Sunday, February 7, 2016

Our Big 2016 Vacation Trip!!


I am so, so, SO excited that Jaime and I planned out our big 2016 vacation trip.  We decided last year that we were sick of skipping vacations.  It sucks.  We would take a few long weekends here and there but getting away with the kids for 9-10 days and focusing 100% on our family has been so amazing.  Last year I blogged about our giant camping/cruise trip from the mid-west to California (read about that trip here).
 

It was so fantastic.  It was half rustic with the camping and then a completely relaxing cruise in the middle to Mexico and Catalina.  We saw so much… camped at the Grand Canyon, went through and saw the tall trees of Denver.  Basically hit, while camping, every really amazing site to see on the way to and fro.
 

This year we decided to get really brave and do a half cross country camping adventure all the way from Missouri to the keys and we are going to see so much cool stuff in between!  We split our trip into 8 hours of relaxing driving so we can enjoy each area and stop and shop at cool small business during the entire drive. Then we camp, cook… buy the local foods to cook on our trip.  The way we camp is pretty decently expert with our cooking gear, pantry, cleaning stations, canopy’s.  It’s definitely not tent and ground style and we can stay out for weeks at a time in complete comfort.
 

So our first stop is in Kentucky to see one of their cave wonders, Mammoth Cave which is a National Park.  So we’ll stop a night at the local KOA and tour the cave.  Our second night is going to be in Savannah Georgia with a trip into Tybee Island!!  I’m the most excited about this stop because me and my dad discovered The Crab Shack in Tybee Island on our way to Florida 15 years ago.  With him being gone I might cry the entire time we are on that stop, but the seafood is the best I’ve ever had in my life!!
 

Then we will spend our next two nights fishing and chilling on the beach at Key Largo Camp Ground and Marina in Key Largo.  The Caribbean waters, the manatees, the wildlife!  The kids are going to have so much fun.  Then for two knights we are traveling down to Knights Key RV Resort and Marina which is part of Marathon right in the middle keys for more fishing, super blue Caribbean waters and wildlife.
 

On the way back we will be stopping in the coolest UFO sighting and creepy swamp in the US!  I can’t wait to see if we experience any mysterious activity.  That will be at Okefenokee Swamp which I’m half freaked out about but the wildlife and possible night spooks from swamp gas is going to be a once in a lifetime experience.  Then finally we are going to stay in Memphis Tennessee walking distance from Graceland!!  At Graceland RV Park and Campground.  So we get to check out and tour the stomping grounds of Elvis!!  Then back to home...
 

All in all we are going to get so much out of this trip.  US landmarks, National Parks, the best fishing, crabbing, clamming, oyster digging, cooking, spooky swamps, gators… the list goes on.
 

And I have to say if you really want to travel and experience where you are at, camp.  It sounds crazy but you can’t sit inside and put on makeup and fart around.  You are quite literally forced to be right there.  Outside.  With the wilderness and the weather and seeing and feeling everything at every place you stop.  It really is incredible.  Hard work sometimes, but so incredible.  You will never experience each destination as purely as when you stay outside at that destination.  And that's why we are campers and love every minute of it.