6 Awesome Travel Products You’ll Love

The thing about a really great bag, is it just gets better with use.  It softens, and molds to the way you lug it.  You instinctively know exactly where to find things, after repeatedly storing and digging for them.  It becomes an extension of you on your adventures, as it accumulates all sorts of great memories. That’s why I feel it’s so essential to choose quality travel products, with well thought out designs.  When you find an entire brand that consistently makes this type of gear, it’s nice to be able to rely on them for your hiking and travel luggage needs. 6 Awesome Eagle Creek Travel Products Eagle Creek has been making durable travel outfitter goods since the 1970’s.  They offer a great assortment of luggage, backpacks, and even packing organizers.  They offer a “No Matter What” Warranty, which is lifetime coverage of their products.  They will either repair or replace, depending on the product failure. Here are some of what I think are their best products to check … [Read more...]

Inside Peek at Great Wolf Lodge Colorado Springs

Good news for Coloradans, and other fun-loving families in the region.  You've heard of the legendary indoor water park resorts: Great Wolf Lodge.  Well, now is your chance to visit one!  Last weekend marked the official Grand Opening Celebration at their newest location: Great Wolf Lodge Colorado Springs, Colorado. Although we live in Western Colorado, it was well worth the journey last weekend for my family to go check it out.  Suffice it to say… my kids didn’t want to come home.  Here’s an inside peek at the new Great Wolf Lodge Colorado Springs , and what to expect with your stay. Slow Beginnings… Colorado’s First Great Wolf Lodge Around 3 years ago, a developer with big dreams selected a prime location.  With fabulous views of the Rocky Mountains, sitting just to the north of Colorado Springs, ground was broken on a large hotel and convention center.  Alas, it never fully came to fruition. Locals tell a sad tale of a half completed hotel and convention center, sitting … [Read more...]

Have You Dreamt of Enchanting Iceland? [Trip Giveaway]

Iceland... enchanting land of wild ponies, steaming outdoor thermal pools, and stunning views of Aurora Borealis.  This destination has gained notoriety in recent years as a fabulous travel destination.  Being a nature and outdoors lover, Iceland is squarely on my Bucket List. So when my friends over at Outdoor Families Magazine recently announced this awesome giveaway, I wanted to be sure my readers knew about it.  In celebration of their 3rd year anniversary, Outdoor Families Magazines has worked with Travel East to offer this exciting Iceland trip giveaway! Family Adventure Iceland Trip Giveaway You can enter HERE for a chance to win the Enchanting Iceland Land and Sea Family Adventure Vacation Giveaway.  This opportunity is for you and your family to explore all the great unknown treasures the "land of fire and ice" has to offer! The Grand Prize Winner will receive the following: 3-night Stay for 3 at Hotel Bláfell in Breiðdaslvík Kistufell – 3-4 hour Super Jeep … [Read more...]

My First Kayak Adventure Ever… in Sagres Portugal!

Death by rollover.  Trapped upside down in my kayak, whoosing past head-smashing rocks, unable to release my lower body from its underwater tomb.  Yep, it’s one of my worst nightmares.  Can you blame me? Hence my hesitancy whenever I’ve had the opportunity to go kayaking. And I almost passed up the opportunity yet again, on a recent media trip to Portugal.  We had a local guide from the fishing village of Sagres Portugal who was planning on taking our small group of three out for a kayak adventure.  Realizing I was there to report in the capacity of “OUTDOORSY” TravelingMom… I figured I better suck it up, Buttercup! And join them. Lesson learned:  Never pass up a chance to kayak with a guide! My First Time Kayaking – Walk in the Park Turns out the only danger that day was if I had actually tipped over, my iPhone would have been trashed.  Other than that, it was so completely safe that they even take out children if the sea is calm. “The Sea.”  That’s what they … [Read more...]

Consider Bandung, Indonesia for a Winter Getaway Vacation

As the cooler temperatures approach, it's a great time to plan a winter getaway vacation to a warmer destination.  If you are traveling within the United States, everyone who reads my blog would know one of my favorite recommended locations is visiting the beaches of Florida and a trip to Disney World. But how about someplace more exotic?  Prices are often surprisingly affordable, and more and more locations are catering to families with kids.  Resorts offer more services and areas to accommodate children than even before.  Attractions welcome children, with hands on activities and opportunities for exploration.  With that in mind, here are some reasons to consider a family vacation to Bandung, Indonesia. Family Friendly Activities in Bandung, Indonesia Millions of tourists visit Bandung, Indonesia each year.  Bandung is one of Indonesia's top family destinations, and they enjoy relatively cool tropical weather. Here are just  a few of the family friendly activities you can … [Read more...]

Does the Midwest Have a Culture?

Now that I also write for a larger family travel website, TravelingMom.com, I've had the opportunity to take some fun press trips.  Recently I was invited to come visit Iowa to check out their whitewater parks (which are very cool... they've converted deadly dams in these free recreation areas).  My daughter accompanied me, and I was excited for her to see a new part of the country she wasn't familiar with. My 11 year old daughter is a Western Colorado girl, being raised in a high mountain desert terrain.  I wanted her to see some landscape more similar to what her Midwestern mom had been raised around.  Or at least, what I thought I had been raised around. But my, oh my!  The lovely, unending oceans of corn were unlike anything I had ever encountered.  The fields were dotted occasionally with massive, gorgeous barns.  And even without mountains on the horizon, the landscape was unique and beautiful (and in that regard, I'm admittedly biased!) But the corn fields aren't what … [Read more...]

Why You Need to See Colorado in the Fall

A year-round outdoor lover, I’d have to say that Fall is my absolute favorite season in Colorado.   The Fall colors in Colorado showcase a breathtaking mix of golds and greens, as the Aspen trees start to change color and contrast against the pines. There are numerous driving routes through the Colorado Rocky Mountains, available to behold this Fall splendor.  There's also an extensive trail system available for exploring, as the state is filled with outdoor lovers who love to go hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, and 4x4 off roading. Here are some ideas on best bets for accommodations, keeping your kids excited about the adventure, my favorite Colorado scenic drive, and when to come visit. Colorado ~ Where To Stay First off, what are your options for accommodations?  Well, I say go native.  And by that I mean... embrace a nice cabin with a fireplace and hot tub, if  you can! If you’ve never staying a luxury lodge style cabin… you are in for a pleasant surprise.  … [Read more...]

Free Coffee & Carside-to-Curbside Service from Denver Canopy Airport Parking

Most Coloradans who travel on a budget, or just live near Denver, will likely find themselves flying out of DIA, the Denver International Airport.   For my family, much lower airfares are worth a little up front car travel time to book flights from this location. One thing I'm always sure to include in our vacation budget is airport parking.  Being on the uncrowded fringes of Denver has resulted in DIA having multiple options for long term parking of your vehicle.  Prices vary, but will generally be cheaper than parking in a DIA lot.  The short shuttle ride over to the airport is not a big deal, so this is the option we typically chose. I recently learned about a cool, affordable Denver airport parking option that I'm excited to try out the next time we depart from DIA.  Canopy Airport Parking offers three types of parking:  indoor valet, covered self-park, and open-air. They are a totally green facility which is: Green Garage Certified, LEED Gold … [Read more...]

Top Things To Do in San Diego, California

Heading to Southern California, and looking for family friendly ideas on what to do?  My family recently spent a week in the San Diego area, thanks to a generous Aventura Clothing Ambassador gift of a timeshare.  I did a fair amount of research prior to our trip, and also had a few of my own favorite places I wanted to see. Top Things To Do in San Diego This was my husband's first visit to the West Coast, it and was to be a grand adventure!  It would also be our first long road trip in some time, so we weren't sure what  to expect. Our trip was not without a surprise or two, but we had a great deal of fun.  I don't recommend our 14 hour road trip home through the southwestern states, in 108 degree temps with a broken A/C.  But here are the highlights I do recommend to your family, if you are headed to Southern California for vacation. 1.  San Diego Whale Watching San Diego Whale Watching offers the only year-round whale watching tour in San Diego.  Heading out on the … [Read more...]

2016 Best Summer Travel Destinations

Planning any summer travel this season, or still looking for some great destination ideas?  WalletHub has released its list of 2016's Best Summer Travel Destinations.  Their analysts compared the 80 largest metro areas across 30 key metrics to identify the most budget-friendly and fun-filled summer destinations. Whew!  They obviously didn't rule out any cities due to high temperatures (Las Vegas in summer?!)  But I do think they've used some smart criteria... such as “cost of the cheapest flight”, “number of attractions”, and “diversity of activities.” I can see where those elements would make for a fabulous trip.  What do you think of the cities that made the list? Best Summer Travel Destinations Las Vegas, NV Salt Lake City, UT Orlando, FL ~ Can't go wrong with a trip to Disney World! Los Angeles, CA ~ LA is Scary, but exciting in my opinion, after 1 week spent downtown... Atlanta, GA ~ World of Coke gets 2 thumbs up from me! Dallas, TX Greenville, … [Read more...]