5 Christmas Photography Tips

Mackinac Island- A Michigan Paradise

This past week I had the privilege of visiting Mackinac Island during their annual Lilac Festival week. Mackinac Island is a “must-see” sight in Michigan, it is a beautiful island on Lake Huron. I have four main reasons why you might want to add this island to your next trip!

Mackinac Island- 5 reasons to visit

Horses

Lots and lots of horses. Ok, it might seem a bit obvious, but really horses are a big attraction at Mackinac Island and provide transportation for people everyday. The horses of Mackinac replace cars on the Island which makes it a quieter, more peaceful place to visit.  To get your horse fix in the island offers an array of horse-related transportation, from personal carriage rides, carriage tours, and horseback riding.

Mackinac Island

Mackinac Island

Mackinac Island

 

Biking

Lots of people go up to the Island to enjoy the eight mile loop around the Island. Lake Huron surrounds the Island and is very picturesque. Besides, you would need a good bike ride after some Mackinac Island fudge! (Wait, remember your healthy like that and don’t eat fudge.) 😉

Mackinac Island

Mackinac Island

Mackinac Island

The Grand Hotel

Probably the most famous landmark on Mackinac Island, besides Fort Mackinac, is the Grand Hotel. Built in 1886 the hotel opened in July of 1887. Back then a nightly rates could anywhere from $3 to $5 dollars! Of course that is equivalent to about $79 – $133 today. The Grand also boasts the world’s longest porch, with a 660 foot front porch that can be seen when approached from the Straits of Mackinac.

mackinac Island

Mackinac Island

Lilacs

Mackinac Island hosts the Lilac Festival every year in June. Their Marquette park is loaded with lilac bushes that blossom at this time. The lilac colors vary from light purple, white and a vary dark purple. An absolute must see if you enjoy lilacs!!

Mackinac Island

Mackinac Island

Mackinac Island

Mackinac Island

Thanks for reading, I hope you get to enjoy the Island this summer!

– Anna

 

Mackinac Island

 

5 Christmas Photography Tips

Visit Florida- 5 Places to Check Out Down South

In a recent trip down to central Florida to visit my grandparents in Zephyrhills, I got to visit and re-visit several cool places! I took tons of pictures and now would love to share them with you along with the names of a few places that I think are worth visiting!

Continue reading “Visit Florida- 5 Places to Check Out Down South”

5 Christmas Photography Tips

Georgia Aquarium

This year I went to the Georgia Aquarium for my 16th birthday! The Georgia Aquarium is the biggest aquarium in the world and is also known for it’s large tank that holds over 60 million gallons of salt water! The tank holds the Aquariums 4 whale sharks, the only whale sharks in an aquarium in the United States. I have been there before for my birthday but this year was different. I saved for two years to swim with their whale sharks on my birthday!

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Continue reading “Georgia Aquarium”

5 Christmas Photography Tips

Myrtle Beach, S.C.

Myrtle Beach, South Carolina is one of my family’s favorite vacation spots! Here are some photos from our recent visit:

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Our favorite campground to stay at in Myrtle Beach is Ocean Lakes Family Campground!

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Our campsite was only a few steps away from the beach!

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One of my coolest beach finds included the horseshoe crab pictured above!

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On our last day at the beach we hunted tirelessly for shark’s teeth! I found 4 teeth! They were my favorite thing to hunt for!

We made it a point to wake up early every morning to catch the sunrise!

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This is the sun coming up over the ocean!

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We got to go horseback riding on the beach as an early birthday present! It was so much fun!

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While at Huntington Beach State Park I got to see lots of alligators and many species of birds!

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I caught a great blue heron as he was coming in for a landing!

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I saw lots of wood storks in trees!

I loved seeing an immature yellow crowned night heron (left) and a tri-colored heron (top right). The snowy egrets (lower right) were also cool!

Other cool creatures I saw included (left to right) a blue crab, a ghost crab, and a periwinkle snail.

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Taking photos of the little sanderlings on the beach was very entertaining.

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I identified lots of terns while I was there, including the sandwich tern, royal tern, and forester’s tern.

 

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Myrtle Beach was so much fun!

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by Alexa

5 Christmas Photography Tips

Tuttle Marsh National Wildlife Refuge

Last weekend I finally got to check off a birding spot that I have been wanting to visit: Tuttle Marsh National Wildlife Refuge! Tuttle Marsh is located near Tawas City, Michigan. You have to take back roads to get to the drive. It is mostly an attraction for birders and is not well trafficked.

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I arrived in the evening and at first did not see very many birds. As dusk continued to descend more and more birds began making their appearance. I was able to identify quite a few, but others still go un-named.

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If you look hard enough in this photo you may be able to pick out a blob in the center. That is a juvenile Northern Harrier.

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These little guys are pectoral sandpipers.

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Those are my mystery ducks. Judging from the size, flatness of the back, and length of the bill I am guessing they might be green winged teals.

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These are wood ducks.

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I am guessing that this one is a greater yellowlegs.

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Belted kingfisher with great egrets in the background.

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These are all greater yellowlegs. That photo and the one below was taken through my binoculars.

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Solitary sandpiper (also the bird pictured in the very first photo)

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If you look close enough in this photo you will see a bird near the reeds. I have no idea what it is as I was unable to get a good look or photo of it.

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This was a fun place to visit and I really want to go back in the spring and maybe hit it up in the morning, which is the best time for birding.

Have a great week!

by Alexa