Image from http://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/holidaytypeshub/article-620054/Here-I-Coe-wilds.html
For my Sustainability, Society, and You course we were asked to think of landscapes that we feel are the most beautiful. I have two, the very specific Glen Coe, and Northern California beaches.
Glen Coe, in the Scottish Highlands, is stunning. The colors vary depending on the time of year you visit, and the various greens of the hills are velvety and sumptuous and when the light fades those hills turn a majestic purple. Water glistens, heather blooms, and the peace that flows through the valleys invades every sense. It has a specific smell, almost minty, definitely woodsy and fresh, and the quiet (even with tourists) is incredibly refresing. When I went there was a bagpiper standing by a hillside, lending to Glen Coe an almost surreal atmosphere (yes, I realize he was a cheesy tourist attraction), one in which you could leave the bustling city of Edinburgh (which I also love) drive for a bit, and journey back in time to a pristine landscape, one that has been preserved and untouched. I felt I was home and its peaceful energy felt like an embrace.
I also love the raucous nature of Northern California beaches. I’m from the San Francisco Bay Area and I grew up driving up and down Highway 1, one of the most beautiful drive in the world.
We are very blessed in California. We have mountains, and forests, beaches, lakes, snow, sun, desert, and everything in between. But it’s the beaches that are my favorite places to go. The salty smell, the soft sand under my feet, and the roar of the waves all bring back both childhood memories and joy at infinite beauty. As you look out over the crashing waves you fully understand how vast the ocean is and it might be a cliche’ but you really do understand how insignificant you really are. The kaleidoscope of blue and green water is not found anywhere else, and often you can see sea lions, otters, and even whales.