On Day 78 of the Nowhere To Be Project we left Cherry Hill RV Park near DC heading for NYC. As you might imagine, the drive was filled with traffic and tolls. The nice thing about the pricey turnpikes is the smooth blacktop which keeps the pup happy. I was also thrilled about the full service fuel station along the turnpike. I haven’t seen that since the mid-1980s!!!
After nearly five hours, we pulled into Liberty Harbor RV Park in Jersey City. It is situated on a harbor with a view of the Statue of Liberty (hence the name). The park is on the higher end in terms of price ($99-110 per night plus tax), but is certainly no frills in terms of amenities. However, the proximity to public transportation (ferry and train) can’t be beat and the park offers 24 hour security, which is a huge plus. We’re excited to spend three nights here with our son who is flying in from Florida as we speak. I love him so much that I’m giving up my comfy bed cave over the cab😍❤️! Much more to come over this holiday weekend…
I spent day 77 of the Nowhere To Be Project in Washington, D.C. We pulled into Cherry Hill RV Park last night and called it a night fairly early. The park itself is okay, but our spot is really flooded due to the recent rains. That is a problem for a clean freak like me because the dog (and the husband) keep tracking in mud. We stayed at this park many years ago and liked it due to its proximity to the city. That part remains good, thankfully.
We hopped on a bus at 9:45am at the park and took it to the metro which took us directly into D.C. This is my fourth visit, so I didn’t feel pressured to do everything. Instead, I meandered around Smithsonian’s Museums of Natural History, American History and their Freer Art Gallery. My favorite thing was the exhibit on America’s First Ladies. Despite not having an official role, our First Ladies have been outspoken and action-oriented. As a fashionista and collector of antique dishes, I especially loved seeing their gowns and their china patterns.
We enjoyed lunch at one of our favorite outdoor cafes (Cafe du Parc) where I enjoyed an amazing vegan streusel and wiled away the rest of the day by roaming the streets of our nation’s capital. It is a beautiful place that everyone should try to visit, even if you’re limited to just eight hours as we were today.
Day 76 of the Nowhere To Be Project was a loooooooooong travel day that took us from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina to College Park, Maryland. We usually try to keep our travel days at no more than four hours, but with today’s journey we’ve been on the road for seven hours already with about two more to go. While road trips in a RV are much more comfortable than being confined to a small car, the challenge of finding ways to pass the time remains.
I guess I could watch TV using the satellite system we installed on our rig. For some reason though, I feel the need to keep my eyes somewhat on the road in my chosen role as an annoying backseat driver. As an avid reader, I could devour the next book in my current literary addiction, the “Outlander” series by Diana Gabaldon. I’m not sure why, but I find it difficult to focus intently on my reading while zooming down the highway at 70 miles an hour, so that’s out too. That leaves me with needlepoint, which I’ve done so much of today that my eyes are blurred from trying to keep the stitches in line while bouncing up and down country roads and interstates. I’ve also spent a fair amount of the day snacking- a hidden danger of traveling in a vehicle with a fully stocked kitchen. How do you pass the time on the road???
Day 75 of the Nowhere To Be Project began with 38 laps at the pool. Here at Ocean Lakes, the pool is a party. With an Olympic-sized swimming area, a giant water slide and a splash park, it’s easy to see why. We learned last night that the party starts at the pool and ends at the beach here in South Carolina.
We are parked beachside and all through the night, golf carts filled with revelers who love loud rap music and illegal fireworks zoomed past. We got to talking about the RV party culture that seems to have developed in the decade we were without a rig. For example, the group in the spot adjacent to us were well on their way to oblivion when we checked in yesterday afternoon. They kept their party going long after we moved inside for bed and have yet to surface today (it is after 3pm, lol). Even their dogs join in the festivities! We can’t even get ours to stop napping long enough to enjoy the beach.
We are all about having a good time, but so far we’re just too darn tired to keep up with this crowd! We’ll have to do better. I guess it’s a good thing we’ve got nothing but time.
On Day 68 of the Nowhere To Be Project, I spent some time reviewing our fabulous weekend. We spent it at Walt Disney World’s Fort Wilderness Campground in our new 2018 Winnebago Navion RV. We specifically chose Fort Wilderness for our inaugural trip due to its proximity to our home, thinking that a short three day jaunt would be the best way to work out any of those new RV kinks. We also selected it because it is one of the best campgrounds we have visited in our nearly 15 years of RVing.
Fort Wilderness is one of Disney’s oldest resorts, but also one of its most affordable. We have camped in a RV at the resort many times over the years and have also stayed in their wilderness cabins several times. Fort Wilderness offers glamping at its finest with a prime location on Disney property. Amenities include free transportation to the theme parks by water ferry or bus, abundant immaculate restroom/shower/laundry facilities, level spots with full hook ups (many with with grills and picnic tables), two swimming pools with organized activities and music, a nightly campfire singalong and movie, an equestrian area with horseback riding, dog park, archery, convenience store, and multiple restaurants and bars. Golf carts are available for rent as well to make getting around the manicured property a snap.
Prices at Fort Wilderness vary depending on the season and on the size and type of camping spot needed. We paid roughly $80 per night for our 24 foot class C RV. I highly recommend this campground to anyone who desires stress-free camping, with or without kids. It is a really great spot for newbies as well because everything is so user-friendly. There is just so much to do within Fort Wilderness that the theme parks almost become an afterthought!
On day 27 of the Nowhere To Be Project I contemplated the purpose and power of reviews. I was reading a fellow blogger’s post about a recent stay in Sydney, Australia with bated breath as I’m visiting there as a newbie in a few weeks. Selfishly, I was bummed when the blogger had absolutely nothing positive to say. My takeaways from the post were that the city is overrated, beyond expensive and anything more than two days there is a complete waste of time. By the end of the post, I was wondering if I had made a mistake in booking my trip. It felt awful to have my excitement about the trip dampened! Then I recalled a recent hotel stay at The Peabody Hotel in Memphis, Tennessee.
My husband and I were road-tripping with our dog. We decided to stay at the pet-friendly Peabody. When he mentioned this to a friend who had recently stayed there, he was told to avoid the place like the plague. According to this friend, the hotel was rundown, overpriced and offered horrible service. We considered canceling our reservation in light of the information. I am so glad that we didn’t as we had a delightful stay! Our 100 pound Mutt was welcomed in grand fashion with amenities and treats made just for him. We were given a beautiful room, served delicious food and experienced top-notch service throughout our visit. We found the Peabody to be a fabulous old hotel offering immense charm and luxury.
Who knows what happened with his friend to taint his opinion of the hotel so intensely? Same with the blogger who hates Sydney so. While I value their input, I can only take it with a grain of salt. It isn’t their job to plan my travel. We all have different expectations, desires, likes and dislikes. Blogs are great at sharing the perspectives of their authors and reviews can be extremely useful tools for planning travel. However, neither should make or break a trip. Bloggers are not responsible for telling readers what they want to hear. That is the beauty of blogs! I’ll remain totally addicted to blogs and reviews, yet I’m going to trust myself and my gut a bit more when it comes to my journeys. I think I’ll call it gut travel!
Day 23 of the Nowhere To Be Project was spent at the Born Hotel in Denver. This newish hotel is part of the Kimpton brand and is conveniently located in Denver’s trendy LoDo neighborhood adjacent to Union Station. I frequent Kimpton hotels mainly because of their pet-friendly approach to hospitality. They are always my first choice when traveling with my dog, George Bailey. He absolutely adores their offerings of canine-centric amenities. Another member of the Kimpton brand, Hotel Monaco, was my staple in Denver. As much as I like the Monaco, the Born Hotel will now be my first choice in Denver and should be yours as well (even if you’re traveling sans pooch).
The vibe at the hotel is what I would describe as trendy western with lots of warm wood, exposed concrete and clean lines. The service is exceptional. From the moment I entered the valet area yesterday to the moment I left today, every staff member I encountered went above and beyond in terms of service. I was graciously offered early check in and late check out and was upgraded to a top floor room with floor to ceiling windows offering a lovely view of the city. The room was spotless, quiet and wonderfully comfortable. While everything from shopping to dining is mere steps away, I definitely would consider taking advantage of the free bicycles or even the hotel’s Tesla for zipping around town.
One of my favorite perks when staying at a Kimpton property is the wine hour. My pupper also loves this part of our stays as he gets to meet the other pooches who are guests of the hotel. The Kimpton wine hours are usually held in the lobby area and typically include several complimentary beverage and hors d’oeuvre options. I was thrilled to learn last evening that Kimpton selects and serves only wines that give back to charity! I mean, who wouldn’t want to drink in the name of charity?
From top to bottom, this stay exceeded my expectations. It was so hard to check out because we simply did not want to leave the comfort and warmth of this beautiful hotel. Let me put it this way, my dog and I will most certainly be born again.