Glamping – It’s all the Rage!

Yurt • Circle M RV & Camping Resort

It may have become official when the word was added to the Merriam-Webster dictionary in 2018, but “glamping” has quietly become quite trendy over the past several years. The word itself it’s a combination, or portmanteau, if you will, of glamour and camping. The concept is simple, combine luxury amenities and accommodations with the outdoor activity of camping, and voila, you’re glamping.

But why has it become such a big thing in the last few years?  Simply put, American’s are looking to combine two of their favorite things – relaxing, and being outdoors with the caveat of making it less stressful when it comes to the accommodations part. No more making sure you arrive before dark so you can see all the tent poles, or waking up with an aching back which may wreak havoc on daytime activities like hiking and canoeing. According to a market research study done by Arizton, the glamping market will reach roughly $1 billion by 2024 in the U.S. Glamping is here to stay!

Glamping certainly amps up an outdoor experience in many ways. Accommodations for glamping are designed to give you the maximum amount of luxury, while staying true to the concept of communing with nature. What today’s glamper is looking for is camping amenities that include unique and quality sleeping options, onsite private kitchens and bathrooms, and a location that is near major attractions but still provides that “off the beaten path” feeling, while not sacrificing resort amenities and facilities.

Yurt Yosemite Lakes Groveland, CA

Of course, whether your camp or glamp, the benefits are still the same. The reduction in stress levels when you go off grid and spend time outside is tremendous.

So, how do you glamp?

First off, unique accommodations such as yurts, cabins, teepees and tiny houses are considered glamping accommodations. Yurts are spacious, and typically can accommodate queen-sized beds, bathroom suites with showers and kitchenettes. Similarly, cabins provide ample space for more luxurious amenities and plenty of space to relax and enjoy your camping company. Teepees are unique, and well, just plain cool. As for the tiny houses, these little darlings are so well-appointed they feel just like home.

Location is also a factor for your outdoor foray to be considered glamping. To be glamping-worthy, your campground should have clean, accessible bathrooms (if your accommodations do not provide private bathrooms), electric hook-ups, onsite amenities like pools and laundry rooms and should be pet-friendly (after all, if you’re a pet-lover, you wouldn’t consider adventuring without your four-legged bestie along for the ride.) Access to recreation should also be available, whether at the location or nearby.

Horses RanchoOso Photo By JulieVader

Some Petite Retreats glamping locations to consider would include:

Yosemite Lakes (Groveland, CA) – Check off access to recreation with Yosemite National Park just up the road, and the campground is pet friendly. As for accommodations, check out the yurts here.

Rancho Oso – The scenery surrounding the campground, which includes Los Padres National Forest and the Santa Ynez River, provides relaxing vibes, while the teepees are ultra-cool for bedding down after a day spent horseback riding or hiking. And yes, pets are welcome.

Mt. Desert Narrows (Bar Harbor, ME) – The rugged east coast location, proximity to Acadia National Park, the cozy cabin accommodations, and the pet friendly attitude make this campground a glamping possibility.

Other items that can make you a glamper include interesting menu items other than traditional camping fare that can be created over your campfire or camp kitchen, fun cocktails, or mocktails, to relax after the day’s events, cozy blankets and chairs to relax in, and aromatics or incense to keep things smelling fresh!

Sunset • Mt Desert Narrows Camping Resort

Check out other Petite Retreat locations and get your first glamping experience under your belt. You don’t want to be left out in the cold on this trend!

Hike and Yurt – Our Favorite Four-Letter Words!

Yurt at Mount Vernon RV Campground, Bow, WAWe’ve detailed the benefits of camping in our yurts many times – spacious yet comfortable, close to nature yet shielded from the elements, and, they are ready and waiting so you can get camping the minute you arrive at your destination!

We’ve also detailed the benefits of hiking many times – regularly hiking lowers your risk of heart diseases, lower blood pressure and blood sugar levels, boosts bone density, strengthens your core and elevates your mood.

Combine all those benefits and it’s no wonder Hike and Yurt are some our favorite four-letter words. Toss in our Washington yurt accommodations and the benefits multiply as the state is home to five different locations that offer yurt lodging and all offer proximity to hiking trails that can’t be beat.

Grandy Creek RV Campground (Concrete): The Cascade Trail Head is an easily-accessible, 22.5-mile trail that runs along the Skagit River Valley with farmland and wildlife views. It is crushed stone and gravel and fairly level and there are some benches along the way for resting. A highlight is the historic Henry Thompson Bridge at trails’ end in Concrete. At the time it was completed in 1918, it was the largest single span cement bridge in the world. The bridge is now on the National Register of Historic Places.

Long Beach RV & Camping Resort, Seaview, WA

Long Beach RV Campground (Seaview): AllTrails.com lists 11 hiking trails in Cape Disappointment State Park, which is just a five-minute drive from the campground, or a 15-minute bike ride via the Discovery Trail. Most of 11 trails listed with AllTrails are rated easy to moderate so everyone can enjoy the hike. The Bells’ View Overlooks Trail (0.5 miles) is rated for all hikers and offers beautiful views of the wildflowers and the bay. The Discovery Trail itself is 14 miles roundtrip, and takes hikers over the sand dunes via the boardwalk, provides views of the ocean and even a sculpture of William Clark, for whom the trail is named, along with his travel companion, Meriwether Lewis!

Mount Vernon RV Campground (Bow): The Padilla Bay Shore Trail takes you along the bay where the Skagit River meets the Salish Sea and makes it one of the most diverse and biologically productive of the major estuaries on the Puget Sound. It is a 2.25-mile trail that can be easily trekked. Binoculars are a must!

Paradise RV Campground (Silver Creek): One of the stars here is the Skagit River Valley – an opportunity to explore the Hoh Rain Forest, one of the largest temperature rain forests in the US, via a hike along the Hoh River Trail. Mt. St. Helens National Monument is another opportunity for hiking as it offers more than 200 miles of trails that offers views of wildflowers, mountains, lakes and even the devastation caused by the 1980 eruption.

Yurt at Tall Chief RV & Camping Resort, Fall City, WA

Tall Chief RV Campground (Fall City): April to October is the best time to take a hike and view the beauty of Snoqualmie Falls, which is less than four miles from the campground.  Of course, the highlight here is the 268-foot waterfall and good to note, it’s an easy hike for everyone. Sit on the rocks near the base of the falls and take in another great show from Mother Nature.  Take a longer drive (about 40 miles) and explore a more difficult trail at the Lake Lilian Trail, an 8-mile trail that is a favorite of birders!

Book your Hike/Yurt summer adventure today – go to the petiteretreats.com/accomodations_yurts and get moving!

Boston Calling

Boston Skyline, Boston, MA

Making New England your summer retreat this summer? If so, take note of some the events going on in and near Boston this summer.

Tuxbury Tiny House Village, Tuxbury Pond RV Campground, South Hampton, NH

  1. Boston Calling – it’s not just the title of this piece, but also a 3-day music festival in Boston scheduled for May 24-26, that also features comedy performances as well. This year’s musical lineup includes artists Tame Impala, Jack White, Brandi Carlisle, The Killers, Khalid and Portugal the Man to name a few, while the comedy lineup includes Jenny Slate, Fred Armisen and Michael Che. The event is held at the Harvard Athletic Complex in nearby Allston. For a full lineup and ticket information visit www.bostoncalling.com.
  2. Boston Dragon Boat Festival – the first and oldest festival of its type in the US, this event brings over 70 teams from around the country and world to compete in a 500-meter race along the banks of the Charles River as each team commands their own 39-foot Hong Kong-style Dragon Boat. The festival itself is full of fun for the whole family with cultural events, food, vendors and more. The 40th Annual Dragon Boat Festival takes place June 8-9.
  3. North Star Pro Rodeo – while you really wouldn’t associate a rodeo with Massachusetts, you will have an opportunity to change that with a visit to the North Star Pro Rodeo held in Marshfield on June 22-23. Like any other rodeo, you can expect bull riding, steer wrestling, barrel racing and more rodeo fun. For details, visit www.marshfieldfair.org.
  4. Boston Pops July Fourth – this annual extravaganza has Boston Pops Conductor, Keith Lockhart, joined by some pretty popular guest stars, as he conducts the music of America to celebrate our country’s birthday! The concert and spectacular fireworks display should be on everyone’s bucket list. Why not check it off your list this summer? For information, visit www.bostonpopsjuly4th.org.
  5. Boston Seafood Festival – as they say, when in Rome, except in this case, when in Boston, don’t miss the seafood! This festival provides the perfect chance to eat lobster and clams and whatever else they dish up. Held on the historic Boston Fish Pier, this year’s event is set for Sunday, August 4, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. There will be chef demos, a fish cutting demonstration, a lobster bake, clambakes, Battle of the Shuckers and a beer garden.

Vacation Cottage, Pine Acres RV Campground, Raymond, NH

Boston highlights also include: The Freedom Trail, a walking path through the city with historical markers that document events of the Revolutionary War; Faneuil Hall, a meeting hall and market place originally built in 1742 and restored in 1976 to become one of Boston’s most visited places thanks to its mix of markets, food vendors and street entertainers; Boston North End, the city’s Little Italy neighborhood, containing some of the oldest buildings in the city – just a short walk from downtown Boston, the food and baked goods make it worth the trip; and Fenway Park, home to the 2018 World Series Champions, the Boston Red Sox. Take in a game, see what the Green Monster is all about and decide for yourself whether there’s a repeat brewing!

Cabin at Gateway to Cape Cod RV Campground, Rochester, MA

Reserve a stay at New Hampshire’s Tuxbury Pond or Pine Acres or Gateway to Cape Cod in Massachusetts which are all conveniently about an hour’s drive away from the city. Visit PetiteRetreats.com to plan your trip to explore one of the oldest cities in the US.

Nestled in New York

Cabin at Lake George Escape Campground, Diamond Point, NY

Nestled in New York

Does your idea of the perfect summer vacation include a cozy cabin in the woods, complemented by the perfect lake for lazing by or playing in, all surrounded by towering trees and majestic mountains? If that fits your bill, don’t wait to book a stay in one of the cabins at Lake George Escape or Alpine Lake, both located in New York’s incomparable Adirondack region.

Lake George Escape, located in Diamond Point, sits on 178 acres and has direct access to the Schroon River. With four cabins to choose from (one sleeps 4, one sleeps 5 and two sleep 6), this is the place to enjoy an idyllic summer getaway. Amenities vary from cabin to cabin but all promise to be the perfect place to spend your summer at the lake.  The campground also has two pools, a playground and of course access to the lake.

Cabins at Alpine Lake RV Resort, Corinth, NY

The cabins at Alpine Lake RV Campground, located in Corinth, sleep 6 and have full bathrooms and kitchens complete with refrigerator, stove, microwave, as well as AC and heat. The resort has fishing available in the stocked lock and plenty of hiking and biking trails to explore.

Nearby to both campgrounds, there is plenty to keep you busy this summer. While there are certainly “inside” things to see and do, the focus here is enjoying the outdoors. There are hiking trails, rafting and tubing trips, scenic boat rides and lots of fishing.

From a history buff’s perspective, there’s Grant Cottage State Historic Site, in Wilton, where Ulysses S. Grant spent the last days of his life writing his memories and where for years Civil War veterans trekked to pay homage to our 18th president and Civil War General. Another top historic attraction is Lake George Battlefield Park, a 35-acre park that preserves battle sites from both the French & Indian War and the Revolutionary War.

Both the Saratoga Performing Arts Center (SPAC) and the Adirondack Theater Festival (AFT) have a lot to offer this summer season. The AFT, located in Glen Falls, produces a nine-week summer theater schedule and this summer’s shows include Alice in Wonderland, Calling All Kates, a romantic musical comedy and The Enlightenment of Percival Von Schmootz, a musical comedy billed as Monty Python meets the Dark Ages. Check out this summer’s lineup at www.atfestival.org.

SPAC runs the gamut of entertainment genres from live big-name concerts including the Dave Matthews Band and Dead and Company to opera, ballet, and theater productions. A full calendar of events can be found at www.spac.org.

Special events to note include the Adirondack Wine & Food Festival, June 29-30, at the Charles R. Wood Festival Commons in Lake George, that will showcase 120 wine vendors, craft beverages, artisan foods, food trucks, and vendors. For information on that event, visit www.adkwinefest.com. Come fall, when the color show of autumn makes its debut here, the Adirondack Balloon Festival draws more than 150,000 people to this event to watch the hot air balloons soar into the mountain skies. That event is set for September 19-22 in Queensbury.

Pick your events, pack your bags and book your cabin for a tranquil, yet cultured, lazy, yet, sporty and definitely all kinds of fun summer in the Adirondacks. Go to www.PetiteRetreats.com.

Spring Break in Orlando & Kissimmee

Orlando, FL
Orlando, FL

Looking for a way to get away this spring? Look no further than Orlando & Kissimmee, Florida! While the Orlando & Kissimmee areas are known for the theme parks, there’s so much more to explore in this area. Here are some of our favorite ways to explore the region in the spring!  

Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival

Until June 3, the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival brings the kind of joy only spring can bring! During the International Flower & Garden Festival, Epcot is positively bursting with all the colors of the rainbow from over “30 million blooms.” While the flowers and garden displays are certainly the main events, this year’s 25th annual festival also features concerts, special programs and demonstrations, new topiaries and gardens, food specials, and more! Admission to the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival is included in your day pass for Walt Disney World®. Be sure to visit the Epcot website for more information: https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/events-tours/epcot/  

Lake Eola Park 

Lake Eola Park is a perfect daytime excursion while enjoying spring break in Orlando. Located in downtown Orlando, you’re in the heart of it all with lots of shops, restaurants, and bars to check out. Here, you can rent a swan-shaped paddle boat, see a concert at the Walt Disney Amphitheatre; or just relax amid the flower beds while gazing on the view of Orlando’s skyline! Remember to also check out the sculptures installed around the park by the nonprofit, See Art Orlando. These outdoor public sculptures serve to “enlighten and enrich” the park and the lives of park visitors. For more information about Lake Eola Park, visit orlando.gov. 

Ziplining Safari 

Take a zip line adventure in Kissimmee! Zip across the treetops at 25 miles an hour at Forever Florida’s Zipline Safari! Thrill seekers of all ages can strap on a helmet and swoosh across the treetops for a sensational activity you won’t soon forget! Forever Florida also offers other outdoor excursions like horseback riding and a trail buggy. For more information and to book an excursion, visit foreverflorida.com. 

Seven Seas Food Festival at SeaWorld®

Eat your way around the world when you visit SeaWorld until May 5! Every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, visitors can sample over 180 international cuisines and a huge collection of beer, wine, and spirit selections from around the world! This year, the festival has become even bigger and more diverse with new markets like Italian, Vegan, and Caribbean, and a lineup of live performances featuring bands from many genres like Latin, rock, country, and more! Just make sure to purchase a Specialty Dining Pass along with your general admission to SeaWorld® or visit seaworld.com. 

Tropical Palms Resort
Tropical Palms Resort

Stay & Play at Tropical Palms RV Resort 

Located in Kissimmee, Florida, Tropical Palms RV Resort is a hidden gem set on 69 beautiful sun-kissed acres that are perfect for your Orlando vacation getaway, especially for spring break! Approximately 4 miles from Walt Disney World Resort, 11 miles from the Orange County Convention Center, and within walking distance from Old Town and Fun Spot, Tropical Palms RV Resort is the perfect home base for your spring break adventures. 

The colorful and spacious vacation cottages at Tropical Palms are a favorite accommodation option for guests! Complete with private deck, full kitchen, flat-screen TV, sleeper sofa, and available in a variety of floor plans to accommodate any size group! If you want to bring a furry family member, Tropical Palms also has pet-friendly cottages available 

Tropical Palms Resort
Tropical Palms Resort

When you choose one of these spacious private cottages or RV sites, you will have access to the Tropical Palms pool, café, shuffleboard, bocce ball, horseshoes, live entertainment, social events, on-site laundry, and much more. Tropical Palms RV Resort makes for the perfect Central Florida spring break getaway! 

Make your reservations today and learn more on petiteretreats.com 

Glamping in Style with Petite Retreats!

Thanks to the advent of “glamping,” more and more people are catching the camping bug. And, because glamping made alternatives to tent camping cool, camping is no longer just a warm-weather getaway option. With glamping becoming trendier, accommodations like yurts, cabins, and tiny houses are now sought after options, compared to the more traditional, yet weather-dependent tent and all the outdoor accoutrements associated with camping.

Glamping options like tiny houses have all the amenities of a hotel while also providing the cozy, communing with nature feeling campers seek. Cottages and cabins can range from rustic to well-outfitted yet still maintain that same “one with nature” atmosphere provided by the camping cottages and cabins of yesteryear. Yurts offer a unique way to spend time among nature in a setting that is both cozy and spacious all at once.

Whether you’re looking for a wintery glamping experience filled with hot cocoa and activities bouncing around in the snow, or escaping the cold until the winter in the North is over, there are plenty of options ready and waiting to help make your glamping dreams come true with Petite Retreats!

Is the Pacific Northwest calling your name this season? Check out the Tiny House Villages in Leavenworth, Washington, or Welches, Oregon. The Mt. Hood Tiny House Village in Welches sits amid all the winter sports activities in the area and is also close to Portland so you can get your big city fix when you’re done playing in the snow.

Leavenworth Tiny House Village has the backdrop of the Cascade Mountains (and all the snow fun that comes with it) and is, of course, is just a few miles from the Bavarian Village of Leavenworth, where you may just feel like you went to sleep in Washington and woke up in Germany!

Leavenworth Tiny House Village
Leavenworth Tiny House Village

There are also yurts at Bend-Sunriver in Oregon, the aforementioned Mt. Hood, and several Pacific Coast locations from Washington on down through Oregon. Cabins can be found in California, Oregon, and Texas. And, if you insist on spending winter on the beach, colorful cottages in Florida beckon you to locations that include the Florida Keys and centrally-located Kissimmee.

Florida speaks for itself in terms of fun and sun. Kissimmee offers perfect proximity to all the theme parks and the Keys are as close as you can get to a tropical adventure without leaving the U.S. So, enjoy a cottage in the sun and go glamping the Sunshine State.

Colorful Cottages at Fiesta Key

Pick a yurt and enjoy a stay at Tall Chief RV Resort in Fall City, Washington, which is less than a half hour outside of Seattle. Or, choose a cozy cabin at Pacific City RV Resort in Cloverdale, Oregon, and enjoy winter hiking in Cape Meares State Park. Try out staying in a cabin “Cali-style” and book a stay at Rancho Oso RV Resort, located just outside the charming city of Santa Barbara. Enjoy “America’s Riviera” as Santa Barbara is known, and take in the history, culture, arts, and local wineries.

Get your winter glamping groove on while you can! Petite Retreats provides you with lots of variety in your choice of destination, or destinations if you’ve got the time. So, get going and get glamping!

Visit petiteretreats.com to find your perfect winter glamping getaway.

A Bit of Bavaria Stateside!

Leavenworth Tiny House Village
Leavenworth Tiny House Village

Cold-weather playground, unique holiday destination, plenty of ways to experience nature…these are phrases that describe Bavaria, a state in southwestern Germany, which is roughly 4,000-5,000-plus miles across the Atlantic. Definitely a charming destination with its snow-capped mountains, quaint villages, cultural offerings, and generous hospitality.

But if you don’t have the time (or the funds) to make a trek across the pond this winter season, why not check out the USA’s own little bit of Bavaria, otherwise known as Leavenworth, Washington. Nestled in the Cascade Mountains, Leavenworth is a Bavarian-styled village that is all about doing things Alpine-style. And once the winter season begins, the town explodes with more snow-filled activities and holiday events than you can imagine. There’s cross-country skiing, sledding, downhill skiing, ice fishing, snow tubing, sleigh rides, a Christkindlmarkt, a Christmas Lighting Festival, a cookie crawl, and more, all set among the most beautiful little Bavarian-style backdrop you can imagine this side of the Atlantic!  

To make your visit to Leavenworth even more enchanting, stay at the Leavenworth Tiny House Village in your choice of five uniquely Bavarian-styled tiny houses. Combine a Tiny House stay with all the charm of Leavenworth and you’ll be guaranteed a Bavarian-styled experience without even needing your passport!

Belle
Belle

What can we see about Belle? Of course, she’s the belle of the ball at 307 square feet with a full bathroom, kitchen, first-floor bedroom and the cozy loft with a queen and twin bed! She’s perfectly appointed with stylish décor and furnishings, including linens and kitchenware. Belle sleeps 4-5 and has a TV with basic cable.

Adeline
Adeline

Adeline, sweet Adeline will be decked out for the holidays and welcoming the lucky four guests who can call her home during a stay at Leavenworth. With 287 square feet of charming space, Adeline has a first-floor twin bedroom, full bathroom, and kitchen. Plus there’s the cozy loft with its queen and twin beds. Linens, kitchenware, and TV with basic cable complete the sweet tiny house that is Adeline.

With an exterior as blue as the Alpine skies, Hanna is perfect for any duo that wants to experience the seasonal offerings of Leavenworth and bunk in each night in 181-square feet of cozy. There is a loft bedroom with a queen bed, a full bathroom, kitchen and TV with basic cable. Linens and kitchenware are included. Hanna has it all for a pair of winter adventure-seekers!

Rudolf
Rudolf

Of course, Rudolf is a red tiny house, what other colors would he be!  Step inside Rudolf and you’ll find 250 feet of space that sleep 4-5 thanks to a loft with queen bed and twin bed, and a pullout couch on the first floor.  Rudolf also features a full bath and kitchen, with linens and kitchenware included. TV with basic cable round’s out Rudolf’s amenities. He’s too cute!

Otto
Otto

Otto is the big guy on the Leavenworth RV Campground campus with his robust 287 square feet that sleeps 4-5. This hardy tiny house has a loft with queen bed and twin bed, pullout couch on the first floor, full bathroom and kitchen and comes with linens and kitchenware.  All that, plus TV with cable and a pet-friendly attitude makes Otto one popular fellow!

Leavenworth Tiny House Village
Leavenworth Tiny House Village

Check out leavenworth.org to see the events scheduled in the town of Leavenworth and what else there is to see and do in this charming little Washington gem!

For more information on the Leavenworth Tiny House Village, visit leavenworthtinyhouse.com.

Palm Springs: A Modern Playground

Palm Springs RV Resort
Palm Springs RV Resort

Palm Springs became a big draw to movie stars in the early 1930s not only because of its proximity to Los Angeles but in just a two-hour drive you’re transported in the serenity of the desert, away from the hustle and bustle of the Hollywood lifestyle. Palm Springs has always offered plenty of sunshine, fresh air, hiking trails, and natural hot springs. Today, Palm Springs continues to draw stars and regular folks alike thanks to its fabulous mix of desert vistas, vibrant arts and culture scene, and plenty of shopping and culinary opportunities.

The Palm Springs Art Museum includes works by Marc Chagall, Picasso, Andy Warhol, Ansel Adams, and even features two outdoor sculpture gardens. It also has major collections of Native American and Western art, photography, and glass, including works by Dale Chilhuly. A special exhibit that runs through August 2019 is Lines in the Sand which explores the history of the desert through our relationship to the land, environment, and community. Admission to the museum is free. For hours and additional information visit psmuseum.org.

For more art, don’t miss the Desert Arts Festival, scheduled for December 8 and 9, 2018, which will feature artwork across all mediums including acrylic, oils, watercolors, clay, stone, wood, etchings, and sculpture.

Joshua Tree National Park

Of course, you can’t come to the desert and not experience the desert, so some suggestions include a Jeep tour to Joshua Tree National Park, Indian Canyons and the San Andreas Fault. The area has several different companies that offer various tours, so be sure to visit visitgreaterpalmsprings.com to see what your options are. The Living Desert Wilderness Loop Trail is also a great option for hiking the desert – this can be done through admission to The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens, another must-see when in Palm Springs!

For a double whammy of total tranquility and delicious food, visit The Starlite in the heart of downtown Joshua Tree, where you can take a yoga class at the Instant Karma yoga studio and enjoy an authentic slice of NY style pizza at Pie for the People, right in the middle of the desert!

If shopping is your game, there’s plenty of action in the Palm Springs area, which boasts many distinct shopping districts. There’s the Desert Hills Premium Outlets mall in Cabazon and downtown Palm Springs with its boutiques and antiques. The mod Uptown Design District features 50 unique boutiques, galleries, and shops along several blocks. And if you visit the Corridor, which has shops, cafes, and galleries, don’t miss the Just Fabulous bookstore, where plenty of famous authors like Anne Rice and Lily Tomlin have held books signings. You never know who might be looking for that perfect vacation read!

Speaking of stars, each month the Astronomical Society of the Desert conducts sky tours and observations of the night sky through telescopes and binoculars at the Santa Rosa & San Jacinto National Monument. These Star Parties are free events, but optional donations help support the group’s mission to protect the Coachella Valley desert. For more information or to make a reservation for the next Star Party at the Monument, visit desertmountains.org.

The colorful cottages at  Palm Springs RV Resort are the perfect place to stay while you play in and around Palm Springs! The campground is set among 805 date palm trees in the beautiful Coachella Valley with plenty of amenities and activities, and the adorable cottages are the icing on the cake here!

Make your Petite Retreats reservations today!

On an Island in the Sun

On an Island in the Sun
On an Island in the Sun

There’s a popular song that talks playing and having fun on an island in the sun. We think it’s all about the Florida Keys which actually offers several islands of choice to play and have some fun!

First, a bit of history and some fun facts about this series of islands that extend from the southern tip of Florida down into the deep blue ocean. The Keys are part of an archipelago and there are hundreds and hundreds of islands but a little over 40 of them are actually inhabited. Because there are so many and they stretch over such a long distance, they are divided into groups, the Upper Keys, the Middle Keys, and the Lower Keys. The most famous is Key West thanks to Ernest Hemingway who made his home here from 1931 to 1939. The largest is Key Largo. The populous Keys are connected via the Overseas Highway which links the Keys through a series of 42 bridges.  

Temperatures range from hottest in July at an average of 86 degrees and coolest in January at an average temperature of 70 degrees. On average, there are 256 days of sunshine in the Keys which is plenty of time to have some fun in the sun.

In all, if you start at Key Largo and drive south to Key West, it’s a total of 97 miles and roughly a two-hour drive. But take your time and stay awhile, there’s a lot to see and do in the Keys this winter.

The Humphrey Bogart Film Festival happens on Key Largo, of course, and is scheduled this year for October 17-21. It’s a good year to attend this event as it is the 70th anniversary of Bogart’s famous film, Key Largo. Key West will also host the Key West Film Festival from November 14-18.

Celebrate fall island-style at Marathon Key’s Third Annual Fall Harvest at Crane Point Museum that promises a day of family fun with hay rides, trail mazes, lives music and all things autumn on October 28.

Art lovers make note of the Big Pine & The Lowers Keys Island Art Festival on November 24 which features locally produced arts and crafts, plus live music and food.

Other popular Keys activities include snorkeling, deep sea fishing, visiting the key deer at Deer Key, Dry Tortugas National Park, the historic bridge at Bahia Honda State Park and the Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum.  

Dry Tortugas National Park
Dry Tortugas National Park

From a sheer relaxation perspective, there are the beaches. Some notable and regular best beach list-makers include Sandspur Beach and Calusa Beach on Big Pine Key, Higgs Beach in Key West and the beach at Long Key State Park on Long Key.

Chart your course for a Keys vacation and use the conveniently located Fiesta Key RV Resort & Marina or Sunshine Key RV Resort & Marina as your place to stay. The cottages offered at both of these resorts add to the perfect island getaway. Imagine…your own private cottage just steps from the beach!

Fiesta Key RV Resort & Marina
Fiesta Key RV Resort & Marina

Fiesta Key RV Resort & Marina  sits on 28 acres where you can enjoy swimming, snorkeling, fishing, and a fabulous Tiki Bar and Cantina. Sunshine Key RV Resort & Marina has a marina, fishing opportunities and is just a mile away from Bahia Honda State Park with its historic bridge and great beaches.

Make your reservations to retreat to the Keys, today!

 

Make Mt. Hood Your Happy Place

If your happy place is nestled among the trees, then there’s nothing better than the Mt. Hood Tiny House Village for your next vacation destination. Five tiny houses, all with their own individual personalities, await you at this Oregon campground in the picturesque landscape of the Pacific Northwest.

There’s Atticus, complete with modern masculine finishes as the name would imply. Atticus is 178 square feet in size with a full bathroom and kitchen and sleeps 3. He’s quite handsome with his cedar plank siding and black trim.

Atticus - Sleek + Rugged + Modern
Atticus
Atticus
Atticus

Lincoln may be more of the hipster in this group sporting red trim siding. Lincoln sleeps 5 in 261 square feet and has a full bathroom and kitchen. He’s also pet-friendly, of course.

Lincoln - Rustic & Modern
Lincoln
Lincoln
Lincoln

What can we say about Zoe? She’s boho chic with her blue finish accented by white trim. Zoe sleeps 3 and has a full bathroom and kitchen in her cool 196 square feet.

Zoe
Zoe – Wild & Free
Zoe
Zoe

Savannah is oh so charming with her light yellow cedar plank siding with white trim and red shutters. Savannah’s southern hospitality extends to three guests in her cozy 175 square feet.

Savannah - Down home grace
Savannah
Savannah
Savannah

Scarlett, at 233 square feet, is of course easily recognized by her farmhouse red cedar plank siding. Five guests can sleep easily with her double loft, complete with full bathroom and kitchen.

Scarlett - Farm House Charm
Scarlett
Scarlett
Scarlett

Each one of these tiny houses at Mt. Hood Tiny House Village offers the perfect, and unique, place to start and end your day when exploring the beauty of the area. The tiny houses are perfectly designed to make you feel that you’re a part of the natural setting while providing all the comforts and accommodations of home.

Mt. Hood Tiny House Village
Mt. Hood Tiny House Village

Mt. Hood’s must-sees include the Mt. Hood Scenic Loop, historic Timberline Lodge, and the Mt. Hood Skibowl. Mt. Hood must-dos include snowshoeing, winter waterfall hikes, skiing, and snowboarding.

Make your reservations at the Mt. Hood Tiny House Village today!