Halfway Around Paradise


As winter sets in, the temperature drops and the gas bills start to rise. For many, this means putting away your summer outfits and getting out the heavy duty jackets and waterproof boots. Right? Well, some people may not agree just yet.

For one thing, whenever people in warmer states think of winter time, they picture a fairytale like setting. One that’s filled with glittery snowflakes falling from the sky while listening to the wood crackling as they sit next to the fire. They don’t, however, picture the slippery streets and sidewalks, and the months of enduring strong winds making the roads an unsafe place.

Although winter time is filled with fun and excitement, if you’re anything like me, you admire the cold weather from afar. Although I don’t mind living in the cold weather during the winter time, I do my best to escape the freezing temperatures. However, this task proves to be easier said than done.

After the excitement of wearing big leather jackets and earmuffs fade away, find comfort knowing that you can flee the harsh winters with a vacation to a warmer destination at a low cost.

Escape to Paradise Island

Arizona. The place famously known as the “Valley of the Sun,” has a desert charm that offers plenty of no-cost fun for families and singles alike. Typically, when people think of Arizona they imagine a desert that runs on for miles on end. Beneath the desert land, this state has a wide variety of things for travelers to do no matter what time of the year it is.

Courtesy of YouTube

Courtesy of YouTube

If you’re in the Wild West, for example, the Goldfield Ghost Town is the place for you. The town is complete with rustic wooden buildings and desert landscape, giving it the “Old Western” look. The location also offers different activities like mine tours, hiking, and my personal favorite, free Goldfield Gunfighters shows on weekends.

Another popular attraction is, of course, the Arizona Capitol Museum, which was named one of the best museums to visit in Phoenix by USA Today. The museum was dedicated on February 25, 1901 and designated a museum in 1977. It also serves as a symbol of Arizona’s rich and colorful history since the museum was actually once the state capitol building where the governor’s office was located until the mid-70s.  

Not a museum person? No worries. You might find the park activities over at the Civic Space Park to be the right location for you and your family. The park alternates between a variety of different free activities that include concerts, movie screenings, and vendors, since we all love shopping and getting a chance to earn free stuff.


California. With over 39 million people living in this state, it’s hard to believe that you can run out of things to do. Aside from the activities you see on television, California, believe it or not, offers a lot of free activity for both tourists and locals. You just have to know where to look. If you find yourself in southern California during the winter season, you’ll discover that the weather’s no different from spring.

In SoCal, the sun is out, the streets are crowded, and entertainment is never too far away. San Diego in particular has many free attractions including some of the world’s best concerts (that you can check into by taking a selfie!), kitchen remodeling shows (for the HGTV crowd) and over 30 beaches open to the public. All of which are family friendly and fun. For tourists, this means getting out and walking on the beach listening to the wave’s crash against the sand and watching birds soar past you at high speeds looking for food.

Courtesy of Discover Los Angeles

Courtesy of Discover Los Angeles

Speaking of beaches, Los Angeles also has a popular beach location that attracts people from all over called Venice Beach, which has live entertainment by street artist, vendors, and skaters. The environment is breathtaking and I encourage everyone who visits Southern California to go and experience. The street performers, for example, come from all over to show off their amazing abilities that include dancing, singing, and free running (people who flip over objects).

Don’t forget to go and see the spacecraft that has literally been to the moon and back. The California Science Center has spacecraft on display that have flown with Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo missions. The free exhibit also tells of life science and human evolution over time. The attraction is worth seeing, and might even inspire your little ones to try and become astronauts themselves.

About the Author:

Cody Hill loves exploring the wilderness, and traveling whenever he can. If you can’t find him online, you might be able to catch him watching baseball (Go Cubs), or out hiking.

Thank you for taking time out of your day to read my article. I would like to know, however, what are some other places you would recommend to travelers visiting Arizona, or California? Feel free to leave a comment.

1 Comment

  1. Not really a ghost town but this was an enjoyable stop. Lots to see just wandering around and there is a gunfight in the street about every hour. Restaurants, tours and shopping. What more do you need in a tourist stop.

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