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As we continue our epic western trip, we chose one day to hop into an ATV for an off-roading adventure. Nicholle volunteered to drive as we head on trail to picture-perfect canyons, over a bumpy unpaved road and we even got a little wet while crossing over water and of course, we were very dusty. 







The trail ended with a small hidden walkway to Tusher Tunnel. 
This off-roading alongside the canyons was an epic addition to our adventurous trip! 

Stay tuned for our vlog! 



This year, we went to Six Flags Over Georgia's Fright Fest! This was Nicholle's first time at the Six Flags in Atlanta so Kristina was exciting to share all her favorite rides including "The Georgia Scorcher", where guests are in a stand-up position with loops; "The Goliath", the tallest ride in the park, and "The Monster Mansion", kind of an old school slow ride with a "It's a small World" from Disney feel. 

Watch our vlog for roller coaster POVs (point-of-view) and some spooky-ness over on our YouTube Channel. 

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One of the top things to do on our list for the start of the Fall season is to visit the Georgia State Fair. 
The Georgia State Fair, this year, was held at the Atlanta Motor Speedway in McDonough Georgia.
As soon as we entered, we talked to vendors, who were selling products and services but the first attraction that caught our eyes were the live butterfly feeding. 

ANIMALS

When we got up to the butterfly feeding stand, we were given paint sponges with nectar. Some butterflies are flying around and some that are just resting on a flower.  To get one a butterfly to come onto the sponges, we put our sponges right next to their mouths, and they climb the right onto the sponge, and from there you can pick up the sponge very gently, and we were able to walk around with butterfly they were very still and easy to photograph.  Feeding the butterflies was as first for the both of us and we weren't sure how their behavior was going to be, but they're very gentle and easy to be around. 
After we left the butterfly field, we stopped and went to look at some animals.
One of the coolest things is that they have a bunch of exotics animals to see and two giraffes that you can feed carrots. 
Also, they feature camel rides and a few race shows, one that we saw had pigs racing, and another featuring 
The Banana Derby", which is a monkey racing on a dog. Yes, you've read right, a monkey as the jockey and a dog as the horse. It is entertaining and a lot of fun! 


FOOD 

For dinner, we had Philly Cheese Steaks with fries loaded with ketchup and a few sweet treats. Kristina ate a caramel apple topped with peanuts and Nicholle had a candy apple with sprinkles. 
We did get some funnel cake with strawberries and fried dough,  or as Kristina calls them,  elephant ears with powdered sugar.

GAMES

What is Carnival fun without playing a few games? We played the water gun shooting game where Nicholle won victoriously, and she got to take home a rainbow 💩 plush toy!
Another fun game we tried was the Knocker Balls. These are gigantic inflatable balls that you climb into and try to knock each other over. It's so much fun that we couldn't stop screaming and laughing. This goes to show that you're never too old to have fun because we felt like kids at the playground!




Amicalola Park has multiple trails. We were excited to see the waterfall so we took that route. On the way up, we stopped at the bottom of the creek. After our quick break, we made our way up the "strenuous" stairway up to the falls. This is an easy workout but we would recommend bringing a water bottle or 3.


Although we live fairly close to Dawsonville, an awesome feature about Amicalola Park is that they have a few option for hotels to elevate the trip.
1 option is choosing their simple cabin
Another option if you are looking for more room and comfort is at the Amicalola State Park Lodge.







The "Adventure" Lodge does offer dining. We stopped by for lunch and had their buffet. After the first few bites, we couldn't help but think that the food was prepared home cooked. They had roasted chicken and pork chops as meat options, hot sides, a salad bar and a couple choices for dessert, pecan pie, and key lime pie. The dining was amazing! Lastly, nothing couldn't beat out view of the mountains.

After dining, we stopped across to sign up for our first time ever zip lining. The instructors were fun and it felt like hanging out with friends, but flying in the sky!

We will definitely be visiting Amicalola State Park again because they're so much to do!



Trip Tip #1: Expect crowds 

If you are looking for that perfect photo op, keep in mind, you may need to wait your turn near a good bundle of fully grown sunflowers. Sunflowers are so adorable for family and couple photos or in our case, best friend pics! During this visit, we were lucky to find a photographer that was willing to travel, which saved us a lot more time then how we normally take our group photos. [check out aspencierraphotography.com, @aspencierraphoto on Instagram] 

Trip Tip #2: Beware of Bees!

They're everywhere, and no, this isn't an exaggeration! 

Trip Tip #3: Bring Scissors or Garden Cutters

Don't be unprepared like us, these stalks are tough! 

Trip Tip #4: Don't wait! Sunflower fields last 2 weeks

Or in our case, a week and a half before signs of wilting. Luckily, we stayed updated on Facebook and once we heard about blooming, we decided to go in the middle of the week to ensure that the sunflowers were at their fullest. This is such a beautiful place to visit in mid-July, we are so happy to share these beautiful photos and the experience on our channel! 

CHECK OUT OUR VLOG OF OUR TIME AT THE SUNFLOWER FIELDS! 





Known as Georgia's Little Grand Canyon, Providence Canyon is also referred to as one of the seven natural wonders in the state. We decided to take a 2 hour trip from Atlanta to Lumpkin, Georgia to check out these canyons ourselves. 

Along the trail to the top of the canyons, we were given information that the canyons were actually caused by poor farming practices. although, we can forgive those farmers today. 

One interesting and unexpected feature of this trail is that we found abandoned decayed cars that look like the could be anywhere from 40 years old if not more. It almost felt like we were in a zombie apocalypse movie scene. 


Once we finally figure out the trail, we spent as much time as possible taking in the views of the canyons. Once we got went around the trail, we explored the floors of the canyon that have fun little crevices to peek into. 



Providence Canyon is a beautiful outdoor park with short mile trail options, perfect for a day trip to 10+ miles for advanced hikers. We recommend visiting during the springtime at any level!








Today, we want to talk about the Georgia Aquarium. 
The Georgia Aquarium is located in Atlanta, Georgia. It is the largest public aquarium and absolutely the most beautiful that I've ever been to. Here are some tips and tricks to ensure you get the most out of The Georgia Aquarium. 

Save $$$ on General Admission

As of June 2017, take advantage of some great discounts offers for your group.

1. Early Bird Discount

2. Purchase tickets ONLINE and receive 20% off walk-up ticket booth prices on the weekday and 10% off on the weekends. 

Nicholle and I took up this opportunity and purchased them on our phones right before we entered through the security check.
Please note that these prices are subject to changes without notice. Always make sure to check out their website for any updates. 

Professional Photographs

They do have a few staff members with large DSLR cameras walking around and/or set up in positions to take your photo. Once we went through security, we (Nicholle and I) were greeted by a camera set up on a rig facing a large screen backscreen. And of course, we always love a good photo-op. 
Here are the photos we took with the green screen:




there are photographers walking inside of the building that may be available to take your photos in case you need an extra hand. 
Here are some other amazing photos that we captured at the aquarium:


Also, if you want the professional photos to keep, you can purchase them at the kiosk and receive hard copies or go the digital way and send them straight to your email address. 

What We are Looking Forward To Next Time

Animal Interactions

Can you believe that you could get the opportunity to hang out with some cute marine animals? I would love to do this one day, especially with the dolphins! 

Swimming with The Whale Sharks

This may be way, way down the road because I have a slight fear of open water but to dive and swim with whale sharks sounds pretty epic.

Behind the Scenes Tour


For a small fee, you can check out the backstages of the action. I didn't know this was an option until I checked their site, so make sure to purchase this along with your general admission.

Some Things to Keep in Mind

During the week is a great time to go, fewer people than the weekend crowd but also keep in mind especially local schools love taking their students for field trips to the aquarium. 
Keep up with special events that are held at the aquarium. One event in particular that we are looking at is the "Sips Under the Sea", a 21+ event. The Aquarium also holds sleepover parties! How cool does that sound? 

No worries about leaving your mirrorless camera behind, they didn't give us a hard time at all about letting them in.
Get into the shows early to get a good seat! Nicholle and I opted out this visit to make it to the next destination in time but you don't need us to tell you that seats can fill up quickly
And last but not least, allow yourself to take living in the moment (if time allows you) and don't be shy taking a million selfies, everyone's doing it, and there is a lot of memories to capture with all the adorable aquarium friends. 

If you're getting hangry, go ahead and enjoy some lunch before heading to the aquarium. Last time we went there were quite a few people near the cafe. Plus, the aquarium is in a prime location in downtown Atlanta with many restaurants that are walking distances, full-service and fast food.


Before we wrap this guide up, make sure to check out our vlog at The Georgia Aquarium and come with us to see the fishes!

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"THE WORLD'S LARGEST AQUARIUM" - THE GEORGIA AQUARIUM