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Adventure & Sports

Ruben, Authentic Vacations’ Own Best Friend

Ruben is our four-legged office greeter and spreader of joy. Born in a Vietnamese rescue center, his early adventures included riding in the footwell of a motor scooter through city streets and digging holes in a sandy beach. Then, he was on a 21-hour flight that took him from Da Nang to Seoul to the United States. He found his forever home with Simon Russell, Authentic Vacations’ CEO. Now Ruben lives in Scottsdale, Arizona, and leads the pack when it comes to boundless energy.

He is confident, loyal, loves trying anything new, and shows a flair for posing when a camera comes out. Ruben’s loves are exploring the United States, experiencing travel adventures, and charming the office staff out of treats. We are amazed and inspired by his love of life!

Ruben packed in a lot during 2022. Some people think of Arizona as a flat landscape. Not so! There are ten peaks that are over 9,000 feet, and Ruben climbed five of the tallest. He is not a large dog, but he is mighty. When you visit Arizona, you might consider a mountain trip. It is less crowded than some of the better-known places, but there is plenty of snow, plus gorgeous alpine valleys and vistas. And, of course, there are world-class spas and brilliant red rock country.

Heading to the ocean, Ruben went on a paddle board and took a ride on an e-foil around San Diego harbor and under Coronado Bridge–he wasn’t quite brave enough to go under the Golden Gate bridge with Simon though! He also enjoyed west coast beaches, from San Diego to the glorious Oregon Coast. Ruben spent quite a bit of time on the Oregon Coast, home of lovely villages and exceptional local cuisine. Fresh seafood galore!

National Parks are a particular favorite. The scents and feeling of freedom are incomparable. He hiked the majestic Grand Canyon, one of the few places on earth where immense geologic time is laid bare for all to witness. Glacier National Park was a different hiking experience for Ruben. There are 700 miles of trails that take in glacial wildflowers, lakes that mirror mountain peaks, and pines, spruce, and cedar trees. In Yellowstone, Ruben had a solid hike, passing geysers and mud pots.

Ruben’s adventures do not slow down in the winter. He has snowboarded in Utah, Colorado, and Arizona; every weekend is another snow adventure. And, sometimes, he just likes to play in the snow, making tunnels, running with wild abandon, and digging. Who knows what treasures might be buried there? The Southwest and Rocky Mountains are a dream for those who love any sort of winter sports. They’re also a peaceful retreat. There is nothing like the layered silence that snow brings.

We love Ruben’s enthusiastic outlook on life. We love his free spirit and willingness to try just about anything. As travelers, we want to see the world with the same sense of wonder and joy as Ruben, our Authentic Vacations’ best friend.

Let your Destination Expert know when you’re ready to get wild, and enjoy United States travel like our friend, Ruben!