Eight Adventurous & Rebellious Women

Throughout history, bold women have been casting off the shackles of conventional life. Women who fought courageously and tirelessly to assert themselves as individuals and experts in their field, something most men have had the luxury of taking for granted.

In the female sect of explorers, there are heiresses, socialites, and rebels. But the one thing they share beyond their sex is an intrepid spirit that thirsts for adventure.

These woman and others like them did not just prevail, they excelled when personal, economic, political, and racial obstacles threatened. The cards were stacked against these women, but they bet the farm and won. Their stories are full of adventure, romance, loss, and triumph. Everyone can relate to that—and to their stories.

Here are 8 women who traveled and led adventurous lives, because they wanted to expand their horizons, earn money, or simply because boredom was not their style.

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Abalone Sea Cave & Portuguese Bend Palos Verdes

Smoke from fires set by Native Americans, hunting game on the hillsides overlooking San Pedro Bay, inspired Portuguese explorer Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo to name this natural harbor Bahia de los Fumos or “Bay of Smokes.”

On October 8, 1542, when Cabrillo noted in his log that the bay “is an excellent harbor and the country is good with many plains and groves of trees,” this indented coastline was little more than swampy marshland. Though the expedition did not go on land during their brief visit, they did speak with a group of Gabrielinos in a canoe, who told them there were other white men in the interior (probably survivors of the ill-fated Coronado expedition). Over the next century, other European explorers infrequently skirted Palos Verdes shores, leading natives to tell tales of the ominous “great houses on the sea.”

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Take in the views from Point Vicente

SAM_6154-001Set on the curve of a steep cliff, where it has stood since 1926, the San Vicente Lighthouse is a historical beauty that continues to renew its usefulness with every passing night. The Vicente Lighthouse has long been one of the area’s jewels. To the landsman, the lighthouse is a scenic delight and continual attraction to tourists, photographers and painters. To the mariner, the lighthouse is an aid to navigation, which marks the northern end of the Catalina Channel on the Pacific coast.

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Torrey Pines State Reserve: Home to the rarest pine tree in North America.

If the stress of everyday life is weighing you down, take a trip to Torrey Pines State Reserve just north of San Diego. Torrey Pines State Reserve is home to one of the biggest “secrets” in San Diego. The secret is not readily apparent, but it is important. The reserve is home to the rarest pine tree in all of North America, and one of the rarest trees on the planet, the pinus torreyana – or, as Californians call it, the Torrey Pine. When you visit, you’re getting to see a very rare, endangered species.

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This is why it’s okay to go solo

“Energy rightly applied and directed will accomplish anything.”

-Nellie Bly

I get asked on a daily basis WHY am I traveling solo.

“Who are you here with?” curious people often ask when we become acquainted during my travels.

“Um, by myself,” I reply.

“Wow, that’s really courageous!” they exclaim, wide-eyed.

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Sky Island will make you feel like you’re on top of the world!

Think of the Sky Island Scenic Parkway, as a kind of time machine. No, really. Let yourself go a minute and imagine a landscape that compresses an extraordinary range of topography into one 30-mile stretch of road. The road, known as the Mount Lemmon Parkway, does just that. It takes visitors through five life zones, from Sonoran Desert lowlands all the way up to a mixed-conifer forest, the geographic equivalent of traveling from Mexico to Canada.

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Finger Rock: Not for the faint of heart

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Commanding the skyline above Finger Rock Canyon in the Santa Catalina Mountains is an eponymous stone pinnacle, that resembles a clenched fist with its index finger pointing toward the heavens. This is your first clue to the nature of the trail, that makes an aggressive, unrelenting ascent of its rugged domain.

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