‘Tripping Out with Alie and Georgia’: Why I’m Obsessed With TV’s Happiest Reality Show

This summer I have watched shows about fixers, serial killers, detectives chasing serial killers, and people trapped in a dome. They have two things in common: they’re all good and they’re all heavy. After watching them, I crave something cleansing, something light, something…dare I say it…fun. It’s summer! Murder and mayhem make for good dramas, but there comes a point when what I really want to watch are two awesome women traveling around the country, learning new things, eating lots of food, being besties and concocting wacky cocktails inspired by their journeys. Oddly enough that’s exactly the show The Cooking Channel offered up in Tripping Out with Alie & Georgia, a refreshing cocktail of a series that makes all of my favorite heavy dramas go down easier.

The reality genre is not a genre I dabble in much, but I do love cooking shows and travel shows and Tripping Out is both. Our guides are Alie Ward and Georgia Hardstark, former YouTube sensations turned cocktail mavens turned travel guides. Most importantly, they have the most delightful, candid personalities of any hosts on either The Cooking Channel or Food Network. If you spend more than three minutes watching these ladies, you will immediately want to hang out with them. Which is conveniently what Tripping Out allows us to do.

Over the course of the first season, Alie and Georgia have went dog sledding in Alaska, crafted a Vegas trip that doesn’t have to stay in Vegas and proved that Marfa, Texas has more to offer than just those cool ghost lights. They poke around the nooks and crannies of every city and town they visit, and it’s not always a love fest. In one episode, they took a trip to the California Desert and Alie made it clear she was not a fan of mud baths. Meanwhile during their Vegas vacation, the duo gleefully took lessons from a poker teacher who broke out his “little ladies” technique of teaching, then later they laughed about his gender-based assumptions in the talking head portion of the episode. It’s rare to see a show that allows its hosts to be anything but 100% genial at all times. Alie and Georgia’s road trips feel like the real deal: sometimes they’re a blast, sometimes a mixed bag, but they’re always a treat for the viewers at home.

My personal favorite part of the series is that both of our hosts push themselves out of their comfort zones and they encourage us to do the same. They’ve learned to walk a high wire, they went camping and tried their hand at the roller derby. It’s inspiring, made even more so because they do it all while wearing stunning vintage dresses that I can’t stop myself coveting.

Then at the end of every episode they return home and they recreate their trip for their friends by sharing recipes and whipping up unique cocktails. Every episode leaves you feeling happy, educated, enlightened and cleansed. And maybe even ready to grab your own best buddy and hit the road yourself. It is the definitive summer television treat: sweet with just the right hint of tartness and a side of lovely dresses. Tune in to The Cooking Channel Fridays at 10:30 PM ET/PT to join Alie and Georgia on their journeys. This Friday they’re heading to Miami, so I’d save it for when you need an upbeat Dexter chaser on Sunday.

Follow me on Twitter @sljbowman