Tag Archives: Michigan

6 Off the Beaten Path Kid-Friendly Attractions in the US

Guest post from Melanie Grosjean of Travel-Wise:

When planning a family vacation, it can be tempting to just select those tried and true destinations that are notoriously good for kids. While these can be enjoyable in their own right, it can also be worthwhile to go off the beaten path.

If you’re looking for something a bit different for your family vacation Continue reading 6 Off the Beaten Path Kid-Friendly Attractions in the US

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Best Places To See Fall Foliage

Best Places For Fall Foliage

As much as I hate to admit it, fall is officially in full swing. Even in the south, leaves are changing and the calendar keeps moving deeper into September.

Though I dislike the cooler weather, even I will admit there’s nothing more beautiful than fall foliage. And nothing cuter than kids with leaves!

I love photographing my kids with leaves!
I love photographing my kids with leaves!

Although I won’t even pretend to understand the complexities behind this weather phenomenon, rumor has it that this year’s fall foliage is expected to be the best in decades.

If you’re looking for some great spots to leaf-view this season, here are 18 places I recommend:

  1. Skyline Drive (Blue Ridge Parkway), Virginia
  2. Napa Valley, California
  3. Litchfield Hills, Connecticut
  4. Great Smokey Mountain National Park, Tennessee
  5. Enchanted Circle Scenic Byway, New Mexico
  6. Adirondacks, New York
  7. The Berkshires, Massachusetts
  8. Aspen, Colorado
  9. Acadia National Park, Maine
  10. Lost Maple State Natural Area, Texas
  11. Upper Peninsula, Michigan
  12. The Ozarks, Missouri
  13. Lake Champlain Islands, Vermont
  14. Fayetteville, West Virginia
  15. Chattahoochee National Forest, Georgia
  16. Glacier National Park, Montana
  17. Bardstown, Kentucky
  18. Leavenworth, Washington

I know, 18 is an odd number of places to recommend. 10 wasn’t quite enough. Then I ambitiously decided I’d do  50 before realizing there are some states that don’t even deserve honorable mention when it comes to fall foliage (hello, Florida!)  Also, I decided not to duplicate any state. Although, I could have easily listed Vermont locations for all 18 places on the list!

Road trips are my favorite way to view fall foliage. We always try to plan travel during peak leaf changing season even if the foliage itself isn’t our destination. Taking scenic routes on the way to your destination will provide beautiful backdrops.

Always pull your car over at an overlook to snap pictures and capture all the fall colors! And, of course, get a few pictures of your kids with the falling leaves!

Kids + Leaves
Kids + Leaves

Where is your favorite place to view fall foliage?

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Memorial Day Weekend

May2016

Memorial Day Weekend is just a couple days away, and it’s not too late to plan a little family get-away!

Some of our best, most memorable trips have been VERY spontaneous trips. One of the advantages of traveling last minute are the deals that might be available. Sometimes you are able to find some great bargains! Additionally, staying flexible with your travel plans allows you to take weather into consideration (to an extent!)

We really enjoy saving day-trips, or closer locations for our spontaneous weekends away. These trips might include one specific destination, or a series of stops.

If you aren’t sure where to start, consider visiting the Only In Your State website and searching for the “Ultimate Waterfall Road Trip.” You can build an entire trip around visiting several waterfalls in your state (which is usually a very inexpensive itinerary.) I posted an example of this with the Ultimate South Carolina Waterfall Road Trip.

SCWaterfalls

Another great way to spend your Memorial Day Weekend would be to find some landmarks or “bucket list” items within driving distance. A few years ago we wanted to visit Lake Superior (on our quest to eventually visit all 5 Great Lakes!)

Michigan2

Driving directly to the lake was about a 3 and a half our drive for us. While it would have been possible to do it in a day (7 hours total), it certainly wasn’t our most ideal situation. We considered staying in the small town by the lake, but the lodging prices were extremely high.

We ended up picking a bigger city closer to the lake- Milwaukee, Wisconsin- to stay in for the weekend. From Milwaukee, we were able to make a day trip up to Lake Superior. We were also able to make several other fun stops along our route since we weren’t trying to pack it all into 1 day!

Our favorite “extra” stop on that particular weekend trip was the Jelly Belly Factory in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin.

Wisconsin2

3-day weekends are always a great time to plan a spontaneous get-away for your family! Where are you going to spend Memorial Day Weekend?

 

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