Celebrate The Girls with a Getaway

National Girlfriends Day is celebrated August 1 annually. And to be clear, it’s not a celebration of the romantic type, but one for the woman, or women, in your life who are there for you through thick and thin. The ones who show up, the ones who’ve known you since before you were you, and the ones who you may go a long time without seeing and then pick up right where you left off.  If you’re lucky enough to have these kinds of girlfriends in your life, why not celebrate with a girlfriends getaway?

Franklin, Tennessee: While nearby Nashville is also well-suited for a girls trip, Franklin might be a good idea, as well. A little lower key than the neon lights of Nashville, Franklin is great for girl-focused fun, like eating, shopping, cocktailing, and maybe even a walking ghost tour! Book a stay at nearby Natchez Trace RV Campground and you’ll have quick access to Franklin, Nashville, and the surrounding areas. Franklin highlights include the Lotz House Museum, the Franklin Glassblowing Studio, and brunch at The Honeysuckle where you can experience the Biscuit Board, like only the South can offer! More shopping and eating can be found in nearby Leiper’s Fork, anther quaint southern town considered “Nashville’s Backyard,” which is also home to a few celebs. Check out Puckett’s Grocery for great burgers and live music.

Potawatomi State Park

Door County, Wisconsin: Not only is this a great destination because of all the shopping, but the area also offers plenty of outdoor activity to indulge in so everybody gets a little something on a girls getaway here. Get the girls all settled into a cozy cabin at Tranquil Timbers Camping Resort and prepare to explore the Door. Take in a tasting at Hatch Distilling in Egg Harbor which features a craft cocktail menu that changes daily, or hike, bike, or stroll through Potawatomi State Park, which has roughly 20 miles of trails. Speaking of trails, the Door County Wine Trail is also an option. A few don’t miss items are the goats on the roof at Al Johnson’s Swedish Restaurant and an iconic Door County fish boil.

Tuolumne County, California: Tuolumne County is home to Yosemite National Park, which is in and of itself, an adventure. But there’s also whitewater rafting opportunities, shops, and eateries to try in the area’s several small towns, plus wineries and hiking trails. Start off with a yurt rental at Yosemite Lakes RV Resort and get ready for indoor and outdoor fun, girlfriend-style. Enjoy a two-fer when you visit Gianelli Vineyards Winery that offers fabulous wines as well as live music on Friday and Saturday evenings in a tented venue among the vines! Spend a day or two touring the historic Gold Rush towns that include Groveland, Sonora, and Jamestown. Outdoor fun includes horseback riding, whitewater rafting, panning for gold and exploring the wonders of Yosemite.

Cozy cabin at Yosemite Lakes RV Resort in Groveland, CA

The Adirondacks, New York: Imagine the great photo ops when you gather the girls in the beauty of New York’s Adirondack Region for a getaway. Mountain backdrop: check. Lake backdrop: check! With a vacation cottage rental at Lake George Escape, you’re in the perfect location to see why the Adirondacks are a great place to celebrate girlfriends. Toast to friendship at the Adirondack Winery (there are two tasting rooms – the Lake George Tasting Room and the Bolton Tasting Room). Or, head to Million Dollar Beach, one of the largest beaches in Lake George, and take a few beach shots for the ‘gram. Although it is also the most popular beach, there’s plenty of space at this beautiful 51-acre beach. Girlfriends can appreciate history so head to Fort William Henry, a British fort dating to 1755 or the Chapman Museum in Glen Falls which details the history of the area. End the days with a relaxing sunset or dinner cruise on Lake George.

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Because it’s all about the Grapes

Whoever came up with the calendar that recognizes national days of celebration in May must be an oenophile – or what regular folks call a wine lover. May has two days dedicated to vino – National Moscato Day on May 9 and National Wine Day on May 25. So, let’s raise our glasses of whichever fermented grape is your favorite and toast to America’s Wine Trails.

Cozy cabin at Verde Valley in Cottonwood, AZ.

Arizona’s Verde Valley Wine Trail (vvwinetrail.com) has at least 10 wineries (check the website for a downloadable map) set among the beautiful countryside that includes locations in Jerome, Cottonwood, and Sedona. Book a tiny home at Verde Valley and you’ll find yourself in perfect proximity to explore Alcantara Vineyards, which is less than a 5-minute drive or a nice 1.4-mile hike from the resort. One unique way to see the vineyards is to do the Water to Wine Kayak Trip – check out sedonaadventuretours.com. Another option if you don’t want to go solo is to check out the tours offered through Sedona Vineyard tours (sedonavineyardtours.com).

Glamping Tent at Marina Dunes in Marina, CA.

If you’ve already done California’s northern wine country (Napa, Sonoma, etc.) consider the wineries of Paso Robles for a different perspective. Start your adventure with a glamping reservation at Marina Dunes and then take the day to head to Paso Robles to explore their grape offerings. For details, visit pasorobleswineries.net. There are plenty of options for tours, including group, private and even one where a non-drinking guide drives your car! And, if you want to taste something different than wine, consider an olive oil tasting at Pasolivo (pasolivo.com).

Vineyard in the Willamette Valley region of Oregon.

Did you know that Oregon’s lush Willamette Valley is home to two-thirds of all of Oregon’s wineries and vineyards? Start your trip off right by requesting a downloadable brochure from willamettewines.com and booking a tiny house at Mt. Hood’s Tiny House Village so at day’s end you have the best place to enjoy some of the wines you purchase along the way. All kinds of tours are available for Oregon Oenophiles, so check out agreatoregonwinetour.com for some options. Fun Fact: because of Oregon’s cooler climate, the state’s signature grape is the Pinot Noir, which is considered one of the oldest grapes in the world.

Cabin at Lake George Escape in Lake George, NY.

While not specifically devoted to wine alone, the Beverage Trails near Lake George, New York, do offer wine tasting along with spirits, cider, and beer. Book a rental cabin or cottage at Lake George Escape and try a different libation every day!  In addition to the Winery Production Facility, The Adirondack Winery has two additional tasting locations in the area as well. Check out visitlakegeorge.com/things-to-do/beverage-trails.

If you book a cozy cabin at Neshonoc Lakeside you can explore parts, or all, of Wisconsin’s Great River Road Wine Trail which stretches from northern Iowa to southern Minnesota. In addition to the great wineries, your drive will serve as an attraction as well. The river part of the Great River Road refers to the Mighty Mississippi so the route includes valleys, bluffs, and views of the river, all among a perfect country setting. Visit greatriverroadwinetrail.org for more information.

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The Thrill of It

Hiking trail at Red Rock State Park in Sedona, Arizona.

Are you a thrill-seeker? Are you always challenging yourself to try something new? Do you love the adrenaline rush and the sense of accomplishment after you’ve done something your friends or family say you were crazy to try?

Well you’re not crazy – and, according to some studies, you’re possibly managing life better than your more sedate friends. Tackling your fear of these thrilling sports can provide you with coping mechanisms that you can use in other parts of your life. Another benefit is the boost to your self-confidence. You did it! Hooray for you! Who doesn’t feel good about themselves after accomplishing these feats?

Cabins at Yosemite Lakes RV Campground in Groveland, CA

If you’re ready to get your thrill on, consider these sports:

  1. Whitewater Rafting: Book a stay at one of the cool yurts at Yosemite Lakes RV Campground in Groveland and ride the whitewaters of the Tuolumne River, which is considered one of the best rivers for such an adventure. Plenty of outfitters are waiting to help you tackle the Class III rapids of the Wenatchee River in Leavenworth, Washington. Visit www.leavenworth.org to find the one that fits your idea of thrills. Plan to stay with us at Leavenworth Tiny House Village in your own tiny house where you can relax after a thrilling day on the water!
Yurt at Yosemite Lakes RV Campground in Groveland, CA
  • Rock Climbing: If you’re heading to Maine, check out rock climbing at Maine’s Acadia National Park which offers all kinds of climbing options through the Acadia Mountain Guides Climbing School. Solo efforts can range from four to seven-hour jaunts, plus there are family climbs and evening climbs. Make a reservation at our nearby locations, Narrows Too (cabin and cottage options) or Mt. Desert Narrows (cabin accommodations) to be where the climbing action is. 
Cabins at Narrows Too in Trenton, ME
  • Zip-lining: Want to soar across the treetops of the amazing Adirondack forest? Book a comfy cabin at Lake George Escape and then find the zip-line adventure for you. There are plenty here including Adirondack Extreme Adventure Course or the Adirondack Adventure Center. Crazy views of Wisconsin’s Door County Peninsula as you fly over towering pine trees are what’s in store when you zip-line in this Wisconsin wonderland. Book a cabin at Tranquil Timbers and plan your adventure. Check out Door County Adventure Center or Lakeshore Adventures for their zip-lining courses.
Inside a yurt at Tranquil Timbers in Sturgeon Bay, WI
  • Snorkeling: No better place to dive deep than the Florida Keys. Reserve a colorful cottage at Fiesta Key or a super cool tiny home at Sunshine Key and explore the underwater kingdom of The Keys. The warm shallow waters off the Dry Tortugas are said to be best for snorkelers of all ages while John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park, the first undersea park in the US, is great for viewing the various coral species, plus turtles, parrot fish and butterfly fish.
Colorful cottages at Fiesta Key in Long Key, FL
  • Ultimate Hiking: While hiking is a great activity for both body and spirit, the thrill on these hikes is the view. These are ultimate when it comes to the unparalleled beauty of nature (not to mention majorly Instagram-worthy photo ops).

Fay Canyon, Arizona: An easy 2.4-mile trail in the scenic Fay Canyon of Sedona’s Red Rock State Park. Rent a tiny home at Verde Valley and hike the park everyday for a different point of view.

Joshua Tree National Park, California: All levels of hiking trails are available here and most come with views of the Park’s namesake, the Joshua Tree. Find Heart Rock within the Park and you’re guaranteed an insta-shot you will love! A cottage accommodation at Palm Springs is the perfect companion to this hiking trek.

Atticus the Tiny House at Mt. Hood Tiny House Village in Welches, OR

Mirror Lake Loop Trail, Oregon: The Mt. Hood area of Oregon is full of opportunities for great hikes and great pics. One of the most popular, and amazing, is the view of Mt. Hood from the Mirror Lake Trail, a 3.7-mile loop. A tiny house at the Mt. Hood Tiny House Village is perfect for the after-trail relax.

New Year, New Trails

Sunset at Joshua Tree National Park, 30 minutes from Palm Springs in CA.

Do you plan to blaze a new trail in 2020? You might want to consider trekking these trails around the country.

Joshua Tree National Park (CA) – Check out the trees the park is named for while hiking the more than 65 moderate trails in this rugged terrain.  The Joshua Tree is characterized by its twisty, bristly limbs and these distinctive trees are just part of the scenery to be seen here. The Arch Rock Trail hike brings you to the namesake of the trail, Arch Rock, which runs 30 feet wide. Get up close and personal (well, maybe not too close or too personal) with the Park’s Cholla Cactus on the relatively easy Cholla Cactus Garden trail.

Reserve a stay in a cottage at Palm Springs in Palm Desert to hike Joshua Tree National Park.

Lake Kissimmee State Park (FL) – Live oak hammocks provide the perfect cover as you explore the two loop trails in this Florida hiking destination. The Buster Island Trail takes roughly 3 ½ hours to walk this 6.9-mile loop on an island that is surrounded by three lakes. The North Loop Trail is another option that includes Gobbler Ridge, a spur trail that leads to the edge of Lake Kissimmee.

Rest your head in a colorful cottage at Tropical Palms in Kissimmee to hike Lake Kissimmee State Park.

Prospect Mountain (NY) – Imagine 100 miles views of the Adirondacks! This somewhat difficult hike (not suggested for youngsters) is one of the

more popular hikes in the region thanks to the rewarding scenery. The goal is the summit at 2,030 feet, where hikers can experience those magnificent views but also see the remains of the Prospect Mountain Cable Incline Railway. The trailhead begins in the town of Lake George.

Cozy up in a cabin at Lake George Escape to tackle Prospect Mountain.

Fall Hollow Falls (TN) – The waterfalls are the draw on this trail, not to mention the creeks and wooden bridges. Cross over the two bridges and you’ll find yourself at the observation deck for the falls. The trail to the observation deck is less than a quarter mile. The trailhead for this hike is just off the historic Natchez Trace Parkway.

Natchez Trace
Choose your favorite themed cabin at Natchez Trace to trek Fall Hollow Falls.

Honeymoon With Petite Retreats!

Honeymoons can be some of the best days of a marriage. That feeling of being brand new and ready to face any adventure together may not last forever, so where do you go to spend that window of unfettered travel and leisure?

The Adirondacks

With majestic mountains, moonlit lakes, and charming towns, the Adirondack region of New York is definitely a romantic destination. From scenic drives and boutique wineries to water sports and hiking and biking trails, the Adirondack region has it all.

Consider the Mohican Trail Historical Driving Tour, self-guided tour that takes you through military sites, historic markers, and the surrounding counties that include Saratoga County and its architectural and cultural offerings.

Parasail with your partner over the beautiful views of the mountains and lakes from high in the sky. The region has several providers of parasail adventures including Lake George Shoreline Parasail Adventures and Pinky’s Parasailing Adventures. As they say, the couple that parasails together stays together.

The Adirondack region is home to several distilleries, wineries, and craft breweries and offers several ways to see these operations. There’s the Adirondack Coast Wine Trail (adkcoastwine.com) or the Adirondack Coast Beverage Trail which combines 28 wineries, cideries, distilleries, and breweries on one bike trail. The trail offers incredible views of Lake Champlain and the Adirondack Mountains.

Cabin at Lake George Escape, Lake George, NY

Stay in a cozy cabin with your honey at Lake George Escape in the beautiful Adirondacks!

Santa Barbara, California

From the city’s small-town charm combined with its Mediterranean inspired architecture and miles of sandy beaches, it’s no wonder that Santa Barbara is called the “American Riviera.” There are wine trails, spas, shopping, fine dining, museums, gardens and more to explore in this idyllic coastal town, and it’s more romantic the more you explore it.

The beautiful architecture of the city and surrounding area may inspire you with ideas when you begin setting up your home with your honey. Most notable are the Lobero Theater, the Santa Barbara Courthouse, and the Old Mission Santa Barbara. Take a walking tour of the city and learn the rich history of the Spanish-style buildings or drive into nearby Montecito and tour Casa del Herrero, a stunning example of Spanish Colonial Revival architecture, along with its gardens and grounds (casadelherrero.com). Don’t miss a hike to Knapp’s Castle and explore the ruins of the palatial estate built by industrialist George Knapp in 1920.

Old Mission Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara is known for its stunning sunsets and there are several places, both public and somewhat private, to watch the sunset to end a perfect honeymoon day. Enjoy dinner and a sunset at the Shoreline Café or the Boathouse at Hendry’s Beach. For a sandy sunset, try Cabrillo Beach or Butterfly Beach. Stearns Wharf, albeit a bit more touristy, is another option and offers not only sunset views but shopping and dining options.

Butterfly Beach, Santa Barbara, CA

Stay at one of the unique accommodations at Rancho Oso RV Resort just outside Santa Barbara, CA!

Visit petiteretreats.com to see how you can take your next romantic getaway with Petite Retreats!