The Many Wonders Grapevine Texas Has To Offer Vacationers

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Are you a tourist or a local looking for fun activities in Grapevine, Texas? If yes, then Grapevine will give you the best vacation you have ever had. There are many amazing things to see and do that are very close to the major Grapevine hotels. Here are the wonders Grapevine has to offer vacationers:

1. The Grapevine Vintage Railroad

While travelling by train can be a holdover for you, it is one of the best things to do in Texas. Experience the historic Grapevine Vintage Railroad, which will take you years back to when trains were the central transport means. The Vintage Railroad will take you to Fort Worth Stockyards from Grapevine. You will get to hear the wheels of the train move on the steel tracks and enjoy the view of the cabin sways. The railroad provides standard rides between February and December. Special rides that you can take part in include the North Pole Express and a Jazz Wine Train trip.

2. Grapevine’s Wineries

Just like its name suggests, Grapevine is the ideal destination for the best wines in Texas. For a glass of white or red wine, visit any of the nine local vineyards. The GrapeFest is the biggest wine festival in the Southwest, and it takes place in Grapevine. The town is also home to Urban Wine Trail Texas. You can visit wineries along the Main Street, including Bingham Family and Messina Hof Vineyards. Just one block from Main Street, you will find the Homestead Winery where you can taste wine at the century-old Victorian home. If you want a real Texas vineyard, you can tour the Delaney Vineyards & Winery. The stunning winery is located within an attractive building that looks like an 18th-century French castle.

3. Biggest Indoor Waterpark in the State of Texas

The Great Wolf Lodge offers the biggest indoor waterpark in Texas. You can have an exciting time riding at the Coyote Cannon or descend the Alberta Falls’ swift banking turns. You can also have a relaxing time at its hot Springs’ soothing waters. Your family can have a great time playing at the water tree called Fort Mackenzie while your kids get special rides. The waterpark is not restricted to seasons; it is available all year round due to its pleasant 84 degrees of temperature. However, only Great Wolf Lodge’s guests can play there.

4. Lake Grapevine

If you love being outdoors, Lake Grapevine is suitable for you. The lake is located to the north of Grapevine’s Historic Downtown, and it’s only a few minutes ride from the town. The lake is scenic and surrounded by rolling hills covered in beautiful lush trees. You can go out to the lake on a kayak or a boat and attempt catching the white bass that is available in plenty. You can join a hired sailing trip or a romantic cruise at night under the stars.

The shoreline of the lake offers the opportunity for hiking the trails for nine miles of wilderness. Close to the lake, you will find the Meadowmere Park and Oak Grove Park that have 26 miles of great paths ideal for cycling and hiking. You can also have a picnic at the lakeside and enjoy the panoramic views.

Conclusion

Grapevine’s fine wineries, stunning lake, exciting waterpark, and Vintage Railroad as well as luxurious hotels are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the many wonders that vacationers can enjoy. If you are looking to have a good time in Grapevine, these are some of the sites to visit.

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Visit Lubbock Texas For A Memorable Vacation

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Lubbock might not be the very first place you think of when it comes to a traveling destination for you and your loved ones, but that is actually a plus. You are less likely to be encumbered with long lines to attractions while still getting top-rate experiences. Let’s go through a few of the sites that make Lubbock a gem in the Lone Star state.

Buddy Holly Center

Did you realize that we have Lubbock, Texas to thank for being one of the birthplaces of rock n roll? It’s true! Charles Hardin Holley, professionally known as Buddy Holly, was born in Lubbock and it is where he started his career in the early 1950s. He went on to have several hits (which he wrote and recorded himself, quite unusual for the time) that are influential in the music industry to this day, before dying in a plane crash at the age of 22 in 1959. That day is forever known as ‘The Day The Music Died’.

Lubbock has a wonderful attraction built in memory of Mr. Holly which is absolutely a must for your visit. The Buddy Holly Center opened to the public featuring a museum, a fine arts gallery, a preservation of one of Buddy Holly’s band members’ house, and a performance venue. Museum items on display include everything from childhood letters to Buddy’s iconic eyeglasses. If anyone along for your vacation is a music-lover, this is the place to go. Plus, there are several hotels in Lubbock near the center, so this could be your jumping off point for other attractions.

Silent Wings Museum

If you have someone in your party that is more into military might than in the roots of rock music, there is definitely something in Lubbock that suits the bill. Lubbock was once a training area for pilots during the days of World War II. This history is remembered and honored by the Silent Wings Museum, a museum dedicated to educating the public of the glider pilot program that took place in Lubbock. The crown jewel of the museum is an actual glider plane from the era, that was rescued and restored after being found used for advertising on top of a tire store in Fresno, CA!

Caprock Winery

The idea of a winery might seem like a novelty in West Texas, but the fact is that Caprock Winery has been producing award-winning wines just outside of Lubbock since 1988. You can take a tour of the facility along with doing wine tastings five days a week (excluding Sunday and Monday). There is even a lounge area where you can enjoy a glass of their wine next to a roaring fireplace or on their patio (depending on the time of year).

Joyland

Okay, so the kids have been good during these trips to all the adult attractions and now they deserve to cut loose. What better destination could there be than an amusement park?! Joyland Amusement Park boasts over 30 rides, from roller coasters to rides for the littlest of your little ones. It is also very competitively-priced for an amusement park, with group rates and discounts easily obtainable online. It is an oasis for the young as well as for the young at heart.

Great Vacation Spots You Might Not Have Considered, But Should!

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You want to go on vacation, but you don’t want to join the hordes of people in New York City, Los Angeles, or Miami. Here are some vacation destinations that offer lots of entertainment without the mobs. They provide a range of options from parks to skiing to Victorian Christmas celebrations.

1) Dublin, Ohio

Dublin, which is near Columbus, was named after the Irish capital and boasts a number of attractions that play up its heritage. That includes a number of pubs, taverns, and shops, plus an Irish Festival held every August. Visitors can also enjoy the Glacier Ridge Metro Park which has an observation tower that provides views of the park’s 1037 acres. The park also contains debris from glaciers that is between 12,000 and 17,000 years old. Dublin Ohio hotels range from the modest to the luxurious, and there are many different ones to choose from.

2) Sedona, Arizona

Sedona boasts both natural beauty and an artistic vibe. Visitors can hike or cycle along desert trails and take in such impressive sites as an extinct volcano and massive buttes. They can also travel to the Grand Canyon or go birdwatching. Sedona also boasts a variety of spas, shops, and art galleries. Several different festivals take place in Sedona, including the Sedona VegFest (January) and the Sedona Film Festival (late February to early March).

3) Cape May, New Jersey

Located on the coast of southern New Jersey, Cape May is a small town (population 3600+) famous for its many Victorian buildings. The entire town is considered a National Historic Landmark. During the holiday season, Cape May is decorated in a Victorian style. The Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts (MACA) sponsors Christmas Candlelight House Tour and holds a Dickens Christmas Extravaganza.

4) Sanibel and Captiva Islands, Florida

Sanibel and Captiva are a pair of islands off Florida’s southwestern coast. They are linked by a short bridge, and a longer bridge connects Sanibel, the bigger island, to the Florida mainland. According to the official website, the islands have “15 miles of beaches, 25 miles of bike paths, 50 types of fish, 230 types of birds, 250 kinds of shells, and 0 stoplights.” Sanibel Island is home to the J. N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge, which is known for its mangroves and migratory birds.

5) Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

Coeur d’Alene is located in northern Idaho, and it is roughly 30 miles east of Spokane, Washington. It sits on Lake Coeur d’Alene’s northern shore. The Trail of the Coeur d’Alenes runs through the town. It is a 72-mile long trail that runs roughly east-west from Mullan to Plummer. During winter, travelers enjoy cross-country skiing and snowshoeing along the trail. Coeur d’Alene is also home to a variety of museums and galleries. The Museum of North Idaho is dedicated to the region’ history, while the Art Spirit Gallery is devoted to works by artists in the area.

6) San Antonio, Texas

San Antonio was originally established as a Spanish trading post and mission in 1718 and became a city thirteen years later. It is thus the oldest city in Texas. Attractions in the city include the Alamo and SeaWorld. The latter will hold a Christmas celebration from mid-November until early January. There will also be a number of events commemorating the city’s tricentennial. The Witte Museum, for example, has an exhibit dedicated to the city’s history that will remain until January 6, 2019. There will also be various Christmas events like the Ford Holiday Boat Caroling along the San Antonio River Walk.

La Paz and Todos Santos, Mexico

La Paz and Todos Santos: It was our first ever girls-only trip and five of us were determined to go somewhere…anywhere to chill, bond, and be wild. Only one condition, it had to be outside USA. To go easy for the first time, we chose Mexico…a place which was closer to our home and within short distance. After lots of going back and forth, we chose Cabo San Lucas in Mexico. After visiting around 60 countries, this was the single most memorable trip that I’ll always cherish.

A small Mexican village - El Triunfo

A small Mexican village – El Triunfo

We planned ahead for the La Paz and Todos Santos trip to get out of the city life of Cabo. If you have an extra day and are looking for an excursion from Cabo San Lucas, this would be a great option. Both of these small towns are rich in history and culture, but my personal favorite was Todos Santos. The distance from Cabo San Lucas to La Paz is about 264 km and took us about 3 hours by car. But don’t fall asleep…most portion of the journey is very scenic and roads/highways are  surrounded by Sierra Mountains that should not be missed.

Reservation for this trip was made before arriving to Cabo thru Easy Cabo Trip. It was $70 per person and paid partial amount from the total to reserve the day. Originally I chatted with Alex from Easy Cabo Trip to book the trip who was extremely helpful with our needs. Our guide/driver, Eric, was someone who I would recommend highly for anyone. He was knowledgeable, friendly, very nice, dedicated, and spoke pretty good English too. We were picked up from our resort sharp at 8am. It was about 10 hours trip from pick up to drop off. And Eric helped us all the way at every step.

Time of Travel: We were in Cabo San Lucas during the 1st week of December 2017. We kept the first couple days and the last day for Cabo itself. In between, on the 3rd day, we decided to go out of the main tourist spots and enjoy the rural parts of the town. Weather in December in Cabo is usually very pleasant. It was somewhere in the 70s and 80s most of the time.

Our Hotel: We stayed in Marina Fiesta Resort and Spa in Cabo San Lucas. Please check out my page on Cabo right side to know more about the resort.

Eating and Shopping: The morning we went to La Paz, Eric, took us to a small breakfast place because we weren’t able to start our morning without some coffee. I had a freshly made delicious beef empanada while others tried burrito and etc. The place had a small shop attached to it where a lady was selling all sorts of dry fruit pastes, spicy candies, and traditional Mexican snacks. I bought a guava paste bar (my kids loved it) and some tamarind hot candies.

Our breakfast place on our way to La Paz, Mexico

Our breakfast place on our way to La Paz, Mexico

Todos Santos is a fun place to do some souvenir hunting. Hotel California can be slightly pricey but it has some nice selections of trinkets and gift items. I bought few keyrings, a rug, and a mug from here. Other stores here sell similar items, sometimes maybe a bit cheaper than Hotel California. But for my rug, I found that Hotel California was cheaper than other stores and they carry some unique items that other stores didn’t have…but don’t forget to bargain.

Souvenirs inside Hotel California in Todos Santos, Mexico

Souvenirs inside Hotel California in Todos Santos, Mexico

Places We’ve Visited: I wish I knew how beautiful Todos Santos is, I would have planned to go there first and spend more time and then go to La Paz after lunch. We barely got a chance to roam around Todos Santos, because it was already dark when we reached there and everything was getting ready to close.

  1. Tropic of Cancer: This is where we first stopped in the morning. It’s a very simple monument in between San Jose del Cabo and La Paz, where the tropic of cancer crosses. Other than the monument itself, there is a small church and some hand-crafts shops are here too. We spent about 15-20 minutes before heading towards our breakfast venue.

    Monument for Tropic of Cancer near Cabo, Mexico

    Monument for Tropic of Cancer near Cabo, Mexico

  2. Gold and Silver Mine: This is an old and unnamed gold and silver mine. It had no sign and was hidden in the middle of a small hill and bushes. A tiny door leads to the mouth of the mine. We didn’t dare to go inside the mine itself.
  3. Iglesia de El Triunfo: Once a mining urban settlement, El Triunfo is a small town where another silver mine, El Triunfo de la Cruz, is located. In fact, it is this silver mine that gave birth to the town El Triunfo. We didn’t go to the mine here, just saw it from a distance from this church. With the Latin cross floor plan of this building with wooden structured roof, Iglesia de El Triunfo dates back to the second half of the 19th The main altar was designed elaborately in neoclassic style.

    Iglesia de El Triunfo in Cabo, Mexico

    Iglesia de El Triunfo in Cabo, Mexico

  4. Playa Ballandra: Playa Ballandra is a calm and sandy beach with a beautiful landscape. We spent about an hour walking along the water and taking pictures. It was not overly crowded but was lively.

    Playa Ballandra in Cabo, Mexico

    Playa Ballandra in Cabo, Mexico

  5. Playa Tecolote: This is where we had our lunch. It’s a small private-like beach, didn’t see anything nearby, except for the restaurant which was almost packed with tourists and locals.

    Playa Tecolote in Cabo, Mexico

    Playa Tecolote in Cabo, Mexico

  6. La Paz Downtown: 30 minutes drive from Playa Tecolote is La Paz Downtown. This is an old Mexican port and still carries that feel and vibe. The corner stone of Cathedral de Nuestra Senora de la Paz was laid in 1861. It has some stained glass windows and a simple alter. We really didn’t do much here other than visiting the cathedral and looking over some local shops. There are few galleries…but everything was closed on Sunday.

    Cathedral of La Paz

    Cathedral of La Paz

  7. Todos Santos: Located in north of Cabo, Todos Santos is one of the small cities of Baja California on the Pacific side. It took about 1 ½ hours from La Paz to Todos Santos and we got here when it was already dark. It would have been ideal if we came to Todos Santos in the morning and stayed until lunch. We could have spent more time and enjoyed the inspirational characteristic of this Mexican town.

Even if you can’t do La Paz, I would highly recommend taking a day trip to Todos Santos…this is almost a must-see when you are visiting Cabo and makes perfect day trip from Cabo. Its tiny community is filled with old colonial style arts and architecture which take you few centuries back. Here are some places we managed to see in Todos Santos.

  1. Mission of Santa Rosa de Todos Santos: This century old monastery is at the heart of this town. The original building goes back to early 18th We could make it to the cathedral right before its closing and there is no charge to visit. It has a simple interior with elegant altar and grand exterior.
  2. Hotel California: The iconic colonial style red building of Todos Santos is the Hotel California. This is located only 2 minutes’ walk from the cathedral. Inside of the hotel is more beautiful than the outside. So make sure to go inside and check out the hotel lobby, bar, café, and shop.
Inside Hotel California in Todos Santos, Mexico

Inside Hotel California in Todos Santos, Mexico

 

 

What to Do in the Poconos in Every Season

The Poconos region spans 2,400 square miles and is known for its mountainous peaks, abundant forests, waterfalls, wildlife, and ample opportunities to get out and explore the countryside. Indeed, one of the best things about this area is that you can visit any time of year and find something fun to do. Here’s a small fraction of what you can look forward to during each season in the Poconos.

Spring

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Image via Flickr by Alexander Day

Between the lows of winter and the highs of summer, spring is one of the best times to get outdoors and go hiking or biking in the Pocono Mountains. Plan a trip to one of these areas:

  • Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area
  • Bushkill Falls
  • Dingmans Falls

You’ll find dozens of locations and trails to explore, but each of these will give you a look at the area’s best waterfalls. The tallest one at Bushkill towers at over 100 feet high.

One of the best things about exploring the state parks and nature areas in the Poconos is that the mountain range is a popular spot for discount hotels, luxury accommodations, and everything in between. Check out a Poconos hotel room from Hotel Planner in the area to enjoy proximity to these natural spots and all the other local attractions.

Summer

Summer in the Poconos is ideal for swimming and water sports. A visit to one of the waterfalls will cool you down, but you can also go swimming or camping at Worthington State Forest or Beltzville State Park. You’ll find beach areas at Delaware Water Gap Recreation Area and Gouldsboro State Park as well.

The area is also home to a couple of water parks that the whole family will love. Visit Camelbeach Waterpark, which features indoor and outdoor pools and slides, or go to Aquatopia, which has water slides, water rides, and a swim-up bar where you can order a cocktail and some bar food.

Fall

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Image via Flickr by Ravi_Shah

Poconos is in a northeastern part of the United States that ignites with color every fall. From September through November, you can visit locations throughout the states to see the changing leaves. If your priority is to see the rich fall foliage deep in the mountains, keep an eye on the color forecast throughout the year in order to plan a successful vacation. The color zones run through the Poconos, so you should have several weeks in the fall when you can visit and see this phenomenon.

Fall is also a popular season for festivals in the Poconos. If you’re visiting this time of year, attend the Apple Harvest & Timber Festivals, Black Bear Film Festival, or Pocono Food Truck & Art on the Mountain event.

Winter

The area’s many ski resorts open their lifts and trails in the winter. These are a few of the areas where you can take the family for lessons, equipment rentals, and skiing and snowboarding fun:

  • Big Boulder Ski Area
  • Blue Mountain Resort
  • Camelback Mountain
  • Jack Frost Mountain
  • Shawnee Mountain Ski Area

Poconos promises tons of outdoor fun regardless of when you visit. Add these activities to your itinerary to make the most of your time in the Pennsylvania mountains.

 

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