"To travel is to take a journey into yourself."

Ok... so I've gotten a little off-track keeping up with weekly posts. I can't help it -- whenever I have a free moment I'm out and about, so I'm always on-the-go!  Here's a quick rundown on what I've been up to the past few weekends. I hiked Muir Woods which was absolutely incredible. I love any excuse to exercise, and being surrounded by giant redwoods made it that much more enjoyable (Tip: if you're looking to go here I would recommend going as soon as it opens since it's a huge tourist attraction!). I also hiked up Twin Peaks where I was able to see over the entire city, walked around Land's End and the Sutro baths, laid on the grass in Dolores and Golden Gate parks, walked through the Botanical Garden, and admired the murals in Balmy Alley. In between all of this, I've eaten at countless cafes and delicious bakeries. The list seriously goes on and on. However, instead of going through the details of these experiences, I'd like to share a deeper part of my experience.

I've never truly understood the importance of traveling and adventure until now. I've always had a strong desire to travel and see new places, but I always thought of myself as too much of a homebody to REALLY step out of my comfort zone. Nothing says stepping out of your comfort zone like moving to a new city for 3 months in a state you've never been to before, with people you didn't know before, and being completely immersed in the culture. And yes, the San Francisco culture is a bit like being abroad in a different country. I thought I was making a big step by picking up my life and moving two states away for college. Boy, was I wrong. This trip has really opened my eyes to so many things, but mostly my desire to continue traveling. Although I still would like to call one place home (the gypsy life isn't for me), I would like to make it a goal to prioritize seeing more of the world. Each new place I travel to, even just in California, teaches me something new and makes me appreciate life a little more.

I want to encourage everyone to step out of their comfort zone and travel to a new place they've always wanted to go. Yes, any trip is expensive and is an investment. However, you will be so much more fulfilled because of it. And if you're a college student, like me, and can't yet afford a month-long vacation in Italy, there are so many other ways to see new places! Book a road trip with friends or family and map out places to see and things to do along the way. It doesn't have to be a glamorous trip to Europe to be fulfilling. Some of my favorite memories in California, and from previous travels, have been road trips with my friends where we had a budget and made the most of what we had.

I’m definitely making it my goal continue being adventurous and finding new places to explore, even when I'll be living back in the Midwest. But, I'm definitely not done traveling. Below I've shared some images of more beautiful places I would LOVE to travel to one day. What is the one place you're dying to go to? Comment below!