How to Ride the Dayton Donut Trail & Visit 7 Bakeries

Do you know about the Dayton Donut Trail?

When my dad told me that he was riding it last weekend I knew I had to get all the details to share them with you. Our family friend, Brent Devitt, runs Dayton Cycles (a site that puts together themed rides through Dayton) and the Dayton Donut Trail is one of the first featured routes.

Brent and my dad rode it together this weekend and loved it (I mean, who wouldn’t?) and now that it’s been thoroughly tested and approved it’s time to share it with the world.

So, without further ado, here’s everything you need to know to ride the Dayton Donut Trail!

 

Dayton bike trails

 

Dayton Donut Trail Stats

Distance: 16.1 miles

Time: 5 – 6 hours

Starting Point: 2nd Street Market (Webster Market)

Loop: Yes

Donut Shops Visited: 7

 

Where to Start the Dayton Donut Trail

The Dayton Donut Trail is a loop, so you can start at any of the shops on the route that’s most convenient for you. However, Brent recommends the 2nd Street Market as the start and end point for a few reasons. First, there’s parking and bathrooms, and second, there’s a bike share station as well. So, if you don’t have a bike or don’t want to lug yours through the city, don’t fear: you can still ride the Dayton Donut Trail.

 

Duck Donuts in Dayton, Ohio

 

The Dayton Donut Trail Route

Ready to hit the road? The Dayton Donut Trail will take you to the seven bakeries listed below. You can see the full route already planned out, get specific directions, and even upload it into your GPS at the Dayton Donut Cycle Ride with GPS page. Just keep in mind you’ll need the Ride with GPS free app to access it.

After you have it downloaded, you’ll be ready to go. Here’s a brief overview of the route and what you can expect on the Dayton Donut Trail…

 

Start: 2nd Street Market 0 mile mark

 

Stop 1: Evans Bakery 1.3 mile mark

Evans Bakery was opened in 1969 and ran until 2004, when the Evans family sold it. In 2011 their daughter quit her job as a civil engineer, returned to Dayton to reopen the family business, and Evans Bakery has been going strong ever since. The shop has a selection of bite sized treats for 25 to 40 cents each, and they even got first place for “Best Cinnamon Glazed Twist” during the Dayton Municipal Court Donut Day Celebration in 2016.

 

Stop 2: American Classic Donuts 7.5 mile mark

In 2018 this shop won the “Best Blueberry Donut in the Miami Valley” award during the Dayton Municipal Court Donut Day Celebration. Also, American Classic Donuts supplies donuts to nearby schools like St. Helen’s so it may just taste like your childhood as well.

 

Stop 3: Dunkin’ Donuts 7.6 mile mark

Always good to calibrate your palette with a chain donut tasting. For research of course.

 

Stop 4: Tim Horton’s 10.4 mile mark

Maybe try two chains, just to be sure.

 

Stop 5: Stan the Donut Man 10.7 mile mark

This donut shop has a classic old-school vibe, which isn’t surprising. Stan the Donut Man been open and operating in Dayton for 45 years.

 

Stop 6: Ashley’s Pastry Shop 12.6 mile mark

Ashley’s Pastry Shop is located in Oakwood and has been open since 1982. They have plenty of donuts on the menu and an array of other desserts like pastries, cookies, coffee cake, fresh baked breads and more to tempt your sweet tooth.

 

Stop 7: Duck Donuts 14.3 mile mark

Duck Donuts is one of the newest donut shops in Dayton, and also one of my favorites. Build your own donut with an array of topping choices, and then watch it get made fresh right in front of you. Is there anything in this world more heavenly than a hot donut? Plus, it’s co-owned by former UD Flyer and NBA player Chris Wright which is pretty cool as well.

 

Bonus Stop: Twist Cupcakery

If you haven’t had enough sugar yet, you can also stop for an artisanal cupcake on the Dayton Donut Trail. Twist Cupcakery is on the route from Duck Donuts to the finish and is located .6 miles before you reach the 2nd Street Market.

 

Finish: 2nd Street Market 16.1 mile mark

 

Evans Bakery in Dayton, Ohio

 

Dayton Donut Trail FAQ

Why isn’t Bill’s Donuts included on the Dayton Donut Trail?

Despite being a classic Dayton staple, Bill’s Donuts is not on the list because the location is so far out of the way. It’s possible to extend your route to add it to your Dayton Donut Trail, but it will require an extra 13 miles of cycling.

Is the Dayton Donut Trail on roads or bike trails?

Most of it takes place on roads. However, they’re often in quiet neighborhoods and some have bike lanes as well.

Does this count as exersice?

Sure, but you will probably gain weight instead of losing it.

 

American Classic Donuts in Dayton, Ohio

 

Try The Dayton Donut Trail

The Dayton Donut Trail is perfect for a weekend ride through the Gem City. Hop on your bike and pound out 16 miles, and you’ll be rewarded with 7 donuts for your efforts.

Try some of the best donuts that Dayton has to offer, support local business, and see a little more of our wonderful city as you go!

 

PS if that’s not enough exercise for you, you may also like the DIY Dayton Brewery Walking Tour to visit 6 of the 7 breweries in downtown Dayton!

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Want Amazing Instagram Pictures in Mexico? Visit These Places!

I’m not going to lie, getting magical Instagram pictures in Mexico isn’t very hard.

The country is flooded with beautiful places to explore and is just crazy photogenic no matter where you end up. Whether you’re on the beaches of the Riviera Maya, the crowded streets of Mexico City, or anywhere in between, there’s definitely some insta-worthy action happening nearby.

I spent ten weeks wandering through the country and these are my favorite spots for Instagram pictures in Mexico. Use this guide to choose the ones you like best, learn how to visit them, and then snap some awesome pics of Mexico to wow your friends with!

 

 

Izta-Popo National Park near Mexico City

Izta-Popo National Park Mexico City
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swimming with the turtles at Akumal Beach

Swimming with the Turtles Akumal Beach
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water swings at Laguna Bacalar

Water Swings Laguna Bacalar
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Rooftop pool in Playa del Carmen

Be Playa Rooftop Pool Playa del Carmen
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Taxco, Mexico

Taxco Guerrero
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Akumal Beach in Playa del Carmen

Akumal Beach Riviera Maya
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Cumbres del Ajusco National Park in Mexico City

Cumbres del Ajusco National Park Mexico City
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Taxco, Mexico at sunset

Cristo Rey Taxco
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Pozas Azules in Taxco, Mexico

Pozas Azules Taxco
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Tepoztlan Ruins in Mexico City

Tepoztlan Ruins Morelos
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Biblioteca Vasconcelos library in Mexico City

Biblioteca Vasconcelos Mexico City
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Aerial Picture of Mexico

Plane over Mexico Cancun

 

Swimming in the Choo-Ha Cenote

Choo-Ha Cenote Tulum
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View of Mexico City from Chapultepec park

Chapultepec Park Mexico City
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climbing the Coba Ruins in Tulum, Mexico

Coba Ruins Tulum
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couple on boat, catamaya sailing cruise

Catamaya Sailing Cruise Playa del Carmen
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swimming at Laguna Bacalar

Laguna Bacalar Quintana Roo
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shrimp tacos from the seafood truck in Playa del Carmen

 

 

 

Of course, you can’t forget the classics when it comes to Instagram pictures in Mexico. The country has amazing food, so tacos are a must. And no matter how short your trip to Mexico is, you’re sure to see some stray dogs as well. Maybe, if you’re lucky, you’ll get to meet some puppies too (or, stay in a hostel where the owners have a brand new one. So cute!)

I was able to spend ten weeks in Mexico so I got to see a lot of the most famous parts of the country as well as a peek at her hidden beauty. From volcanos to beaches, ruins to colonial towns, and everything in between, there are so many photogenic spots to Instagram in Mexico!

This list will give you a head start, but I know you’ll discover even more amazing places along the way.

 

PS get more travel inspiration for your trips with these 18 photos to convince you to visit Colombia and Peru. Or, get planning with our complete Mexico guide!

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Mexico vs. Colombia: Which Should You Visit?

I love Latin America.

The people, the culture, the nature, the language; all of it is amazing.  

We spent almost all of 2017 (and the beginning of 2018) traveling in Colombia, Peru, and Mexico, and I hope that we can return someday to see even more of both South and Central America.

Unfortunately, what many people have to base their opinion on when deciding where to travel in Latin America is what they see in the media.

While there certainly are places that you probably shouldn’t visit in both Mexico and Colombia if you value your life, the reality for both countries is much different than what you might expect.

So, let’s take a look at traveling in Mexico vs. Colombia to see which option might be better for you.

 

Tourist Attractions

Although I don’t feel the need to seek out every tourist attraction that a city or country has to offer, I do enjoy seeing the sites as time allows.

If there’s one thing missing for tourists in Colombia, it’s probably a wide range of true tourist attractions as compared to other countries in Latin America. Some of the most popular are…

While there are certainly other things to do, these are the ones I found that most people tend to visit.

 

the colorful streets of Guatape, Colombia

 

If tourist attractions are your thing, you won’t be disappointed in Mexico.

Some of the most popular are…

  • The beaches and islands of Quintana Roo (Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Tulum, etc.)
  • Mayan ruins like Coba, Chichen Itza, and more
  • Underground Cenotes
  • Colonial cities like Taxco, Puebla, and San Miguel de Allende
  • Laguna Bacalar
  • Boat cruises and scuba diving
  • Many national parks

I had to really limit myself on the Mexico one just because there’s so much to see. For me, their list of tourist attractions beats Colombia’s any day. 

Mexico vs. Colombia Tourist Attraction Winner: Mexico

 

Ease of Tourism

Because of the sheer volume of tourist attractions in Mexico, there are a ton of different choices for all types of travelers. Whether you want to do everything on your own or do an organized/prepaid tour, there are always options available to you.

Since Colombia is still in the earlier stages of its tourism industry, everything can be just a little bit more difficult to figure out. There isn’t always a ton of information about what to do, and there aren’t many of easy options for organized tours if that’s what you’re looking for.

Mexico vs. Colombia Ease of Tourism Winner: Mexico

 

Infrastructure

Latin America isn’t exactly known for having the easiest infrastructure to navigate, but I found Colombia and Mexico to both have pretty good infrastructure for whatever you need.

In the bigger cities, you can almost always find nice grocery stores, access to public transportation (Mexico City and Medellin both have metros), modern highways, shopping malls, taxis, Uber, and options for quality healthcare.

Mexico vs. Colombia Infrastructure Winner: Tie

 

Nature and Hiking

Both Mexico and Colombia are beautiful countries with a lot of nature to see.

However, what I found in Colombia (at least in Medellin) was that the nature was a bit difficult to access if you didn’t have a car. With that said, there are plenty of really nice places around the country for you to enjoy. Whether you visit Santa Marta, Jardin, or Salento, there’s a lot of beautiful scenery.

The main advantage that Mexico has is that the country is significantly bigger than Colombia, so there are just more options. We swam in cenotes in Tulum, spent days on the beaches of Playa del Carmen, relaxed at Laguna Bacalar, and hiked near active volcanoes in Izta-Popo National Park. Overall, the nature in Mexico is way more varied, interesting, and accessible than it is in Colombia.

Mexico vs. Colombia Nature and Hiking Winner: Mexico

 

water swings at Laguna Bacalar

 

Nightlife

Colombia is famous for their nightlife scene. No matter what city you’re in, you can find wild bars, clubs, or parties to go to. This is especially true in the cities that tourists tend to go to, Medellin and Bogota.

Poblado has the best nightlife in Colombia, but you can find one just as good in Playa del Carmen, Mexico. Additionally, Mexico City is one of the biggest cities in the world, so you can find whatever you’re looking for there as well. They also have a much better rising craft beer scene in Mexico City, which I enjoyed taste testing during our trip.

Both countries have great nightlife, but Mexico just comes out ahead on this round. 

Mexico vs. Colombia Nightlife Winner: Mexico

 

Safety

Both countries have been plagued by drug violence over the years.

However, Colombia has managed to reduce it significantly (at least anywhere that you will likely see), and there’s no question that it’s an incredibly safe country for you to visit as long as you’re smart.

On the other hand, Mexico is still fighting its war on drugs. With that said, the violence tends to be concentrated in specific areas of the country that you can easily avoid. We never felt the least bit unsafe at any point during our two months in Mexico, even while visiting a city (Taxco) in one of the states (Guerrero) that the United States has on its no travel list.

In both countries, common sense prevails. If you’re seeking drugs, prostitutes, or any other nefarious activities, all bets are off.

Mexico vs. Colombia Safety Winner: Colombia

 

Food

I love food, and it’s one of the most important things to me when I’m traveling.

There’s a lot of good Colombian food (bandeja paisa, anyone?), and there’s also quite a few different international options for you if you’re in the bigger cities. Even in the less touristy neighborhood of Envigado in Medellin, there were definitely some really good restaurants.

However, for me, Colombian food doesn’t come close to Mexican food. Being from the United States, I’ve always enjoyed Mexican food, so it was pretty great to be able to get really amazing and cheap Mexican food wherever I went. There’s also a ton of really great options for international food as well in Mexico City, which sealed the deal.

Mexico vs. Colombia Foor Winner: Mexico

 

shrimp tacos in Mexico

 

Overall Winner of Mexico vs. Colombia

There’s really no question for me when it comes down to which country I recommend visiting. The score says it all, and Mexico wins this showdown 5 to 1. Although I loved the time that I spent in Colombia, Mexico just comes out ahead.

Whether you’re a long-term traveler or someone looking for an easy and fun vacation, Mexico has it all.

 

PS still not sure which country to see? Keep reading our Colombia vs. Peru take down to explore more options in South America!

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Get a Quick Glimpse Into Portland With These 11 Photos

Visiting Portland was just a dream for me for many years. However, when my sister took a job in the city for a few months,I knew it was time to go and finally make the trip a reality.

Honestly, the city was even more amazing than I expected. There was so much great food, and the strange culture and beauty of the city permeated every corner I explored.

Of course, these can’t do it justice, but hopefully my favorite pictures from the week long trip will inspire you to plan a trip to Portland as well! Keep browsing for a glimpse into the delicious eats, beautiful scenery, and unique PNW vibe that Portland is all about.

 

The International Rose Test Garden in Portland

International Rose Test Garden

 

The redwoods in Hoyt Arboretum

The Redwoods at Hoyt Arboretum

 

Pad Thai in Portland

Pad Thai from Baan Thai Restaurant

 

Hiking in Mount Hood National Forest

Old Salmon River Trail in Mount Hood National Forest

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hiking in Mount Hood National Forest

Old Salmon River Trail in Mount Hood National Forest

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biscuit sandwich from Pine State Biscuits

The Reggie from Pine State Biscuits

 

view of the Oregon Coast at Oceanside Beach

Oceanside Beach

 

View of the Oregon Coast

Oswald State Park

 

Pittock Mansion in Portland

Pittock Mansion

 

lunch at Breitenbush Retreat

Lunch at Breitenbush Retreat

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breitenbush hot springs

Wild Deer at the Breitenbush Hot Springs

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Oregon really has it all. The amazing hikes, the beautiful beaches and coast, and of course a vibrant city with a delicious food scene and wild nightlife.

If you’ve been considering a trip to Portland, book it! Just one week was all it took for me to completely fall in love with the city.

 

PS looking for more travel inspo? These 10 Photos Will Inspire You to Visit Rocky Mountain National Park, or check out these 18 Travel Photos to Convince You to Visit Colombia and Peru. You might also enjoy these 19 Must-See Photos of the Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu or my diary recording the 19,000 ft. climb up Misti Volcano. 

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Breitenbush Review: The Clothing Optional Hot Springs in Portland

Breitenbush is a clothing optional hot spring and lodge about two hours outside of Portland. The whole wellness industry is big here, and you’ll find centers for it scattered all around the city. Most of them involve paying a set fee for a sauna and hot tub soak, massages, acupuncture, yoga or all of the above, and Breitenbush is no different.

The retreat center has a large lodge, hiking trails in the scenic Mount Hood National Forest, multiple hot springs, massages, yoga classes, a meditation sanctuary, and cabins for overnight stays all spread across their remote piece of land. It sounded so very “Portland” to me that I just had to go check it out for a day, and of course write this Breitenbush review to tell you all about it!

 

lodge at breitenbush

 

Costs and Reservation

Breitnebush offers a sliding scale of payment, which means that a day pass can cost you anywhere from $20 to $35. They’ll just ask you on the phone and you can pick what you’d like to pay. I also had to pre-order any meals I wanted for $15 each. I opted for lunch only (served from 1-2), but they also have breakfast and dinner daily.

The actual reservation process is pretty old school. It’s still not possible to make one online (but you can check availability here) so you’ll have to call during business hours to lock in your slot and pay with a card over the phone.

 

river at breitenbush

 

Getting There

Breitenbush really prides itself for being off the grid, so they have no wifi or cell service and getting there can be a little tricky. The drive is two hours from Portland, and the retreat sits just outside the tiny town of Detroit, Oregon.

When I made my reservation, Breitenbush sent multiple emails that stressed that the backroads are treacherous and if I tried to use GPS I was doomed to be lost in them forever… but that’s not the case. All you have to do to get there is plug “Detroit” into your GPS, and once you arrive you can follow the signs for a few miles until you arrive at Breitenbush. Easy.

 

What to do at Breitenbush

The most popular activity at Breitenbush is definitely soaking in the clothing optional hot springs. They have four man-made spiral pools on one side of the land, and three natural pools on the other with varying heat levels. The last one is the hottest, and also requires absolute silence.

I enjoyed soaking in the springs for a couple hours during my trip, especially when a family of five deer came and ate in the field right in front of us. It was cool to connect with the wild so closely, and I won’t deny it’s an extremely unique experience. The view from all of the springs are beautiful, but the last silent pool was definitely my favorite.

 

breitenbush hot springs

 

Because I arrived around 11:30am, I only had about an hour before it was time for the 1pm lunch in the cafeteria (or you can opt for silent eating in the library as well). I felt like I was back in school lining up and hitting the buffet, but honestly the all-vegetarian food was really good. The menu is ever changing but I thoroughly enjoyed the falafel sandwich, salad, and basil lemonade.

After lunch, I went on a short hike on the trails and then soaked the hot springs again.

Around 3:15 I decided I was done, hit the showers, and packed up to leave. However, heading out at 4 pm was a mistake because I reached Portland juuuuust in time for that rush hour traffic. I’d recommend timing your departure either earlier or later to make sure you miss it.

 

sandwich and salad for lunch at breitenbush

 

So, Would I Go Back?

Honestly… no. I really wanted to love it and feel ultra-relaxed, but the truth is I just wasn’t a huge fan.

I like wifi and meat, I suck at yoga, and I get bored in quiet places. I know there are plenty of people who are into meditation and getting unplugged to find their inner self, but the vibe just wasn’t for me. It was kind of relaxing, but by the afternoon the pools were starting to get cloudy (ew) and I was definitely ready to go after only four hours at the lodge.

If Daniel had been there though, I think I might have enjoyed it more. I’m glad I went, but I also thought $40 payment was a bit steep and think there’s other, better things to do in Portland for the price (like go for a free, easy hike in Mount Hood National Forest and then use that money on dinner, drinks, or a million other things).

 

river at breitenbush

 

Breitenbush Review

Honestly, I know that there are plenty of people who love this place and I really get why they do, but the Breitenbush retreat isn’t for everyone. It has its pros: nice mountain views, delicious food, and natural hot springs, and some cons: far from Portland, kinda pricey, and no wifi or cell service.

You all know yourself best, and know if you’d enjoy the place or not! If you’re interested, give it a try and let me know what you think!

All my love,
Di

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Old Salmon River Trail: An Easy Hike in Mount Hood National Forest

If you’re looking for an easy hike in Mount Hood National Forest, the Old Salmon River Trail is a great choice.

When my sister and I went visited Mount Hood in late March we thought we would be able to hike anywhere, but we were so wrong. The snow was still packed in on almost all of the trails! Unfortunately we were not prepared for snowshoeing or winter hiking, so we had to return to the Zig Zag Ranger Station and the trails at the start of the forest, where the snow was melted.

We asked for an easy hike in Mount Hood National Forest, and the ranger recommended Old Salmon River Trail. It’s almost two miles out and back (four miles total) and has very little incline. It’s also located in a surreal and stunning moss covered forest along the banks of the wild and rushing Old Salmon River.

This hike does NOT have views of Mount Hood, but if you’re in the park on a rainy or cloudy day and want to experience the classic PNW atmosphere, this is a great choice for any and all skill and fitness levels. The best way to get there is to just plug the “Old Salmon River Trailhead” into your GPS, or stop by the Zig Zag Ranger Station that’s just a minute or two up the road for directions.

If you’re still on the fence, check out my photos below to see why you should add this easy hike in Mount Hood National Forest to your Portland to-do list!

 

old salmon river trail, portland, oregon

 

old salmon river trail, portland, oregon

 

old salmon river trail, portland, oregon

 

old salmon river trail, portland, oregon

 

old salmon river trail, portland, oregon

 

The Old Salmon River Trail is beautiful, easy, and a great hike during the spring or fall when options in Mount Hood National Forest are limited from the snowfall. Explore the trail, enjoy the scenery, and comment below to let me know what you think!

All my love,
Di

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