Tag Archives: trip

Take Me Back Tuesday – Newport, Rhode Island

I haven’t written a Take Me Back Tuesday post in quite a bit.  I’m not sure if it’s because I’ve run out of places to write about or that writing about places I’ve been makes me miss traveling….yup I think it’s the latter.

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This week I decided to tell you about Newport, Rhode Island, one of my favorite weekend getaways in both the summer and winter.  Newport is the perfect little nautical town that has something for everyone.  Fantastic restaurants with beautiful ocean backdrops, fun outdoor bars, gorgeous sightseeing, a bit of history, and even some fun adventurous activities!

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My Newport Favorites

Place to Stay

Rheas Inn: My family has been staying here for years.  The owners are super accommodating and friendly.  Rhea’s is set right across from the beach and is a 5 minute cab ride from downtown.  It’s a cozy place with about a dozen rooms and a common area that is stocked for a full continental breakfast (or late night snack).

Newport Beach Hotel & Suites:  If you are willing to spend a little more money, this place is really nice.  I stayed here for my sister’s wedding and had the suite.  It was definitely a 4-5 star experience.

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Beach

Easton’s Beach:  Often referred to as “First Beach” this area is right across from the above two hotels.  It gets pretty crowded in the summer, but that’s to be expected.  If you plop your chair in front of the Atlantic Beach Club you can expect some music and college kids enjoying being college kids.

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Restaurants

Midtown Oyster Bar: This restaurant was new this past summer.  Me and Andy loved it.  It had great food and a roof deck!

Red Parrot:  I think my family goes here every single time they visit Newport (and that’s at least a couple of times a year).  It’s kind of a Newport staple right in the middle of Lower and Upper Thames.

Brick Alley Pub:  Another staple restaurant on Thames street.  They have a great salad bar!

The Landing:  If you want a water view, this is a great option.  We weren’t blown away by the food or service but the view is worth it!

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Things To Do

Thames Street:  You can go to Newport and spend the entire day walking up and down Lower and Upper Thames Streets.  They are the cutest cobblestone streets with a ton of great small boutiques, souvenir shops, and of course great restaurants.

Concerts at The Newport Yachting Center:  This is a great small and intimate venue to go see a band.  It’s right downtown and has some great shows.  A fun way to start or end your night.

Cliff Walk:  I absolutely love going for a run or walk on Cliff Walk….I can’t believe I don’t have pictures from it!  Just take my word and go.

Ocean Avenue:  Take a drive on Ocean Avenue if you want to play the game “How much do you think that house is worth?” or “Which one would you buy?”.  The houses on Ocean Avenue are unreal.  A bit different from the old money mansions down the street, these are modern-day million/billionaire’s summer homes set right on the ocean.

Mansions:  I actually haven’t toured the mansions since I was younger but it’s definitely a must – do!  There is so much history and of course a lot to see!  If you want to go when the crowds aren’t there, go during Christmas.  They decorate a few of them for the holidays and they aren’t too busy!

Skydive Newport:  Andy and I went to Newport this past summer just for the skydiving.  It was absolutely awesome!

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Have you ever been to Newport? What’s your favorite thing to do there?  If not, where is you favorite getaway from home?

 

 

Take Me Back Tuesday – Cancun, Mexico

I woke up this morning before the 6AM mark.  It was cold, dark, and SNOWING! What the heck? Since  I’m really just not ready for the snow flakes I think a little Cancun, Mexico edition of Take Me Back Tuesday will put me in much better spirits!

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This past May me and Andy ventured off to the beautiful beaches of Cancun, Mexico.  Funny story about why we decided on Cancun.  We were planning on being there for my birthday, Cinco de Mayo (pretty awesome birthday).  Silly me thought how fun it would be to celebrate the Spanish holiday in Mexico!  Well come to find out, Cinco de Mayo is not very Spanish at all.  Americans have basically made it what it is, which is primarily a drinking and partying holiday.

With that aside, we ended up having an awesome first vacation, in a beautiful place, for very cheap! Here were the details of our trip.

Booking

We booked our trip on CheapCaribbean.com.  This site is awesome!  You can find some fantastic deals, many which include flight and all-inclusive hotels.  We ended up booking our 5 night vacation, including airfare, hotel, and airport transfers for under $1000!

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Hotel

We stayed at the Grand Oasis Cancun.  This hotel was huge!  Definitely not a 5 star resort but we had to keep in mind how much we paid.

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Positives

  • We scored an Ocean View room.
  • A few different pools, some with swim up bars.
  • A small gym.
  • The beach was big, clean, and beautiful.
  • A good buffet breakfast place.
  • A great Brazilian Steakhouse and awesome Sushi restaurant.

Negatives

  • You had to book reservations for most of the restaurants in the resort the day before very first thing in the morning.
  • You had to reserve beach chairs very early in the morning if you wanted to get any.
  • No wireless connection.
  • At certain restaurants, the best items on the menu were “extra.”
  • It seemed one half of the resort was filled with college kids on spring break while the other half was for couples/families.

Excursions

Isla Mujeres, Snorkeling, and Swimming with Dolphins

We bought this excursion from the CheapCaribbean reps that we had to meet with once we got there.  This was an absolutely awesome excursion that included three exciting activities.  We started the morning sailing off on a catamaran.  We were completely catered to by the crew.  They served us drinks until we got to the snorkeling area.  The snorkeling was so great I think it may even beat Aruba’s.  We saw some really cool fish, and the water was so blue!

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After snorkeling we headed to Isla Mujeres, an island off the coast of Cancun.  I absolutely loved it here.  The island has a fisherman village type of feel and makes you feel off the beaten path, especially compared to the touristy hotel strip of Cancun.  Here we really just walked around, took some pictures, and found some cool secluded beaches.  I would spend a few days here next time if I could!

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Our last stop of the day was to Dolphin Discovery!  I have wanted to swim with Dolphins since I was a little girl so was ecstatic for this part of the trip.  You can read my review on Trip Advisor to get all of the details.  All you have to know is if you ever go to Cancun, you should definitely swim with the dolphins at Dolphin Discovery!

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A Night on The Hotel Strip

For my birthday night we decided to leave the hotel and explore the restaurants and bars on the hotel strip.  We went to a fantastic restaurant called Lorenzillo’s where I ordered an amazing surf and turf meal.  Filet Mignon stuffed with lobster!  We also had a friendly visitor during dinner.

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After dinner we headed to Senor Frogs for some good ol’ touristy shenanigans.  They very much so celebrated Cinco de Mayo here for all of us Americans.

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I really enjoyed Cancun.  It was the perfect, relaxing vacation where we didn’t feel pressured to do too many activities or sight see. Where is your favorite relaxing destination?

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Take Me Back Tuesday – A Weekend in Manhattan

For this weeks Take Me Back Tuesday post, I decided that I’d like to just re-live my past weekend in Manhattan,  Yeah, yeah I guess that’s being a little greedy but it was just the perfect weekend.  Andy and I celebrated our one year anniversary in the city.  It was an absolute beautiful weekend for it and neither of us realized before that it was the weekend of the marathon!

We arrived at our hotel Friday night which Andy booked.  As soon as we arrived he took me up to the roof top deck which had an awesome view of the Empire State Building!  He knows me well.  We tried to get some pictures of ourselves but night time selfies are tough!

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We went to dinner at a restaurant in Murray Hill called Cask Bar & Kitchen.  Take a look at my Yelp Review.  We indulged in some bread and oil and a great cheese and meat board.

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Saturday morning we woke up and went for a run.  It was the perfect temperature and the city was buzzing because of the marathon!  We ran a couple of miles up First Ave, which is part of the marathon route.  I was only maybe pretending we were running the next day 🙂

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We came back to our hotel and did some handstand practice.  I really need to work on my banana back! Baby steps.

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After our work out we decided to head out and walk uptown towards Central Park.  I hadn’t been to Central Park in a while and thought it would be pretty on a fall day.  On our way there we ran into a street market!

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Central Park was so pretty.  The pictures don’t even do the foliage justice!

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From Central Park we headed to Rockefellar Plaza.  I’ve heard that the Top of the Rock is an awesome view of the city.  Of course, most tourists go to the top of the Empire State Building but going to the Top of the Rock you actually get to SEE the Empire State Building.

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The view was awesome!  Andy was probably getting a little antsy with how many pictures I was taking from every angle possible.

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That’s Central Park behind me!

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Everyone was really friendly up there and offering to take pictures.  I returned the favor of course!

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On Saturday night we headed to dinner and then to a Comedy Show at The Stand in the Gramercy area.  I highly recommend this comedy club.  Tickets were cheap and the acts were hilarious.  Oh and I should mention that Jim Gaffigan was a surprise guest!! Along with Godfrey.  They are both really well known comedians.

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We had an awesome night!

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On Sunday morning we woke up and headed to a great diner (I think they might all fit that description).  I ordered their “Red Flannel Hash” which was a twist on hash that included sweet potatoes and beets! It was so different and so good.

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After we ate we headed to the train.  I was sad we couldn’t catch the marathon but then we were lucky to see it from the train!!  That’s all I needed 🙂

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I love this weekend.  New York is such a fantastic city and I’m grateful to live so close and just a train ride away.  Now if I could just figure out how to get my pictures on my blog to be bigger!