Thursday, October 1, 2009

San Diego Daycation- October 2009

October in San Diego is a great time to get out and explore your own backyard. With Santa Ana winds clearing the air San Diego's weather is ideal. Make sure to get outside and enjoy some of San Diego's best outdoor activities before our chilling winter (65 degrees) arrives and you have to put on a sweater. Here are a few great options to help you explore San Diego, whether on a date with a special someone or an enjoyable family day out:

1) San Diego Gondola Company-
Many San Diegans don't know that we have Venetian Gondolas in our own backyard. The San Diego Gondola Company offers gondola rides from the Coronado Loews Resort. Packages start at $85 for a one hour afternoon cruise through the Coronado Cays or $99 for a sunset cruise, these cruises include appetizers or chocolate covered strawberries and a beautiful Italian serenade. Feel free to bring your own wine or champagne for a sunset toast. For more information be sure to visit

2) Surf Lessons-
Anywhere along the coast you can be sure to find a surf school that fits your needs, from Mission Beach to Oceanside surf schools are in abundance with instructors eager to teach you how to ride the curl. So many San Diegans make this a life goal but find a hard time making it a priority. Now that the tourists are gone it is a perfect time to accomplish something new, go on learn to surf (while the water is still warm). Just google San Diego surf lessons and you can pick a company that fits your learning style best, from private lessons to group lessons, San Diego surf lessons offer everything under the sun.

3) Kayak and Bike Tours-
San Diego Bike and Kayak Tours offers great outdoor adventure packages here in your own backyard. You can choose to kayak the Seven Caves in LaJolla or bike the LaJolla Freefall down the backstreets of Mount Soledad. Check out for a full list of all tour offerings, rentals, and discounts.

Well San Diego, if that doesn't get you motivated I don't know what will. Perfect weather and numerous adventures, get out and enjoy the weather. If you would like additional Daycation options in San Diego be sure to contact

In addition: Mark you calendars for two events coming to San Diego in November

November 1, 2009 Celebrate Dia de los Muertos in Oceanside, CA at the San Luis Rey Mission from 9-4pm, $5 gets you in to enjoy all of the entertainment including mariachi bands and Aztec dancers (find out more at

November 18-22, 2009 is the San Diego Bay Food & Wine Festival, this event will feature hundreds of local restaurants and caterers along with hundreds of national and international wineries and wine makers. Events include VIP parties, cooking classes, barrel tastings, and the Grand Tasting event on Saturday the 21st. For more information and to purchase tickets be sure to visit

Vacation Destination of the Month- October 2009

The destination of the month for October 2009 is Maine. Trees changing colors and gourmet food make Maine the perfect fall destination. October brings cool and pleasant weather to the North East of the United States. Unless someone has traveled to Maine they usually do not know how wonderful the dining experiences can be in Portland, Maine. My husband and I had one of the best meals we have EVER eaten at a small restaurant in Portland called Vignola (check out We started with a wine flight and cheese platter from their immense selection of international cheeses. After the cheese we moved on to a delightful heirloom tomato salad (all locally grown of course) and then on to the main courses which are rotating based on the freshest local produce and an seasonal selections by the chef. To top it off we enjoyed a warm apple crisp with a rich Hungarian dessert wine. Overall an amazing dining experience that we would recommend to anyone searching for dining excellence. Just remember that everything in Portland closes early so make sure to get seated and order before 9:30pm. If you are in a pinch Sebago is one of the only places in downtown Portland that is open "late night" and they serve a large selection of food including a great lobster quesadilla.

For accommodations in Portland, I recommend the Pomegranate Inn, a member of the Select Registry of distinguished inns of North America. This bed and breakfast is quaint and very well decorated, each room is themed and features eclectic furnishings and brightly colored murals or wall paper in every room. The Pomegranate Inn is very cozy with only eight rooms so make sure to reserve early at where you can choose your room or suite and add on packages such as cheese plates, chocolate covered strawberries, and champagne. As if the rooms and rates were not good enough, the Inn features a gourmet breakfast for every guest of the inn with such delicacies as vegetable frittata, huevos rancheros and banana bread french toast (so yummy!). In the afternoon the inn features Intermezzo, an opportunity to meet other guests in the inn and enjoy appetizers and wine. Overall the Pomegranate Inn is a wonderful place to stay, centrally located with friendly staff and everything a tourist in Portland Maine would need.

Driving around Maine, either to the north or south of Portland you will find delightful towns with galleries, antique shops and restaurants galore. If you make it up to Camden be sure to enjoy clam chowder at Cappy's Chowder house.

If you have a few extra days be sure to book a trip on the Timberwind sailing out of the small harbor of Rockport, just south of Camden. The Schooner Timberwind is an all wooden sailing vessel built in 1931 that is now being used to give tourists and Mainers alike the experience of a lifetime. Sails range from 3-6 days so there is a schedule to fit everyone's needs. The crew is delightful and courteous, not to mention amazing at cooking on a wood burning stove, and Captain Bob is full of great stories. This is an authentic Maine excursion that should not be missed and of course it includes a true to form Maine lobster bake. Be sure to check out for the schedule and you will be booking with Becky another great staff member of the Timberwind who can answer all of your questions.

Maine has so much to offer and this blog explains just a bit of what there is to explore. If you have other Maine experiences and recommendations we would love to hear about your experiences. Please let us know what else you think should not be missed in Maine.

If you would like help booking your trip to Maine or organizing your itinerary for a trip that you have already booked please contact BellaMar Concierge, Inc. at