Welcome Kara to D-RAVEL! We can’t wait for you to learn more about @thekarebear and her Pacific Northwest way of life and travel experiences.

Dearest D-RAVEL Traveler,

“As a Seattle-based blogger, I’ve developed a deep care for our earth. Therefore, Mother Nature inspires everything I do. Naturally, I often am seeking outdoor adventure. Hand in had with my appreciation for nature is my dedication to living more sustainably,” says Kara.

Q: Where are you from?

A: I was born and raised in western Washington!

Q: Where have you lived?

A: I’ve lived a few different places in the greater Seattle area, where I grew up and attended college.

Q: Has any specific city been your favorite to live in?

A: Seattle is by far my favored place to live because of the mix of urban and green spaces. It’s pretty remarkable how many city parks and beaches you can find in such a large city. Some of my most loved are Discovery Park and the Washington Park Arboretum. Also, I find the energy of the city, especially downtown, so motivating! Plus, there’s tons of dog lovers with cute pups.

Q: Where’s the best place to travel in the PNW?

A: From mountains to sea there are countless scenic locations in the PNW. If you’re traveling to Washington State then you can’t pass up Mt. Rainier National Park. As the icon of the state, Mt. Rainier is the tallest mountain in the Cascades. Its park offers opportunities to see waterfalls, glaciers, old-growth trees, and a variety of wildlife! The most popular way to explore the park is through the Nisqually entrance (located about 2 hours from Seattle). From here, there are lots of spots to pull over to admire the views on your way up to Paradise. Here you will come face-to-face with the mountain herself. This an ideal spot for picnicking, hiking, and taking photos.

Q: What inspired you to create your social media platform, and what keeps you going?

A: Much of my inspiration comes from spending time in nature. So, I created my platform with the hopes of encouraging others to get outdoors! Besides providing beauty, time nature is often mentally refreshing. I hope you find peace, energy, and joy in the great outdoors.

Q: What’s your favorite thing to do while traveling? 

A: While traveling I love to look for outdoor spaces like parks and beaches that are little-known gems. It is a challenge, but also rewarding! A simple way to do this is to open Google Maps and look for the green spaces, which indicate parks. This is particularly helpful in finding green spaces near you. How has your life changed since sharing your adventures with the world?I’ve learned that SO many others enjoy nature as much as I do. They look to the outdoors and traveling for an escape from the rush of everyday life. While I like to think I have inspired some to explore more, I find myself even more inspired by the comments and conversations I have with my friends / followers.

Q: What is/was your dream destination, and what was your experience like there?

A: The Hawaiian Islands continue to be a place where dreams come true for me! I’ve visited a few times now and am constantly in awe of its tropical beauty, friendly people, and abundant wildlife. A typical day on the islands starts and ends with a swim to admire the colorful fish and sea turtles. In between, I love to hike or take drives to discover new places. No matter what, I always sleep well there because of how full my days are. Hawaii has my heart!

Q: Once COVID ends, where is your next big trip to?

A: Last month my family and I had to cancel a trip that would have covered 3 islands in Hawaii. Needless to say, that is where I am most looking forward to traveling once it is safe to do so!

Q: When traveling to a new place, what are the essential items in your bag?

A: Living sustainably is important to me, even when it comes to traveling. So, my bag contains reusable items such as water bottles (likely a Hydro Flask), straws, and sporks. Pre-Covid, I have even brought my own bowls and asked take-out restaurants to fill them instead of giving me single-use plastic ones. They certainly come in handy and significantly reduce the amount of waste I produce while traveling! Other than that, I enjoy bringing a notebook to jot down highlights from my day. This provides a sweet way to look back on memories.

Q: What piece of advice would you give a person deciding to take their first ever big adventure?

A: Research is key! Many adventurers traveled to the places you want to go, so listen to their experiences and advice. Read blogs and books. Watch YouTube videos. There’s tons of information out there, so utilize it to prepare yourself. Also, pack just enough. Plan out outfits ahead of time so that you don’t waste space carrying items you won’t end up wearing. At the end of the day, you’ll remember the place not what you were wearing anyway!

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