Z: Zion National Park

A2Z-BADGE-0002015-LifeisGood-230_zps660c38a0Shangri-La Days shares peaceful and relaxing places to visit, rejuvenate and restore your soul. Follow us and the posts will go directly to your inbox. Don’t worry, after April we go back to our once a week schedule, so your inbox won’t explode.

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Z: Zion National Park

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAUtah’s First National Park

Follow the paths where ancient native people and pioneers walked. Gaze up at massive sandstone cliffs of cream, pink, and red that soar into a brilliant blue sky. Experience wilderness in a narrow slot canyon. Zion’s unique array of plants and animals will enchant you as you absorb the rich history of the past and enjoy the excitement of present day adventures.

With elevations ranging from 3,600 to 8,700 feet, Zion National Park has a diversity of plant communities, supporting more than 900 species of plants. Changing elevations, temperature ranges, and varying amounts of sun and water, as well as species from the Colorado Plateau, Basin and Range, and Mojave Desert, all create a mosaic of habitats within the park.

When visiting Zion, each time you look up and see any of the 288 species found on the park’s bird list, take heart in knowing that by being here you help them thrive. You offer your highest and best to the idea that all of nature contained in our 232 square mile sanctuary, and beyond, is worthy of saving. May the wandering spirit of all our avian friends inspire in you a new understanding of what it means to fly free.

Do you have a favorite place where you like to go retreat and find peace? Where is it at? Leave us a comment about your favorite sanctuary location. We’d love to know!

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Y: Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area

A2Z-BADGE-0002015-LifeisGood-230_zps660c38a0Shangri-La Days shares peaceful and relaxing places to visit, rejuvenate and restore your soul. Follow us and the posts will go directly to your inbox. Don’t worry, after April we go back to our once a week schedule, so your inbox won’t explode.

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Y: Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area

yoloYolo Bypass Wildlife Area is the perfect spot to escape urban life in nearby Sacramento and Davis. Bird watchers, hunters and schoolchildren all come to the area to experience wildlife up-close in nature.

Located in the heart of the Pacific Flyway, Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area’s approximately 16,600 acres is a haven for fish, waterfowl, shorebirds and wading birds, neotropical migratory birds, raptors, invertebrates, snakes, turtles, toads, and bats. Vegetation community types include managed seasonal and permanent wetland, natural seasonal wetland, natural perennial wetland, and riparian woodland.

https://www.wildlife.ca.gov/Lands/Places-to-Visit/Yolo-Bypass-WA

X: X Marks the Spot – any spot

A2Z-BADGE-0002015-LifeisGood-230_zps660c38a0Shangri-La Days shares peaceful and relaxing places to visit, rejuvenate and restore your soul. Follow us and the posts will go directly to your inbox. Don’t worry, after April we go back to our once a week schedule, so your inbox won’t explode.

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X: X Marks the Spot – any spot

oasis1Nature soothes us and nourishes our soul. We can fill our life with peace and serenity without driving hours and fighting traffic to reach a place of beauty. We don’t need a day or a weekend to visit these out of the way spots.

Your Shangri-La space is wherever you find it.

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  • It may be a tucked away corner in your backyard.
  • It could be on your own back patio, sitting in a lounge chair reading a good book, or watching hummingbirds come drink at a feeder.
  • Maybe a solitary park bench under a shady tree in the parking lot at work is the closest place you can retreat to.
  • A small pocket park in the midst of development may be your get away space.
  • It could even be an hour spent wandering the garden department at your local hardware store.

oasis3Don’t wait for the perfect opportunity. Don’t wait until you have the spare time, or have the gas money, or whatever it is that keeps us from perusing a small spot of peace in an otherwise hectic life.

oasis5X’ marks the spot, any spot. Find your oasis wherever you can. Where is your special spot to find serenity?

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V: Valley Nature Center

A2Z-BADGE-0002015-LifeisGood-230_zps660c38a0Shangri-La Days shares peaceful and relaxing places to visit, rejuvenate and restore your soul. Follow us and the posts will go directly to your inbox. Don’t worry, after April we go back to our once a week schedule, so your inbox won’t explode.

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V: Valley Nature Center

Vvalley nature centeralley Nature Center is a 6-acre park and nature preserve in Weslaco, Texas. Its focus is environmental education about the natural history of the Lower Rio Grande Valley.

The center’s activities include a summer camp, birding trips, natural history classes and lectures. There are programs for individuals, children and adults.

Secret Garden in the Heart of the Lower Rio Grande Valley Mission “To provide educational opportunities and to foster appreciation and understanding of the Lower Rio Grande Valley’s unique natural communities of flora and fauna.”

Link to Valley Nature Center

For the most information and a slew of terrific pictures, check out this web page by Jan Dauphin

Do you have a favorite place where you like to go retreat and find peace? Where is it at? Leave us a comment about your favorite sanctuary location. We’d love to know!

T: Terra Studios

A2Z-BADGE-0002015-LifeisGood-230_zps660c38a0T: Terra Studios, Fayetteville, Arkansas

This is a repost of a prior blog. (March 6, 2015) Every word still stands true, this is my very favorite place in the world, other than a beach. I wish I lived closer so I could visit every week!

terra1Where’s my Shangri-La? If it’s not at Laguna Beach, or any other craggy, rocky cove overlooking an ocean visit, my next favorite place to be is at TERRA STUDIOS in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

This ten acre wonderland is full of delightful nooks and crannies. Peaceful and serene, the land is filled with whimsical sculptures showcasing the glass art and pottery done on the premises. Sculpture gardens are outfitted with fantasy creatures, murals, fountains, and interactive art. Benches, picnic tables, and plenty of seating places are scattered around the grounds, giving visitors a place to sit, relax, and reflect.

A favorite spot, where I usually catch my dad when we’re visiting Terra Studios, is on the swings under a shady arbor, overlooking the lake.

terra3A full size traditional 7-channel labyrinth was installed in 2003. The founder’s grandsons worked hard to construct the labyrinth using huge slabs of Wedington Limestone.

When you’ve had your fill of the serene outdoor experience (I doubt it’s possible), wander indoors where you can catch glassblowing demonstrations, with glass artists creating the Bluebirds of Happiness that Terra Studios is known for. Glassblowing demonstrations are from noon to 4 p.m., March 15th through the first weekend in January.

Pottery demonstrations frequently take place in another building . Several galleries exhibit pottery and have handcrafted items from many different artists available for sale. I think of Terra Studios every morning when I drink my orange juice from the delightful hand crafted mug with dragonflies careening around the sides.

Classes, tours, musical performances and other events round out the offerings. Check their web site for specific information on the classes or other events.

terra4Terra Studios is open from 10 am – 5 pm daily, excepting Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, New Year’s Day, and days of inclement weather.

And the best part of all … it’s FREE! Totally free, unless you want to adopt a dragonfly mug or unique pair of earrings to bring home with you to remind you of the serene day spent amongst art and nature.

S: South Texas Botanical Gardens & Nature Center

A2Z-BADGE-0002015-LifeisGood-230_zps660c38a0S: South Texas Botanical Gardens & Nature Center

Venture into the delightful 2600 square-foot screened Butterfly House, and new Bromeliad Conservatory. Experience 2000 orchids, 300 breathtaking roses, quaint Hummingbird Garden, imaginative Sensory Garden with fascinating artscape, Arid Garden and colorful EarthKind Demonstration Trial Gardens. And during our eight warmer months, enjoy the fragrant tropical Plumeria Garden with elevated viewing ramp.

south texas botanicalYour visits to the Botanical Gardens & Nature Center in Corpus Christi will immerse you in serene beauty, followed by an adventurous ‘walk on the wild side’ with 11 uniquely stunning floral exhibits and gardens shouting color, followed by quiet trails and boardwalk through identified native habitat and natural wetlands.

This 180-acre showcase on Oso Creek offers a unique and varied take on botanical gardens– beautiful new Exotic Parrots, or native wildlife in the new Reptiles in Residents exhibit; artistic decorative water features, or vast natural wetlands; majestic Rose Pavilion; or rustic Palapa Grande on scenic Gator Lake– Corpus Christi’s South Texas Botanical Gardens & Nature Center will impress you with its unusual approach to environmental education through creative horticultural design, and fascinating naturescape of natural wetlands and trails through native mesquite forest. Definitely not your grandmother’s botanical garden!

http://stxbot.org/

Do you have a favorite place where you like to go retreat and find peace? Where is it at? Leave us a comment about your favorite sanctuary location. We’d love to know!

R: Riley Fuzzle Road (Peckinpaugh Preserve)

A2Z-BADGE-0002015-LifeisGood-230_zps660c38a0Shangri-La Days shares peaceful and relaxing places to visit, rejuvenate and restore your soul. Follow us and the posts will go directly to your inbox. Don’t worry, after April we go back to our once a week schedule, so your inbox won’t explode.

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R: Riley Fuzzle Road (Peckinpaugh Preserve)

riley fuzzyEstablished in 2005, the 25-acre Peckinpaugh Preserve merges 10 acres generously donated by Mrs. Patricia Peckinpaugh Hubbard and 15 acres contributed by the Houston Audubon Society.

The preserve is named in honor of Mrs. Hubbard’s parents. Mrs. Hubbard’s father, William Thomas Peckinpaugh, purchased the land in the 1920’s. The preserve is located adjacent to the new Riley Fuzzel Road bridge. Spring Creek forms the southern boundary of this beautifully wooded preserve, with undeveloped forest land and the Spring Trails subdivision to the north. The preserve is protected by a conservation easement held by Bayou Land Conservancy, formerly known as Legacy Land Trust.

riley fuzzy2A canoe launch has opened at the end of Old Riley Fuzzel Road, adjacent to the Peckinpaugh Preserve, which offers direct access to Spring Creek. The preserve contains 2,385 linear feet or almost one-half of a mile of frontage along the banks of Spring Creek.

http://www.springcreekgreenway.org/naturecenter.htm

Do you have a favorite place where you like to go retreat and find peace? Where is it at? Leave us a comment about your favorite sanctuary location. We’d love to know!