NHRA Races in Las Vegas and Houston in April

NHRA racing started this February with the Winternationals in Pomona, CA. In March the track was already ablaze with the Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals in Gainesville, FL. But don’t worry; these two kickoff races will be followed by some really exciting races in April.

You still have time to plan to get to the Las Vegas Motor Speedway in Las Vegas, NV for the Strip’s famous DENSO Spark Plugs NHRA Four-Wide Nationals on the weekend of April 5th – 7th. The Speedway offers seating for more than 130,000 fans to watch the excitement as racers try to qualify in both Pro Stock and Nitro Qualifying races on Friday and Saturday, with Semi-Finals and Finals on Sunday afternoon. Take the time to see Top Alcohol racers as well as racers in the Sportsman category at this NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series race. The wheels will be spinning and tires burning as top racers vie for points in Las Vegas.

Camping for your RV is available on site, at the Burnout RV lot. Located next to the dragway behind the general admission grandstands, the Burnout RV Lot features reserved camping. This allows for easy access to the pits and main grandstands. Race tickets are required in order to camp in this lot. For more information on tickets and to reserve camping, see DENSO Spark Plugs NHRA race.

The next weekend takes racers to the Mopar Express Lane NHRA Spring Nationals Presented by Pennzoil at Houston Raceway Park near Houston, TX. This race weekend occurs on April 12th through the 14th with Pro Qualifying races on Friday and Saturday and the final elimination races on Sunday afternoon. This weekend is the fifth race of the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series.

As the temperatures heat up, so does the excitement while the NHRA’s best Top Fuel and Funny Car competitors battle for an early season points lead at Houston Raceway Park. Every ticket is a pit pass, giving fans unmatched access to the drivers and crews who drive these 10,000-horsepower machines to their limits!

NHRA racing

NHRA racing

Camping inside Houston Raceway Park is already mostly sold out but there are some spots left in the Nitro Village Campground. If that is full, there are several area RV campgrounds nearby. Check these out in Baytown, TX. Highest rated is Buzzards Roost RV Park, which gets 4.9 out of 5 stars on Google. Also nearby is Pine Lakes RV Park, Mont Belvieu, Houston East and Texans RV Park, all rated with at least 4 stars.

For more information on camping and tickets see Mopar Express Lane NHRA Spring Nationals.

Don’t miss the exciting action at the track when you go in your RV to either of these NHRA events.

Need to rent an RV? Find your ideal recreational vehicle at one of our El Monte RV Rental locations. Planning to go to the Las Vegas Motor Speedway? Check our Las Vegas Rental location for rates and availability.

If you are heading to Houston, our closest location is at El Monte RV Rental in Dallas, only a 4-hour drive from the Houston Raceway Park.

Posted in Nevada RV Camping Vacation, NHRA Races RV Vacation, Texas RV Camping Vacation | Leave a comment

RV Camping Adventure: Arizona State and National Parks

Arizona has a variety of things to offer for an outstanding RV adventure!

Arizona is a prime destination for RV’ers; once you stay there, you will see why. The Grand Canyon State is high in sunshine and scenery and low in precipitation. The temperature remains relatively warm throughout the year with temperatures easily reaching the upper 70s even in January. This makes it a haven for RV’ers escaping the harsh winter weather.

With 35 State Parks, Arizona, also known as the Copper State, offers beautiful camping locations in several regions. Starting with the western region, the “west coast” of Arizona is bordered by the Colorado River with four parks offering you the choice of where to relax and enjoy the scenery.

The Colorado River is a popular spot for boating, tubing, and floating your days away, and here are four great state parks that have camping available so you can get into river life mode for a week or a weekend. The most well-known park, Lake Havasu State Park, boasts a white-sand beach, five boat ramps, and plenty of electric hook-up sites for your RV, including beach-front sites. If you want a quieter park, check out Cattail Cove State Park, located just 15 minutes away. This park has 61 campsites, including boat-in campsites for you to enjoy near the water. Plus, there’s a dog-friendly beach so you can enjoy time with your best companion! Boat on the blue waters, sail into quiet coves, or water or jet ski out on the open lake.

Head south along the river to reach the Parker strip and two more beautiful state parks, Buckskin Mountain and River Island. Both parks have gorgeous views of the river, the nearby mountains that line the river on both sides, family-friendly events and activities, and amazing amenities to make your camping trip the best yet. The hardest decision you’ll have to make is which park to choose! See the Arizona State Parks and Trails site to get a full lineup of possible parks to stay in.

Alamo State Park, AZ

Alamo State Park, AZ

For a completely different experience, head east from the river to Alamo Lake State Park, located near Wendon, Ariz. This is the place to be for bass fishing, expansive views, and quiet solitude.

With the nearest city lights nearly 40 miles away, this is also a prime stargazing park. In spring, wildflowers bring bright colors to the gentle rolling hills, and visitors can enjoy camping in tents, RVs, or the park cabins year-round. Take your boat out on the lake, or try a canoe or kayak to get the best views. With plenty of group sites, camping spots, and quiet, you’ll be able to get away from it all and unwind. This park also offers access to some of the best off-highway vehicle trails in the state.

There are many national parks and monuments in addition to the state parks, and if time and weather permits, Grand Canyon National Park is something you shouldn’t miss. However, if southern Arizona’s more temperate climate is preferable, visit the amazing Joshua Tree National Park. Or check out Saguaro National Park in the southeast corner of Arizona and on the eastern edge of the state, you can see the Red Basin and Martha’s Butte in the Petrified Forest. Don’t leave out Montezuma Castle National Monument in the center of the state, just south of Flagstaff. Here you can see through windows of the past into one of the best preserved cliff dwellings in North America. This 20 room high-rise apartment, nestled into a towering limestone cliff, tells a story of ingenuity, survival and ultimately, prosperity in an unforgiving desert landscape.

For more information on RV camping and all the National Parks in Arizona, see National Parks in Arizona.

Rent an RV for your trip:

For this unique travel experience, to best see the sights in Arizona you can rent an RV from our El Monte RV Rental location in Phoenix.

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NASCAR Races to Las Vegas, Phoenix and Texas in March

NASCAR racing started again this February with the famous Daytona 500 as the kickoff race. Now it continues with Las Vegas Motor Speedway on March 2-4 weekend, ISM Raceway in Phoenix the next weekend and Texas Motor Speedway on March 30-April 1st. Don’t miss the exciting action at the track when you go in your RV to any of these NASCAR events.

NASCAR racing

NASCAR racing

Las Vegas Motor Speedway hosts race fans for the Pennzoil 400 on March 3rd but the action lasts all weekend long. For infield access, one can add a Neon Garage pass to the ticket package which includes pit passes. They’ve also just completed some road construction projects to make ingress and egress easier for all the fans. LVMS’s spring 2019 NASCAR Weekend begins with Strat Qualifying and the Strat 200 NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series race on Friday, March 1; it continues with the NASCAR Xfinity Series Boyd Gaming 300 on Saturday, March 2; and finishes with the Pennzoil 400 presented by Jiffy Lube Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race on Sunday, March 3. The NASCAR action will be preceded by two nights of World of Outlaws action on Feb. 27 and 28 and the Star Nursery 100 K&N Pro Series West race on Thursday, Feb. 28, at the LVMS Dirt Track, giving the nearly 1,000-acre facility five consecutive days of top-notch racing.

ISM Raceway in Phoenix is the site of the next weekend’s NASCAR action. Here is the lineup for the TicketGuardian 500 main event which happens at 12:30 pm on Sunday, March 10th. Preceding that race is the NASCAR Xfinity Series race on Saturday at 2 pm. And before that, the NASCAR Weekend kicks off on Friday, March 8, 2019 with Gatorade Pole Day. Don’t miss practice sessions for both the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series and NASCAR Xfinity Series before the starting line-up is set for the TicketGuardian 500. You can even sign up for the INfield, an all-new experience that lets you watch driver’s meetings, see your favorite teams, or even get in on the kudos in Victory Lane.

Texas Motor Speedway is open for the action of the O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 from Thursday March 28th, with campgrounds open even earlier and infield camping opens on Wednesday, March 27th. The actual O’Reilly race takes place on Sunday and is part of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race. In addition this weekend will be the site for the NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series race. Friday will be the qualifying races and the Gander Outdoors Truck Series race is Friday night – starting at 8 pm. Sunday at 2 pm the 334 lap O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 race begins. Lots of other activities occur all weekend long. Check out the website for schedule details.

Camping at NASCAR Tracks:

Visit Monty’s Musings blog topic – NASCAR RV Camping – The Ultimate Racing Experience. We give you the top ten things you need to know before you go.

Traveling to a NASCAR race in RV comfort, camping close to the action with a bunch of race-friendly fans can bring new excitement and fun for your family. Pick a race, get tips from motorhome camping NASCAR fans and reserve your campsite. Pick a location and reserve your RV for any race week you want.

Need to Rent an RV?

You can rent an RV from El Monte RV for your trip to Las Vegas from our location there. In Phoenix, see our El Monte RV rentals location there, and in Texas – you can rent from our Dallas location, less than an hour’s drive from the track. See availability and rental rates on their pages.

Posted in Arizona RV Camping Vacation, NASCAR RV Vacation, Nevada RV Camping Vacation, Texas RV Camping Vacation | Leave a comment

RV Adventure: Carlsbad Caverns and more in New Mexico

How about a nice late winter or early spring RV vacation to New Mexico? Here you can explore several National Monuments, Preserves, Historical Parks and Carlsbad Caverns in this remarkable southwest state.

Carlsbad Caverns National Park

Located in southeastern New Mexico, Carlsbad Caverns has aptly been called the Grand Canyon with a roof on it. This underworld cache lies beneath the Guadalupe Mountains and is one of the deepest, largest and most ornate caverns ever discovered.

A Brief History

For a long time, the area that would become Carlsbad Caverns was more hearsay than an accepted national treasure. Curious explorer Jim White discovered and explored the caverns throughout his adolescence and well into his adult life. Through storytelling, self-promotion, and exciting guano exporters Jim White was finally able to convince people of the cavern’s significance and geological value. On October 25, 1923, President Calvin Coolidge signed the legislation that created the Carlsbad Cave National Monument and the area was finally awarded full National Park status by the United States Congress on May 14, 1930.

White discovered and named many of the cavern’s vast interior spaces that would go on to eventually become a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995.

Best times to visit:

The best times to visit Carlsbad for ideal weather are March 12th to June 3rd or September 17th to November 4th. So, plan now to get there in March and you will be treated to average temperatures with highs around the low 70s and very few rainy days. During spring, the desert is in bloom and is even more stunning to see.

Carlsbad Caverns National Park

Carlsbad Caverns National Park

Carlsbad Caverns National Park is in a semiarid region that can get quite warm in the summer with daily highs around the mid to upper 90s, but it’s always cool in the cave. The interior of Carlsbad Cavern is very stable and hovers around a cool 56 degrees with the deeper sections holding around the low 60s. Summer also brings the highest bat populations to Carlsbad so you’re sure to get a great show at dusk and dawn when the bats leave and return.

Other National Parks, Monuments and Preserves in New Mexico:

There are many other treasures to see in New Mexico. Some are National Monuments such as: Aztec Ruins, Bandelier, Capulin Volcano, El Malpais, El Morro, Fort Union, Gila Cliff Dwellings, Petroglyph, and Salinas Pueblo Missions, among others.

As an example, Petroglyph, near Albuquerque, protects one of the largest petroglyph sites in North America, featuring designs and symbols carved onto volcanic rocks by Native Americans and Spanish settlers 400 to 700 years ago. These images are a valuable record of cultural expression and hold profound spiritual significance for contemporary Native Americans and for the descendants of the early Spanish settlers.

There are also National Preserves and National Historical Parks and Trails in New Mexico worth visiting, including Chaco Culture, El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro, the Manhattan Project, Old Spanish Trail, Pecos, Sante Fe, and Valles Caldera. Valles Caldera is a 13-mile wide circular depression that was created about 1.25 million years ago by a spectacular volcanic eruption. The preserve is known for its huge mountain meadows, abundant wildlife, and meandering streams. The area also preserves the homeland of ancestral native peoples and embraces a rich ranching history.

Many of these are worthy of a full day of exploring with trails worth traveling to learn about the ancient history of this region.

Check out more about these New Mexico riches at National Park Service – New Mexico.

Where to Stay:

Carlsbad Caverns is one the smaller National Parks, situated on land that has been declared wilderness so there are no park-sanctioned areas to park your RV in the park itself. There are several nearby options near Carlsbad. Here are two you can check out:

  • Brantley Lake State Park: This is on the southernmost lake in New Mexico, and is an oasis of water, wildlife, plant life and gorgeous sunsets as well as stunning night skies. It is located 12 miles north of Carlsbad at an elevation of 3,295 feet.
  • Another great option is the Carlsbad KOA which is not only great for its proximity to the park but has great amenities as well. You would be very close to the Living Desert Zoo & Gardens State Park as well as the Sitting Bull Falls Recreation Area, Roswell’s International UFO Museum and White Sands National Monument.

RV Rental:

Rental of an El Monte RV is no problem if you wish to explore the fascinating terrain of New Mexico. Dallas and Phoenix are our closest locations. You can explore Tucson and the Gila National Forest on your way from Phoenix to Carlsbad. Check Phoenix RV Rentals for availability for your travel dates. Or see Dallas RV Rentals for available RV’s in Dallas.

Posted in National Parks, New Mexico RV Camping Vacation, State Parks | Leave a comment

Pet-Friendly RV Vacations – What You Should Know Before You Go

As you get ready for your next RV adventure, are you thinking about what to do with your pets? Is little Felix rubbing up against your leg as you browse the Internet thinking of far off destinations for your adventure? What about Rover? Is he going to have to stay home and miss all the fun?

We get it!  Your pet is a part of your family and you can pack up the treats and leashes and your furry companion can come along and travel in the motor home with you.

Travelling with Pets

Travelling with Pets

There are lots of spots that allow pets to come along. RV campers willing to follow the same common-sense rules they observe with their pets at home shouldn’t have a problem including their animals on vacation.

Check out our Pet Friendly RV Vacations page to see some great potential destinations that will welcome your pet.

Are you one of those people who loves to see dogs on parade? Well, you can travel in RV luxury to see the excitement and glamour of many top dog shows. The American Kennel Club sponsors dog shows throughout the U.S. These shows display the very best in dog show competition and give credibility to this rapidly growing sport. Agility trials, conformation events and several other categories of shows promise something for every type of dog lover. To learn more about specific locations of the AKC shows each year, check out our Traveling by RV to Dog Shows page.

Here are some tips for safely traveling with your favorite pet:

  1. Make sure your pet is secure when you’re riding in the RV. No, you shouldn’t just let your animal roam about freely. They could be injured and can also be a distraction for the driver. Keep them in a kennel or secure them with a harness or leash that buckles into the seat belt.
  2. Sure, you know your pet needs food and water (and don’t forget the treats!). But what about…
  • Their leash?
  • Their waste pick-up bags?
  • Their litter?
  • Their toys?
  • Their brush?
  • Their crate?
  • That fuzzy sweater that they love?
  1. Make sure your pet has up to date shots and an updated ID. Consider chipping your dog or cat to ensure that in that awful situation when he or she may get lost, you can always retrieve them. Minimally, if chipping doesn’t appeal to you, you should go to your local Wal-Mart or PetSmart, find the pet ID kiosk, type in their name on one side with your name and phone number on the other, print it, stick it on their collar, and voilà! Your pet has his/her own personal ID.
  2. Keep your pet’s information with you while you travel. This includes:
  • Vaccination records- many campgrounds may ask to see recent vaccination records and rabies shots.
  • Proof of ownership – Yes, someone could claim your animal was theirs! If you carry proof, this won’t go far.
  • Photographs – keep some cute pictures of your pet on your phone – and consider printing one or two good pictures in case they run away.
  • If your pets have allergies or medical issues bring the paperwork about that too.
  • A first aid kit – not just your standard personal one but one that includes pet items too.

And there are many other tips you can find by just searching for pet friendly RV’ing.

Now you’re all set to go on your pet-friendly adventure but where’s the RV? You can easily rent one of our RV’s at numerous locations around the US. Check out availability for your travel dates on our Where you can Rent RVs page.

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RV Adventure – One-Way Rentals Make it Easy

Take your next road trip in our RV and make it easy on yourself. You can leave from or fly into one city, rent the RV and then travel to your destination, return the RV and fly home.

Ever wanted to road trip across the states, taking in all the amazing sights and attractions from the comfort of your own vehicle? An RV is a great way to do this as it will allow you to pick and choose where you want to go and stay.

An RV is the best way to see the countryside, but while you are planning your trip, you should keep in mind that you will usually have to return the RV to its original location.

It is really not that all surprising that some travelers want to rent an RV in only one direction. The cost of flying home may actually work out cheaper. Besides, does anyone really want to drive a rental RV on a round trip? Your available time could be the deciding factor. Also, many of our El Monte RV locations offer transportation from the nearest airport. These locations include: Santa Fe Springs, CA, Dublin, CA, Ferndale, WA, Las Vegas, NV, McKinney, TX, Orlando, FL and Linden, NJ.

One-way rentals are extremely popular with RV’ers choosing to travel short trips from San Francisco to Las Vegas, or even longer trips from New York City to Los Angeles. Other popular road trips include the journey from Boston or Chicago to Miami in the fall, and from New York to Orlando, Florida during the Christmas period.

One Way RV Rentals

One Way RV Rentals

An important thing to keep in mind if you are considering a one-way rental is to book early. This may involve booking your vehicle several months in advance in order to find the best deal and the cheapest one-way fee. When thinking about this you should also take the time of year into account. Holiday periods are extremely busy and if you try to book too close to your time of travel you may miss out.

Another thing you can do to reduce the cost of your one-way rental is to wait for the companies to have a special. Many companies advertise rental specials every now and then and if you find one that matches your needs, you could end up saving a fortune. For example, at El Monte RV, we have a Vehicle Relocation Special for select dates in April, but you will need to book early. This special starts near Chicago and ends up in Los Angeles, Dublin, California or Las Vegas, Nevada. Click on the link to learn more.

El Monte also has a Holiday Recuperation Special this January where you can pick up a vehicle any day in January and rent for four nights or more and get an extra night for FREE, plus you even get 50 FREE miles per night.

One-way rental is a great idea if your time is limited. If you only have enough time to travel to your desired destination, a one-way rental will allow you to take your time to get there and then simply catch a plane or train home.

Traveling to and from the many beautiful sights in the USA is a fantastic experience. Discovering them in your RV is an extremely enjoyable way to accomplish this, and a one-way motor home rental gives you the freedom to take your time, forget about rushing and appreciate the things that really matter.

See more information about One-Way Rentals on our RV Rental Vehicles page and click on your starting and destination cities to see if one-way rentals are available for your itinerary.

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NASCAR Season Kicks Off with the Daytona 500

NASCAR racing starts again this February – on the 17th with the famous Daytona 500 as the kickoff race. Florida welcomes drivers from all over the country for the start of the 2019 season the weekend of the 16th to 18th of February.  For a sneak preview of the next few NASCAR events following the Daytona weekend, March 2nd-4th will feature the Pennzoil 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Then on March 9th-11th, ISM Raceway (formerly the Phoenix International Raceway) will be home for the TicketGuardian 500 race. The next scheduled weekend, on the 30th of March to April 1st is the O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 at the Texas Motor Speedway.

Daytona will feature the 61st running of the Daytona 500 race when the NASCAR season begins, with this showcase of speed, skill and determination as the drivers battled the famed 2.5 mile tri-oval track with its 31 degree banking to earn the title of Daytona 500 Champion.

Camping at Daytona

Any Daytona veteran will tell you that you haven’t truly experienced the “World Center of Racing” until you’ve loaded up the RV, called up your closest friends and set up camp somewhere in the 180-acre infield.

Surrounded by Daytona’s famous track, you’ll find that there’s far more happening at Daytona than just three-wide racing. Devoted race fans from all over the world descend upon every inch of the infield, creating a rich communal atmosphere from campsite-to-campsite.   

Daytona International Speedway

Daytona International Speedway

Whether you’re in a decked-out motorhome or a tent is more your style, DAYTONA offers several camping options that put you right next to all the history and heritage that’s made this place world-famous.  Infield campgrounds and GEICO Park West campgrounds also include FREE Wi-Fi!

If the International Speedway happens to be full – which sometimes happens when the race is sold out, check out these other camping options in the Daytona area.

  1. Daytona Speedway RV
  2. Finishline Park
  3. Daytona Racetrack RV
  4. South Daytona RV Park & Tropical Gardens

Other things to do near Daytona

If you have a little free time, there are many other attractive places to see near Daytona that will make you appreciate this gem of a location on the Atlantic. You can take your time visiting the Dunlawton Sugar Mill Gardens with free admission, or the Marine Discovery Center in New Smyrna Beach. Here, you can tour the Indian River Lagoon, North America’s most diverse estuary that has been designated as an Estuary of National Significance. Here, salt and fresh water mingle, and more than 4,000 species of plants and animals co-habit, some of which are endangered or threatened and some that are found here and nowhere else on earth. Mangrove trees line shorelines and provide habitat for many species of animals and invertebrates. Birds such as osprey, pelicans, ibis, heron, roseate spoonbills or even bald eagles are commonly seen. In the estuary, bottlenose dolphins chase schools of baitfish, and manatees charm visitors with their slow-moving, gentle ways as they swim with their newborns.

As you travel along 1A you should stop and see the Ponce Inlet with its iconic Ponce De Leon Inlet lighthouse and museum, great for stretching your legs and more if you choose to climb the 203 steps of the 175 foot tower lighthouse. This lighthouse, the tallest one in Florida and the second tallest masonry lighthouse in the US, is second only to Cape Hatteras Lighthouse on North Carolina’s Outer Banks.

There are Sugar Mill Ruins just west of New Smyrna Beach and Edgewater and just an hour south is the NASA Kennedy Space Center.

If you want to take in some nature close to Daytona Speedway, check out the Bulow Creek State Park near Flagler Beach, one of the largest remaining stands of southern live oak forests along Florida’s east coast.

Tomoka State Park is nearby in Ormond Beach, where Native Americans once dwelled and now a bird-watchers’ paradise. And, stop by the Gamble Rogers Memorial State Recreation Area at Flagler Beach or the Sunglow Fishing Pier to enjoy a bit of fishing. For more information about camping in any of the 175 award-winning Florida State Parks, check out their website.

Need to Rent an RV?

You can rent an RV from El Monte’s Orlando location for your trip to Daytona, only an hour away. See availability and rental rates on their page.

Posted in Florida RV Camping Vacation, NASCAR RV Vacation | Leave a comment

Holiday Fun – A Florida RV Adventure

Don’t suffer with freezing temps and snow and ice this holiday season. Take a tropical jaunt (ok, semi-tropical) through Florida and enjoy lots of Holiday events and attractions in the Sunshine State.

To help you plan some holiday activities in Florida this year, here are some of our favorites.

Universal Orlando Resort, Orlando

It takes more work for some to get into the spirit of the season, and you can seethe heartwarming process in action with a live show of Grinchmas, as the Grinch tries to ruin the holiday for the Whos before finding the true meaning of Christmas. You can also see Macy’s Holiday Parade nightly,with balloons and floats straight from New York’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, along with music, entertainment, and a spectacular tree lighting display. Winter is also when The Wizarding World of Harry Potter comes alive,with sights, sounds, and even tastes straight from the books and movies! Learn more here. 

ICE! at Gaylord Palms, Orlando

For the most frigid attraction in Florida, look no further than ICE!, the award-winning display of millions of pounds of ice hand-carved into amazing sculptures by artisans from China. This year, the journey tells the story of how the beloved characters from DreamWorks’ Merry Madagascar saved Christmas after Santa and his reindeer crashed onto the island of Madagascar.There are also two-story-tall ice slides to take a ride on, truly a unique holiday experience in Florida! With the entire exhibit kept at a downright freezing 9 degrees, this is definitely the coolest event of the year. Click here to learn more.

The Holy Land Experience, Orlando

Fora more traditional take on the Christmas season, The Holy Land Experience provides a living museum and park that makes some of the most well-known stories of the Bible come to life. From the Garden of Eden to the birth of Jesus, experience the sights and sounds of the biblical world in a way you can’t find anywhere else. 

Walt Disney World Resort, Kissimmee

For the holidays, on select nights at the Magic Kingdom, the Walt Disney World Resort brings an extra holiday cheer with Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. Amid the spectacular decorations, enjoy a parade featuring several favorite Disney Characters, along with a special appearance by Santa Claus himself! There’s also a new fireworks show,complimentary cookies and hot chocolate, and even a wintry snowfall. Enjoy the magic of Disney at this enchanting time of year. 

Town of Christmas

What better place to explore than the town where it’s Christmas year-round? Just outside of Orlando, the quaint town of Christmas sees visitors flock to their post office yearly to have their cards and letters postmarked from “Christmas, FL” for a unique touch to their holiday mail. The town also features a historical park with a museum showing what life was like in the original settlement from the 1800s.  Let everyone else dream a white Christmas while you experience the real thing!  Find out more at their website. 

Mount Dora Events and The Polar Express

From early November through December 30th, you can ride on the officially licensed THE POLAR EXPRESS™ train ride from Tavares Union Train Station, bound for the North Pole. For tickets and more information on this and all their holiday events, see the Mount Dora website.

Busch Gardens, Tampa

Not to be confused with the Town of Christmas, Busch Gardens is being transformed into Christmas Town.  The theme park will have special holiday shows, Santa’s house, and an entire snow-filled playground! From snowmen to penguins to the Christmas Town Village,there’s an entire wintry wonderland just waiting to be explored. 

Gingerbread House Extravaganza, Jacksonville

You won’t believe your eyes or nose when you see what amazing creations people are able to make with gingerbread, icing, and imagination. For the 11th consecutive year, the Jacksonville Historical Society is hosting the Gingerbread House Extravaganza to raise money for children’s programs, but this is no ordinary bake sale. The artistry and detail of the edible creations are a real treat, providing enough awe to keep your sweet tooth in check. And if you’re feeling adventurous, you can submit your own masterpiece to be part of the fun.

Nights of Lights, St. Augustine

If you enjoy going to local houses to see their Christmas light displays, then St.Augustine has just what you’re looking for. Every year, literally millions of holiday lights decorate the nation’s oldest city, transforming it into a twinkling spectacle. With so much to see, you may be better off taking one of the several tour buses than trying to take it all in on your own. There are also a multitude of events coinciding with the brilliant display. See their website here to find out more details.

Santa’s Enchanted Forest, Miami

Though we all know that Santa makes his home in the North Pole, South Floridians know he also maintains a warmer wonderland. Santa’s Enchanted Forest at Miami’s Tropical Park lays claim to the title of world’s largest Christmas theme park, with more than 100 rides, shows, games, and attractions.

El Monte RV Holiday Special:

Whatever you do for the holidays, this is a special time to enjoy visiting with family and friends. To make the season even more fun, take advantage of this Holiday Special from El Monte RV.

This month we’re offering a free Monty Christmas night to help you with your holiday travel plans or accommodations! Whether you’re traveling to see relatives, needing extra beds for those visiting you or just getting away from the Christmas rush, get a free extra day!

Rent any Class C or Class A model motor home, pick up any day in December and rent for a minimum of 6 nights and get 1 extra night FREE! Plus you get 50 free miles per night! Get 7 nights for the price of 6!  
Use Coupon Code: HOLIDAY

You can easily rent one of our RV’s at either of our Florida El Monte RV locations, in Miami or Orlando. Check out both of them and some more suggested Florida vacation ideas on our Florida RV rentals page.

Posted in Florida RV Camping Vacation, RV Vacation Ideas | Leave a comment

RV Vacation Time – December Music Festivals

Music abounds in the month of December and what a great way to see and hear the best of the best in rock and hip-hop than to go to music festivals. We feature one on the west coast – the Rolling Loud Music Festival in Los Angeles on December 14-15th and two in Florida – Riptide 2018 in Fort Lauderdale from November 30 – December 2nd and Next Big Thing in Tampa – Saturday and Sunday, December 1st and 2nd. So take your pick: if you are on the west coast, check out Rolling Loud and if Florida is your destination (or home), you have two excellent choices.

Rolling Loud – Los Angeles 

Discerning hip-hop lovers will be treated to a panoply of performers at this two day long festival at the Banc of California Stadium Grounds and Expo Park in Los Angeles. Performances by Post Malone, Lil Wayne, Cardi B and Lil Uzi Vert headline while the rest of the lineup is filled with Wiz Khalifa, 21 Savage, Shoreline Mafia, Bali Baby, Young Thug and many, many more. Check out the full schedule here. The festival starts on Friday the 14th and goes through Saturday the 15th of December.

Riptide Music Festival – Ft. Lauderdale Beach, Nov. 30-Dec. 2

Starting on Friday, the 30th, this Alternative Rock music festival kicks off with four performers on Friday night- followed by a huge array of bands on Saturday and Sunday. These include Young the Giant and Dirty Heads, as well as Panic!  At the Disco and Alice Merton all performing on Saturday. On Sunday, the likes of Third Eye Blind, Everclear and Gin Blossoms will headline the entertainment. If you want to see the full lineup, check out their website.

Next Big Thing – Tampa, Dec. 1 – 2

If you prefer the west coast of Florida, check out Next Big Thing – which has some of the same Alt Rock performers as the Ft. Lauderdale Riptide Fest but they have an even larger lineup of 50 bands playing for 2 days. On the lineup for this year’s Next Big Thing, held at Tampa’s MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre: Bastille, Foster the People, Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness, Young the Giant, AJR, Chvrches, Elle King, Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats, LANY and more. Click here to see the full lineup and schedule.

Music Festival

Places to camp nearby:

There are lots of options for nearby camping in Southern California and close to either Ft. Lauderdale or Tampa in Florida.

Los Angeles RV Camping:

You can camp at Hollywood RV Park, the Dockweiler RV Park or Walnut RV Park, all of which have 4 or more stars. Check out the best rated RV Parks on Yelp or Google and you may be tempted to stay in Marina Del Rey at the Marina Boat and RV Storage location.

Ft. Lauderdale area Camping:

In the Ft. Lauderdale area, you can find an abundance of potential camping spots including: Aztec RV Resort, the Kozy Kampers RV Park, Yacht Haven Park and Marina and Easterlin Park in Oakland Park.

Tampa RV Camping:

Many campgrounds exist in Hillsborough and Pinellas Counties – close to this Tampa venue. You can choose to park your RV in Bay Bayou RV Resort, or Tampa RV Park Camp Nebraska, in Tampa (Hillsborough County). Or go west to Pinellas County and you’ll find a variety of other choices, some near the Gulf of Mexico such as St. Petersburg/ Madeira Beach KOA, Clearwater Travel Resort of Vacation Village RV Resort in Largo.

Again check out the ratings on Yelp or Google and decide for yourself what the best fit is for you and your family.

Rent an RV for your trip:

For the Los Angeles event, you can rent an RV from one of our 4 nearby El Monte RV California locations. Click here to see all of the California locations and perhaps get some other ideas for your California RV Vacation.

For Florida shows, you can take your choice to rent an RV from El Monte rental locations in Miami or Orlando. Our Miami location is a one hour drive from Ft. Lauderdale while the Orlando Rentals and Sales location is about a one hour drive from Tampa’s Mid-Florida Credit Union Amphitheatre.

Whatever you decide for your December RV trip, we hope you enjoy some great music while creating memories with your friends or family.

Posted in California RV Camping Vacation, Florida RV Camping Vacation, Music Festivals | 1 Comment

RV Vacations to Watch Fall Leaves Change in Pennsylvania

As the season’s remarkable color changes paint the landscape, fall is an ideal time to get out and enjoy nature. What better way to do so than to take an RV camping trip in our National parks. Every fall, especially in the State of Pennsylvania, fall colors resonate in the beauty of our National Parks.

A Sampling of Pennsylvania’s National Parks

There are over 200 miles of scenic roadways to explore in the Delaware Water Gap. Several historic villages along the way provide a window into the past. For more historic adventures Independence National Historic Park has many monuments and sites representing our country’s colorful history.

Autumn trail in the Delaware Water Gap

Autumn trail in the Delaware Water Gap

History buffs will also want to visit the Allegheny Portage Railroad National Historic SiteGettysburg National Military ParkEisenhower National Historic Site and Fort Necessity National Battlefield. Take advantage of the many campsites along the way.

Gettysburg is particularly accessible as you can drive the battlefield on a self-guided tour, stopping to view the restored visitor center. The center features a hand painted Cyclorama, a breathtaking canvas that measures 377 feet in circumference and 42 feet high. Longer than a football field and as tall as a four-story structure, the Gettysburg Cyclorama oil painting, along with light and sound effects, immerses visitors in the fury of Pickett’s Charge during the third day of the Battle of Gettysburg. Visit this and other remarkable histories of momentous Civil War battles at the National Park’s Museum and Visitor Center.

National Forests Provide Outdoor Adventure and Year-Round Recreation

With over 600 campsites, many miles of trails for you to hike, ride all-terrain vehicles or bikes, boat launches, and beautiful wilderness for you to explore, you will definitely want to visit the Allegheny National Forest. The forest is also open during winter months so visitors can enjoy snowmobiling or snowshoeing. 

State Parks / Major Lakes, Rivers and Beaches

The whole family can enjoy Pennsylvania state parks. There are plenty of campsites, lakes and rivers for fishing, boating, canoeing or swimming, trails for hiking, and unlimited places for solitude if that’s what you are seeking. A few favorites are Round Valley, Voorhees, Spruce Run, Pymatuning, Hickory Run and Jacobsburg State Parks. You will probably enjoy yourself so much you’ll want to return and see Tobyhanna, Lackawanna, Ricketts Glen and Nockamixon State Parks.

There are so many reasons to go out and enjoy nature, but go soon as winter is quickly approaching. Take the time to drive an RV in the second state to ratify our country’s Declaration of Independence and be treated to fall colors against the beautiful backdrop of the mountains and valleys that defined this nation nearly 250 years ago.   

Four Reasons to Go Camping

In case you need a little help to get started, here are just a few of many reasons you may want to organize your next RV camping trip without delay.

  • Reconnect with nature: There is nothing as soothing as a walk in the woods to calm the spirit as you respect the beauty of the natural world. Ah, as you breathe in the smell of fall leaves. It is indeed refreshing to the soul, allowing you to recharge your batteries and be ready to face a hectic world.
  • Get off the grid: Want to unplug and get away from all those electronics? Go off-grid and allow camping to force a return to simpler things.
  • Get some outdoor exercise: Tired of the weekly or daily treks to the gym? Go outside for some exercise! Walk, hike or bike in the gorgeous natural workout room of the outdoors. Notice the beauty of changing leaves around you while you burn calories. So much more uplifting than just a routine workout at the gym.
  • Find your quiet place: Allow yourself to take time to unwind and clear your mind of everyday worries. Listen to the breeze rustle the leaves in the trees; the crickets chirping at night, or an occasional hoot of an owl. This is living – the stillness around you can help quiet your mind so you can relax in ways you may never do in your day-to-day life. Camping allows you to enjoy the peace that is in you.

You can rent an El Monte RV at our Kingston, PA location or at our Baltimore rv rental location, and take your time driving through Pennsylvania, enjoying the changing leaves along the way.

And remember our November special: For rentals with pickup dates between November 1 and November 30, rent for 4 or more nights and get double the miles free! That’s 100 free miles per night!

Posted in Fall Foliage, Pennsylvania RV Camping Vacation | Leave a comment