Eric Smillie

Contributing Writer, Via

Eric is is a former contributing editor at Via with more than 10 years of experience.

Featured Publications

His work has also appeared in Afar, GOOD, MAKE, Newsweek, Sunset, the New York Times, and Wired.


Summer visitors flock to the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk on the Fourth of July.

Santa Cruz, California: Fun on the Boardwalk and Beyond

Oceanside fun, tasty eats, and California history converge in Santa Cruz.
The pavement of Highway 395 in Northern California stretches towards the mountains in the distance.

Highway 395: Your Route to the Sierra's Secret Wonders

Escape the crowds and discover the eastern side of the mountains.
Sunset from the top of Mount Tamalpais in Marin County, California.

Bay Area Hikes With Great Payoffs

Take these 8 trails to see birds and elephant seals, stunning waterfalls, and towering redwoods.
Red Tesla Model 3 driving with carpool stickers on the bumper.

How to Remove a Bumper Sticker

An expert provides steps for removing adhesives from your car.
A family rides along the Monterey Bay Coastal Trail in Monterey, California, photo

14 Fantastic Bike Paths in the West

Take a leisurely bike ride on these beautiful paths in the West.
picture of the bright houses on the beach in Capitola

Beach Weekend in Capitola, California

A charming coastal town near Santa Cruz offers shopping, sunshine, and dining with a view.
Sather Tower rises over the campus and city at sunset at University of California, Berkeley, photo

Berkeley, California: 5 Things We Love

A visit to Berkeley soon reveals that is nearly impossible to pin this university town down.
spherical boulders revealed at low tide at Bowling Ball Beach in the Greater Farallones National Marine Sanctuary off California's Mendocino Coat, picture

Greater Farallones National Marine Sanctuary

A stretch along California's Mendocino coast is one of North America's richest upwelling zones.
a specialty cocktail at the popular bar and restaurant 515 Kitchen and Cocktails in Santa Cruz.

Craft Cocktails in Santa Cruz, California

The friendly beach town offers craft cocktails, modern chic, cozy lounges, and a tiki bar.
Waterfront Bridgeway street in Sausalito, California, image

Bayside Beauty in Sausalito, CA

North of San Francisco, this small town is a beacon for foodies, artists, and kayakers.
deconstructed samosas with garbanzo beans, pico de gallo and chutneys, from Mortar & Pestle, San Jose, San Mateo, California, image

California's Spin on Indian Food

A new wave of restaurants is turning out delicious dishes that celebrate the cuisine of India.
New Belgium Brewing's Fort Collins tasting room and outdoor space

8 Best Brewery Tours in the West

Tours at top microbreweries in the West offer a peek behind the scenes—and samples, too.
Donuts from Blue Star Donuts in Portland, Oregon

Best Gourmet Donuts in the West

Try unique varieties of donuts in a range of flavors in California, Oregon, Nevada, and beyond.
Beautiful tree-lined street with historic homes in Midtown Sacramento

Midtown Sacramento Weekend Trip

The thriving neighborhood features historic houses, one-of-a-kind shops, and good eats.
Hilo Farmers Market Kitchen, Hawaii, picture

The Big Island: Hilo, Hawaii

On Hawaii's Big Island, visitors find a low-key town, tropical splendor, and an active volcano.