All posts tagged: explore

End of Summer Playlist

To help you fully soak in these delicious last languid days of Summer, we’ve put together a sun-drenched playlist full of old and new favorites for your listening and partying pleasure! Throw it on, lay back and chill out as you celebrate Labor Day Weekend with your gang! Take a moment to feel the sun on your face, dip your toes in the water & simply enjoy this great gift of being alive. Sending big love for your sunshine days! xoxo Sirens & Scoundrels   Be sure to subscribe to Sirens & Scoundrels for off-the-beaten-path L.A. happenings and epic experiences! Enter your email address on our home page & hit “SUBSCRIBE”!  Follow us on Instagram: @sirensandscoundrels Words & Playlist by Christina Huntington // Photography by Christina Huntington & Sarah Prikryl © 2019 Sirens and Scoundrels

Summer Desert Retreat ~ Harmony Vista

Every year when summer hits the city, we start hearing the call of the desert. It might not seem like the obvious destination when the thermostat reaches 90° but for us here at Sirens & Scoundrels, summer and the deep desert have become our favorite pairing for a soul-filling and soul-fueling retreat with friends. We pack up all the fresh organic summer fruit we can find, plenty of iced beverages, pool floaties and board games and head out into the hot desert days to relax and unplug at our most beloved California summering spot—Joshua Tree. Our favorite source for the perfect desert hacienda is  Joshua Desert Retreats. With nine properties spread across the east desert, we have been slowly meandering our way through each one over the years. JDR properties are much like staying at the famous Madonna Inn in San Luis Obispo where each room has its own unique theme and eventually you just want to try them all. The same goes for JDR, except here each entire house has its own theme. We …

Descanso Gardens~ Enchanted: Forest of Light 2017

Words by Christina Huntington // Photography by  Sarah Prikryl // Contributing Photography by: Gina Cholick Our favorite Winter Wonderland is back for 2017! Grab your loved ones, bundle up with a hot cup of cocoa and prepare to be totally Enchanted by light!!  Two simple white string lights illuminate the long dirt path that leads to the entrance of Descanso Gardens. Despite being sold out tonight, I find myself alone on the path with only the sound of my own footsteps as my companion in the inky dark night. I can see my breath clearer with each step I take, amazed at this simple joy that almost never happens in LA as I practice blowing clouds around me, giggling in delight. A full moon peeks through wisps of mist above, a feeling of magic fills the air—and I’ve barely left the parking lot. My fellow Sirens await at the front, all bundled up for a surprisingly chilly Los Angeles evening. We’ve been drawn here by the promise of light. Enchanting light, to be exact. Never ones to turn down an …

Best of Fall Fun Hitlist

Words by Christina Huntington // Photography by Sarah Prikryl In Southern California, we don’t measure the change of seasons in terms of sun or snow. We measure it in light. Did you catch the subtle shift in sunlight this week—all that bright yellow of Summer fading into the hazy gold of Fall? If so, you may have been filled with a strange urge to stock-pile sweaters and buy everything with a pumpkin on it. Pumpkin coffee, pumpkin pancakes, pumpkin toothpaste? Sure, throw it all in the cart! Amidst the first-week-of-Fall flurry, we here at Sirens & Scoundrels have been inundated with requests for our “Best of Fall” adventure recommendations. Lucky for you, we happen to be experts on the matter. So to get you prepped for the cozy months ahead, we present you with our “Best of Fall Fun Hitlist”…all the best of the best for getting out into the world and exploring the many gorgeous, off-the-beaten-path treasures that make Autumn in California feel so magical. So grab your list and check it twice…you won’t want to miss …

Happy Ours Ranch ~ Utah

Words by Christina Huntington // Photography by Sarah Prikryl // Contributing Photography by Gina Cholick Halfway between Zion National Park and Bryce Canyon National Park lies a little secret gem tucked away amongst the rolling green fields of Glendale, UT. Winding your way off the main highway onto a sprawling expanse of ranch land, a small dirt trail slowly circles the grounds to finally reveal the sweetest home-away-from-home a cabin lover could ever dream of. Beautifully hand-built by the family who own and run the property, Happy Ours Ranch makes all your tiny cabin fantasies come true the moment you lay eyes upon it. Quaint and cozy, this wood and tin delight has enough charm to tempt you away from ever leaving the property…even with the astonishing draw of Zion and Bryce just a short car ride away. On the hunt for the perfect pied-à-terre to kick up our feet and rest our heads during our Summer Sirens Utah Roadtrip, we knew we hit the jackpot when we stumbled across Happy Ours Ranch on VRBO.com. It was everything we could have …

Bryce Canyon ~ Utah

Words by Christina Huntington // Photography by Sarah Prikryl // Contributing Photography by Gina Cholick Deep in the heart of Utah lies a surrealist dreamland sprung to life. If Salvador Dalí painted the Grand Canyon full of drippy peach candlestick mountains all melting in the desert sun while Indiana Jones hosted an archaeological dig for extraterrestrial life at the center of it all…that pretty much sums up what Bryce Canyon National Park feels like. At once awe-inspiring, mind-blowing and really pretty trippy. We took a one-day excursion out to Bryce in the middle of our Zion adventure week to take in some new scenery and hit some new trails. An easy 2-hour drive east of Zion, Bryce is definitely the wild child amongst its sleeker Utah and Arizona canyon cousins. If the Grand Canyon is Mozart, Bryce Canyon is Bowie. Nothing to see here but mind-bending intergalactic rock ‘n roll mountainsides incarnate in nature. Upon arrival, we decided to take in the lay of the land as our first endeavor. The road into Bryce is laid out in a loop where …

Zion National Park

Words by Christina Huntington // Photography by Sarah Prikryl // Contributing Photography by Gina Cholick A couple years ago, I came across a photo of a giant bright peach of a mountainside towering over a meandering aqua river adorned with patches of bright green fluffy trees dozing under a hazy golden sunset. It seemed like something out of a dream. Or perhaps a distant memory from some other world where only peace, beauty and tranquility exist. A mythological fantasy planet that someone managed to come back to Earth with visual proof of. I recognized it somehow, though I had never seen it before. This intense feeling immediately rushed up from deep down inside my soul and commanded, “We must go to there!!” I could almost taste the gorgeous landscape on my tongue, hear it whispering in my ear. My eyes searched for the name of this biblical Eden incarnate until they landed on the word “Zion”. Of course…Zion. I had heard the tales many times from others who had made the epic journey before me but this was the first time …

Summer Road Trip Playlist!

Words by Christina Huntington // Photography by Sarah Prikryl  The dawn of May means one thing: road trip season is officially upon us! Time to make your plans and hop in the car with your nearest and dearest this summer to go explore the big wide wild open! Over the next few weeks, we’ll be sharing highlights from our epic Sirens road trip to Utah’s stunning national parks. We took in the jaw-dropping majesty of Zion and Bryce Canyon and even stayed at the world’s sweetest tiny log-and-tin cabin, Happy Ours Ranch. We’re sharing our on-the-road playlist to set the mood and soothe your soul on all your summer adventures! Car packed, wheels down…go get those tires dirty with our “Dusty Trails” playlist! MAY 2017 ~ DUSTY TRAILS // ZION And stay tuned for this month’s adventures to Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon & the Grand Canyon! Happy Trails!! xoxo, Sirens & Scoundrels FOLLOW US ON SPOTIFY FOR EASY LISTENING FROM ANY DEVICE!~ https://play.spotify.com/user/sirensandscoundrels Be sure to subscribe to Sirens & Scoundrels for unique local, travel & food adventures delivered straight to you! Enter …

The 14th Factory

Words by Christina Huntington // Photography by Sarah Prikryl  If you ever wished you could combine a haunted Halloween funhouse with a large-scale multi-media international modern art installation (minus the chainsaws and hulking guys in masks breathing down your neck), your wish has finally come true. Full of thrilling discoveries and suspense around each new darkened corner, The 14th Factory is an art-lover’s moody paradise—combining video, sound design and both static and interactive immersive environments to create an art experience truly unlike any other. Envisioned by British-born, Hong Kong-based artist Simon Birch in collaboration with global artists from China, Hong Kong, the US, the UK and Canada, The 14th Factory asks you to step inside a nondescript seemingly abandoned warehouse located in a forgotten part of Los Angeles and follow the path it leads you down…armed with little more than the promise of experiencing a Hero’s Journey. The black box entrance greets you with a brief introduction written on the walls where you are handed a map and then let loose to discover what secrets await. Funneling onto …

Travel Tales ~ Yosemite

Words & Photography by Alex M. Rice  //  Interview by Christina Huntington Known primarily as a popular summer camping destination, we’ve always been huge fans of Yosemite in winter. So when we heard that one of our favorite recent LA transplants, designer and photographer Alex Rice, was heading to our beloved National Park for a solo winter adventure, we convinced her to let us tag along…by sharing her travel tales with us! We love that Alex was inspired by our same mission to get out and make your life an adventure! So come along for the ride on our first Travel Tales ~ YOSEMITE!  HAPPY ADVENTURING!! xoxo, Sirens & Scoundrels Instead of wearing a sparkly, uncomfortable party dress and hitting the city streets of LA for the New Year, I decided to immerse myself in nature. Although I was looking forward to the new year, 2016 had some incredible memories—living with my best friend in Washington D.C., working with talented artists and traveling with my mother to Montana. But after moving from Burke, VA (a place that was familiar …

Meet the Sirens~ Our One Year Anniversary!

We have so much to celebrate! Aside from welcoming in a brand new year, we also recently rang in our one-year anniversary over here at Sirens & Scoundrels! It’s been quite a wild ride, bringing you our most beloved local, travel and food adventures every week! We are thrilled to see our readers answering the Siren call—seeking out our favorite places in your own lives. Our greatest hope is to inspire you to get out into the world in a bigger way. As Californians, we are so incredibly lucky to have all the Best of the West right at our fingertips! We can’t wait to bring you along on many more beautiful adventures this year! To celebrate our 1-Year Anniversary, we are taking a little inside look at the real Sirens behind all the adventures. We sat down for a joint interview to reflect on our favorite moments from the past year and what we are most excited to share with you in the year ahead. Thank you so much for all of your love …

New Year’s Eve 2016 Hitlist

Words by Christina Huntington // Photography by  Sarah Prikryl Well, 2016 is wrapping up with quite a bang. While many of us are still feeling the bumps and bruises of these last few months, it is as important as ever to continue to celebrate life, community and all the people we hold most dear. It’s time to send 2016 off and welcome in a brand new year. And we’ve got our top picks to ring in 2017 to match whatever mood you’re in. From roaring 20’s decadence to soul-full reflection to cozy self-care, we’ve got you covered! Whatever you get up to, take care of your self, your hearts and the hearts of all those around you. Remember, we are all in this together! Here’s to a New Year!! CELEBRATIONS ~ KCRW’s annual 1920’s-themed “Prohibition” party in Downtown’s gorgeous Union Station is always a top pick for a great NYE out in LA. Guests dress up in their Gatsby finest for a night of dancing to DJs, jazz and live bands while enjoying an open bar and …

Descanso Gardens ~ Enchanted: Forest of Light

Words by Christina Huntington // Photography by  Sarah Prikryl // Contributing Photography by: Gina Cholick Two simple white string lights illuminate the long dirt path that leads to the entrance of Descanso Gardens. Despite being sold out tonight, I find myself alone on the path with only the sound of my own footsteps as my companion in the inky dark night. I can see my breath clearer with each step I take, amazed at this simple joy that almost never happens in LA as I practice blowing clouds around me, giggling in delight. A full moon peeks through wisps of mist above, a feeling of magic fills the air—and I’ve barely left the parking lot. My fellow Sirens await at the front, all bundled up for a surprisingly chilly Los Angeles evening. We’ve been drawn here by the promise of light. Enchanting light, to be exact. Never ones to turn down an opportunity for enchantment, we dive in…ready to be immersed in some light magic. The moment we step foot inside Descanso Gardens’ “Enchanted: Forest of Light”, the world suddenly …

Jackalope ~ Joshua Desert Retreats

As the year draws to a close, the air gets a little crisper and the longing for snowy log cabins starts to set in, something else begins to call our names over here at Sirens & Scoundrels…the desert. It might not seem like the obvious choice for a winter getaway but there is something about the deep stillness of our dusty wide-open spaces that seems to push our inner “reset” buttons whenever we answer that call. The desert brings the perfect opportunity to slow down, unplug and reconnect to some delicious peace that feels heaven-sent for this time of year when we all naturally start to turn inward. So in pursuit of some “quiet nights of quiet stars”, we set out for our beloved Joshua Tree. Most Californians know Palm Springs as the haven for any mid-century enthusiast. But here on the outskirts away from it all, we uncovered a secret vintage gem to make all your Mad-Men-in-the-Desert dreams come true! Allow us to introduce you to Jackalope, one of thirteen charming desert compounds owned …

Ghost Town ~ Bodie State Historic Park, CA

A couple years ago, I started seeing photos pop up around Instagram that literally haunted me. Images of antique rooms covered in thick layers of dust, wrought iron beds with beautifully decomposing mattresses and dainty wallpaper peeling away in long layers, hats left dangling from chairs awaiting owners who will never return. Perfectly preserved decay, simultaneously frozen in time and ravaged by it. It seemed like a strange fever dream, no way it could exist in reality. Surely these were just film sets, all Hollywood smoke and mirrors built for some weird music video shoot. But as I researched, I discovered that not only was it 100% real, it was right here in our own backyard. Never able to resist a good ghost story, the Sirens packed into the Prius and headed out to investigate the truth behind one of the largest gold rush ghost towns in California and the U.S.…Bodie State Historic Park. Located off the 395 about an hour northeast of Mammoth, things start to feel strange early on as the paved road …

Sirens & Scoundrels Playlists

You can now find all of our Sirens & Scoundrels travel playlists in one place! Our new PLAYLIST page features our hand-crafted playlists for your listening pleasure! Take us along on your next road trip!! Bookmark the link to our PLAYLIST page for some awesome mood-setting jams right at your fingertips!~  https://sirensandscoundrels.com/playlists/ And be sure to follow us on Spotify for easy listening from any device! https://play.spotify.com/user/sirensandscoundrels   Words by Christina Huntington // Photography by Sarah Prikryl © 2016 Sirens and Scoundrels

The Grand Canyon ~ Arizona

If you were a kid growing up on the West Coast, pretty much everyone has a story about being packed up into the car between siblings, Mom and Dad popping in a John Denver cassette tape on repeat and making the long desert drive out to see the Grand Canyon, where you took a bunch of photos that got tucked away in an album, never to be seen again. As a native Angeleno, I somehow made it into my third decade without ever seeing our great Canyon—a strange and shocking fact to most people, including myself. I was equally shocked when last year out of nowhere, I suddenly had a burning urge to see it. It just hit deep in my soul one day, like a command. As a meditation teacher, I’ve learned to listen to these Soul Calls, even if they don’t seem to make sense. So with one adventurous friend in tow, I headed out to see what this whole Grand Canyon thing was all about—knowing it’d probably be a very different experience seeing …

Joshua Tree Escape ~ Godwin Ranch

Last week, we spotlighted our trip out to Pioneertown to see Charles Bradley & His Extraordinaires perform live at Pappy & Harriet’s Pioneertown Palace—two of our favorite things colliding in one magical place! There is something about Joshua Tree that just inevitably brings about these kinds of other-worldly experiences—and not in the Burning Man kind of way. We’re talking real-deal straight-to-your-core magic that comes from just being still with the people you love and hearing your own soul speak to you of all its dreams and longings. One thing is guaranteed: when you make that drive out to the desert…you always get your Question answered. Even if you didn’t know you have one. After experiencing The Screaming Eagle of Soul in all his soul-shakedown love-revolution glory, we packed it in for a weekend friend retreat in Joshua Tree. Whenever we head out to the desert, we love to stay with Joshua Desert Retreats. Their thirteen quaint and charming desert properties range in occupancy from 2-14 guests and are surprisingly very affordable. We love that they …

Eastern Sierras, CA

When we met up with Daniel Mansfield of The Adventure Project for our San Bernardino National Forest mountain hike last month, we arrived with one burning question in mind. Our common mission is to get people out and exploring all the amazingness the West has to offer. But Daniel’s mission is, more specifically, to get people out into the mountains. So the one thing we needed to know was…if he could choose just one place in all of California to take someone to experience the Best of the West, where would it be? Without missing a beat, his answer: The Eastern Sierras. We were a bit surprised by this, having never heard particularly much about them ourselves. Everyone knows and loves the Sequoias, Yosemite, Mammoth, Big Bear—all our resident beauties. But “Eastern Sierras” wasn’t readily rolling off the tongues of our hike-loving friends. We had to know: what was it about THESE mountains that made them stand out so far above the rest? There was only one way to answer that question. Road trip. Three weeks later, …

Free National Park Week!

Aside from this glorious pre-summer weather we’re being blessed with in Southern California, all you Mother Nature lovers out there have just been given another reason to strip down and do your sun-worshipping dance! It’s National Park Week—which means you can get into any National Park across the U.S. completely FREE this week! From Saturday April 16th – Sunday April 24th, all parks that normally charge will be waiving their entrance fees. Been wondering about that rare Death Valley superbloom? Go explore for yourself! Been yearning for the epic peaks of Yosemite? Get in the car and go before the summer crowds hit! Longing for the damp moss-covered forests of Muir Woods? Let your inner wood nymph go romp! Big bonus to all you kiddos trekking back from Weekend 1 or out to Weekend 2 of Coachella—you can enjoy free entry into Joshua Tree National Park while you’re out there! Take a break from soaking in the sounds to soak in some beautiful desert stillness. LIFE BONUS: the Lyrid Meteor Shower is also happening this …

Poppy Hunt ~ Lancaster, CA

Every spring in California, the magic moment happens. We’d heard the legend for years. Fields of neon orange flowers suddenly exploding into full Technicolor glory in every direction as far as the eye can see. Mountains, hills and every surface ablaze with fiery petals. Enough California poppies to make Dorothy forget about heading to Oz. We knew this generally happens in springtime, though we had never experienced it ourselves. With spotty reports from the park service, but a few promising Instagram updates from friends, we decided to set off on our very own poppy hunt to witness Mama Nature’s majestic springtime pageant. We packed a picnic and off we went…visions of poppy fields dancing in our heads. The Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve in Lancaster was our destination, about an hour and half up off the 5 Fwy N. We threw on some good tunes, passed the wild Martian mountains of Vasquez Rocks Park and enjoyed the wind in our hair, the sun on our skin and that thrill of freedom and adventure that always comes …