Meet the latest traveller in our series Interviews on Off the Radar Travel Destinations!
This week, we have with us Janna from Janna on a Jaunt – Respiratory Therapist and Road trip enthusiast. Originally from the Philippines, she moved to the US when she turned 18. She currently reside in Las Vegas, Nevada. Janna has traveled all around the US, mostly doing road trips a few times a month. She will be talking about my recent road trip to Dead Horse Point State Park in Utah.
Tell us a bit about yourself and your travels
Living in Los Angeles didn’t really give my husband and I a lot of opportunities to travel. We mostly traveled locally, due to the fact that Los Angeles’ cost of living is really expensive. When my husband had the opportunity to work for a hospital in Las Vegas, we decided to leave our home in Los Angeles and move to a new state. We only started traveling after we got married in June 2014 and we haven’t stopped ever since. For our unofficial honeymoon, we went on a road trip to Utah, Wyoming, South Dakota & Colorado. It was an adventure of a lifetime! We didn’t know what we were getting ourselves into being that it was our first time going on a road trip. Since then, we’ve been road tripping to Arizona, Utah, New Mexico, Tennessee, Florida, New Orleans, Washington state, Oregon, Georgia and a few others. Our favorite state to road trip to is Utah because most of the attractions are only less than 6 hours away from our home here in Las Vegas. We’re big on nature so we love going to places where we can hike and enjoy a great scenery. I have never traveled without my husband and I don’t think I’ll ever do it without him. I commend other travelers that travel solo but for me, traveling is more fun when you share it with someone you love.
Why did you chose to travel to Dead Horse Point State Park?
We chose to travel to Dead Horse Point State Park because it was one of the closest destinations to our Airbnb. Also, we’ve seen pictures of the park and they were so beautiful, we just had to see it for ourselves!
Where did you stay?
We stayed at an Airbnb in Blanding, Utah, roughly 1 hour and 30 min away from Moab. Usually, we don’t mind booking accommodations outside of our destination as long as it’s less than 2 hours away and especially if it’s a scenic drive. We collectively chose to do an Airbnb instead of a hotel because we wanted to have more space and cooking our own meals, was our top priority. We did some groceries beforehand and cooked a different meal each night. Most of the accommodations we saw in Moab were $200 and weren’t spacious enough for us. The house we stayed at was only $85 a night and allowed us to save some money for other things like entrance fees and food.
What were your favourite and most difficult parts on this journey?
My favorite part of the journey was getting to spend some time with my husband and our friends. I’ve never traveled with my best friend so it was definitely a treat for me. We shared laughter and stories that we will remember forever. I think the most difficult part was the driving. Don’t get me wrong, I love road trips (obviously) but driving for long hours can definitely drive you crazy. Also, waking up early in the morning after a long drive the night before was very difficult for us. We wanted to sleep in and rest but the thing is, most of these national parks can get really crowded around noon. So we had to beat the crowd by waking up before sunrise to get to our destination.
Highlights of your stay?
One of the highlights of our trip was when my best friend almost fell off a cliff. It was scary and nerve-wracking but at the same time, it was also funny. So what happened was after we’ve taken our pictures and soaked in the view, my husband, my best friend and I decided to hike down to a ledge near the cliff. The ledge was pretty wide and had ample amount of space for more than 10 people so we were fine. My husband wanted to take a picture of my best friend and I on a rock that faces the view. I safely made my way close to the cliff where the rock was and sat down. So now it was my friend’s turn. I guess she didn’t see that there was a small step (or she was just so comfortable I assume, because she was laughing) near the rock and next thing you know, she tripped and fell face down, almost sliding off the cliff. I immediately grabbed her leg to stop her from falling and helped her up. Next thing you know, she started laughing (out of relief, I guess), which made me laugh hysterically. I was glad she was okay but I will never forget the moment I almost saw my friend slide off a cliff. Definitely one for the books!
Would you recommend this attraction to other people?
I definitely recommend Dead Horse Point State Park to every nature lover out there. It is not well known like the other state parks/national parks in Utah so it’s less crowded and also, for a cheap entrance fee of $10 (valid up to 3 days), you get rewarded with beautiful, panoramic views of the canyon below. It also has family-friendly trails that you can either hike or bike, either way, I’m sure you will enjoy the spectacular views! Best time to take photographs? At sunset, of course! Make sure you guys head to the Dead Horse Point overlook to see the famous view of the Colorado gooseneck.
What’s next on the horizon for your travels?
A trip to the Philippines! I’ve never been back since I left 9 years ago. I’m looking forward to exploring the islands outside the metro like Palawan and Cebu. Also, my goal this year is to hopefully explore Iceland! Ever since I watched The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, it has been my dream to visit it.
To read more on Janna’s travels and follow her adventures: