The Spring Go List:  Lodi, Kauai, and Beyond

Wildflowers are popping up all over the state, and here in the Bay Area, they abound. You'll see poppies even on the freeway offramps. We hope you revel in the warmer weather.  At the same time, we are experiencing an extended ski season. If you haven't been to Tahoe, Yosemite, or the Sierras for years, make this spring the time you reach for the slopes.  New types of lessons, new lodging, and new amenities will make your trip easy-peasy.  See our story: Snow Adventures in California for more details.

For more local finds, read about our new findings in Lodi called The Accidental Lodi Tourist.  You will uncover wineries, kid museums, parks, and more.  

Sticking around Northern California this spring? Go no further than Sonoma for fabulous kiddie-day outings. Take root at the Lodge at Sonoma where your kids will love the pool, hot tub, and local parks.  See our review here

And if you haven't figured it out by now, Southwest Airlines is now flying to Hawaii. Do take advantage of any deals you can. Nature lovers will enjoy Kauai Treasures in a focused article on the island's bounty.  And in our other story, see Adventures in Kauai to learn about zipling, tubing through a sugar cane ditch, and ATV-ing through mud.  

Do you like animals?  We go llama hiking in Vail, Colorado.  Come with us on our journey, and read our article: Hoofing it with the Llamas.  

We urge you to consider some new places and new hotels in the local vicinity.  The Monterey Tides Hotel is now under Joie de Vivre family of hotels since March, and this former Best Western underwent a $12 million facelift.  Enjoy our thorough review of the property.  While in Monterey, be creative and try a never-done-before activity like paddle boarding, kayaking, or whale watching.  Bring your bicycle and jump on the bike path hugs the ocean vista. Try a restaurant on the wharf that you have always wanted to visit, but never had the time.   Drive the 17-mile dream route in Carmel.  In other words, break out of your routine, and your kids will thank you for it, especially as they get older. 

Check out our deals in the Deals page. There are lots available in San Francisco, so consider going there for the holidays.  And then look at the Calendar for this spring to try a new activity such as learning about gardening at the Kendall-Jackson Estate.

And historic hotels are looking pretty good this time of year in Mendocino. Read our review of the Little River Inn, and find out how you can enjoy a weekend up in this coastal retreat with the kids. 

BAFT contributor Donna Corwin offers up Montana as a place that can become your new favorite state.  Check out her review of Flathead Lake Lodge to see what memories you can drum up with your family.  

International travel is an adventure and education for all families. Our latest story Cuba: A Country of Contrasts is an eye-opener as the country is still very old world in many ways.  Learn about Havana and the various places you can bring the kiddos to enjoy. 

NorthBayJuly18-1.jpg Next, we go up north, and we take you to the town of Calistoga in Napa Valley. check out our latest review of things to do with the kids while in this bucolic resort town from the 1800s. Next, we hit up the Westin Napa Verasa. Check out our review here.  It's a place right in downtown Napa, and you will have access to activities, restaurants, and all you need to have a great time.

And it comes to practical matters, learn how to go green on your next vacation - Consumer Lookout. It's not that hard.

Don't miss other relevant and timely columns:
Healthy Recipe for Cacao Bites - Consumer Lookout
Alkaline water bottles - Products
Vice Cream Ice Cream Hits Stores- Products

Hope you have a carefree spring and a delightful Easter.  Be happy like my friend Joyce Kiefer pictured swinging above. May you continue building fond memories through travel!

Kathy Chin Leong
Executive Editor


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