Category

Pets & Wildlife

Featured
in Pets & Wildlife

Santa Clara River Estuary: A Hidden Beach Bird PartyFeatured

At the Ventura Harbor Village, flocks of tourists pick through shops selling clunking bamboo chimes and fish-shaped ice cream cones. On the opposite side of Spinnaker Drive, surfers bob on the ocean’s surface waiting for the perfect set. However, a third unseen group gathers along Spinnaker – floating, eating and soaking up this seaside retreat. Just 400 yards from popular beach Surfer’s Knoll sits the Santa Clara River Estuary, a nature preserve where almost 280 species of birds have been observed.  The Santa Clara River Estuary is tucked along the Ventura coastline — less than three miles from Highway 101. Unknown to most spreading out their beach blankets, sits one of the richest bird watching environments in Southern California. And perhaps that is a good thing. An easy five-minute walk away is the protected habitat of the Western Snowy Plover, a small shorebird who nests in the sand above the high tide line. Once parked, follow the beach to the left at the shoreline (so as not to accidentally roam through a plover nest), past the signs and the dunes scraggly with invasive ice plants. The coastal playground evolves into habitat as bits of dried reeds and lost feathers litter…

Continue reading
Featured
in Pets & Wildlife, Sports & Adventures

Find your Zen in one of these Southern California GardensFeatured

Wildfires, the pandemic lingering, nonstop traffic…the overall state of the world can feel anxiety producing. Take back your mental sanity by unplugging and spending time enjoying the benefits of one of these healing garden refuges. Breathe in the surroundings and exhale out blissful sentiments for your overall health and peace of mind.   Lotusland in Montecito This 37-acre botanical paradise in Montecito boasts 25 different gardens with rare cycads, cacti, palms, and euphorbias. Waltz around this horticulture nirvana through a Japanese garden, a rose garden, an insectary garden, and a shade palm garden where you can immerse yourself in bromeliads, succulents, and silvery blue-grey foliage. Tropical exotic blooms overhead, brightly colored seed explosions down below, pools with massive clam shells as water features, odd-looking worn statues from France, and symmetrical carved leaves are all part of the fantastical plot of land. Madame Ganna Walska and her sixth husband purchased the estate in 1941. She spent 43 years cultivating the plant utopia until her death at age 97. Book in advance for two hours of exploration.  Sunnylands in Rancho Mirage The former Annenberg estate welcomed presidents and royalty since the 1960’s thanks to publisher billionaire magnate Walter Annenberg, who created TV Guide,…

Continue reading
Featured
in Pets & Wildlife, SoCal Trends, Sports & Adventures, Things To Do

GlampingFeatured

Gotta be honest: We’re not campers. Two small Jewish women from the city go camping sounds like the start of a joke or the end of a serial killing spree. I know, I know, stereotypes. But in this instance, they’re true. We don’t own a tent, or camp stove, or camping, well, anything, unless sleeping bags and hiking boots count. That said, one of us is otherwise a fan of waking up surrounded by nature and the other is a fan of comfortable accommodations that don’t require set up or clean up and allow the dog. In other words, glamping – glamorous + camping – was invented for semi-outdoorsy families like ours. Especially when it’s less than two hours from home, in southern California wine country, and surrounded by cute towns filled with shops we can meander during some seriously hot afternoons. We – that’s me, my 18-year-old daughter and our 12-pound pup – found our way easily from Los Angeles to Eco-Camps’ glampsite in Warner Springs, maybe 30 minutes southeast of Temecula, entered the combination to the lock on the gate to the property, parked the car, and hauled our luggage (I won’t embarrass myself by using the word…

Continue reading
Featured
in Featured, Pets & Wildlife, Things To Do

Camping With Your KiddosFeatured

By Maria del Cisne Vital   Camping is a great way to teach your kids the importance of the outdoors and to spend some quality time together. Ditch the technology, take in your surroundings, and become one with nature at these kid-friendly SoCal camping spots:   Black Rock Campground in Joshua Tree National Park One of two camping sites that can be reserved at Joshua Tree, Black Rock is a great place for family camping because of its beauty and accessibility. It is located on the edge of the park, and it lies within one of the thickest Joshua tree forests. It is ideal for RV camping, but also has amenities (showers and laundry) within five miles. Keep your eyes peeled for the elusive desert tortoise and other desert creatures! Waking up for an early morning hike will be a truly breath-taking experience for the whole family as you watch the sun rise over the desert. https://www.recreation.gov/camping/black-rock-campground/r/campgroundDetails.do?contractCode=NRSO&parkId=70953   Crystal Cove State Park’s Moro Campground Who needs a white noise app when you can get the real thing at Moro Campground? Fall asleep and wake up to the beautiful sounds of the Pacific at this campground. You can enjoy the beauty…

Continue reading
Related posts
in Things To Do
8 Steps to Get Your Mojo Back This Summer
August 8, 2018
in Pets & Wildlife, Things To Do, Uncategorized
The Best Hikes in Los Angeles
July 27, 2018
in Featured, Things To Do
Father’s Day Fun
June 14, 2018
Featured
in Featured, Pets & Wildlife, Sports & Adventures, Things To Do

Take To The Great Outdoors With Winter Whale Watching and Excursions To Channel Islands National ParkFeatured

Island Packers, the official boat concessionaire to Channel Islands National Park, with daily departures to the Channel Islands from Ventura Harbor Village, has now re-opened!  www.islandpackers.com.  A winter Whale Watch is a perfect way to gather with family and friends to view Pacific Gray whales migrating through the Santa Barbara Channel from their feeding grounds in Alaska to their breeding grounds in Baja. Pacific Gray Whales are normally sighted in the National Marine Sanctuary near Anacapa and Santa Cruz Island beginning in late December and extending through middle of April 14, 2021. This mammoth migration of over 20,000 whales and 6,000 miles twice a year remains a major attraction in Southern California.  Sightings of the southern migration began in December for Pacific Gray Whales. Island Packers has also witnessed humpback whales, fin whales, and occasionally orcas. Common dolphin that frolic with the boat and ride the bow can be enjoyed by passengers year-round. For our most recent sightings visit www.islandpackers.com or find us on Twitter. The half-day Winter Whale Watch Cruise provides stunning views of the Ventura coastline or the Channel Islands; depending on where the whales may be sighted.  Winter Whale Watch excursions are available now thru mid-April from Ventura and/ or Channel Islands Harbor departing at 9:30 a.m. and/or 1:30 p.m.  Rates for half-day trips are $40 for adults, $36 for…

Continue reading
in Pets & Wildlife, Things To Do, Uncategorized

Farm Day

Over 20 Ventura County farms, ranches, nurseries and other agricultural operations, from organic to conventional, row crops to orchards, will open their doors to the public during the 7th Annual Ventura County Farm Day. On Saturday, November 9, visitors will experience a day of agricultural activities and meet the farmers who grow the food they eat. Farm Day is free to attend. Tour hours are from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Farm Day visitors can go online to select three or four agricultural operations (some require reservations) and then drive themselves to each location. Every stop is unique, but all farms feature a number of activities such as educational tours and free produce sampling. Farm Day will officially kick off Thursday, November 7 with a “Farm-to-Table” barbecue at Old Creek Ranch Winery in Ventura. From 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., the public can enjoy live music and a farm-fresh barbeque and pig roast catered by Craft Woodfired Catering. The menu features meat and vegetarian options, artisanal cheeses, locally-sourced marmalades and an Old Creek Ranch wine flight. Ventura County Farm Day is organized by the nonprofit Students for Eco-Education and Agriculture (SEEAG). SEEAG’s mission is to help children understand the farm origins of their food through classroom agricultural…

Continue reading
Close