By John Anderson

With summer arriving Saturday and school finished on Monday, many family vacations are in order. One challenge many families face is deciding where to go during their limited vacation time. Some people return to familiar spots while others have vacation homes that limit their travel options. Personally, I seek something different each year.

A sea lion patiently waits for a handout at the open air fish market on Santa Cruz.

A sea lion patiently waits for a handout at the open air fish market on Santa Cruz.

My family has been fortunate to travel to many National Parks like Yellowstone, Bryce Canyon, and my wife’s favorite, Yosemite. We’ve also been to Ireland, Alaska, Nova Scotia, and Colorado to name a few destinations. Maine has always been a favorite of ours, and we usually spend some time in Boothbay Harbor each fall. It’s great being there on Columbus Day weekend when restaurants close as they run out of food or staff. Once, on the last night at a small restaurant, the Austrian Chef had Hasenpfeffer on the menu and it was out of this world.

We’re looking for some of our readers to share their past experiences. If you’ve been somewhere that others might enjoy, please let us know. We’d also like to publish a photo or two. Attach them to an email with a brief summary of your experience and send to janderson@auburnmassdaily.com. If we like your idea, we’ll follow up. We’d also love to hear from your school aged children, and hear what and where they like best in the summertime.

We’re not looking to get into the review business, and we don’t want to be trashing anyone or anyplace. After all, travel can be unpredictable; some things are unavoidable.  We’re just looking for fun experiences readers want to share with other readers.

Half of our group leads the way into a cave at Vicente Roca Point in their Panga.

Half of our group leads the way into a cave at Vicente Roca Point in their Panga.

 

 

I joined TripAdvisor last year after doing a boat trip that had gotten a lot of negative comments. The positive comments proved to be true, and I felt others should know of our great experience. If you do have a legitimate complaint, talk to the provider first and then use a service like TripAdvisor if you get no results. And remember, some people are just grumpy.

I hope this project works out to everyone’s benefit and we can all add to our bucket lists. This article’s photos are from April of 2013 when my wife and I travelled to the Galapagos Islands with Mark Blazis, his wife Helen, and 12 other guests. We will never forget the wildlife and the experience of snorkeling with sea turtles, rays, sea lions, penguins, and sharks. Oh, and tons of fish.

 

 

At the  beach on the Island of Iasbela, my wife and I pose with a Sea Lion who prefers the human lounger.

At the beach on the Island of Iasbela, my wife and I pose with a Sea Lion who prefers the human lounger.