Paso Robles Wine Country – Domestic Travel

“Not being able to travel has been difficult but we’ve found safe and effective ways to get out, help local economies, and see the state. We wear our masks and practice social distancing. We make sure where we are going isn’t crowded and others, if anybody is around, are being safe as well. Family or personal road trips are the best way to get around right now and see local areas in your state! 

My family and I recently went to Paso Robles to enjoy the beautiful hills and wineries. We traveled to two wineries this trip and I can honestly say I have not felt safer out in public than I did at these two places. Social distancing was in full-effect and all guests were wearing masks the entire time. There were not many people on site when we were there, and those that were on the premises were quite far from us. The two wineries we visited were Justin Cellars and Daou Vineyards.

Justin Cellars is world renown and the wine options are stellar. They offer a lovely tour of the vicinity and gives you the chance to explore the vineyards. They planted the vineyards in 1981 and have been making wines for over 30 years. Scott Shirley, the current winemaker, has been making wine their for over 13 years. At the restaurant, they offer farm-to-table food options as well as a beautifully crafted and wonderfully tasting charcuterie board to pair with your Bordeaux-style wine blends. If you’re an avid fan of theirs, they have a wine society for you to join.

If you look at my personal pictures, you can see that I was staying safe as no others were even close to us! We had pretty much the patio to ourselves and the view was beautiful.


Next on our wine tour was Daou Vineyards which was also incredible! The wine tasting was amazing and social distancing was again in full effect. We had the opportunity to try their home-made olive oil as well which was unbelievable. Daou wines do a fabulous job of mixing their two cultures together with both French and Lebanese style food and wines. The brothers, who own the winery, offer wines dedicated to their Lebanese roots and French home. On top of wine, they make a wonderful olive oil based on their own personal love for their grandfather’s olive grove they used to visit as a child. Daou puts a strong emphasis on the entire wine tasting experience such as entertainment, comfort, and hospitality. Each summer they throw a gala that lasts an entire weekend with cirque-style entertainment and amazing wine and food options to share. Daou also offers a membership option for anyone wanting to join the Daou club. 

Please call us today to plan your wine tasting adventure in Paso Robles.”
Lynn Hakam
L & M Travel

Florida Keys and Key West

Duval street Florida KeysThe Florida Keys are beautiful string of tropical islands stretching about 120 miles off the southern tip of the state of Florida.
Known for their laid back vibe and activities such as fishing, diving, snorkeling.
Key West is one of the favorites which is famous for Duval street, which has many bars, restaurants and shops, not to mention spectacular sunsets at Mallory’s marina!

Bungalows at Little Palm Island
Although Key West is fun place to be, if your going to unplug and connect with your loved one, we highly recommend checking out other Keys, our favorite was Little Torch Key, its just a short 15 minute boat ride out, but feels like your a world away!!!!

Little Torch Key is a beautiful private island with a adult only bungalow type resort, called Palm Island Resort.

All Bungalows are beachfront with your own private deck with sunken hot tub, as well as your own beach fire pit.Firepits at LIttle Palm Island







This paradise island so reminded me of some islands in Fiji, so if you don’t have the funds or time to to Fiji, check our little Palm Island in Florida, you will be blown away, I seriously hated to leave this place!!!!

Sunsets in the Florida Keys

LIttle Palm IslandSince Little Palm Island is one of our luxury properties, we can offer you VIP amenities such as; chilled champagne, stocked minibar, $100 resort credit etc…… =)







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Maui “The Magic Isle”

Maui is the magic isle and second largest Hawaiian island, but with low population, making it very desirable with its diversity and attractions,Maui "The Magic Isle" - Couple walking along the beach with canoes in the foreground
there something for everyone here! From its heavenly beaches to its scenic wonders its no wonder why Maui has been voted best island several years now!

Some of our favorite areas to explore:
*Beautiful beaches- Kaanapali Beach on the west is Maui’s “famous beach” known for its powder white soft sand, and Makena Beach on the south,     known as Maui’s “Big” beach, the largest beach on Maui.
*Road to Hana- leads you through tropical rainforest, with dramatic scenery of flowing waterfalls and plunging pools, experience old HawaiiMaui "The Magic Isle" - Convertible going over a bridge on the road to Hana
*Haleakala National Park– Maui’s highest peaks 10,023 feet above sea level, morning sunrises are unforgettable
*Lahaina- Hot spot on the west, historic whalers village with shops, restaurants & marina, catch some great tours leaving from here.
*Molokini- A small island a few miles off of Maui’s southwestern coast, great for snorkelers and divers.
*Wailea- South shore of Maui, known for its world class golf courses and crescent-shaped beaches.
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Puerto Rico Honeymoon

Puerto Rico- For US citizens, no passport needed! Experience this side of the Caribbean, with their tropical rainforest, warm turquoise waters and soft yellow sand, Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico (Rich Port) is certainly abundant in natural riches.
Most visitors are attracted to the island’s beaches, from San Juan’s calmer Atlantic waters to Rincón’s ripping surf breaks, and from Culebra’s picture- perfect Flamenco Beach (rated one of the top 10 beaches in the world by the Discovery Channel) to Vieques’ nearly deserted beaches where wild horses roam, there really is sand and surf
for every type of beach bum in Puerto Rico.  One of the Caribbean’s largest islands, Puerto Rico is a land of distinct contrasts. About 75% mountainous, it contains deserts, high mountains, rich rainforests, an extensive underground cave system and many beautiful beaches.

Some of our favorite areas:
*Old San Juan- The wonderful colonial Spanish fortresses of El Morro and San Cristobal are both perched on cliffs, and most of the old city remains enclosed by a wall built in the 16th and 17th centuries. Blue cobblestone streets, intimate plazas, and colonial-style homes provide many opportunities for memorable photos.
in the northeastern Caribbean, Vieques is part of Puerto Rico, and retains strong influences from 400 years of Spanish presence in the island. Its about 8 miles east of Puerto Rico mainland and measures about 21 miles long by 4 miles wide. Home to the best Bioluminescent Bay, which welcomes night-time visitors to see this show of natural lights dancing in the water. Caused by dinoflagellates and a cluster of conditions that make their movement visible, you have to see and experience to believe!
*Condado Beach This beach also know as “La Playita del Condado” is located just east from downtown Old San Juan.  Condado Beach extends for several miles, which is lined with high-rise resorts and packed with sun worshippers. The clear waters and the white sand make it feel like a paradise island. Excellent beach for snorkeling you can find a lot of diversity at the coral reef on the area.

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United States Virgin Islands

The U.S. Virgin Islands is located in the eastern Caribbean, just 1,100 miles southeast of Miami. Surrounded by the clear blue waters of the Caribbean. United States Virgin Islands - USVI Flag
Each of the three major islands,
St. Croix, St.John and St. Thomas has a unique character all its own. The U.S. Virgin Islands is a paradise with so much more to offer than the traditional beach vacation.  Visitors wishing to immerse themselves in a profound cultural experience can enjoy historical tours, culinary encounters, artisan fairs, parades and more. Experience a cosmopolitan culture with a tropical twist.

*St. Croix– The largest of the three islands, 82 square miles, is known for its cultural diversity, lies entirely within the Caribbean Sea. Pastel buildings and charming shops characterize the historic towns of Christiansted and Frederiksted, while the local restaurants punctuate the islands culinary landscape.

*St. John- The smallest of the three islands, only 20 square miles, is known for its world-renowned beaches including Trunk Bay, Cinnamon Bay and Maho Bay. Two-thirds of St. John is a protected US national park with hilly green land and an underwater reserve.

*St. Thomas- Measuring just 32 square miles, is the most cosmopolitan of the US Virgin Islands, with sophisticated dining and tempting duty-free shopping. Charlotte Amalie is a bustling harbor town full of fine restaurants and quaint shops whil picturesques Magens Bay is ideal for a relaxing afternoon retreat.

*Buck Island- Located off the shores of St. Croix, is one of only two underwater national monuments in the U.S. and the only one occurring naturally. Snorkelers  can encounter coral reefs with a dramatic array of colors, encompassed with tropical fish and experience through the monuments 700 acres of protected national park.

*Charlotte Amalie- located on St. Thomas, is the capital and largest city in the US Virgin Islands, founded in 1666, located on the southern shore , the city is known for its Danish colonial architecture and historical importance, with a long history of pirates and is the second oldest synagogue in the Western Hemisphere.

*Water Island- Take a ferry from St. Thomas Crown Bay Marina and escape to the secluded tranquility of Water Island, often referred as the “4th virgin” Water a peaceful, quiet retreat, ideal for a quick getaway. The island has a population of less than 200 people!United States Virgin Islands - USVI Beach View

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Sonoma County Wineries

We LOVE Sonoma County Wineries! Not only because we live and grew up here, but for what its turned into, from apples to grape vines to perfect wines! A peaceful, beautiful valley full of breathtaking vineyards, majestic mountains, quiet rivers, towering redwoods all close to the pacific ocean. There are different areas in Sonoma Wine Country and over 700 wineries at last count, so choosing which ones to visit can be a little overwhelming to say the least.  No worries, we will break down the best areas and list our favorite and highly recommended wineries for you. 

There are basically four Wine Regions you should not miss! 

RUSSIAN RIVER VALLEY– This is the appellation best known for its Top- Pinot Noirs, Old Vine Zinfandels, Chardonnays, also known for Merlot, Cabernet, Sauvignon Blanc and Syrah.   The grapes, for the most part, grown and produced here in Russian River Valley.  This valley set the standards for California Wine Country back in 1983.  Because of the sunny yet cool protected coast line, Russian River area has some of the finest wines ever produced, in my humble opinion!
Here are some of our favorites & highly recommended Wineries:

Russian River Vineyards – Russian River Old Winery
Love this place! Its a very unique destination winery! Hands down, the best wine!  But don’t take my word for it.   They were just voted best wine north of the Golden Gate.   Their wines are all organic.  The winery has great prices and a friendly staff.  Stop by and meet the Winery owners, Gio & Chris, the most down to earth friendly guys who love to share their stories and wine with you!
They also have a amazing onsite Restaurant -Corks.  The restaurant, which grows it’s own organic produce, was just voted best outdoor restaurant in Sonoma County.  Seriously, this is a must when in Wine Country!
Occidental Road Cellars-
Ultra-premium wines from lands farmed by their family for four generations. The vineyard site is a rolling ridge near Occidental, with a southern aspect and spectacular views of the hills beyond, the moderate climate allows for fruit maturity with exceptional depth and balance with amazing wines, great prices.
Hook and Ladder-
On 375 acres, their vineyards produce cool climate grapes widely recognized as some of the finest in the world. They have a really quaint winery which you can go to and taste right in a old barn style room alongside the wine barrels, sometimes you get lucky and get to taste right out of the barrel!
Lynmar Winery-
Situated on a unique and picturesque site with rolling vineyards, their vines are over forty years old, 15 clones of Pinot Noir and 4 clones of Chardonnay . They also have breathtaking gardens which border the vineyards that attract beneficial insects and hummingbirds, providing a natural barrier from pests, they practice sustainable farming which lends itself to amazing wine.

DRY CREEK VALLEY– Known for its idyllic undisturbed beauty, Dry Creek Valley is home to over 9,000 acres of vineyards, with a grape growing history going back 140 years. Because of the valley a little more heated, they boast one of the best Old Vine Zinfandel in the world!  Most the wineries, at least the ones we recommend, have a commitment to land stewardship with the valley’s farming practices, they follow sustainable, organic and biodynamic practices in the vineyards.
Here are some of our favorites we recommend:
Truett-Hurst Winery-Truett-Hurst Winery
One of our favorite and most highly recommended wineries in Dry Creek area! They are located on a quiet river, complete with farm animals and gardens, bring a picnic lunch and enjoy a tasting creek-side or grab a table and enjoy the gardens! They specialize in making Zinfandel and Petite Syrah, they also produce delicious Port, this is a must stop when in Dry Creek area, love this place!
Bella Vineyards & Wine Cave-
Located on West Dry Creek Road, enjoy estate grown, award-winning Zinfandels and Rhone varietals. Explore the wine caves and enjoy the incredible serenity and breathtaking views while tasting small-production wines in their underground tasting room. Their wine tasting can be done in their quaint county barn or in their wine cave, either one is really unique and fun
Sbragia Vineyards-
The end of Dry Creek road, this winery is located on a hillside, overlooking the entire valley with sweeping views,  wine taste varieties which include Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Merlot, Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon.
Bring a picnic and enjoy wine tasting with the sunshine and vineyard views in the tasting room or request a tasting on their scenic wrap around deck!
Wilson Winery-
A small, family-owned and operated winery. Specializing in estate-grown red wines only.  Visit the tasting room with one of the finest panoramas of Dry Creek Valley, enjoy a tasting in their quaint tasting room or on the panoramic deck over looking the vineyards, very friendly, great wine, bring a picnic lunch and enjoy!

ALEXANDER VALLEY–  Located at the north end of Sonoma County, is about 22 miles long, the valley is best known for the world-famous Cabernet Sauvignon grapes that thrive from the valley floor all the way up the rolling hillsides and mountain ridges.
Taste a erray of delicious wines with a focus on Bordeaux varietals. Enjoy the historical buildings that have been beautifully restored using green building and recycling practices, a realistic feel of a historic old town. They inspire to regain its place in the community, by providing spectacular venues for social gatherings, and to promote local agricultural products, cuisine and artisanal specialties.
Hanna Winery-
Founded in 1985 by Dr. Elias Hanna, a world-renowned cardiac surgeon, eager to find a place in the country to continue the farming heritage of his upbringing. His daughter Christine has run the operations of the winery for 20 years and has has lived in  Sonoma all of her adult life. Hanna owns 600 acres of land in the Sonoma County’s Russian River Valley and Alexander Valley and the Mayacamas Mountains, the winery has evolved and blends the diversity of fruit cultivated in its four vineyard estates in unique appellations.
Alexander Valley Vineyards-
Located on Highway 128 owned since 1963 by the Wetzels family, they planted premium grape varieties, they bottled their first vintage of Cabernet Sauvignon in 1968 which was given to friends and family. In 1975 the family built a small winery , which they produced thier first wine in 1975. They now produce Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, and Merlot constitute over one-half of total production.
Clos Du Bois Winery-
After traveling France’s wine regions, founder Frank Woods returned to California inspired to marry the French style of winemaking! In 1974 their classic Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, 1980 Merlot and Sauvignon Blanc were added and early 1900’s Zinfandel release and the winery were born.

SONOMA VALLEY-Also known as The Valley of the Moon, is located in the southern portion of the county. The appellation is bordered by two mountain ranges: the Mayacamas Mountains to the east and the Sonoma Mountains to the west. This area is known for its unique terroir, with Sonoma Mountain protection from the wet and cooling  Pacific Ocean, and Sonoma Mountains to the west, that protect the valley from excessive rainfall. The cool air that does affect the region comes northward from the Los Carneros region and southward from the Santa Rosa Plain.
Deerfield Wine Cave-Wine Cave
Our favorite Wine Cave! They have the best organic fruity wine, perfectly balanced, soft tannins, low acid and cleanly made with low sulfites, they are located in the center of 23,000 square feet wine cave. You walk through the crush pad, around the fermenting tanks through beautiful Redwood portal doors into the cave. Stroll past hundreds of barrels full of wine to the center of the wine glass shaped cave and into the Grand Room.
ST. Framcis Winery-
Established in 1971 with four decades of wines that reflect the finest mountain and valley vineyards in Sonoma County. The founder, Joe Martin, fell in love with Sonoma Valley and planted 22 acres of Chardonnay and 60 acres of Merlot in Sonoma Valley. After achieving great success as a grower, Joe opened his own winery in 1979 with his business partner Lloyd Canton, thus known as St. Francis. certified as a sustainable  family-owned winery!
Landmark Vineyards-
In the heart of Sonoma, founded in 1974 in Windsor, CA and in 1989 relocated from Windsor, a town that was slowly being smothered by urban sprawl, to a spectacular piece of land at the base of Sugarloaf Mountain in the Sonoma Valley. Practicing old tradition of handcrafted wines, producing rich, balanced wines perfect for pairing with a multitude of cuisines.
Ledson Winery-

Known as the Castle Winery, this 16,000 square foot French Normandy winery originally designed as their family home, specialize in small varietal lots that reflect the genuine diversity of their select vineyards and appellations, taste Merlot, Pinot Noir, Sangiovese, Syrah, Petite

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