Although I enjoy being a Texan, I think I may have been a Midwesterner in another life. From my five years living in Illinois to my recent travels through Wisconsin, there’s just something about Midwestern charm that makes me feel like I’m home.
I recently discovered a jewel on the Illinois-Wisconsin state line that’s worth putting on your Midwest travel map — Beloit, Wisconsin. Whether you’re looking for a weekend trip from Chicago or a stop on a Wisconsin road trip, Beloit has lots of fun t...
On my quest to visit all 50 states, I always expected Kansas to be sort of an afterthought or a straggler state I’d have to check off when I was getting close to 50. As it turns out, Kansas was state number 39, and it wasn’t the uninspiring expanse of prairie and Wizard of Oz lore I expected. Here’s what will wow you about the Sunflower State.
I spent 8 hours on Amtrak's Texas Eagle for $47, and it felt like flying in business class, but I wouldn't do it again
I traveled on Amtrak's Texas Eagle, taking the eight-hour route from San Antonio to Alpine in Texas.
My $47 coach-class seat was comfortable, but I wish I'd brought my own blanket and pillow.
The train had impressive gourmet meals and showers, but they weren't available to coach travelers.
For $47, I traveled from San Antonio to Alpine on Amtrak's Texas Eagle.
It takes me about five hours to drive from my home in San Antonio to Alpine, a small West Texas town near Big Bend Nation...
If you’re looking for the perfect winter blend of stunning, frosty scenery, warm hospitality, and “away from it all” without being too remote, look north to Banff National Park in Alberta, Canada.
Located in the Canadian Rockies, Banff National Park is known for winter sports. The park was established when railway workers accidentally stumbled on a thermal hot spring. It became Canada’s first national park in 1885. Banff was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1984. While Banff is a fo...
The San Antonio Botanical Garden is a 38-acre urban oasis that combines a feeling of zen with a community space where kids can play and learn about plants and everyone else can just soak up the beauty of the South Texas scenery.
The varied terrain inside the garden includes formal gardens, native Texas vegetation, walking trails, a climate-controlled conservatory with plant species from around the world, an authentic Japanese garden gifted by San Antonio’s sister city, Kumamoto, a family adve...
I booked the cheapest room on the Disney Magic, the fleet's oldest and smallest ship. Even with no view, my stay felt magical.
My family shared a deluxe inside stateroom on the Disney Magic, the cruise line's smallest ship.
We tried all three of the onboard restaurants and sampled quick-service eateries, too.
The Magic has plenty of entertainment options, ranging from live musicals to trivia games.
The Disney Magic hit waters for the first time in 1998, making it the oldest ship in Disney Cruise Line's current fleet. The cruise line has since renovated the Magic to ensure it's up to par with its four other vessels.
If you think of Tupelo as “that other Elvis place that’s not Graceland,” then stop what you’re doing and start planning your trip to Tupelo. While this small town (population 37,000 as of 2021) in northeast Mississippi has lots of activity choices for everyone, such as families and multigenerational groups, Tupelo shines when it comes to girlfriend getaways. If you’ve been seeking the perfect place in the southeast for your next girl’s trip, then look no further.
Bespoke Denim an...
Tequila is becoming more well-known as a premium spirit. Here’s what you need to know about tequila flights—even if you think you aren’t a tequila drinker.
Many songs have been written about tequila, but not very many about chardonnay, malbec, or prosecco. If you put your mind to it, you can probably name at least half a dozen country singers who croon about tequila, lamenting the bad decisions made from drinking tequila or the woes that lead to cracking open a bottle of Jose Cuervo. As far a...
Any time is a great time to visit Sugar Land, Texas. Sugar Land is 20 miles southwest of Houston, and the area enjoys nearly year-round warm temperatures, which make outdoor activities an option just about any day of the year.
The suburb’s name comes from the product it was once best known for producing: sugar. Early settlers brought sugar cane to the area, and the crop thrived in the fertile floodplain of the Brazos River. Eventually, the sugar plantations were absorbed into Imperial Sugar, ...
With a name like Fredericksburg, visitors expect to find restaurants serving German favorites, like schnitzel and sausage. While that’s certainly available, there’s also a Fredericksburg food scene beyond German cuisine waiting to be savored. Here are eight places to try on your next visit.
Sage Restaurant and Lounge
A fresh and modern place for lunch, dinner or drinks, Sage delivers whether you’re celebrating or looking to relax after a morning of shopping. You’ll find unique twists o...
There's nothing like dance hall sounds: the twang of a steel guitar, the sweet notes of a fiddle, boots shuffling across worn wooden floor boards. The Texas dance hall environment is pure nostalgia, wholesomeness and excitement rolled up into one package. From older couples who've been dance partners for decades showing they've still got it to twirling children elated to be up past their bedtime kicking up sawdust and copying their parent's dance moves, Texas dance halls are for everyone.
My family of 4 spent $2,570 on a 3-night Disney Cruise. Here are 4 things that were worth it and 2 that weren't.
My family spent $2,570 on a three-night Disney Cruise from Miami to the Bahamas.
The included amenities and food and the trip to Disney's private island were worth the money.
We paid extra for spa treatments and a champagne tasting, which I wouldn't spring for again.
My husband and I took our two kids on a three-night Disney Cruise for $2,570.
Although we think we got what we paid for, some things were more worth it than others.
I'm glad we went with the lowest-priced stateroom because we had...
Packing Tips for Carry-On Only
These packing tips for carry-on only will help you adopt a more minimalistic approach to packing and simplify your travel.
I pride myself on being a minimal packer most of the time. My goal for most trips I take is for everything to fit into a suitcase small enough to be approved for airline overhead bins. Whether I’m flying or driving, I have a more enjoyable, less stressful trip when I’m not trying to juggle heavy bags or pawing through a mountain of clothes t...
My earliest memory of a passenger train is from back in the 1970s before permanent press was common. My mother used to hire out our ironing. We crossed a train track to pick up the clothes and we usually got stuck there. I was fascinated by watching the slow-moving freight trains chug by, my mom probably less so.
One day, I saw a different sort of train. The guardrail dropped, and a gleaming, silver train whizzed by so fast it appeared blurry. The guardrail raised and we rolled over the track...