Category Archive: Car Trips

Postcard from Wildlife Safari

It’s a road trip weekend and a chance to enjoy the baking hot weather of southern Oregon. These three brown bears at Wildlife Safari (in Winston, Oregon), were trying to beat the heat with a bear-sized popsicle – a large block of ice with berries and other fruit frozen inside.

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Postcard: Cypress of Big Sur

Along the Pacific Coast, south of Monterey and north of Carmel, you’ll find these iconic Cypress trees on a point near the Pebble Beach Golf Course and Resort. Make time for this gorgeous scenic drive.

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Jersey Shore: Lucy the Elephant

I love offbeat and quirky kinds of places – for just the reasons that they are offbeat and quirky. I’ve been known to drive out of my way to see the “biggest,” “smallest,” “world’s only,” “oldest” thing or place or whatever. Why not?! Although the Hurricane Sandy did a lot of damage on the Jersey shore, it didn’t harm one of the shore’s iconically quirky attractions – Lucy the Elephant. Lucy is a six story, 90 ton elephant made of wood and tin sheeting. She was put up 1881 to attract tourism and development to the south Atlantic City area, and while she was architecturally unique at the time, she soon became merely the first of several zoomorphic (animal-shaped) buildings. Did you even know there was such a thing a zoomorphic architecture? Since she was originally constructed, Lucy has been a […]

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Road Trip Ahead: Coastal & Central Oregon

I’m up early today because I’ll be heading out on a road trip.  Yes, me, a road trip.  It’s a 5-day road trip with some other writers from the Seattle area and is sponsored by some nice folks in Oregon.  (A full list of sponsors will accompany subsequent posts.)  Joining me will be:  Andy Hayes (from Sharing Travel Experiences), Kelly Goodman (from Travellious), and Michelle Schusterman (from Unlikely Places) The group will be meeting later thing morning (still in the early hours for most of us)  at EverGreen Escapes who will be providing our driver and transportation for the trip in one of the comfy, bio-fueled Mercedes touring vans.  Not familiar with EverGreen Escapes?  Well I love these folks – I’ve met them personally – and was taken with their love of the Pacific Northwest, their commitment to their eco-friendly […]

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Top 5 Drives with Views of the Ocean

When heading to the beach, the fun usually starts when you arrive at your destination.  However, sometimes the stunning views along the road to the beach can mean that the journey itself is an enjoyable one thanks to the amazing sights you can take in along the way.  Great ocean drives allow you to witness some stunning scenery of both sea and land while enjoying the freedom of the open road. Below, are five of the best driving routes with views of the ocean: Pacific Coast Highway – California Heading along the Pacific Coast Highway in southern California will see you travelling a 123-mile route that affords breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean. Starting from Monterey, the highway takes you through the Big Sur region of the state to Morro Bay and as it is a designated All-American Road, you […]

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Traveling the East Coast Underground Railroad

In honor of Black History Month, I am pleased to feature this guest post on the Underground Railroad, a part of history that’s well worth spending time learning about. —- Over the years, I’ve found that introducing history to my children through travel has made more of a difference than anything they’ve read in history books. Visiting the places where history actually happened gives children and adults so much more knowledge. It also gives them a real connection to the past. As February is Black History Month, I’ve been researching Underground Railroad locations to bring history to life in our neighborhood and in preparation for our forthcoming family travels. Here are the most interesting Underground Railroad destinations on the East Coast which are open to the public: Florida – Fort Gadsden State Park, Route 65, Sumatra – This abandoned fort, […]

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This Summer Send the Kids to Jail

If the kids tell you that the house rules make them feel like their in prison, put the Old Idaho Penitentiary on your vacation stop.  No commission of a crime required, just stop by their location in Boise, Idaho. The Old Idaho Penitentiary State Historic Site was used as Idaho’s prison between 1870-1973. The prison was originally a single building, but the growing population brought a need for a growing prison, and several additional buildings were added, all surrounded by a high sandstone wall.  These additions to the prison complex were constructed with sandstone that the prisoners quarried and cut, back at a time when hard labor was a part of prison life. As happened at many prisons in the 1970’s, the over-crowded conditions led to a prison riot, occurring here in Boise both 1971 and again in 1973.  As […]

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Driving in Italy: Not for the Faint of Heart

While normally I am a big fan of public transportation, and opt for trains, planes, and buses while on vacation, our trek to Italy and Croatia required covering a lot of ground to remote locations.  A car was a necessity. Although the driving was left in the hands of the guys, we’ve covered enough ground that I can make a few observations (albeit from the passenger’s seat) about driving in Italy. People drive fast on the Autostrada.  Really, really, fast! Tailgating seems not only permissible, but encouraged.  Even when you’re going fast on the Autostrada.  Leaving any discernible gap between the car ahead of you is an invitation for someone to pass. You need a navigator or two to read the map and watch for directional signs.  When you blowing by them at speeds of 100+ kph, you need some […]

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National Park Service: The American Presidents

With the Presidential inauguration just a couple weeks away, it’s a good time to think about our former Presidents and the place they occupy in history.  Putting politics aside, that’s just what the National Park Service has done – put Presidential PLACES on display – with the new Discover Our Shared Heritage on-line travel itinerary site. The American Presidents itinerary explores the lives, contributions and historical sites of all 43 presidents.  (President-elect Obama is not yet on the list.)  Among the sites listed are birthplaces, home and memorials.  There’s also a general presidential itinerary that includes the White House, Mount Rushmore, and other general sites. The list includes over 70 sites spanning the country, all listed in the National Register of Historic Places, and about half part of the National Park System. Here’s a sampling of what you’ll find: Description […]

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View Classic Corvettes at the National Corvette Museum

Begin, or renew, your love of the Corvette at the National Corvette Museum, as you gaze longingly at these classic sports cars that are an important piece of Americana and automobile history. Introduced in 1953, the Corvette became a favorite, and eventually a classic, and the museum attracts enthusiasts from all over the world.  Exhibits and displays change, but you can count on seeing:  introductory film about the history of the Corvette, a look at retro displays outlining how the car became a classic, technical information relating to design and performance, racing, and a gift shop.  You’ll be seeing lots and lots of cars! The National Corvette Museum is located at 350 Corvette Drive, in Bowling Green, Kentucky (map it), and is open daily , 8 am – 5 pm (except for Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve and Day, and New […]

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