You're on vacay, free from the pressure of your 9 to 5 job ( no more cubicles!). Your yearly vacation is like no other! You're making your way to your favorite beach- it's nostalgic, safe. You know exactly what will happen each day so there are no surprises...and...guaranteed happy!
While there's nothing wrong with sticking to a routine in an effort to guarantee time well spent, it can also be a bit... boring.
Growing up Southern Louisiana, every family I know has a tradition of how long they can hold their breath or how loudly they can scream as they drive through the George Wallace tunnel (Mobile, AL) on their way to the prettiest beaches in the country. The Floridians call it the Emerald Coast. To us, these beaches are called the "Cajun Riviera". Every single family I grew up around made this annual pilgramidge. Our parents were brought here by their parents, and of course, we pass this itenerary down to our kids.
And, like clockwork, when we arrive at our sandy beach destination it's highly likely we will be staying in the same hotel or condo as the year before. We will eat in the same restaurants that we have come to love (Here's lookin' at you McGuires!). We will say hello to the other families we have met in previous years who also routinely visit the same time and places we do each year. We have generations worth of fast friends and nostalgic memories.
Travel Isn't Affordable
Travel back in time to a world where Traveling was reserved for the elite. It simply wasn't something that could be done by anyone other than those with money or resources in their pockets, and even then it required an expensive flight and a travel agent to get there! Most people didn't think about going on vacation to any place that wasn't directly in their own backyard.
Cruise Lines changed all of that.
Luxury Cruises were popularized by the "Love Boat", a hit TV show in the late 70's to mid 80's. The ports of call in this fantasy show included exotic destinations like Puerto Vallarta, Acapulco, and Mazatlán. These places were thought to only be accessible by the well -to-do.
However, The 1990's saw the rise of cheap and affordable cruises. Far off, exotic destinations were no longer only an option for the upper class. For the same cost of going on vacation to the beach, you could now stay in a private state room and with each passing day, wake up to explore places like Lovers Beach in Cabo San Lucas or the world famous Rum houses of Nassau.
Travel opportunities truly opened up when the world became more accessible. When the internet became mainstream in the very late 1990's, people finally had seemingly endless access to information regarding places they had never seen in magazines or heard about from their friends. You could now locate hundreds of hot springs to frolick in... in places outside of Arkansas. You discovered that Indiana isn't just a great big corn field but it is also a great place to see waterfalls and cliff dive. You could hike through landscapes you had never seen before or visit festivals in places that made you come alive. The internet is the reason why people started becoming willing explorers. We slowly started discovering there was so much more than what was the ease and safety of the beach.
Who says you can’t find the perfect vacation anywhere else? What if instead of taking your usual route to the beach, you decide to drive off in the opposite direction? You don't have to leave the country to experience exotic or beautiful destinations either. There are so many places all around this country that have stunning scenery, diverse environments and offer something new for you. Simply choose a roadway and start driving.
One of our favorite (and most memorable) road trips was driving Amarillo, TX to Las Vegas, NV via Route 66 then back home via I-10. On this 2 week road trip, we saw Cadillac Ranch, Meteor Crater, we hiked a volcano, stood inside an ice cave, visited Sky City reservation and introduced our son to native american culture and Las Vegas Kitch. We also visited the Grand Canyon, Roswell/Area 51, explored Carlsbad Caverns, saw the sun set on the Painted Desert and hit up Astroworld and Schlitterbahn's before heading home. It's hard to believe, but the entire trip cost the same as if we had spent a week in a condo at the beach, eating out in restaurants the entire time.
Understandibly, it's not always ideal to just head out into the great unknown without a plan.
One incredible way to ease into road trips, plus get the benefit of relaxing and enjoying your time off is by visiting our National Parks. the annual National Park Pass is only $80. With this pass (and a couple tanks of gas) you could be boulder climbing in Joshua Tree. You could be skiing down the slopes of Yosemite. You could be hiking Shenandoah. You could be instagraming geysers in Yellowstone. When you consider that there are over 400 National Park sites in the country, and you have likely not visited many of them, it's also easy to admit that there are alot of natural wonders you've not experienced yet.
Just Here For The Party?
Grab some friends, go find a party!
With all of the cheap airlines available now, flights aren't really that expensive.
There are some really great destinations where you can go see your favorite bands play a concert (Red Rocks, I'm coming for you).
There are also some really great festivals out there that can truly challenge your way of being simply by participating in them.
Imagine spending a few days in Albuquerque where you could watch nearly a thousand hot air ballons take to the skies, and even ride in a hot air balloon yourself! Imagine spending a weekend on a motorcycle at Sturgis, watching some of the most amazing stunts and races known to the motorcycle world. You don't even need to be an enthusiest to have the time of your life there.
If you limit your vacation time to one single destination, how will you ever understand the purpose of Burning Man? The insanity of Fantasy Fest? The thrill of being chased by bulls in Cheyenne? Eating ALL of the foods in Chicago? Or sippin wine in Napa Valley?
Life is too short to live the same vacation year after year.
So, what are you waiting for? Pick a destination and start planning your next vacation. If the thought of choosing just one place makes you feel overwhelmed, don't worry – just throw a dart at the map and go with that. There’s so much world out there to see. And who knows, maybe by getting out of your comfort zone (and your zip code), you might find yourself enjoying the best vacation of your life. Ready, set, go!
Where will your next adventure take you?
~ Tiffany... with Tim
Check out how we stepped up our road trip game:
For more "TIFFANY TAKES ON THE WORLD! with Tim"