Mike’s Road Trip “Best Of” 2010
I spent more than seven months on the road in 2010 and had some amazing experiences that I wanted to share in a classic “Best Of” list. There were a lot of worthy contenders. While I’m sorry some did not make it, I’m confident I’ve chosen the best-of-the-best. Click on any of the links below to be taken to posts, pictures and/or video of my experiences.
To all the “winners,” congratulations! Your dedication and commitment to excellence have caught the eye of this discerning travel writer. If you have not been contacted, please email me for your “Mike’s Road Trip “Best of'” icon to display on your website and social media profiles.
- Best Hotel Winner: The Davenport Hotel in downtown Spokane, Washington. This wonderfully restored hotel will make you feel like you’re in another era, but with all the modern refinements.
- Best Hotel View Winner: The Ocean Lodge in Cannon Beach, Oregon. Literally on the beach, with views of the famed “Haystack” rock(s).
- Best Overall Bed & Breakfast Winner(s): Tie…Colette’s Bed and Breakfast in Port Angeles, WA and Brewery Gulch Inn in Mendocino, CA. These two B&B’s fire on all cylinders…great accommodations, food, views…they have it all.
- Best Bed & Breakfast Property/Landscape Winner: Colette’s Bed and Breakfast in Port Angeles, WA. The outstanding gardens at Colette’s have been featured in a number of magazines.
- Best Bed & Breakfast for Romance & Privacy Winner: WildSpring Guest Habitat in Port Orford, OR. Private cabins, open-air hot tub overlooking the ocean, trails through the property for intimate strolls…nourishment for the soul.
- Best B&B Breakfast Winner: The Lady Macdonald bed and breakfast in Canmore, Alberta – Canada. Tammy (one of the innkeepers) is a scholastically trained chief…breakfast is a culinary treat.
- Best Lavish Lodge Winner: Glacier Mountain Lodge in Columbia Falls, MT. Spectacular furnishings, architecture, construction materials and accommodations make this place truly “Lavish!”
- Best Dining Experience Winner: EVOO Cooking School Dinner Show in Cannon Beach, OR. This was one of the best meals of my life and such a great and unique experience to boot.
- Best Restaurant with a View Winner: RedFish in Port Orford, OR (southern coast). In addition to an outstanding view, RedFish has equally great food and service.
- Best Fish and Chips Winner: Point Loma Seafood Company in San Diego, CA. I’m a big fish & chips fan…The Spud in Seattle held this position for most of my life, that was until Point Loma Seafood Co. entered the picture.
- Best Fast Food Burger Winner: In-N-Out Burger. Simple menu, quality ingredients, great service, AND, low prices makes In-N-Out…the BEST!
- Best Small Town Coffee Shop Winner: The Coffee Pot in Bozeman, MT.
- Best Espresso Winner:Vivace Roasteria in Seattle, WA.
- Best/Most Refined Coffee Experience Winner: LAMill Coffee in Los Angeles, CA.
- Best Grocery Store Winner: The Co-op in Bozeman, MT. Great prepared dishes, local produce and seating area.
- Best Bakery Winner: Sluys Bakery in Poulsbo, WA
- Best Hike Winner: The Chief in Squamish, B.C. – Canada
- Best Camping Spot Winner: Anywhere near Lake Powell in Page, AZ. The views, fine red sand and clear waters make this place amazing.
- Best Camping Experience Winner: On a secluded beach just east of Clallam Bay in the Olympic Peninsula area of Washington State.
- Best Backpacking Experience Winner: Mount Rainier in Washington State with my cousin Nick.
- Best Stretch of Highway Winner: Big Sur along Scenic Highway 1 in California
- Best Byway Winner: The Beartooth Highway runs between Red Lodge and Cooke City, MT
- Best Drive through a National Park Winner: Going to the Sun in Glacier National Park. As you make your way past fast-flowing blue/grey glacial rivers you begin the steep assent through precipitous overhangs for which this road is known.
- Best Rest Stop Winner: Anaconda, MT just west of I-90 on state route #1. This rest area has great architecture, views and private (very clean) stalls.
- Best Road Trip App Winner: The WHERE app. So many to choose from, but WHERE is a great all-in-one app.
- Best Place for Tires Winner: Discount Tire
- Best Gas Prices Winner: ARCO
SCENIC VIEWS CATEGORY
- Best View from a National Park Winner: Going to the Sun lookout visitors center in Glacier National Park
- Best View from a Highway Winner: Beartooth Highway in Montana
- Best Lake View Winner(s): Tie between Lake Louise and Lake Moraine in Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada
- Best Mountain Views Winner: The Superstition Mountains in the far east valley of the Phoenix Metro Area.
- Best Waterfall(s) Winner: Sol Duc Falls in the Olympic National Park – Washington State
- Best Vista Winner: Hurricane Ridge in the Olympic National Park – Washington State
- Best Beach Stroll Winner: Cannon Beach, Oregon
- Best Boardwalk Stroll Winner: Steveston in Richmond, B.C.
- Best Small Town Stroll Winner: Poulsbo, Washington
- Best River Stroll Winner: Duckabush River Trail, Olympic National Park, WA
- Best Idyllic Stroll Winner: Leavenworth, Washington
- Best Small Town Winner(s): Tie between Whitefish, Montana and Jackson “Hole,” Wyoming
- Best/Most Idyllic Town Winner: Port Gamble, Washington
- Best Smallest Town Winner: Port Orford, Oregon
- Best Small City Winner: Victoria, B.C. – Canada
- Best National Park (US) Winner: Grand Teton Nation Park in Jackson, Wyoming.
- Best National Park (CAN) Winner: Banff National Park in Alberta, Canada.
- Best State Park Winner: Hearst Castle State Park in San Simeon, California.
- Best Firework Show Winner: Butchart Gardens in Victoria, Canada. Only during the summer and only on Saturday evenings, this firework show is absolutely stunning and unique.
- Best Place for 4th of July Winner: Butte, Montana
- Best Tourist Attraction Activity Winner: Capilano Suspension Bridge Park in North Vancouver, B.C. – Canada.
- Best Botanical Garden Winner: Butchart Gardens in Victoria, B.C. – Canada
*Note: The aforementioned are my personal “Best of” for travels during 2010 and don’t necessarily represent, “The Best” of all time.