Los Angeles Weekend Trip

Los Angeles

Looking for a great couples long weekend trip?

Los Angeles is a perfect weekend getaway for you and your partner! You can find it all here:  great beaches, restaurants, cities, attractions, outdoor fun, glitz and glamour. You name it, you can find it!

Where to go:

Los Angeles, California

Beach Cities

Hollywood

When to go:

Summer, Fall

How long to stay:

4-5 days is perfect for a quick trip with no kids

Where to stay:

In Venice Beach

The Inn at Marina del Rey

Hotel Erwin

Venice Beach Suites

 

In Santa Monica

High End Options

Shore Hotel 

Viceroy Santa Monica

Moderate Options

Fairmont Miramar Hotel & Bungalows

The Georgian Hotel

Budget Friendly Options

Travelodge Santa Monica

 

In Hollywood for one of the touristy spots in LA but close to everything

High End Options

Loew’s

Roosevelt Hotel

Moderate Options

Holiday Inn Express

Hilton Garden Inn

Budget Friendly Options

Best Western Hollywood – motel style but great location and you can’t beat the price

 

Other options to stay for a romantic vacation for two:

In Manhattan Beach

Hotel Belamar

Sea View Inn at the Beach – free bike rentals included

 

On Catalina Island 

The Avalon Hotel on Catalina Island for a small boutique hotel

Hotel Vista Del Mar

Pavilion Hotel

 

What to do in and around Los Angeles:

In Malibu

Paradise Cove for lunch and stay for the great beach club $30 a day for parking for beach $6 for lunch

Hike in Solstice Canyon – amazing views of the Pacific Ocean

Drive the Malibu Coast on Highway 1 – make a day of it and enjoy a whole new view of California

 

In Hollywood

Eat in Thai Town – try Vim Thai Restaurant, make sure to order the Thai Ice Tea.

Shop at the Farmers Market and The Grove , located south of Hollywood Blvd and east of Beverly Hills. There are lots of food stands to choose from in the Farmers Market and so many shops at The Grove outdoor shopping area.

Shopping on Rodeo Drive , enjoy window shopping among some of the most exclusive and expensive stores in the world. 

Catch the Beverly Hills Trolley Tour to see some famous landmarks and homes. 

Sunset Strip for nightclubs and sidewalks full of party people.

Griffith Observatory 

Hollywood Sign Hike in Griffith Park.

See music at the Greek Theatre in Griffith Park or the Hollywood Bowl .

Shopping at the Hollywood & Highland Center .

Grauman’s Chinese Theatre – see the handprints of the stars.

Hollywood Walk of Fame

 

In Nearby Beach Cities

Venice Beach where you will find out that anything goes here so don’t be alarmed in the sights you will see. 

Eat at The Sidewalk Cafe for the best people watching and great fish tacos.

Ride bikes along the boardwalk or learn how to surf (or watch the surfers).

Walk along the wide open beaches.

Santa Monica Pier and Pacific Park is fun to take a ride on the ferris wheel and share a funnel cake.

Santa Monica beach is very beautiful. 

Take a sunset walk through Palisades Park .

Third Street Promenade is a fun street to walk down and enjoy the shops and cafes. 

Ride bikes along the South Bay Bicycle Trail .

Hike in the Santa Monica Mountains.

 

Enjoy your Weekend Trip to Los Angeles! 

 

 

Visit New Orleans

New Orleans LA

 

New Orleans

Where you will find great food, amazing music, fun times, history and a city like no other! It is a favorite couples destination for us, check it out and you will find out why.

 

Here are my travel tips for a romantic weekend to NOLA:

Where to go:

New Orleans, LA

 

When to go:

Anytime except maybe Mardi Gras unless you want non-stop party and people, people, people. Believe me, it feels like Mardi Gras all the time.

 

How long to stay:

3-4 days 

 

Where to stay:

Recommended in the French Quarter

New Orleans Marriott  – make sure to ask for a river view room in the higher floors, amazing views and very quiet

JW Marriott 

Hotel St Marie 

Prince Conti Hotel

Omni Royal Orleans 

 

 

Things to do in New Orleans:

French Market 

Frenchman Street for every type of music fan, low-key, fun

St Charles Streetcar to Garden District 

Historic Cemeteries

Haunted History Tour 

Riverwalk Marketplace 

Mississippi River Cruise 

Shopping on Royal Street

Visit the New Orleans City Park 

Jackson Square and St Louis Cathedral – beautiful church and lots of painters and musicians everywhere

 

Restaurants (to name a few):

Café du Monde – famous beignets and café au lait, open 24 hours a day, just be sure to not wear black or anything you don’t want to get powdered sugar on. 

Market Café at the French Market, outdoor dining and live jazz 

Dooky Chase   be sure to have the “Creole feast” 

Jacques-Imo’s  for Great Creole food

Galatorie’s 

Domenica in the Roosevelt Hotel  — Great happy hour food, wine and beer

Restaurant R’evolution in the Royal Sonesta Hotel 

Tivoli and Lee in The Hotel Modern 

Commander’s Palace 

Galatoire’s 

Clancy’s 

Coop’s Place on Decatur St and order the fried chicken red beans and rice

 

Best places to see live music (not to be missed):

The Spotted Cat Music Club on Frenchman St 

Irvin Mayfield’s Jazz Playhouse  on Bourbon St

Preservation Hall   one of the most quaint and down-to-earth venues you will ever see. No drinks served or bathrooms but this is the real deal folks

Tipitina’s – venture out of the French Quarter and you will find some of the best musicians playing at Tipitina’s.  

House of Blues 

d.b.a. 

One Eyed Jacks 

 

Looking to catch some of the best local musicians in NOLA? Make sure to pickup the Offbeat magazine to find out who is playing where and you may get lucky enough to see one of these amazing musicians. 

  • Rebirth Brass Band —Tuesday nights at The Maple Leaf
  • Hot 8 Brass Band
  • Soul Rebels Brass Band
  • Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews — The 27-year-old Treme bandleader
  • Galactic
  • Papa Grows Funk
  • Dr John 
  • Kermit Ruffins
  • Irvin Mayfield – you might even catch him at his Playhouse in the Royal Sonesta Hotel on Bourbon Street
  • Rockin’ Dopsie Jr. for some great Zydeco
  • Lost Bayou Ramblers

 

Enjoy your couples trip to New Orleans, you will be glad you went! Who Dat!

 

   

Saratoga Wyoming

Saratoga Wyoming

Looking for a quick, fun, side trip for two while traveling through the great state of Wyoming?

Head to Saratoga Wyoming for hot springs and hiking with amazing views!

Here are my travel tips and recommendations for a trip to Saratoga Wyoming:

Where to go:

Saratoga Wyoming

When to go:

Summer/Fall

How long to stay:

3-4 days 

Where to stay:

Recommended: Saratoga Resort & Spa – great hot spring pools and a perfect place to getaway from everything. Very romantic location.

Hotel Wolf – located right on Main Street, lots of character and charm. Great restaurant on-site. 

Silver Moon Motel – very clean, great rates and some rooms have kitchens. 

The Lodge & Spa at Brush Creek Ranch – for a luxury guest ranch experience.

 

Things to do:

Hobo Hot Pool – Free hot spring pool open 24/7. There are even changing rooms.  

Saratoga Hot Springs & Pool– visit the teepee covered pools, each are different temperatures and sizes. And take advantage of the spa while you are there. 

Blue ribbon trout fishing – stop by Hack’s Tackle for a great guide or just a scenic float.       

Breathtaking views in the Medicine Bow National Forest .

Hiking in the National Forest from Mirror Lake to Lookout Lake.

Driving on Hwy 130 which is closed in the winter.

Saratoga Lake Campground – camping, fishing, boating and beach activities.

Blackhawk Gallery – check out the local talent.

Shopping in Saratoga – check out Laura M and the Hat Creek Trading Post.

Horseback riding through the mountains and wilderness. 

ATV and Off-Roading adventures.

Bird watching at the Saratoga Dam.

Golf at the Saratoga Public Golf Course

The Red Sage Spa for a really relaxing end to your day.

 

Restaurants:

Silver Saddle Restaurant – steakhouse at the Saratoga Resort & Spa.

Hotel Wolf Restaurant – local watering hole, great service. 

Bella’s Bistro – great Italian food. 

Snowy Mountain Brewery and Pub – fun spot to stop for a drink at the Saratoga Resort & Spa.

 

Enjoy your trip for two to Saratoga Wyoming! You will be glad you went off the beaten path and explored the Saratoga area!

Grand Teton National Park

Grand Teton National Park

Grand Teton National Park
Summer Couples Vacation Travel Tips

Grand Teton National Park has the most majestic mountain ranges and it is a must see to experience the magnitude of the mountains. It is a wonderful place for couples to explore together.

Grand Teton National Park and Jackson Hole are outdoor adventure travel destinations. There is so much to do and see no matter how much (or how little) adventure you are looking, it is great for all couples.

 

Here are my travel recommendations:

When to go:

Summer for these travel tips!

Note: If you are a winter lover, it is also a must-do in the winter when you can enjoy skiing at Jackson Hole, Snow King or Grand Targhee plus snowshoeing, snowmobiling, sleigh rides, snowcoach tours, snow tubing and more.

Where to go:

Jackson Hole, Wyoming

Including Jackson, Grand Teton National Park, and Teton Village

How long to go:

One week or longer if you are going to also explore Yellowstone National Park which is within one hour of the Grand Tetons.

 

Where to stay:

In Jackson

Flat Creek Ranch – Great scenery and secluded cabins

Rusty Parrot Lodge and Spa – Small luxury lodge near Jackson town square

Cowboy Village Resort – Lodge and cabins in the heart of downtown Jackson

In Teton Village

Hotel Terra Jackson Hole – Eco-friendly (LEED Certified) hotel

Four Seasons Resort Jackson Hole – All out luxury resort

Teton Mountain Lodge – Beautiful condos and grounds

National Park Lodging

There are also options within Grand Teton National Park, check out these lodges. Be sure to book early for these.

 

Top summer activities to do:

National Elk Refuge

Grand Teton National Park – see below for more details

Whitewater River Trips

Jackson Hole Eco Tour Adventures

Jackson Hole Wildlife Safaris

Jackson Hole Trail Rides, Pack Trips or Fly Fishing Adventures

Jackson Hole Mountain Resort Aerial Tram Rides with hikes at the top

 

Top Restaurants:

the Kitchen – Try the tasting menus for amazing food

Stiegler’s Restaurant & Bar – Great Swiss dining

Snake River Grill – Expensive but a great restaurant for a special occasion

Lotus Cafe – Healthy cuisine, vegan friendly

The Cellars – For steak lovers, check this place out

Gun Barrel Steak & Game House – If you want to try some Buffalo or just looking for meat and potatoes, this is the place for you

 

Top Bars:

Million Dollar Cowboy Bar in downtown Jackson is a must visit

Mangy Moose Saloon in Teton Village with great live music

Snake River Brewing Company is a fun place and has great beer

Silver Dollar Bar at the Wort Hotel is a western-themed bar

 

 

Top things to do in Grand Teton National Park– Park Map:

Day Hikes:

Jenny Lake Trail – Take the boat ride and then hike to Hidden Falls (Jenny Lake Trailhead) – 5 miles round trip, moderate hike

Leigh Lake – A less busy hike or kayak trip from Jenny Lake Lodge around String Lake to Leigh Lake. It is an easy hike but 3.7 miles around String Lake plus a 3 mile hike to Leigh Lake. Plan accordingly.

Jackson Lake Lodge– Beautiful lake in front of the Grand Teton Mountains

Amphitheater Lake (Alpine Meadows Trailhead)– Strenuous hike but worth it if you can do it, it is 4 miles one-way and you gain 3000’ of elevation on the way

Phelps Lake Trail (Laurance S Rockefeller Preserve Trailhead)– Take the Woodland Trail to Phelps Lake for an easy one mile hike with a great view

Taggart Lake Hike – A 3 mile loop trail or you can continue on Bradley Lake too. Very beautiful hike but a lot of the hike is in the hot sun so wear a hat and be prepared with lots of water and sunscreen.

Beautiful Drives:

Drive the 42-mile Scenic Loop Drive – Plan for at least 6 hours to see the beautiful scenery and stops along the way, not to mention wildlife

Signal Mountain Summit Road – Amazing views from the top

Water Activities:

Colter Bay Village – Rent a kayak or boat or take a scenic lake cruise and enjoy a day on the water.

Looking for additional information or help planning, contact me.

Black Hills South Dakota

Black Hills South Dakota

The Black Hills of South Dakota are calling!

The Black Hills South Dakota is a perfect destination for outdoor couples that love to explore and experience nature.

You may think since it is a top US destination that it would be very touristy and unromantic, but the Black Hills are a National Forest and you can find seclusion if you plan accordingly.

Here are my travel tips for an adventure packed and romantic vacation for two to the Black Hills of South Dakota:

Where to go:

Hill City, South Dakota

Custer State Parks

Rapid City, South Dakota

Deadwood, South Dakota

When to go:

Summer or early Fall

How long to stay:

7 days

 

Where to stay in the Black Hills:

Recommended:

Newton Fork Ranch in Hill City, South Dakota

Amazing log cabins and there are only 7 of them on the Ranch.

Hill City is close to everything yet you feel so far away from everything.
Sylvan Lake Lodge in Custer State Park

The lake is so beautiful to hike around and the views from the lodge deck are amazing.

Note: The lake is freezing, even on a very hot summer day.

If you want to indulge, stay at State Game Lodge in Custer State Park

You can even stay in the rooms that President Eisenhower or President Coolidge stayed.

For making reservations at the lodges, click here

 

Top things to do in the Black Hills of South Dakota:

Near Hill City, South Dakota

Hike or Climb at Wrinkled Rock Climbers Trailhead off of State Highway 244 on the way to Mount Rushmore National Memorial from the west. Just look for the Wrinkled Rock sign and you can park for free and start up the trailhead.

Eat at the Alpine Inn. This is a MUST-DO. They have only one thing on the menu – bacon wrapped filet mignon either 6oz or 9oz with baked potato, toast, wedge of lettuce and ranch dressing for $9.95 or $11.95! They also have some of the best desserts I have ever had.

Note: They don’t take reservations, but it is worth the wait! They are closed Sundays.

See a show at the Black Hills Playhouse

Bike the 109-mile Mickelson Trail

Visit the Prairie Berry Winery and try some locally made wine

 

Near Spearfish, South Dakota

Drive through Spearfish Canyon National Scenic Byway

Hike to the Bridal Veil Falls in Spearfish Canyon

Stop at the Crow Peak Brewing Company

 

Near Deadwood, South Dakota

Gamble in historic Deadwood.

See one of the outlaw shows.

 

Near Hot Spring, South Dakota

The Black Hills Wild Horse Sanctuary for nature & horse lover’s

Red Rock River Resort Hotel & Spa for relaxation at the spa or to stay for a night

 

Near Rapid City, South Dakota

Spend a night in Downtown Rapid City

Find the President statues on every corner

Eat at The Red Fire Truck Brewery

Shop at Prairie Edge Trading Co – featuring Native American Indian artwork.

Visit the haunted Alex Johnson Hotel where past President’s and spirits have visited.

 

If you are looking for more fun things to do, see South Dakota Travel Information.

Looking for more information, contact me.

Enjoy your vacation to the Black Hills, South Dakota!

Amazing Thailand

 Railay Beach

Amazing Thailand

Thailand Vacation for Couples

Travel to Thailand, it is called Amazing Thailand for many reasons, why not find out for yourself.

The Europeans and Australians have already discovered the beautiful Thailand beaches which are some of the most incredible beaches in the world.

Now is the time for you to discover Amazing Thailand!

 

Here are my travel tips for planning some incredible and romantic Thailand vacations:

Where to go

Bangkok, Krabi, Koh Phi Phi

When to go

January – March

This is high season but it also has the best weather

How long

Minimum 2 weeks but go as long as you can since the majority of the cost is the airfare to get there.

Note: When searching for airfare, try to find a site that will allow you to book airfare and part of your hotel stay. We booked only our hotel stay for the first part of our trip in Bangkok and saved a lot.

 

Where to stay in Bangkok:

Highly Recommend = Novotel Bangkok

It is a great location close to shopping and public transportation.

There is wonderful free breakfast buffet included which is a great way to start your day.

Or now is the time to stay in a 5 star hotel, the prices are reasonable in Bangkok compared to anywhere else in the world.

Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok

The Peninsula Bangkok

Shangri-La Hotel, Bangkok

InterContinental Bangkok

Just to name a few of the 5 star hotels in Bangkok.

We splurged for part of our trip and stayed at Anantara Bangkok Riverside Resort & Spa (formerly a Marriott). It was a 5 star resort and it was very luxurious after staying on the small islands with little luxury. It was definitely more of an “American” experience than the Novotel and that may be a little different now that it is no longer a Marriott. The breakfast is not included but it was delicious.

They offer a teak boat to shuttle you on the river to the tram entrance. On the return trip to the resort you are offered a warm towel and water to wipe away the heat of the city, it is quite amazing and refreshing.

How-to get to the Thailand beaches:

Recommendations for flying within Thailand:

We flew to Krabi on Thai Airways – I highly recommend this airlines, they are wonderful.

From Krabi we took a cab to Ao Nang and then a longtail boat to Tonsai.

There are a lot of resorts in Ao Nang with a beautiful beach and lots of restaurants. It would be a great place to stay for easy access to many of the other wonderful Thailand beaches

Note: Travel with backpacks or luggage that is easy to get on and off a longtail boat. Also, be sure to travel in clothes that can get wet since you will be getting in the water to hop onto the longtail boat. There are no docks.

Where to stay in Tonsai or Railay:

Tonsai – Is only accessible by boat and during low tide you can’t get in or out. It is a climber’s destination and very low-key area. The restaurants line the beach and most of them are squatters that have setup restaurants in the sand. The Thai people on Tonsai were the friendliest we had met in Thailand. Really great people and very laid back, you really get away from it all here. They do not know what ASAP means here.

The beaches are not the best, but you can hop on a longtail boat and get to Railay West pretty quickly for an amazing beach. The accommodations vary widely on Tonsai and are very, very inexpensive. The only place that takes reservations on Tonsai is the Tonsai Beach Resort which we stayed at and it was pretty nice compared to the other resorts on Tonsai. You stay in your own beach house with AC but hot water is not always available.

Railay – This is also only accessible by boat but you are greeted by the beautiful beach.

Recommendation to stay on Railay = Rai Lay Bay Beach Resort

Visit the Railay website for descriptions of each resort and to get help with booking at the resorts.

Koh Phi Phi

From Ao Nang, Tonsai or Railay you can book a boat trip to Koh Phi Phi (pronounced Ko Pee Pee).

This is a must -do! Plan at least a few nights on Koh Phi Phi. You will find the top Thailand beaches here.

 

The Amazing Thailand travel experience:

If you are in Tonsai or Railay you will first take a longtail boat and just wait in the ocean for a larger boat to come and then you will have to jump from the longtail to the larger boat and toss your luggage on up. Then you will be on your way – 1-1/2 hours later – you will arrive in paradise!

There are a lot of places to stay on Koh Phi Phi – check out the island on Trip Advisor.

You can either book ahead of time or once you arrive on the dock, you can find somewhere to stay at the information booth. There is a great market in Tonsai Village (on Koh Phi Phi) and a restaurant right on the beach that is really good.

Note: Travel tip – rent two beach chairs and umbrella on the beach in Loh Dalum Bay for $2-4 for the entire day. Great people watching and a lot of Europeans so expect topless attire on the beach.

Many, many more Amazing Thailand beaches and destinations to find and explore! I suggest the Lonely Planet guide book to help find information on everywhere you want to go. Thailand vacations must include at least one of these destinations for a complete city and beach experience.

Top things to do in Bangkok

Visit the temples:

The Grand Palace

Wat Po – see the Reclining Buddha

Wat Phra Kaew -see the Emerald Buddha

 

Visit the markets:

Chatuchak Weekend Market

Chinatown Market

Night Markets

Floating Markets

Flower Markets

 

Check out the wild nightlife:

Khao San Road

Patpong

Rooftop bar in Bangkok

 

Take the public transportation:

BTS Skytrain

Chao Phraya Express Boat

River taxis and express boats

MRT underground rail

Tuk-tuks and taxis

Get a traditional Thai massage

Take a Thai cooking class at Blue Elephant Thai Cooking School

See a Muay Thai boxing match

Visit the MBK Center for all your shopping needs and go to the food court for a great way to introduce yourself to all the Thai food.

Find the real Amazing Thailand for yourself and travel to Thailand!

Sawatdee Thailand!

Please contact me if you need any help researching or planning your next Great Travel Destination!

Riviera Maya

Mexico Poolside

Romantic Vacation to Riviera Maya, Mexico

The Riviera Maya is a wonderful vacation destination for couples. There is so much to enjoy with the culture, history, beaches, food, nightlife and activities for a romantic vacation in Mexico.

Here are my travel tips and suggestions for a romantic getaway to the Riviera Maya, Mexico:

Where to Go

Riviera Maya – between Playa del Carmen to Tulum area

When to Go

November – April

How long should you stay

5 – 8 days

Recommended places to stay:

If you are looking for romance and a complete getaway for you and your significant other, stay at an adults-only all-inclusive!
I highly recommend El Dorado Seaside Resort
This is a beautiful property for adults only, it is a smaller more quaint resort.
You truly don’t need to leave the resort but if you do you are really close to the Tulum ruins.
It is just under a 2 hour transfer from the Cancun Airport so if you are short on time, try to stay closer to Playa del Carmen or even north of there.

If you are looking for a place that is closer to the town of Playa del Carmen, check out these two resorts:

http://www.realresorts.com/Gran-Porto-Real/

http://playadelcarmen.com/nhotels/mahekalbeachresort/

Check the reviews for all of these recommendations on Trip Advisor.

What are the top things to do at the resorts:

Beaches!

Pools

Water activities like snorkeling and kayaking

Restaurants

Drinking (if you are at an all-inclusive, you have to get your money worth)

Paint pottery (they will make sure to touch it up and make it look like a professional did it)

And lots of other planned activities at the resorts.

 

Nearby activities to do:

Tulum ruins

Playa del Carmen for shopping and real Mexican food

Xcaret Eco Theme Park
http://www.xcaret.com/

Ferry to Cozumel

Day trip to Chichen Itza and Coba

Cenote Chaak Tun
http://www.sac-be.com/chaak_tun.shtml

The Jungle Place – make sure to book in advance
http://www.thejungleplace.com/

Akumal Beach for snorkeling and turtles

Xel-Ha Park
http://www.xelha.com/

Rancho Baaxal for horseback riding
http://www.ranchobaaxal.com/

 

Recommended travel book

Fodor’s Cancun and the Riviera Maya
http://www.amazon.com/Fodors-Cancun-Riviera-Maya-2012/dp/0679009647

 

Have a great romantic vacation in Riviera Maya, Mexico!

Contact me if you have any questions or would like additional information. I am here to help plan your next romantic travel destination.

Las Vegas Travel Information

Las Vegas travel information

Las Vegas Travel Information for a Couples Vegas Vacation

Every couple can enjoy a Las Vegas getaway for two! Find all the Las Vegas travel information you need for your next trip.

The gambling town has so much more to offer that you may forget to gamble. That is how most of our trips to Las Vegas go.

Las Vegas travel information and tips for a great Vegas Vacation:

When to go:

September, October, April or May

Where to go:

Las Vegas, Nevada

How long to go:

Weekend getaway to 5 days

Where to stay:

Top Hotels if you are looking for all out luxury:

Mandarin Oriental

Four Season Hotel

My favorites on the Strip:

MGM

The Mirage

Mandalay Bay

New York New York

Check out the hotel reviews on Trip Advisor!

Top Restaurants:

Wolfgang Puck’s Bar & Grill in the MGM Grand

Eiffel Tower Restaurant at Paris Las Vegas Hotel & Casino

Delmonico Steakhouse in The Venetian Resort Hotel Casino

Gallagher’s Steakhouse in New York-New York Hotel and Casino

Diablo’s Cantina in Monte Carlo for a more casual, fun setting with great Mexican food and drinks. Ask for a table upstairs to get a great view of the strip while you eat.

Lotus of Siam Thai Restaurant

Roy’s Restaurant

 

Top things to do in Las Vegas:

Gambling – you have your choice of over 122 casinos in Las Vegas, take your pick

Hotel Resort Pools – resorts usually have top notch, beautifully landscaped and full of action pools for their guests to enjoy

Spas – each resort has their own exclusive spa to pamper you. Check out all the spas on Visit Las Vegas.

Golf – Yes, there are golf courses in the desert, check out these courses on Visit Las Vegas for all your choices.

Shopping – You can find any style or brand you are looking for in Las Vegas, here is a listing of where to shop on Visit Las Vegas.

Shows – there are shows upon shows in Las Vegas! One for everyone to enjoy.

Cirque du Soleil shows can be found in multiple hotels

For live music shows – check out The Joint at The Hard Rock Hotel or the House of Blues at Mandalay Bay

Be sure to pickup the latest Las Vegas Visitors Guide to see who and what are happening when you visit.

Zipline down Fremont Street – Flightlinez

Check out the non-stop Nightlife in Las Vegas – my favorites are the Ghostbar at the Palms and The Foundation Room at Mandalay Bay. Both have amazing views of the strip!

Get a new tattoo – if you are interested in getting a tattoo, I would recommend Downtown Tattoo or Pussykat Tattoo (you must make an appointment at Pussykat Tattoo)

Note: Do not get a tattoo on the strip at one of the hotel tattoo shops, they will charge you 4 times more.

 

Top FREE entertainment in Las Vegas:

Dancing Waters – in front of Bellagio Casino every 30 minutes daytime (M-F 3pm-8pm and Sat-Sun 12pm-8pm) and every 15 minutes evenings (Mon-Sun 8pm-12am)

The Conservatory in Bellagio Casino open 24 hours

The Volcano outside The Mirage Casino every 15 minutes from dusk to midnight

Fremont Street Experience Light Show – Downtown Las Vegas every hour starting at dusk

Sirens of TI – in front of Treasure Island Casino nightly every hour and a half starting at 5:30pm until 10pm

Fountain Festival – Fall of Atlantis Fountain Show in Caesar’s Palace daily 10am-10pm

 

Things to do outside of Las Vegas:

Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area is 20 miles from Las Vegas.

There is hiking, mountain biking, and climbing throughout the area. Or take the 13 mile scenic drive through the Canyon. Very beautiful red rocks!

Note: There is an entrance fee = $7.

Mount Charleston Recreation Area is 35 miles from Las Vegas.

There is hiking and camping in the summer and skiing and sledding in the winter.

It is at 11,918 feet elevation, quite a difference from Las Vegas.

You will also find Las Vegas Ski & Snowboard Resort in Mount Charleston. No one will believe you that you skied on your Vegas Vacation!

Hoover Dam is 35 miles from Las Vegas. It is considered to be the world’s largest dam and it brings water and power to Nevada and Arizona and most of the Southwest U.S. It is amazing to see the true size of it.

Note: There is a $7 charge to park plus the cost for the Visitor Center and if you choose a tour.

Lake Mead is 30 miles from Las Vegas. Is is the 16th largest manmade lake in the world. There is year-round recreation – kayaking, jet skiing, swimming, hiking, paddle boats.

Note: There is a $10 per vehicle entrance fee

Death Valley National Park is 2 hours from Las Vegas. Plan on spending an entire day checking out this National Park and bring lots of water and a hat.

Note: There is a $20 per vehicle fee.

Grand Canyon National Park is 278 miles from Las Vegas. You can find lots of bus or helicopter tours that will take you to and from your hotel to the Grand Canyon in a day.

 I hope you have found all the Las Vegas Travel Information you were looking for to plan a great Vegas Vacation!

Paris Travel Information

Seine River

Find helpful Paris travel information for the City of Lights and get ready for one of the most romantic vacations in the world.

Paris is full of history, fashion, culture, culinary delights and inspiration. One visit will only entice you to come again.

Here are my travel recommendations for a trip to Paris:

Where to go:

Paris, France

When to go:

Spring, Summer or Fall

Note: Depending on the weather you are looking for. Summer has great weather but lots of crowds.

How long to go:

Minimum a week

Where to stay:

Le Citizen Hotel = small boutique hotel

Hotel Ares Eiffel = amazing decor, convenient location

New Orient Hotel = charming and quaint with a great price

Hotel de Londres Eiffel = the real Paris location

Hotel de Varenne = historic hotel and decorated in a Louis XVI and Empire style

Paris travel information for the top things to do:

Musee du Louvre is a must see, just be sure to leave yourself plenty of time, there is so much to see here. You may need a few extra days.
Note: Purchase a Paris Museum Pass as soon as you arrive and you won’t need to wait in any long lines.

Notre Dame Cathedral – One of the world’s most famous cathedrals. It is free to go in and view the stain glass windows and architecture. Try to attend a high mass or music performance for one of a kind experience.

Eiffel Tower – of course, but take the stairs for at least part of the way to get the true sense of the structure.

Seine River – just enjoy a picnic and your company along the banks of the Seine River or take a boat tour on the Seine River.

Arc de Triomphe – make sure to take the underground tunnel to it, that is one crazy, busy road around it.

Musee d’Orsay for the French Impressionists and 19th century art

Luxembourg Gardens – park in the middle of town with lots of beautiful gardens, a large fountain and a great cafe.

Pere-Lachaise Cemetery – A famous cemetery of authors, writers and musicians. Yes, this is where Jim Morrison is buried.

Montmartre – a wonderful neighborhood to find a place to sit and watch the world go by. Exactly what one should do when in a romantic city like Paris with the one they love.

Parc Monceau – This park was the inspiration for Monet. Non-touristy park filled with Parisians on their lunch breaks or on morning jogs. Feel like a real Parisian here.

The Latin Quarter – Les Bouquinistes is a great place for shopping, you will find everything here. Be sure to allow hours to walk around and explore this area and see the Pantheon, Sorbonne University, Cluny Museum, Place St Michel and so much more.

Trocadero – the best view of the Eiffel Tower

Paris Horse and Carriage Rides from the Eiffel Tower to see the major tourist sites, what a great way to see the city.

 

Or just sit and enjoy watching the world go by at one of the many cafes in Paris!

Looking for more Paris travel information? Contact me!

Key West Florida

KeyWestSunset2

Come to Key West Florida for sunsets, beaches, nightlife, great food, shopping, biking, kayaking, boating, snorkeling, historical places and most of all exploring!

The Florida Keys has it all. There is truly something for everyone here.

Florida Sunset Video

Florida Keys travel information and tips to plan your Key West vacation

Where to go:

Key West Florida

When to go:

Oct – May

Note: stay away during hurricane season and it may be cool in December/January but at least the crowds would not be there.

How long to stay:

3-5 days is perfect, it is a small island

 

Where to stay on your Key West vacation:

Recommendation: Southernmost on the Beach/La Mer/Southernmost Hotel/Dewey House

They are all owned by the same company and are all wonderful places to stay. La Mer and Dewey House are B&B’s right on the ocean. The beach is not the best there but they have 3 pools you can also use

Westin Resort on Sunset Key the Sunset Key Guest Cottages

Ocean Key Resort right by Mallory Square, enjoy every sunset without leaving your resort

The Reach for a sophisticated resort and beachfront location and to get away from the crowds

Casa Marina Resort is an upscale option with a swimming beach

Sheraton Suites an all-suite hotel across the street from Smather’s Beach. You would need transportation to stay in this area since it is pretty far from the main Duval St

Top things to do in Key West Florida:

Mallory Square for the Sunset Celebration or try a Tall Ship Sunset Cruise for one of your sunset nights

Duval Street for shopping and people watching

Higgs Beach or Smather’s Beach are perfect beaches to sit back and enjoy a warm Florida day (rental chairs & umbrellas available)

Bike around the island or rent an electric car from Tropical Rent-A-Car, a perfect way to explore the island and you can fit in any parking spot

See the Southernmost Point for the most photographed spot on the island

Take a snorkeling boat tour or you can snorkel off of Higgs Beach and at Fort Zachary Taylor State Park beach

Fort Zachary Taylor State Park – has a great beach with amazing emerald water and pine trees everywhere for shade (great for snorkeling, bring beach shoes for the rocky bottom)

You can also explore the fort that was built in the mid-1800s to defend the southeast coastline. There is a snack hut and beach chairs & umbrellas available for rental.

If you have time, book a trip to Dry Tortugas National Park

Key West Lighthouse – you can climb the 88 steps to the top to get a great view of Key West

Hemingway House – visit Ernest Hemingway’s home and his famous six-toed cats

Take a tour of Key West on the Old Town Trolley

I have heard you have to parasail in Key West so if that is on your list of things to do, try it here

 

Bars to hit in Key West Florida:

Irish Kevin’s for a comedic musical act

Hog’s Breath for a fun outdoor bar with live bands

Garden of Eden for a clothing optional bar experience

Schooner Wharf where you can find happy hour 3xs a day

Willie Ts for great mojitos and where you can leave a dollar on the wall to find on your next visit

Margaritaville for the Jimmy Buffet parrot heads

Sloppy Joes a famous hang for Hemmingway and always a good time to be had at this fun bar

The Smallest Bar in Key West is so small only about 5 people can fit in but it can be so fun to talk to everyone in the bar

The Bull & Whistle Bar – check out the Whistle Bar and enjoy people watching on Duval St from the wraparound porch.

 

Top restaurants:

Latitudes for a special occasion or to make it a very special dinner. Be sure to book dinner during the sunset for an even more amazing experience

Seven Fish for a very simple yet great dining experience, order the fresh fish of the day

Thai Cuisine for surprisingly good Thai food in Key West Florida

Sarabeth’s for a laid-back dining experience on the patio

 

Travel Tips to get to the Florida Keys:

There are many ways to get to Key West Florida, none exactly easy or direct.

Drive from Miami along U.S. Highway 1 for the most scenic but time consuming.

Take a charter flight from one of the other Florida cities.

Fly through Atlanta or another large hub nearby and you will fly on a larger plane.

There are boats from Ft Myers and Marco Island that will take you to Key West on the Key West Express but I do NOT recommend this option. They overbook the boat and unless you show up hours before you are to leave you will not get a seat inside. Which means you will be stuck on the top level with no protection from the wind or weather and it is not suitable for anyone to withstand for the 3-1/2 to 4 hour boat ride.  If they allow you to reserve your seat when you book then I would say it is a good option but if they don’t, skip this option.

Enjoy your Key West Vacation!