Travel

Travel Addiction

My name is Carlie and I am a travel addict. 

It feels good to get that out.

This time last year I made a list of a few destinations I wanted to experience in 2017. You can read the original post here.

Let’s review what did and didn’t happen.

  1. New Orleans  – checknola-bound_new-orleans-in-24-hours
  2. Overlanding the TransAmerican Trail – didn’t happen =(
  3. Camelback Mountain Resort and Waterpark– checkCamelback Mountain Resort
  4. Pensacola, Florida – checktripadvisor-vs-local-top-5-things-to-do-in-pensacola-florida
  5. Washington – check; Alaska – didn’t happen =(IMG_0526

So these were what I planned to do for 2017. As you can see, most of my plans did happen! Some didn’t. But I was able to add some destinations that weren’t on my original list! Such as:

  1. Corpus Christi, TexasCorpus Christi feature image
  2. San Antonio, TexasSan Antonio Feature image
  3. OBX, North Carolina
  4. Road trip: Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maine, New HampshireNew England road trip
  5. Big Bend National Park-TexasOV7nQXjiQpKRO0NcNq+eSA

2017 was a great year of traveling for me. I experienced so much more than I thought I would and it inspired a few of my travel goals for 2018.

2018 goals

  • Visit 30 states before I turn 30 in NovemberF45A4A34-5770-4E22-9A31-15F8D2B0997D
    • I was able to check off 7 states I never visited before in 2017. I have now visited 23 states in the USA, so I hope to visit 7 more states to bring my total to 30 states before my birthday.
    • March 2018- Spring Break Road trip Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, Kansas
    • Moving We may be moving again this summer. Wherever we end up should give me the opportunity to add another state to my list. Will it be Mississippi? Will it be New Mexico? We shall see.
    • Nevada Long weekend in Vegas? I’m hoping I can make this happen.
    • New York: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Weekend Vermont– since I’ll be in the area
  • Learn Latvian in LatviaMy husband is from Latvia. He lived there until he was a teenager and Latvian is his first language. We’re approaching 8 years together and I’ve always said I wanted to learn the language. This is the year I make it happen!
    • The University of Latvia offers a free intensive language course over the summer. So I’m hoping to make the journey to Latvia to spend 3 weeks finally making strides towards learning the languange of his people!
  • Dirty Thirty Cruise
    • I didn’t get to take a cruise in 2017, which is one of my favorite ways to vacay. I’m due. And I’d love to relax in Mexico with a margarita for my thirtieth birthday.

Do you have travel goals for 2018?

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Travel

Camelback Mountain Resort

Camelback Mountain Resort.pngLast week I met my family in Pennsylvania for a quick, snowy getaway. This was our second year traveling to Camelback Mountain Resort and we were able to take what we learned from our first trip to make this one even more enjoyable.

Let’s take a look at what the resort has to offer:

  1. Indoor Waterpark: The indoor waterpark is advertised as the best on the east coast, and I can’t help but to agree. I’ve personally been to another Pennsylvania waterpark, that I can’t even recall the name of and the Great Wolf Lodge in Virginia. Camelback’s waterpark surpasses both of these by far. The park as 13 waterslides, a swim-up bar, private cabanas, wave pool, lazy river, splash park, flowrider, and a huge hot tub that extends indoors and outdoors. IMG_7996
  2. Skiing/Snowboarding: I’m not a skier or snowboarder myself. I attempted snowboarding once, but failed miserably at the stopping part. My bum still has not forgotten. Alas, due to my lack of skills, I cannot give a comprehensive review of this portion of the resort. I will say they have everything you need right there. Lessons, gear rental, various trails, lifts. I don’t know what else you might need, but it appears they know what they’re doing there and you can get your ski and snowboard on whether you are a novice or experienced snow bunny.
  3. Snowtubing: The resort boasts 42 lanes for snow tubing. Both times I have been, they only had half the lanes open, so that’s a bit of an exaggeration. Regardless, it’s still a wonderful time, and I highly recommend taking the time to check it out. Despite not having a lick of talent in the standing up snow sports, I can really rock a sit and slide sport like snow tubing. Our second day at the resort was spent throwing ourselves onto inflated inner tubes and hurtling down a hill as quick as gravity would take us. Zero talent or experience needed.
  4. Food: The resort has multiple restaurants directly on site you can feast. We enjoyed the buffet for dinner the first night. In my opinion the food was really good, but it was very pricey at $23/person. That evening my best friend and her husband arrived late and ordered room service. Again the food was good and the price seemed reasonable, but they automatically charged a $5 room service charge and 18% gratuity to the order which made the price not so reasonable anymore. The next day we had breakfast at the buffet (again overpriced). Lunch at the sushi restaurant was more reasonably priced and the roll I received was very tasty. My only note would be that there were not that many different options. That evening for dinner we opted to order pizza from a local business. I believe it was called Big Papi’s and it was absolutely great! The price was reasonable, they delivered quickly, and the pizza was delicious. Our third and final day at the resort we decided to eat at a local restaurant named Barley Creek Brewing Co & Distillery. I recommend this place a million times over!
  5. Indoor Activities: The resort does not stop at only offering skiing/snowboarding, snow tubing, and an indoor waterpark. There is also an arcade, indoor high ropes course, mini golf, laser tag, pottery painting, scavenger hunts, rock climbing, crafts and mini bowling. All of these activities are excellent, but come at an additional cost. I thought the price for most activities was comparable to anywhere, but in my opinion the arcade was grossly overpriced. Although, we had an absolute ball in the laser tag. Unfortunately we wanted to try the high ropes course, but it was closed for maintenance for our entire stay.

Some lessons learned were definitely to be more prepared in regards to food to save money. The convenience of eating directly on site was great, but I’m not sure the cost of the buffet really makes it worth it. At least not for me. If we return, I will definitely do my oatmeal breakfasts in the room and prepare lunch in the room as well. Although, I didn’t think the sushi restaurant was expensive, so that could be an option for one day. And then we’d probably eat out at a restaurant off resort for dinner.

Highlights from the trip:

  1. Indoor Waterpark: My favorites in the waterpark are the outdoor hot tub and the group slide, the Venus Slydetrap. Our first year at the resort in 2016 we probably went down the slide a dozen times. This year I only did it once and I wish I had done it more! Same thing with the hot tub. The first year we spent so much time in the outdoor hot tub. They even had some steps we’d brave standing on in the open freezing air for as long as we could bear before plunging ourselves back into the warmth of the hot tub. This year, I was saving the hot tub for our long day in the park, and then was greatly disappointed when only the indoor portion was open. Of course it was open again the day we were leaving. Go figure.
  2. Skiing/Snowboarding: I wish I had the skills needed to snowboard. I really want to try skiing because I feel like I might be able to do that better, but I’m also very cheap and didn’t want to spend the cash on lessons. Despite no one skiing or snowboarding there was still a moment that stuck out. My brother-in-law seriously contemplated trying it out, but was quickly deterred by a woman at the desk selling lift tickets and gear rentals. Her response to his request was, “Sir, are you sure you want to try, at this stage in your life?” Which of course we took as a stab at his age, and we laughed and laughed and laughed.
  3. Snow tubing: The highlight of snow tubing this year was no one having a bad time. Last year my sister-in-law almost fell from the magic carpet that pulls you to the top of the hill, and my brother lost his phone. This year was drama free and everyone simply had a ball of a time. Also, it snowed our first night there, which was super exciting since it’s been an unseasonably warm winter, so the snow was real and fresh!1318172714775|Carlos Tejeda/1843~LEFT  Hill
  4. Food: My highlights on food would be the pizza we ordered from Big Papa’s and the breakfast place, Barley Creek. I had the eggs benedict and a side of scrapple. Oh how I have missed scrapple.
  5. Indoor Activities: Definitely the laser tag. Without a doubt, the laser tag. It was $8.99 a person, but well worth every dime.

Well Camelback, yet again you provided a wonderful vacation for me and my family. Will we return? I’m not sure, simply because as much as I love it there, I would also like to go somewhere else to add to my list of travels. Perhaps somewhere in Vermont or New Hampshire. Anyone have recommendations?

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Travel

Travels with Carlie in 2017

img_7391Holy Hell 2016! You certainly gave everyone a run for their money. But you’ve been put to bed, like the bitch you are and now let’s look to 2017.

Growing up poor. Not such a novelty thing. Anyone who knows what it’s like to pay for groceries with food stamps- when they were still printed on paper-knows you don’t get grand vacations. I was raised in Sussex County in Delaware. (Shout out to the 302). No particular town, we bounced around a bit, another side effect of poverty and finding cheap rent. Due to this upbringing I didn’t get to travel or exposure to other places. This changed in 2010. I was in a new relationship with the man who would become my husband and I wanted to do something special for our upcoming anniversary. And then I had a lightbulb moment. You’re an adult with a big girl job. You can literally go anywhere-other than Cuba or North Korea. So I started to do some research on cruises, looked up what I needed to get a passport, and thus was the start of my love of travel.

Since 2010 I have traveled 4 continents, 16 countries, 17 states and countless cities.

A quick map of my travels

screen-shot-2017-01-02-at-2-07-29-pmscreen-shot-2017-01-02-at-2-08-51-pm

You can build your own here.

There is way too much gray on those maps in my opinion. One of the great struggles with loving to travel, besides budget, would have to be deciding where to go! I’ve been to so many marvelous places, I struggle with wanting to go back and also experiencing something new. 2017 will be about mixing the two. So here are my five travel picks for 2017! Hopefully there will be more, but these will definitely be the minimum!

  1. New Orleans- One of the perks of moving to the panhandle of Florida? We’re only a 3 hour drive from New Orleans, Louisiana. This is a destination I’ve had on my list for awhile and now it is conveniently within my reach! I’ve already scoured some things to do on trip advisor and also have a recommendation on an apartment to rent while we are there! We’ll be going in early March for anyone interested in joining! Itinerary will be forthcoming.fullsizeoutput_7df
  2. Overlanding The TransAmerican Trail: North Carolina to Arkansas- My husband has found a new love in overlanding. For those who aren’t familiar this is when you drive roads and trails, off the beaten path in a self sustainable vehicle. Prepare yourself to commune with nature, get a little dirty and get a little stuck. There’s a path that runs the width of North America and we’d like to tackle it. Unfortunately it takes multiple weeks to complete it, which we won’t be able to do all at once, so we will be doing it in portions. We set out with the intention of doing this in the next month or two, but then we were slapped in the face with the realization that while we live in a vacuum of decent and warm weather in Florida, the rest of the country experiences this thing called Winter. So it will have to wait until the Spring or Summer depending on the husband’s training schedule. I can’t wait to see parts of the US that can be challenging to reach and aren’t typically visited. 

    img_7237
    The husband standing proud on our first overlanding adventure at the Eglin AFB
  3. Camelback Mountain Resort and Waterpark- This will be our second time visiting this resort. It’s located in Tannersville, PA. We went last year and shared a suite with my brother and his family. This year we will be sharing two suites with my brother’s family and my sister’s family. I’m so excited! We’ll be partaking in snow tubing and the indoor waterpark for three lovely days with family I haven’t seen in many months. It’s a great time! mc-camelback-lodge-aquatopia-indoor-waterpark-0329-20150328
  4. Pensacola, Florida- Wait. This is where you live Carlie. It is! But I’m new, and there’s tons of stuff to do here and the surrounding areas that I can’t wait to geek out and get all touristy in my new home. I want to do to an ice hockey game, a baseball game when it’s in season, walk EVERY street downtown, I hear there’s a dinosaur park, a zoo, and of course ALL the restaurants. 
  5. Washington & Alaska- We will definitely be going to Washington state, specifically Seattle to visit my brother-in-law, and I’m desperately trying to make it a two-for-one and squeeze in Alaska too. I’m dying to do an Alaskan cruise, but I don’t know if the budget will be able to fit in all of these amazing destinations. Alas, Alaska you may have to be postponed to 2018, but I sincerely hope not. Maybe I’ll start a gofundme page 😉 Just kidding…. maybe…

    15272231_1536775133006444_4591783805877586074_o
    Stolen from the brother-in-law’s instagram. Hope he doesn’t mind. How awesome does this look though?!

So that is what I’m looking forward to in 2017. There may be a move to Texas also, but thanks to life in the Navy, we won’t know about that for a few more months.

What are your travel goals for 2017?

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