Have you ever considered staying in a tiny house in Michigan? Imagine it with me. The weekend hits, and you pack your car with your coziest knit sweaters, a bottle of wine, your swimsuit, and some board games. Then, you hit the road and head up north. In Michigan, this means driving through highways lined in pine trees. When you crest a hill, a turquoise blue Great Lake stretches out before you. Finally, you arrive at your home for the weekend: A tiny wooden cabin nestled in the forest. It’s simple, but it’s all you need.
Chances are if you are traveling in Maine, you will pass through Portland, the state’s largest city. But is it a good place to stick around if you are gluten free? This was my third visit to Portland but my first in the eight years I’ve been gluten free! I have to say, the gluten free Portland Maine scene totally surpassed my expectations, and months later I still dream of some of the meals I had here.
I love exploring my home state of Michigan, which is how I found myself sitting in a vintage Ford Model A in Detroit last November. But let’s rewind – I want to introduce you all to the absolute most unique tour in Detroit: Antique Touring. If you are headed to Detroit (and I hope my love for this city can convince you to!), then you seriously need to book this tour in Detroit.
I grip the handle tightly in borrowed mittens. Through thick ice fishing boots I feel my feet wobble on the tire-treads of the sled runners. Breathe. In and out. Ahead of me five dogs pull their lines taut and stare intently at our guide, Kyle’s, sled in front of us — they’re waiting for his signal. My friend Mary sits as a rider in Kyle’s sled. But me, I’m driving my own sled. I didn’t expect to be this nervous for Michigan dog sledding. But here I am, quite literally shaking in my (giant) boots. The long list of Kyle’s instructions swivel through my head: Feet on the tire treads. One foot on the drag pedal to slow. Stomp on the claw brake to stop. Keep the dog’s lines tight. And whatever you do, don’t let go if (when) you fall.
When in Grand Rapids, Michigan, you need to stay somewhere grand. And really, in Michigan’s second biggest city, there is no better option than the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel. This historic and luxurious riverside hotel is well known among us Michiganders. Personally, I’d wandered its halls at Art Prize festivals past, or walked the skywalk that connects the Amway Grand to neighboring buildings (it’s useful in a Michigan winter… trust). But I’d never actually stayed at the Amway Grand… until our recent visit to Grand Rapids with Experience Grand Rapids!*
It was travel that introduced me to the magic of day spas. From the baths in Bath, England, to the hammams in Marrakech, I was easily converted to this type of wellness tourism. Not only do day spas give you a respite from jet lag or travel-related stress, but you get a peek into local traditions. So when my friend Amanda, who I met up with in NYC, sent me a photo of a rooftop infinity pool with views of the Manhattan skyline… I knew we had to go! Meet Sojo Spa Club, the best Korean spa in NYC, that’s well, not actually in NYC.
Gluten free in New York City? Well, you’ve come to the right place. The gluten free restaurants NYC scene is truly a mecca. Actually, NYC is the first place I traveled to when I originally had to go gluten free back in 2012. Since then, the gluten free scene has grown exponentially, just as awareness of celiac disease and gluten intolerance has grown too.
You all know by now that one of my favorite places to travel in Michigan is Traverse City, a small city located on Lake Michigan. I’ve spent years coming to Traverse City in the summer for swimming, boating, paddle boarding, farmer’s markets, and quintessential Michigan summer experiences. Turns out Traverse City is equally wonderful in the winter, though… it’s the perfect cozy destination and Cherry Tree Inn was the ideal place to escape the cold.