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As part of our East Coast road trip, we made a two-night stop at Bar Harbor, Maine, to check out this seaside town and Acadia National Park.  We divided our short time pretty equally between the town and the park. As always, I wish we had more time, and on this particular adventure, I wish he’d had less morning fog. Still, we always make things work and I’m grateful for the experience. I hope to return to the area someday to experience more of this fabulous park! Acadia National Park is primarily located on the largest island off the coast of Maine–Mount Desert Island.  Bar Harbor is also located on this island, and Acadia National Park is right outside of town. Our Acadia National Park Adventure Begins We arrived in Bar Harbor in the late afternoon. That left us enough time to settle into our lodging, have dinner, and browse…

If you’re hoping to see the White House during your Washington, D.C., trip, you’re not alone. Over a million people tour the White House, also known as President’s Park, each year. Planning Your White House Visit Planning a trip to Washington, D.C., can seem, at first, overwhelming. There are so many things to see and do, and if you’re visiting for a few days, there is no way you’re going to see everything. You’ll have to decide what your priorities are, and then the true planning begins. Most attractions in D.C., though often free, have ticket and reservation requirements, and keeping track of everything can be daunting. If you’ve decided to try for a tour of the White House, you’ll have some steps to complete. And even if you complete the steps correctly, you’re not guaranteed a tour. Even if you get that confirmation and all seems like a go,…

Skylon Tower turned out to be one of my favorite experiences in Niagara Falls. My family doesn’t usually opt for pricier dining experiences, but this exception worked out great for us. It’s all about making memories together. Why Skylon Tower? As we planned our first trip to Niagara Falls, we had a lot of questions. What activities should we include in our experience of the Falls? Where should we stay? Should we opt for a place with an upper-floor view? When I learned that you could get those great views from Skylon Tower, we considered that maybe a pricey hotel room during the summer wasn’t necessary. When I discovered you could dine at the top, I was immediately excited. And one of the restaurants revolves? Let’s do this. Though we could’ve stayed at one of the hotels with a view of Niagara Falls, we decided to stay at the…

If you’re looking for a stretch of remote highway that sparks a tone of mystery combined with fun oddities, the Extraterrestrial  Highway is your road trip destination. Also known as Highway 375, this remote road is famous for its supposed UFO sightings and being the highway that gives access to the gravel entrances to Area 51. What could be more fun than quirky alien merch and possibly being arrested by military police? Sign us up! The Adventure Begins Our adventure along the Extraterrestrial Highway was part of an extended road trip we took to California from Missouri. On our journey. we’d just spent a couple of nights in Yosemite National Park followed by a stay at the Clown Motel in Tonopah, Nevada. You can click here to read about our stay at the Yosemite Valley Lodge and here to read more about the Clown Motel. After the night at the…

The Narrows is one of those popular hikes that lives up to the hype. When I first heard of the hike in Zion National Park a few years ago and realized that it included walking in water, I knew we should give it a try. The scenery is gorgeous, and the cooling water would be welcome in the summer heat of July. Since Zion National Park is popular in the summer, you want to be well-informed about the park. You also have a choice to make when you decide to hike The Narrows–do you rent gear or not? I hope our experience will help you navigate the park and make the best choices for you and your family. Arriving at Springdale and Zion National Park We arrived in Springdale, Utah, in the evening after driving from Tonopah, Nevada, where we stayed a night in te Clown Motel. To read about…

Sequoia National Park and Kings Canyon National Park were stops on one of our epic Missouri to California road trips. As we planned the trip, we couldn’t wait to experience the majesty of the enormous sequoia trees. Like many people, we’d seen the pictures and videos of these amazing trees. Now it was time to experience them for ourselves. Though we only spent two nights in the park, it’s an experience I won’t ever forget. We stayed at the only lodge within Sequoia National Park–Wuksachi Lodge. This one is a little different from some of the classic lodges we’ve stayed in because the check-in building is in a completely separate location from the actual lodges. While the lobby is often in a different building from the actual rooms, this was the first one we’d encounter in which our building was a short drive away from the lobby, gift shop, and…

If you’re heading to the Cleveland area, why not put the A Christmas Story House on your must-do list? Full disclosure: A Christmas Story is not my favorite Christmas movie. I first saw it at a Christmas party at church in middle school. Over the years, the movie found its way to my parents’ TV, especially if my sister was around. She loves this movie, and she made the trek to see the house long before we did. Still, I like the movie enough and it’s found its way into popular culture. When we had the chance, we made the stop. And I’m glad we did. You don’t have to be a super fan to enjoy the nostalgia of Christmas past that is oozing from this place. If you love Christmas like I do, you’ll have a good time. If you’re into cinema history, that’s also a good reason to…

What do you think of when you think of Plymouth Rock? Like everyone else, as a child, I’d heard stories about the Mayflower and the Pilgrims, and I’d imagined this huge rock marking the historic event of when the Pilgrims landed. Over the years, I’d heard that the rock wasn’t all that large. And I’d heard that the site of the rock wasn’t all that amazing. Did that detour us from checking it out? Nope! In July of 2023, we embarked on a huge road trip that started in Missouri, went up to Niagara Falls, then crossed over to Maine. From there, we made our way down the coast to Washington, D.C. This amazing trip took us past many historic sites that shaped the creation of our country. How could we resist Plymouth Rock? The answer is, we couldn’t. When I discovered that you could also visit Plimoth Patuxet, a…

When I realized our summer road trip in 2022 would take us right by the Winchester Mystery House, I knew what we had to do. That’s right. We had to stop. The History of the Winchester Mystery House The Winchester Mystery House is a historic mansion located in San Jose, California. Its construction began in 1884 and continued for almost 38 years until Sarah Winchester, the widow of firearm magnate William Wirt Winchester, passed away in 1922. The house is renowned for its unique architectural features and its intriguing history. Legend has it that after the death of her husband and infant daughter, Sarah Winchester sought solace in the belief that she was haunted by the spirits of those killed by Winchester rifles. To escape their vengeful spirits, she began an extensive and continuous construction project on her family’s unfinished farmhouse. Over the years, the mansion underwent constant renovations, resulting…

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