The “Real Food” RV Recipe Challenge is Now Open For Submissions!

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

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Roll Through the Litchfield Hills in an RV

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 Hills of Connecticut are the perfect location to roll through while on an RV vacation!  Start out in Linden, New Jersey to pick up your RV rental at El Monte RV.  Once you’ve picked out the perfect motor home ride for your family, it’s time to hit the road!  You’ll get the chance to drive through the top of Manhattan Island, so take a good long look before you head out to the rural scenery of Litchfield Hills.  It’s a little piece of smaller-town America, not too far from all the noise and commotion of modern American cities.

Bull's Historic Covered Bridge

Historic Covered Bull’s Bridge

One of the best parts of traveling on the East Coast is reveling in the knowledge that you’re walking in the footsteps of dozens of interesting cultures, past and present.  At the Institute for American Indian Studies, you will learn about the early cultures that have lived in the Litchfield Hills over the past several thousand years.  Stroll through exhibits that show how American Indians lived or choose to participate in a dig with the Litchfield Hills Archaeology Club.  Whatever you decide to do, you’ll enjoy the experience of learning about the historical aspects of this part of the country!

Since you’re traveling by RV, your goal is to take it easy as you tour our great country.  A fantastic way to do so is by driving through some of the historic covered bridges spanning creeks and streams throughout the hills.  Some of the bridges were originally built as far back as the Revolutionary War!  As time has worn them down, the bridges have been rebuilt in the same style keeping the same look of the bridge as it was when it resupplied George Washington’s army.

After your own leisurely drive through the bridges, it’ll be time to catch a glimpse of a few fast-moving vehicles at Lime Rock Park.  This historic venue for races of all types have seen some of the greatest drivers in history pass through, including Mario Andretti and Paul Newman.  You may catch a race at the track, take racing school lessons, or simply walk around and enjoy the beautiful scenery where racing history has been made!

Another way to get out and exercise your legs is by heading over to a local road race!  June is approaching, so you’ll want to get out now and start jogging for a little pre-conditioning warm-up.  The Litchfield Hills Road Race will take you through the historic town of Litchfield and up and down several elevation changes.  Get ready, because it’s guaranteed to get your blood pumping!

After a race, you might want to sit back and listen to some great music (and have some great food while you’re at it.)  The Infinity Music Hall and Bistro is a 300-seat theater built in 1883.  It’s a fantastic venue that showcases a variety of music genres.  Catch a country music show or even an open-mic night.  Whether it’s a big ticket show or locals showing the world what they’ve got, you’re guaranteed to have a lot of fun and end your trip on a high note.

Pick up an El Monte RV motor home and roll through the Litchfield Hills!  The Northeast is calling!

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:  Bull’s Bridge by David Smith under Flickr creative common license.

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Through Utah’s Arches and Canyons on an RV Expedition

You haven’t seen true natural beauty until you’ve seen the arches and canyons of the American Southwest!  Years of erosion from wind and water have shaped the terrain of Utah into soft, flowing valleys and towering spires of rock.  Utah’s arches and canyons should be on your “must visit” vacation list, and you’ll need several days to take in every amazing sight.  In order to do this vacation right, pick up an El Monte RV in Salt Lake City or get an RV rental from a location closer to your home from one of the other numerous El Monte RV rental locations found throughout the U.S. and then get ready for the expedition of a lifetime!

Amazing Delicate Arch in Arches National Park, Utah

Amazing Delicate Arch in Arches National Park, Utah

Your first destination should be Dead Horse Point State Park.  Despite its name, the park is anything but dead!  The most famous feature of the park is the view from the top of a 2,000 foot prominence above a “gooseneck curve” in the Colorado River.  Over the millennia, the river has carved its way deep into the rock of the park, leaving layer after layer of fantastic, multi-colored rock.  The sight of the river’s slow and steady meandering journey through the landscape will take your breath away.

A short drive away you’ll find Arches National Park.  The name may be simple, but there’s a reason this is a world-famous destination for lovers of the great outdoors.  You have to see the natural arches to believe them.  The graceful arcs of stone look like they shouldn’t be able to stand on their own.  The longest, Landscape Arch, is an incredible 306 feet long!  After you’ve finished snapping pictures, take some time to sit back and simply enjoy the view!

If you’re ready to find an even more hands-on approach towards examining the arches, check out the Moab Adventure Center to sign up for some rock climbing and canyoneering.  At the Adventure Center, expert guides will help you suit up and scramble over hundreds of feet of red rock.  You can even rappel down into chasms or off a giant arch!

After getting up close and personal, the next best way to see the parks is from up high.  The best way to do that is by way of a hot air balloon!  Canyonlands Ballooning will take your group up, up and away over Moab, Utah, and all of the incredible surrounding countryside.  The expansive view of the landscape can’t really be comprehended until you take it all in slowly from the sky.

Incredible Capture of the Double Arches and MIlky Way, Arches National Park, Utah

Incredible Capture of the Double Arches and MIlky Way, Arches National Park, Utah

Another view you can’t get anywhere else isn’t just from the sky – it’s of the sky itself.  Far from bright city lights, take your RV out at night to meet up with Redrock Astronomy.  After arriving at a designated “dark sky site,” Redrock Astronomy will regale you with tales of how early Native Americans understood the universe and their relation to the stars.  You’ll get to examine those stars through a high-powered telescope and see them with a level of clarity that’s impossible to attain near towns and cities.

The arches and canyons of Utah are like a whole different world.  Pick up an El Monte RV motor home today and you can head out on an expedition you’ll remember for your entire life!   Remember to plan ahead and reserve your camp site inside the Arches National Park HERE!   For information on locating other RV campground locations CLICK HERE.

El Monte RV

El Monte RV Rentals and Sales

For information on renting a motor home CLICK HERE!

Picture Credits: Panoramic Arches National Park by Bruno Monginoux and Double Arches under Milky Way by John Fowler, both licensed under Flickr Creative Commons

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Take an RV Excursion to Philadelphia’s Freedom Trail

Few parts of our country are as rich in history and fun as Philadelphia.  “Philly” is a major tourist destination because it was the original capital of our country, but it’s also a major metropolitan area packed with fascinating attractions.  Situated halfway between New York City and Washington, D.C., Philadelphia is the perfect location for a family trip in an RV.  First, go to Linden, New Jersey to pick up your RV rental.  Then, head for the city!

Philadelphia -  Benjamin Franklin's Parkway

Philadelphia – Benjamin Franklin Parkway

In order to get your bearings, make your first stop the Philadelphia Freedom Trail.  Modeled after Boston’s Freedom Trail, Philadelphia’s walking tour will take you past several important landmarks that celebrate the founding of our nation and its colorful history.  You’ll see landmarks such as the First Bank of the United States, a controversial institution that inspires debate about our basic Constitutional freedoms to this day.

Then, no trip to Philadelphia can possibly be considered complete until you visit the Liberty Bell.  The Liberty Bell is a landmark synonymous with Philadelphia itself – you’ll see it on everything from t-shirts to postage stamps!  The Bell is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day, and you don’t even need tickets to take a look.  It’s the perfect opportunity to view a major American landmark that doesn’t cost you a penny!

For another fun stop, drive across town to the Betsy Ross House.  You can watch a re-enactment of Betsy sewing the first American flag, and you can also ask this patriot about her life and motivation for getting involved in the Revolutionary War.  A perfect souvenir for the trip would be taking home your own 13-star American flag!

After you’re done visiting with Betsy, take your RV to the waterfront where you’ll find the Independence Seaport Museum.  The Delaware River has always been important to Philadelphia’s economy and the lives of its citizens, so the Museum is the best way to learn about the city’s maritime traditions.  Explore exhibitions devoted to the Titanic and the experience of immigrants in Philadelphia.  Also, head outside and take a look at the submarine and historic ships tied up along the pier!  If you plan on an extended vacation, the Museum even has a summer camp where you can learn boating skills on the river.

Philadelpia Authentic Cheesesteak

Philadelphia Authentic Cheesesteak

When you’re ready to grab some food, there’s really only one choice for a Philly classic.  If you’re not on a diet, swing by one of the top ten best cheesesteak joints in the city.  You’ll have to be able to handle the grease (and probably a liberal dose of Cheese Wiz), but these sandwiches are a true American invention, and they’re loved by tourists and locals alike.

For the last stop on your trip, it’s best to visit long after eating.  If you visit before, you might lose your appetite!  The Mutter Museum is famous for its collection of medical oddities.  One major part of the collection includes Civil War medical tools.  Further along on your trip, everything from a collection of human skulls to slides of Albert Einstein’s brain are available for public viewing.  It’ll be one of the stranger stops on your trip, but it’s also one you’ll never forget!

If you’re looking for an eccentric RV adventure, head to the heart of America.  Philadelphia is ready to entertain and astound you!  For a list of RV Campgrounds in the state of Pennsylvania CLICK HERE.

El Monte RV

El Monte RV Rentals and Sales

For information on renting or buying a motor home CLICK HERE!

Picture credits:  Benjamin Franklin’s Parkway by Jim, the Photographer, and the Philly Sandwhich by N1NJ4 are licensed under the Flickr Creative Commons Attribution license.  Thank you!

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An RV Trip to Seattle is Great for the Whole Family

The Pacific Northwest is a wonderful place to vacation in a motor home, with friendly folk, gorgeous scenery, and  lots of good food.  Seattle is one of the main tourist destinations at all times of the year; however, winter is especially desirable for a family vacation as you will be avoiding the crowds!  Lake Pleasant RV Park is one camping spot that comes highly recommended.  Make the park your home base and begin your Seattle adventure.

Lovely Seattle, Washington

Lovely Seattle, Washington

The first place in Seattle to see is the Space Needle.  This is likely the biggest attraction for those visiting for the first time (and the second and the third…).  Once you are 520 feet above sea level and are observing the city from the Observation Deck, you will see why this is the place to visit first in this Washington city.  You’ll see Elliott Bay sparkling in the sun, the  gorgeous mountains in the distance, and enjoy watching the hustle and bustle of downtown from high above.  An amazing panoramic overview indeed!

Seattle's Space Needle Lookout City Tower

Seattle’s Space Needle – the City’s Lookout Tower

Next you should head for Olympic Sculpture Park and nine acres of artwork to take in.  It is definitely an inspiring place to visit.  Right on the waterfront, this park has unique views of Puget Sound and the Olympic Mountains, as well as the opportunity to enjoy this great outdoor art.  Also, in visiting the Valley next to the Gates Amphitheater, you will see tall fir and cedar trees, lovely blooming shrubs, colorful flowers, and ferns.  There is much, much more to explore to your heart’s content!

Naturally, the Woodland Park Zoo can’t be missed, particularly if you have kids with you on your trip.  It is a place of wonder for kids and adults alike.  The children will love riding on the Carousel and then heading over to get up close to and feed the penguins.   At Willawong Station, the family can experience an aviary where many colorful birds are flying free.  Don’t miss the grizzly exhibit while you are here!

The Lake Union Area of Seattle offers some interesting sights, including the Museum of History and Industry and its awesome Art Deco-style features.  Tour the museum for a view of almost four million photos and historic artifacts.  All through the Lake Union neighborhood you’ll see art displayed by local artists.

Another thrill for young and old alike is the Seattle Aquarium!  Besides sea life, there is a wide array of shows and exhibits to enjoy.  Watch the divers submerge into the water and still be able to answer your questions.  Watch the marine animals being fed.  The giant Pacific octopus is also waiting to meet you and yours.  After your visit here you can go to see the Pacific Science Center where a huge diversity of things await you.  For instance, you can learn a lot about the world of espionage and see collections from the CIA and FBI.

An RV trip to Seattle can fulfill the wildest vacation dreams.  Allow enough time to see everything when you come to this fascinating Pacific Northwest city.  Seattle has it all!

El Monte RV

El Monte RV Rentals and Sales

For information on renting or buying a motor home CLICK HERE!

Picture credits:  Seattle overview by Elias Daniel, the space needle by Frank Kovalcheck “Alaskan Dude” are licensed under the Flickr Creative Commons Attribution license.  Thank you!

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An RV Trip to Death Valley

An ideal winter vacation is to head for Death Valley in an RV.  You avoid the crowds and find incredibly hot weather.  You can enjoy the desert landscape with the natural phenomena you’ll only discover in these desolate spots here on our great planet Earth.  Explore and explore some more.  There is nothing quite like Death Valley for a unique experience!

Death Valley is a Winter-time Wonder to Warm Up the Body

Death Valley is a Winter-time Wonder to Warm Up the Body

Don’t forget to carefully pack for your adventure.  You’ll want to ensure you bring the following items:

• Sunscreen

• Sunblock

• Sunglasses

• Wide brimmed hat

• T-shirts, tank tops, shorts

• Light jacket or sweater

• Hiking boots

Get to Death Valley National Park by starting out in Olancha, California and driving to the Death Valley Junction.  It should take around three hours for this section of the trip depending on how many stops you make along the way.  This is a huge park with more than 3 million acres with plentiful wildlife. There are numerous RV campgrounds in the area which will give you a comfortable and convenient home base from which to operate.

Don’t miss Darwin Falls in the Panamint Springs area and stop to see ten kilns which were built in the late 1800s to help in the processing  of silver and lead ore.  These are called the Wildrose Charcoal Kilns.  All while you venture into these desert landscapes you will be making fascinating memories to share with those back home.

There are three other areas of Death Valley National Park, each with their own unique attractions.  The next one to see is the Furnace Creek area.  This area has a number to things to do and places to see, such as the scenic drive called Artist’s Drive, hiking in the Golden Canyon, and a terrific overlook at Dante’s view.  You’ll also want to learn of the history of Borax in the valley at the Borax Museum. Another famous view is available at Zabriskie Point.

When you make time to see the Stovepipe Wells area you will discover some amazing sights. See the Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes at night with the moon shining down for a very eerie view.  Marvel at the shiny marble walls of beautiful Mosaic Canyon.  Enjoy a stroll along the wood boardwalk when you go to Salt Creek.

Head on over to the Scotty’s Castle area where you can explore a Spanish-style mansion at Scotty’s Castle & Visitor Center.  Also be sure to visit the highest and most colorful dunes in California, the Eureka Dunes.  You may have heard about the mysterious sliding rocks.  This occurs at the Racetrack, and you’ll want to stop here and see if you can be the one who solves this mystery.

Natural Bridge in Death Valley

Natural Bridge in Death Valley

Remember, hiking in this area can be quite rigorous, but winter is probably the best time as the weather is cooperative.  Some trails to take while here are the Natural Bridge Canyon, the Desolation Canyon and Gower Gulch Loop.  One great trail is the Golden Canyon Interpretive Trail, an easy two-mile hike.

The desert is always a fascinating place, and you can enjoy the best of it in Death Valley.  Make your trip the best of all in an RV and stay awhile!

El Monte RV

El Monte RV Rentals and Sales

Picture credits:  Death Valley with suntanning feet by Brainsik and Natural Bridge by Mike Baird are licensed under the Flickr Creative Commons Attribution license.  Thank you!

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Visit a National Preserve Park for a Great RV Vacation

An RV vacation to a unique national preserve site can provide a great getaway for the whole family.  And this one in Florida, is a perfect winter destination all by itself.  The preserve that we recommend you visit is the Big Cypress National Preserve.  An easy drive from Miami, this park has a great mix of climates that is comfortable any time of year.  This is the place to go for wildlife viewing, paddling fascinating waterways, and RV camping.  El Monte RV Rentals in Miami will provide the ideal RV for your trip!

View of the Big Cypress National Preseve in Florida

View of the Big Cypress National Preseve in Florida

In Big Cypress National Preserve you will find a couple of RV campgrounds which are open all year.  The Midway Campground is first-come, first-served and has twenty-six separate RV sites.  There is also a dump station.  This is a great place to make your home base while you explore the rest of the preserve.

Before you get completely settled in, you may want to take some of the scenic drives in the area.  There are plenty of pull-offs where you can stop and watch wildlife, as well as, take in some wonderful views.  Loop Road is 27 miles of forests with pines and dwarf cypress trees and, of course, numerous animals and birds.  The Turner River / Wagonwheel / Birdon Roads Loop is a favorite of birders as there are a wide variety of wading birds that come to feed along this route.

You are going to be experiencing Alligator Alley in real-time and must bring your camera in order to not miss a shot of one of the most popular sights in southern Florida – alligators! And, of course, hiking is always something that will get you out there, up close and personal with nature here at the preserve.  The Kirby Storter Boardwalk is a great path for those with young ones with them.  Short and sweet, this route will take you into the heart of the Big Cypress swamp.  You will find a whole network of hiking trails in the preserve so you can really see all the corners of this most fascinating swamp area.

One of the best trails in Big Cypress National Preserve is the section of the Florida National Scenic Trail that stretches across Florida.  Three parts of this trail are within the park’s boundaries.  There is the northern boundary to Interstate 75, then the section of Interstate 75 to Highway 41, and Highway 41 to the Loop Road.  The latter is best in the winter season as there is no flooding as there is during rainy season.

Canoeing Fun in Big Cypress National Preserve

Canoeing Fun in Big Cypress National Preserve

If the weather permits, you will be lucky because you can follow the canoeing trails and really experience the swamp as it should be experienced.  Newbies to paddling should take the Lefthand Turner River Trail.   More experienced paddlers can take more difficult paddling trails like the Turner River or the Halfway Creek Loop.  Right now is the paddling season.  It goes from November through March.

Yes, a winter vacation to Big Cypress National Preserve is a wonderful trip to take in an RV.  You will be happy to get out of the cold winds, blizzards, and freezing temperatures.  Book your RV rental today!

El Monte RV

El Monte RV Rentals and Sales

For information on renting an RV in Florida  – CLICK HERE or to rent a motor home outside of the state of Florida  – CLICK HERE.

Picture credits: Big Cypress National Preserve and Canoeing Fun are both by BigCypressNPS and are licensed under the Flickr Creative Commons Attribution license.  Thank you!

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An RV Excursion to the Red Rocks of Sedona

The scenery around the Red Rocks of Sedona is an attraction that captures the imagination – a place of beauty and natural wonders, a place to take a deep breath and enjoy the earthy ambiance.  In addition to the scenic sights, the RV camper has a number of opportunities to experience some fantastic outdoor recreation.

Man from Alaska Enjoying the Red Rocks of Sedona

Man from Alaska Enjoying the Red Rocks of Sedona

You will marvel at the sandstone formations with the red and orange coloring as well as the unique setting in the Coconino National Forest. Truly Sedona is the ideal spot to settle down for a wonderful RV vacation!   As you’ll get to experience for yourself, it is the red rocks that make this area so incredible.  The pine forests and canyons with their nearby mountains make this region one of superb loveliness.  Discover landscapes you will find no place else than around Sedona, Arizona.

Be sure to visit some galleries and enjoy the artworks, eat at one or several of the delicious eateries, and check out the events timetable to see what is happening in and around town when you visit.  Stay at the Rancho Sedona RV Park while you visit, as this park makes a great home base.

Bring your trail hiking shoes!  You may want to hike in the Verde Valley and see the rugged cliffs and colorful gorge of Oak Creek Canyon.  Venture out to visit the wildlife parks in this region and try your hand at rock climbing, one of the most popular pastimes.  You may be surprised at how Sedona and your RV traveling brings out the “adventurer” in you!

Another fun adventure is stopping at Slide Rock State Park where you will find a number of trails for hiking.  It may be a bit too cold for water fun, but perhaps if it is a very warm day, you might brave it.  You must take some scenic drives around Flagstaff while in this area! One of the favorites is Page Springs Loop right outside of Flagstaff.  You will have the opportunity to visit some wineries here.

Cathedral Rock Reflections in Sedona, Arizona

Cathedral Rock Reflections in Sedona, Arizona

If you are with your loved one, romance is abundant at Red Rock State Park. Take the famous Moonlight Hike where you can experience moonrise, the moment when the moon rises above the horizon.  You can take guided walks during the day as well.

A popular landmark in Sedona is the Chapel of the Holy Cross, a place for some regenerating inspiration.  This chapel appears to be a part of the red rock landscape.  And if you travel south for a while on Highway 89A, you will reach Jerome, a real ghost town and known as one wicked place back in the day.  This is a fascinating place to visit and should be added to your itinerary if you have the time.

You can spend some time in Flagstaff, too, because there is a long list of sights to see in this town.  Definitely stop at Wupatki National Monument to see this ancient pueblo where nearly one hundred members of local Indian tribes lived.

Yes, winter is an excellent time to come to Arizona, and the Red Rocks of Sedona are waiting for you to arrive and enjoy this unforgettable beautiful setting!  It’s a great vacation destination, particularly in an RV motor home.  Come soon and get away from the cold north for a spell; you’ll be so glad that you did.

Comfy and Cozy Motorhome from El Monte RV

A Comfy and Cozy Motor home Rental from  El Monte RV

El Monte RV

El Monte RV

For information on renting an RV in Arizona – CLICK HERE or to rent a motor home outside of the state of Arizona  – CLICK HERE.

Picture credits: photo of man in Sedona by Alaskan Dude and photo of Sedona Cathedral reflections by Anita Ritenour are both  licensed under the Flickr Creative Commons Attribution license.

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Visiting Jacksonville on a Florida RV Adventure

A winter vacation in Jacksonville, Florida can put new meaning into “vacation.”  The Florida coast offers a marvelous combination of seaside beauty and southern hospitality.  With so many sights to see and so much to do, the whole family will be busy constantly, with very little downtime (unless some is desired, of course).  Florida has some wonderful weather, too!  Jacksonville has lovely beaches and plenty of historical and scenic spots.

Boy at Seaside Playing with Seagulls in Jacksonville, Florida

Boy at Seaside Playing with Seagulls in Jacksonville, Florida

You can easily pick up an RV rental at El Monte RV Rentals and Sales in Orlando and head up to Jacksonville for your vacation.  You’ll discover some great RV campgrounds with lots of amenities, such as the Flamingo Lake RV Resort or the Fleetwood RV Park.  Either is conveniently located to give you easy access to enjoy all the sights and touristy things there are to do in Jacksonville.

One of the first stops in the city will be the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens, a thrill for those of any age.  Animal exhibits are always fun to tour, and the animals love your company!  It’s an experience you won’t want to miss.  Another popular place to visit is the Veterans Memorial Wall  on East Adams Street.  This is a memorial honoring all veterans from all branches of the service.

Flamingos in Jacksonville Zoo, Florida

Flamingos in Jacksonville Zoo, Florida

If you want to enjoy a little outdoor recreation, you can drive a bit north of the city to the Timucuan Ecological & Historic Preserve.  Here is your chance to see coastal wetlands and the animal life that makes their home here.  As you wander the dunes and absorb the seaside ambiance, you’ll realize how relaxing it is to breathe that wonderful sea air.  Stop at the Visitor Center so you can get well-informed about how to make the most of your visit to this preserve.

On one part of the preserve is the Kingsley Plantation, a place where you will discover some fascinating history.  There is no admission fee and you can explore the plantation and imagine you were there in an historic time lapse.  You’ll learn even more history of the time period of the slaves if you take the ranger program.

Museums provide a unique kind of education.  The arts should always be admired and studied, and the Cummer Museum of Art and Gardens will certainly engage your artistic sensibilities.  The gardens are a wonderful place to enjoy some solitude amid its natural beauty along the banks of the river.  You must also make your way over to the Museum of Science and History to learn even more about this amazing state of Florida.  More art is available to view at the Museum Of Contemporary Art Jacksonville.

If you can bear leaving Jacksonville even temporarily, you will have to head south to St. Augustine.  This will be a bonus to your trip to Jacksonville.  Stop and see Ponce de Leon’s Fountain of Youth and the St. Augustine Light.

Premier El Monte RV Rental Motor Home 2014  Model

Premier El Monte RV Rental Motor Home 2014 Model

You will certainly love this opportunity to explore some of the Florida coast and see the sights that Jacksonville offers.  It will be one motor home vacation that will go down in your books as one of the best!

For information on renting an RV in Florida – CLICK HERE or to rent a motor home outside of the state of Florida  – CLICK HERE.

El Monte RV

El Monte RV

Picture credits: photo of boy with seagulls by V2112 and the flamingos by Rob Bixby are licensed under the Flickr Creative Commons Attribution license.

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Head to Redwood National Park for an RV Adventure

Whether you are in Southern California or in its northern counterpart, the current weather should be very cooperative for a little getaway up the coast.  You may run into some rain, but since you’ll be travelling in an RV on this adventure, finding a beautiful place to pull over and stop to wait out the storm will not only be very easy but cozy as well!  Pull out your favorite cold-weather movie, warm up the hot chocolate on the RV stove, start popping that tasty microwave popcorn and you’re all set!  There’s hardly any travelling setbacks due to weather while vacationing in a motorhome.

El Monte RV motor home at the Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco

El Monte RV motor home at the Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco

You can rent your RV in San Francisco and start out driving up Pacific Coast Highway.  This is one drive that has some of the best scenery in the country.  Stay alert for curves and take your sweet time if the highway is wet, knowing that the drive itself is the best part of the trip and is well worth any effort made due to the amazing sights you will be seeing.  The best thing about traveling up through Northern California is viewing the beautiful Redwood trees.  Some of these trees are the largest and tallest trees anywhere.  You are going to have a true nature experience on this trip!

The Humboldt Redwoods State Park has thousands of acres of trees and many of them are the coastal redwoods.  You will discover fascinating exhibits at the visitor center and you can get directions on taking the auto tour (or we should say RV tour) which is 32 lovely miles.  Don’t miss Avenue of the Giants and don’t fail to get out and do your own exploring of these forests.

When you reach Humboldt Bay, stop and visit Humboldt Bay Maritime Museum and learn a lot about maritime history.  Do you love birds and wildlife?  You’ll also want to stop at Humboldt Bay National Wildlife Refuge.  This is a great place to fit in some bird watching and see many ducks, geese, swan and other birds.

As you move closer to your destination at Redwood National Park, you will come upon a coastal town called Eureka.  You can enjoy many galleries, the boardwalk along the waterfront and the restored homes.  Then continue on to Big Lagoon in Dry Lagoon State Park where you might want to fish.  You can get more bird watching done here too, with lots of osprey and herons.  Throw in a line and catch some fish as well.

Exploring Humboldt Lagoons State Park is the next adventure on your itinerary.  You’ll discover this marshland is a wonderful place to see wildlife of all kinds.  Hike and get some exercise in.  You’ll want to be in shape so you can hike throughout Redwood National Park when you arrive.

Family of Redwood Trees

Family of Redwood Trees

So when you reach Redwood National Park you will be in an ideal location for whale watching, believe it or not!  Although migration was over in December, you could still spot a whale or two off the coast.  The forests here are some of the most gorgeous anywhere in California.

Spotting a Redwood National Forest Elk

Spotting a Redwood National Forest Elk

You may spot some black bears or elk in this area.  For the perfect hike, take off along Lady Bird Johnson Grove.  You will love checking out all that Mother Nature offers you here at Redwood National Park.   Take your family on this California road trip not only once, but go back again and again in an RV to maximize this amazing awe-inspiring vacation experience!

For information on renting an RV in California – CLICK HERE or to rent a motor home outside of the state of California –  CLICK HERE.

El Monte RV

El Monte RV

Picture credits:  El Monte RV in San Francisco is a company media stock photo and the photos of Redwood trees and Redwood elk by Arkansas shutterbug and Jeffery Delfiscio respectively are licensed under the Flickr Creative Commons Attribution license.

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