap because there’s a lot of content to digest, and there’s still more thoughts I have about everything.
Some things I learned:
- Do not take pictures in the morning before coffee and breakfast. Without the proper fuel, these people do not have the patience for my antics! Small talk before then is also not advisable.
- Make a decision. When someone asks for your preference, saying that you don’t care or that you will go with the flow or that you will do whatever they want to do is not helpful. It’s not just not helpful but it’s Not Helpful as in negatively helpful.
- You don’t have to do everything together. We had a list of places we wanted to hit up, which was helpful, but it wasn’t until we were on the trip that we realised we sometimes had vastly different priorities.
Another thing was that we often only really spent half or two-thirds of our day; the rest of the time was spent waiting and finding ways to kill time. Which was a shame. Carly at The College Prepster shared this awesome piece of advice in her Paris Travel Guide post that I’ll definitely put into use the next time I’m planning a trip: “Pick two big things + one medium thing per day and keep a running list of ‘bonus’ things.”
(I made a vlog for each city, including San Francisco, but I didn’t like how the San Francisco vlog turned out, so I’ve made it a little difficult to access by posting it unlisted heh… Let me know if you’d like me to link it though.)
Favourite activity // My favourite way to experience a city is by walking, so I really enjoyed walking to the Palace of Fine Arts and the Golden Gate Bridge (the Palace of Fine Arts was on the way to the Golden Gate Bridge). It was a long walk and my feet were exhausted by the time we got off the bridge, but it was definitely worth it. Another activity I enjoyed was the Tomas Saraceno exhibit at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
More popular places: Fisherman’s Wharf, Ghiradelli Square
Favourite eats // I kept wanting to return to Black Point Cafe for breakfast/brunch every morning we were in San Francisco, but we never returned because there were too many other places to hit up. They have delicious varieties of coffee (if you like sweet/milky/creamy/fancy flavours that is), the cutest latte art (I got a bear in mine!), and they’re also quite affordable. Another eat I enjoyed was my thai bubble milk tea from Plentea hehe. They serve their bubble tea in glass bottles and you get to keep them! But besides that, their milk tea and tapioca are pretty good, so it’s not just style but substance as well.
More popular eats: Mr. Holmes Bakehouse, Boba Guys
On the blog:
Favourite activities // Everything in Seattle is very close. If you pop by Melrose Avenue, you’ll find several shops and cafes, and you’ll also find a super lit Starbucks Reserve. If you pop by the Seattle Center, you’ll find several museums, my favourite of which was the Museum of Pop Culture. And whilst I didn’t visit it this time, the Chihuly Garden and Glass museum is also a worthwhile stop at the Seattle Center. The University District Streetfair is a place you can spend quite a bit of time at, but I think it’s an event that happens only one weekend of the year; we were lucky that that weekend just happened to be the weekend we were in Seattle!
More popular places: Pike Place Market
Favourite eats // If you’re looking for a dessert cafe, hit up Blank Space Cafe. If you like teriyaki or ramen, check out Moon’s Kitchen. They’re within walking distance of each other! Another cafe in Seattle that I love but didn’t pop by during this trip is Cederberg Tea House. I still think about their iced rooibos latte.
On the blog:
Favourite activities // Multnomah Falls was definitely a highlight. I hadn’t gone hiking in the longest time, and this left me craving for more! If you plan to visit Portland, the main thing to do is go on hikes. Find has many hikes as you can and go on them. That’s what I’m going to do next time.
More popular places: Powell’s Books
Favourite eats // Grassa is a restaurant that specialises in handmade pasta. My creste di gallo handmade pasta (oregon mushrooms, gorgonzola, caramelized onion, green garlic pesto, crushed walnuts) was soooo good.
More popular eats: Voodoo Doughnut
On the blog:
Can you imagine how long it takes to snap a photo for Snapchat, snap an iPhone photo for Instagram, snap a fancy camera photo for the blog, and take a video for a vlog? It felt like I was pressing the pause button on my life every few minutes. I definitely will not be doing this again for my future travels. There just wasn’t any way for me to fully immerse myself in the experience with all that going on, but I’m not sure which one or two of these I would compromise.
It’s quite difficult to do both photography and videography. Or maybe more time consuming than difficult. I’ll just have to rethink and refocus the content I produce for my Youtube channel.
By the end of the trip, I got a routine down for recording my footage. Unfortunately, I still needed to make everyone pause for me in order to take photos, but I got through that as quickly as I could, and then let everyone get back into motion and eat their food or whatever whilst I proceeded to take video recordings.
I realised why I have so many pictures of food. Because when I’m seated at a table, I’m relaxed in my chair, I can set everything down on the floor, and it’s convenient to pull out my camera, snap a photo, and then stow it away.
Another thing about vlogging is that transitions can really help you tell the story (like shots of you walking or looking out the window whilst riding in a car), which takes time and is more work than taking a photo. I’m not great about this yet.
How do vloggers make it look so natural?? I feel like I constantly have to recreate moments in order to get them on camera.
Anyways, thanks for adventuring with me and I hope you enjoyed it!