Renting from El Monte RV is such a simple and fun experience that the rest of your trip planning should be, too.  Technology can help you do just that!  With recent improvements in smart phones, most Americans are walking around with the equivalent of a computer in their back pockets.  Put all that power to work by using apps on your phone to make your next RV trip the easiest and most memorable one of your life!

Happy El Monte RV Customers

Happy El Monte RV Customers

Here are four exceptional smart phone apps that will simplify everything from setting up your trip to navigating beautiful country roads.

1.  Roadtrippers

The first step in planning youar RV trip is deciding where you want to go.  Once you’ve picked that main destination, you’ll need to consider where you should stop along the way. Roadtrippers is an app that helps you discover fun and offbeat side trips all along the route to your destination.  Everything from peculiar local attractions to awesome local restaurants will announce themselves for your discovery when you have this app installed.

2.  Waze

Have you ever found yourself stuck in the middle of a traffic jam and wished you had been able to see ahead in order to take a different route?  Waze can help you do just that!  It compiles information from over a million users of the app, and it does far more than Google Maps or your in-vehicle GPS can.  In addition to warning you of upcoming traffic, Waze can also tell you where accidents have occurred and even where to expect police speed traps!  Don’t leave home on your next RV vacation without it.

3.  Trip Advisor City Guides

Once you get to your destination, you may have a few landmarks, hiking trails, or restaurants in mind that you’re planning on experiencing, but are you really getting the most out of your trip? Trip Advisor’s City Guides app acts as your personal guidebook to help you get more out of every area you visit.  Having this app is like having your own personal assistant alongside you informing you of events and places to visit that you may have never heard about otherwise the entire time you’re on the road!

4.  RV Parking

Arriving at your destination and getting to explore a bit may be the most fun part of your trip, but you will still need to find a spot to park the RV for the night.  RV Parking is a great app with an exhaustive database of campsites that accept RVs.  You can also review ratings from fellow travelers to find out the experience others have had about each of these campsites.  With modern smart phone technology, the saying really is, “Know before you go!”

These four apps provide a great start for anyone that is looking to have a smart and savvy vacation experience!  There are more great travel apps to make your next vacations as fantastically smooth as possible.  Take a look, and you might find an app so good you’ll wonder how you lived without it!  Since El Monte RV is committed to help you make your trip as memorable as possible, give them a call today to get the help you need to start planning your next RV vacation!

El Monte RV

El Monte RV Rentals and Sales

For more information on renting or buying a motor home CLICK HERE!  or call 1-888-337-2208

The end of summer is only a month and a half away!  Have you made your plans to hit the road for an RV vacation before the kids go back to school and the leaves start falling?  If you’re looking for a great mid-summer trip, consider our friendly neighbors to the north.  Instead of sticking to the States, expand your RV vacation to the Great Lakes region around Toronto!

Niagara Falls

Niagara Falls

Start out by heading to Kingston, Pennsylvania (or clicking the link) to pick out and reserve your favorite RV.  Once you’ve decided on which RV will be the perfect ride for you and your family, make sure to read about the rules and procedures for crossing the US-Canada border in an RV.  You’ll want to be prepared and have any necessary paperwork in order before you get to the border crossing itself.

Once all of your ducks are in a row, start out your exciting road trip by heading for Niagara Falls!  These multiple waterfalls flow between the US and Canada, and they’ve been a classic vacation destination throughout the last century.  You can take a moment to re-create scenes from the many movies that have featured the falls.  Films as diverse as Superman II and Bruce Almighty had scenes set here!  The 167-foot falls also create a magical plume of drifting spray and we highly recommend you sail through it on a Maid of the Mist boat tour!

If the sun is already going down, head for an RV campground near Buffalo, New York.  You can find one near the shores of Lake Erie for an excellent view and then head into the historic city itself for a great dinner!

When you’re ready to continue north, continue around Lake Ontario and you’ll end up in Toronto itself.  One of the first sites to greet your eyes will be the iconic CN Tower that dominates the skyline.  This spire has been a famous piece of engineering since the 1970s, and it’s still the best way to get a bird’s eye view of the entire city.  If you get hungry, there’s even a revolving restaurant that will give you a slow panorama of the entire area.

After you’re done having fun in the clouds, head over to the mid-city Royal Ontario Museum.  It’s a world-leading natural history and cultural museum with incredible exhibits that range from examples of Chinese Forbidden City artifacts to textiles from ancient Egypt.  Toronto is a world-class city, and there’s no better place to get a taste of the whole world than at the “ROM.”

While you’re downtown, take a moment to travel underground!  Toronto is unique in that it has over 19 miles of tunnels and underground walkways in its PATH system.  While they are a welcome respite for downtown travelers during the city’s snowy winters, they are also a lot of fun to poke around during the summer.  The walkways are lined with coffee shops, stores, and all manner of potential souvenir purchasing locations, so give yourself a few hours to get lost in a maze of shopping fun!

Don’t wait until it’s too late: head north in an RV for an amazing lakeside drive to Toronto!

El Monte RV

El Monte RV Rentals and Sales

For more information on renting or buying a motor home CLICK HERE!  or call 1-888-337-2208

Photo Credit:  Niagara Falls by Daniel Lewis licensed by Flickr Creative Commons

 

 

Summertime means that RV travelers across the country are heading out on vacation.  Whether you’re headed for the Grand Canyon or Gettysburg, there’s one factor that every trip planner has to take into account:  FOOD!   Around all the sightseeing and awesome activities you have planned, you’re bound to get pretty hungry!  Here at El Monte RV Rentals we have our favorite on-the-road meals, but we’re launching a recipe contest to find out what you love to make.   We’re excited to announce the El Monte “Real Food RV Recipe Challenge!”

Real Food Recipe Contest

Real Food Recipe Contest

The Real Food Recipe challenge is an opportunity to share your favorite healthy and delicious recipes with the rest of the world.  All you have to do is take a photo of your prepared dish and compile the recipe instructions and submit them on El Monte RV’s Facebook page.  Decide which dish your family loves when you’re out on the road and follow the simple steps for telling the rest of the RV community about it.

All entries will be judged by Lisa Leake of 100 Days of Real Food.  Lisa’s blog is a fantastic source for finding ways to incorporate “real food” into your everyday diet.  What does “real food” mean?  It’s using all-natural and local ingredients that haven’t been overly processed.  If you want to learn more about what using real food will mean for the RV Recipe Challenge, read Lisa Leake’s Real Food Defined.  Lisa’s blog has lots of tips for making real food that tastes great!

In order to get ready, here is the scoring breakdown that you should consider:

25% Taste: pick your best-tasting meal!  Are your pork chops worth writing songs about?  Does the whole neighborhood come out when they smell your pancakes cooking?  Use your best tasting recipe!

25% Creatively Using “Real Food”: processed white sugar and the deep fat fryer will have no place in these recipes. El Monte is looking for healthy meals that taste great!

25% RV Friendliness: making a great meal work in the limited space of an RV is an important part of the challenge.  Can you create a great recipe that works in an RV’s kitchen?

25% Photo Quality: make sure that your photo looks great.  The world will want to see what your prize-winning dish looks like!

It wouldn’t be a contest without a prize, and the prize for the El Monte “Real Food” Recipe Challenge is a fantastic one.  The best recipe and photo, as judged by Lisa Leake, will win a free one week RV rental from El Monte RV!  Now is your chance to experience luxury camping in a motor home

So, get the camera out and start putting your submission together today.  Also, make sure you start planning where you’d like to take that free RV rental for your next vacation.  It could be yours sooner than you realize!  Just think: when you enter the El Monte “Real Food” Recipe Challenge, not only will you be ready for a great vacation, you’ll already know which family favorite meal you’ll be making in the RV along the way!

El Monte RV

El Monte RV Rentals and Sales

For more information on renting or buying a motor home CLICK HERE!  or call 1-888-337-2208

As much as we all love RV vacationing, there are certain challenges that come with this method of travel.  For instance, where to spend the evening on the road when traveling far distances from one location to the next is a common challenge for every RV traveler!  Many RV vacationers may not be aware of their choices in overcoming this challenge of finding a convenient and beautiful place to stay the night while in transition from one destination to the next.  Even if there are amazing sites and attractions nearby, spending night after night in Wal-Mart parking lots can become less than desirable.  And during the peak vacation season, finding an available campsite is not always possible.  Discover another and far better over-night camping option you now have with Harvest Hosts!

HARVEST HOSTS Winery Participant in Nottingham, New York

HARVEST HOSTS Winery Partner

Harvest Hosts is changing all of that.  Harvest Hosts is a program where wineries, farms, and breweries from all over the country open their gates to you for overnight dry camping.  Seasoned RV travelers Kim and Don Greene started this luxury-style camping concept in the U.S. after driving over 200,000 miles by RV all over the world.  They found that it was common for wineries and farms in Europe to host travelers overnight, but nothing similar existed in the United States. In true entrepreneurial spirit, they started their own version of a European hosting association.

From their small and localized upstart with locations only in California, Oregon, and Washington, Harvest Hosts has expanded to include numerous locations across the continental United States, Canada, and even Baja California in Mexico!  The program requires a nominal $40 membership fee for the entire year, giving you money-saving access to travel across North America without paying a cent for camping or parking!

Taste and Experience the Pleasure of RV Road Traveler!

Taste and Experience the Pleasure of the RV Road Traveler!

In return, these small (usually family-run) businesses simply ask that you purchase a bottle of wine or some of their other homemade goods.  Sampling local vintages and farm produce is already on the to-do list for most RV vacationers, so it’s a small price to pay for the great company and amazing locations available.  Free overnight parking added into the activities that you were already planning on is too good to pass up!  There’s really nothing like watching a sunset and sharing a glass of wine with the people that made it.

Once becoming a member, you can search through interactive maps that show available hosts and the amenities that they provide.  It’s a good idea to call ahead to make sure that the farm or winery you have in mind actually has space for you, though.  Many of the hosts are small-time operations that may not accommodate a large number of vehicles at one time.  That’s part of the charm, however.  Instead of an endless sea of RVs, you get the experience of potentially being your host’s only guest!  There’s nothing like waking up to a beautiful morning and being greeted only by the sound of the wind in the trees and farm animals starting their day.

Another benefit to being a member is access to a handy app that helps you find locations along the routes you are planning to take.  You can also use online forums where you may ask questions of other travelers, read up on host reviews, and even share your own vacation experiences and photos.  It’s a valuable tool for selecting the very best spots for your trip.

Overall, Harvest Hosts is providing a valuable service for small-town agricultural businesses and the RV vacationers that love to visit them.  Get out of the parking lots and start making beautiful memories and having the best RV trips of your life!

Once you’ve experienced this pleasurable and memorable RV experience, send us a few photos and we’ll happily share them with our readers and on El Monte RV’s facebook page!

El Monte RV

El Monte RV Rentals and Sales

For more information on renting or buying a motor home CLICK HERE!  or call 1-888-337-2208

Photo credits: RV at Winery by Ray & Roxanne Nottingham courtesy of Harvest Hosts and the wine and food photo by Colleen Lane is licensed under Flickr commons.

Culture and Crafts in the Amish Country of Indiana

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The geographical mid-section of the United States is densely punctuated with fascinating towns and vacation destinations that are overlooked by far too many travelers!  Much of our country’s cultural history is tied up on the roads across the Great Plains states …

 

A Scenic Tour through the St. John River Valley

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When you’re looking for a unique vacation idea, remember that some of the best picks will be the ones you’ve never heard about.  While tourists are packing into the most famous resorts and cities, a different breed of savvy traveler is …

 

Journey to the North in Winnipeg

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Even though it’s directly to our north, many Americans never visit Canada.  What a missed opportunity on so many levels because Canada is a country with unending natural beauty and the Canadian people are well-known for their warm hospitality and friendliness!  If you’re looking for a vacation …

 

Roll Through the Litchfield Hills in an RV

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The northeast corner of our country has been populated for so long and by so many people that it can feel a bit crowded.  Many parts of New England can feel claustrophobic for travelers that want wide-open spaces.  Luckily, the Litchfield …

 

5 Best RV Camping Vacations for the Family

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An RV camping vacation is the ideal get away for the entire family. You can enjoy the comforts of home as you travel and explore this great country together. RV parks can be wonderful destinations in themselves, while supplying you …

 

From Seattle’s Sound to the Mountains

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Most trips to Washington focus on Seattle and that certainly makes sense.  Seattle is the jewel of the Northwest, a fantastic city full of great food, delicious coffee, and the best professional football team in the country!  What some people are not aware …