Tag Archives: destinations

California Welcomes 2018 with Major Openings and Special Milestones

California will welcome visitors with an abundance of new experiences and special events throughout 2018, with major hotel openings, new theme park attractions and milestone anniversary celebrations all on the horizon.

“California’s dream big spirit is reflected in the state’s continual growth and innovation — and 2018 will be no exception,” said Caroline Beteta, president & CEO of Visit California. “This year is the perfect time to plan an adventure in the Golden State.”

From the openings of beachfront resorts and a seaside roller coaster, to anniversaries celebrating sparkling cider, wine, baseball, art and more, the new year brings new reasons to travel to the Golden State.

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AAA Holiday Travel Headache Hotspots

INRIX, a global transportation analytics company, in collaboration with the American Automobile Association (AAA), reports that based on historical and recent travel trends, they expect drivers will experience the greatest amount of congestion before the holiday week – on Wednesday, December 20 and Thursday, December 21 – in the late afternoon as commuters leave work early and mix with holiday travelers. For example, drivers in New York City could see travel times peak at three times a normal trip between 3:30 and 5:30pm.

“With record-level travelers hitting the road this holiday, drivers must be prepared for delays in major metros,” says Dr. Graham Cookson, chief economist & head of research at INRIX. “Our advice to drivers is to avoid peak times altogether or consider alternative routes.”

Here are the worst days and times to travel…


On the road? Why not take us with you. All our websites are mobile-friendly. Visit our growing family of exit guides:  I-4 Exit GuideI-5 Exit GuideI-10 Exit GuideI-75 Exit Guide, and I-95 Exit Guide. Detailed exit service listings… discount lodging, camping, food, gas and more for every exit along the way!

Best, Worst Times to Travel This Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is just around the corner and this year traffic may prove to be a record breaker.

Traveling I-10 can be a real pain with heavy traffic and plenty of short tempers. Here are a few tips to help make your Thanksgiving holiday voyage less stressful:

Getting There:

  • The absolute worst time to get on the road is the day before Thanksgiving (Wednesday, November 22) and if you leave in mid-afternoon (3:00 p.m.) you definitely won’t be a happy camper once you get there.
  • If you have no choice but to leave on Wednesday, make it as early as possible. Start you trip no later than 6:00 a.m. to avoid traffic delays.
  • The Sunday before Thanksgiving (November 19) is the best day to leave for your Thanksgiving road trip, the earlier, the better.
  • Thanksgiving morning is also a good time to leave, the earlier , the better.

Returning Home:

  • The day after Thanksgiving (Friday, November 24) before 6:00 a.m. is the best day and time to return from your Thanksgiving trip.
  • Saturday and Sunday (November 25 and 26) late afternoon are the worst days and times to return from your Thanksgiving road trip. Avoid being on the road between 11:00 a.m and 6:00 p.m. Traffic will be heavy during those times.
  • If you have no choice but to leave on Saturday, try leaving as early as possible (before 6 a.m.) to avoid traffic delays.

Depending on where you’re heading, and how long the trip will be, you might be able to schedule the time when you are on the road to at avoid the worst of it.

Adjust your schedule or route and consider these options:

  • Take a bypass route around large cities
  • Tune to a radio station and monitor the traffic reports
  • If you have mobile access, Use live-traffic-reports.com to monitor traffic
  • Stop at a rest area if headed into heavy traffic and wait until the worst of it has subsided
  • Avoid shopping districts (Black Friday is usually gridlocked around major shopping areas)

Drive responsibly and have a safe trip!


On the road? Why not take us with you. All our websites are mobile-friendly. Visit our growing family of exit guides:  I-4 Exit GuideI-5 Exit GuideI-10 Exit GuideI-75 Exit Guide, and I-95 Exit Guide. Detailed exit service listings… discount lodging, camping, food, gas and more for every exit along the way!

5 Essential Tips for Memorial Day Weekend Road Warriors

Memorial Day is just around the corner, and that means the unofficial start to summer! As Americans prepare for long-weekend getaways, trips to the beach and family picnics, they’ll also be faced with what’s predicted to be one of the busiest Memorial Day Weekends on record. Relatively low gas prices means the roads will be extra crowded.

Here’s our top 5 essential tips to consider if you’re planning a Memorial Day weekend road trip…

Outdoor Adventure Awaits in San Antonio this Spring Break

Outdoor fun, theme park thrills and adrenaline-pumping excursions await in San Antonio this Spring Break. It’s not your average town and not your average adventure. Around every street corner and bend of the river there’s history to be made.

Here are just a few ways to live up the great outdoors in and around San Antonio:

  • Kayak the San Antonio River Walk’s Mission Reach
    Explore one of the most notable sites in the world by kayak. San Antonio‘s Mission Reach is the southern stretch of the famous River Walk. This wildflower-lined section connects four of the city’s five Spanish colonial missions which have recently been designated a World Heritage Site.
  • Spelunk at Natural Bridge Caverns
    Explore natural beauty in the recesses of the earth at Natural Bridge Caverns. For first-timers and avid cavers alike, this is a once-in-a-lifetime experience hard to forget. Choose from a cave walking tour or opt for the ultimate underground adventure tour where guests climb, hike, rappel and explore caverns that are thousands of years in the making. Towering stone monuments, glistening soda straws and waves of colorful cave ribbons await.
  • Combine views and an adrenaline rush at Skydive San Marcos
    The best Texas Hill Country views just might be 12,000 feet in the air. Take in the scenery aboard a turbine-powered aircraft before diving in with experts from Skydive San Marcos, just north of San Antonio.
  • San Antonio by Trail
    Explore San Antonio‘s more than 50 miles of hiking and bike trails that run through neighborhoods and downtown – connecting parks, hotels and noteworthy spots including Pearl and the San Antonio museum district. Trail stewards are on site to help with questions and directions.
  • Theme Park Thrills
    Playtime in San Antonio means one thing: Texas-sized adventure. Whether young or young at heart, big thrills are plentiful at the Alamo City’s world-class theme parks.

    • Wild Days at SeaWorld San Antonio (March 4 – 26)
      SeaWorld San Antonio’s Spring Break features 250-acres of family fun. For four weekends in March and the entire week of March 11-19, SeaWorld San Antonio hosts celebrity wildlife experts – including TV favorite Jack Hanna – as they explore the wonders of the animal kingdom. Additional special shows include SeaWorld Live, Flying High and all new this year, Texas Untamed, an up-close look at the native wildlife of the Lone Star State. SeaWorld’s water park, Aquatica, will be open and travelers can add in a trip to Discovery Point to swim with the dolphins.
    • Mardi Gras Festival at Six Flags Fiesta Texas (March 24 – April 30)
      It’s a Fiesta Texas-style Mardi Gras Festival, featuring Mardi Gras-themed food, merchandise, park décor and a parade with floats that have been artfully created by world-renowned New Orleans float designers, KernStudios. Six Flags Fiesta Texas is stocked full of rides, shows and attractions all themed around the cultures of Texas, from pulse-pounding roller coasters to gentler options for tots and the White Water Bay water park.
    • Spring Break at Morgan’s Wonderland (March 13-18)
      This 25-acre, ultra-accessible park, designed with special-needs individuals in mind and built to be enjoyed by everyone, will offer special entertainment in addition to its rides and attractions. Included will be “The Magic of Friendship,” a 20-minute interactive variety show in which guests will learn about inclusion and the art of making friends through the power of magic; musical performances; exhibitions by acrobatic dogs; feats of magic; appearances by the theme park’s butterfly mascot Joy; and members of The Wonder Squad, Morgan’s Wonderland super heroes.

While in town, stop by the Visitor Information Center across from the Alamo to grab a map, get more ideas on what to explore and have your San Antonio questions answered. Getaway packages, discounts and more information can be found at visitsanantonio.com.

Plan your San Antonio Road Trip Now! Find your perfect hotel!


On the road? Why not take us with you. All our websites are mobile-friendly. Visit our growing family of exit guides:  I-4 Exit GuideI-5 Exit GuideI-10 Exit GuideI-75 Exit Guide, and I-95 Exit Guide. Detailed exit service listings… discount lodging, camping, food, gas and more for every exit along the way!

Spring Break in New Braunfels

Looking for a Spring Break that’s a great family value? Check out New Braunfels in the Texas Hill Country. No children? Looking for a break from winter with your BFFs or significant other? Enjoy an “under the radar” Spring Break opportunity to celebrate the changing season. There’s a little outdoor adventure, some theme park fun and music and romance waiting for everyone:

Spring Break for Families

Destinations like New Braunfels offer a great Spring Break value for families with younger children looking for a budget-friendly easy to manage getaway.

“Shoulder seasons provide a great opportunity for families,” says Judy Young, the New Braunfels Convention and Visitors Bureau Director. “Resort areas like New Braunfels have the infrastructure. New Braunfels entertains thousands of families during the summer. Springtime offers many of the same attractions. People don’t think about how mild our weather is this time of year – perfect for outdoor fun. And we’re a smaller, easy to navigate and safer place for children.”

Explore these family attractions in New Braunfels and the Texas Hill Country:

  • Water Recreation – People flock to New Braunfels in the summertime for the Comal and Guadalupe rivers and Canyon Lake. Mild spring days see a high temperature averaging 72 degrees February through April. Perfect for kayaking, rafting, and fishing the rivers plus boating on the lake. And, kids will love these water-oriented attractions:
    • Schlitterbahn Waterpark – Blastenhoff is open for Spring Break with great rides like the Master Blaster and The Torrent.
    • Texas Ski Ranch – It’s a 70-acre action sports park with a great cable lake for all levels of water sports enthusiasts. You can wakeboard, ski, snowboard, skateboard and SUP! There’s a beach and a spring-loaded trampoline park, too.
  • Outdoor Fun
    • Natural Bridge Wildlife Ranch – Check out ostrich feathers, zebra ears and buffalo noses up close and personal. It’s 450 acres with 500 animals – 40 exotic, native and endangered animal species to see and photograph.
    • Natural Bridge Caverns – See massive, other-worldly formations formed by single drops of water and the slow passage of time. Take on the sky-high Canopy Challenge. Make it through a 5,000 square foot outdoor maze and pan for gems, fossils and other treasures.
    • Stars & Stripes Drive-In Theatre – Create a unique memory. Enjoy a night under the stars at a brand new “Back to the Future” drive-in movie theater!
  • Fun History and Culture
    • New Braunfels Museums – Let the imagination go at McKenna Children’s Museum. Lend-A-Hand Ranch, Destination Space and more provide inspiration. Visit the Sophienburg Archives & Museum. See what traveling by ship from Germany to Texas was like. Check out Heritage Village, the Railroad Museum, and a historic murals “museum” downtown.
    • Historic Gruene Texas – Teach the kids to two-step at Texas’ Oldest Dance Hall like generations of Texans before you. Show them the toys grandparents played with in the antique shops. Have lunch on a giant deck overlooking the Guadalupe River. Stop by the General Store for some fudge or ice cream.
    • Downtown New Braunfels – Take a stroll and delight the kids. There are bakery shops, pizza parlors and fire engine and train museums downtown. Landa Park has a miniature train ride, playscapes and camping/picnicking areas.

Taking a Break with your BFF/Significant Other

Looking for a vacation or long weekend break from winter? No children doesn’t mean no Spring Break! Grab your BFF or SO and go! Enjoy most of the same attractions a family does, plus some unique opportunities:

  • Grown-Up Play In New Braunfels
    • Hill Country Craft Beer Tour – Taste some great craft beer as you explore the Texas Hill Country. Full & Half Day Guided and Shuttled Tours are available!
    • Live Music Dance Halls & Honky Tonks – If you love live music, New Braunfels has a lot to offer: Gruene Hall, Brauntex Performing Arts Theatre, River Road Ice House, Phoenix Saloon, The Watering Hole Saloon, River Hofbrau, and Freiheit Country Store and many more.
    • Wining & Dining – Five million people visit the 51 Texas Hill Country wineries annually. New Braunfels is a great home base for exploring them – including the local ones. Unique, independent restaurants offer dining on the banks of the Guadalupe, tasty Tex Mex, authentic German dishes and barbecue, of course!
    • Wildflowers – There’s nothing like a drive through the Texas Hill Country. In springtime bluebonnets paint the hills reflecting those clear blue Texas skies. Take a camera for some amazing photo opportunities.

For more information on Spring Break in New Braunfels, see PlayInNewBraunfels. Find your perfect hotel in New Braunfels, Texas


On the road? Why not take us with you. All our websites are mobile-friendly. Visit our growing family of exit guides:  I-4 Exit GuideI-5 Exit GuideI-10 Exit GuideI-75 Exit Guide, and I-95 Exit Guide. Detailed exit service listings… discount lodging, camping, food, gas and more for every exit along the way!

New Family-Friendly Tourist Destination Under Construction in Alabama

Poarch Band of Creek Indians Unveil New Tourist Destination Complex Projected to Bring 1 Million New Visitors to Alabama Features Amusement Park, Marriott Hotel, Proximity to Sports Complex.

The Poarch Band of Creek Indians today unveiled detailed plans for its first-class, family-friendly tourist destination currently under construction near Alabama’s most popular beaches.

The development’s name, Owa, means “big water” in the Muscogee Creek language. Owa “big water” refers to the 14-acre lake at the center of the unique project that features a themed amusement park, a 150-room Marriott Town Place Suites hotel, and a wide selection of restaurant and shopping opportunities.

The 520-acre Owa development is adjacent to the City of Foley’s $40 million sports tourism complex which features 16 state-of-the-art outdoor fields and a 90,000 square foot indoor events center that is slated to open in the summer of 2017. The two projects will provide a seamless experience for “sport families” who travel to the area specifically for tournaments, but who will avail themselves of opportunities offered by Owa to entertain the entire family.

Owa, located just off the Foley Beach Express and County Road 20, is just 9 miles from Gulf Shores and Orange Beach. While that area of the State already hosts 6.2 million each year, Owa is expected to bring in an additional 1 million visitors annually.

Phase One of Owa, which includes the 150-room hotel, retail and dining spaces, amusement park and lake will open Summer 2017. Future plans call for a waterpark, additional hotels, a condominium complex and a resort level RV park. When complete, total investment in the development will top $500 million.


On the road? Why not take us with you. All our websites are mobile-friendly. Visit our growing family of exit guides:  I-4 Exit GuideI-5 Exit GuideI-10 Exit GuideI-75 Exit Guide, and I-95 Exit Guide. Detailed exit service listings… discount lodging, camping, food, gas and more for every exit along the way!

Pensacola’s Foo Foo Festival Set for November 3-14

As beachgoers hang up their sun hats, Pensacola readies to host the third annual Foo Foo Festival, presented by Art, Culture and Entertainment, Inc. (ACE), Nov. 3-14.

Foo Foo Festival is a 12-day celebration of culinary, musical, theatrical and creative events, with programming by 22 grant recipients, as well as already established events, throughout the city of Pensacola. The extensive entertainment roster positions the city as a must-visit vacation location for the fall.

Festival-goers will be challenged to vacation artfully, musically and aesthetically – before the holiday rush begins. Events include the Big Green Egg® Cook-off, the US Navy’s Blue Angels Homecoming Air Show at NAS Pensacola, Frank Brown International Songwriters Festival, Great GulfCoast Arts Festival and the Pensacola Marathon, among other uniquely exciting events in the area. In addition, the 2016 ACE grant recipients will host individual experiences specific to their craft throughout the festival.

“We are thrilled to host the third annual Foo Foo Festival,” said David Bear, president of ACE. “Our grant recipients have created programming that will showcase Pensacola as one of the premier arts and cultural destinations in the southeast. We welcome locals and visitors alike to experience the talent and passion that is the hallmark of Foo Foo Festival.”

This year, spectators can watch closely as locally commissioned artists work to transform a downtown Pensacola parking garage into a permanent 3,000-square-foot outdoor mural that tells the story of Pensacola’s rich and iconic surroundings.


On the road? Why not take us with you. All our websites are mobile-friendly. Visit our growing family of exit guides:  I-4 Exit GuideI-5 Exit GuideI-10 Exit GuideI-75 Exit Guide, and I-95 Exit Guide. Detailed exit service listings… discount lodging, camping, food, gas and more for every exit along the way!