No fear, I am back with more recaps from our March 2013 road trip.
When James and I decided that driving was the best option for us to go on a vacation in Disney World this spring, we also chose to explore a few new cities along the way.
How did we come to this stops on the map?
We let the beer guide us.
It’s true. James researched breweries that could be found close to I-95 and we scheduled our breaks that way. It was really hard at first… especially for two English majors to figure out the math when it came to miles and hours. But we thought we would just give it a whirl and see what happened.
We left Orlando at almost quarter to 5 on a Wednesday afternoon with Savannah, Georgia as our destination for the night. Neither of us had been there before so using only Expedia, we booked a hotel with a plan to check out Moon River Brewery the following day.
From left to right: 1. Our hotel: 17 hundred 90 (haunted and gorgeous) 2. It was finally warm enough to wear sandals and I loved the cobblestone roads. 3. 17 hundred 90 was filled with so many beautiful antique pieces. This was a door from our bedroom to a walkway outside. 4. People on Twitter told me I must get Pralines! So we stopped at River Street Sweets Candy Store and also purchased truffles and bark. So delicious!
I really had no idea that Savannah would have so much to do: ghost tours, pub crawls, everything is in walking distance, and there are plenty of cute places to shop and to eat. We walked along River Street for a long time, walked around town, and settled at the Moon River Brewery for brews and lunch.
From left to right: 1. River Street 2. Trees! 3. Moon River Brewing Company 4. Moon River’s beer sampler.
Moon River Brewing Company is such a cute place to hang out. The weather was gorgeous and they had open-air seating. We loved the beer; the service was great and the prices were pretty awesome too. (Although compared to NYC, everything is an improvement. Right?) This would definitely be a spot James and I would hang out a lot if we lived nearby.
It was so unfortunate we didn’t leave more time for Savannah. We arrived at our “inn” late but the general manager was great and immediately took out a map to point us in the direction of restaurants that were still open. We didn’t even have a chance to get a drink in our own hotel! Ahem. A certain travel partner was scared by the possibility of a certain ghostly spirit so I’m not sure if we will stay there again just for that reason, but I would love to go back and visit. (I didn’t know it was haunted until after I booked it and the lovely Melissa at Disney on Wheels offered THIS comfort: Everything in Savannah is haunted!)
We had a lot of miles to go before we reached our next hotel so we decided to check out Charleston, South Carolina. It was off of I-95 and pretty much a total detour but I am really glad we stopped. I wanted to see more water.
From left to right: 1. Gorgeous review of Charleston Harbor. 2. I made James walk forever to find this movie theater from The Notebook film. Oh man, was that out of our way! 3. A pineapple fountain and unlike the fountains in NYC, you can actually wade in this one. 4. Beautiful palm trees everywhere.
What a beautiful city! So much culture, so much history, and a ton of wonderful shopping. I could see Charleston as a great vacation to take for a ladies trip or even just a quick getaway with your honey. So many tempting places to stop and eat, every kind of food you can think of, and yet another place I want to return to.
The next time we go back, I hope we have time for Southend Brewery — it looked wonderful inside but there was no way we could have drinks and then drive soon after.
We were resting for the night in Fayetteville, North Carolina so unfortunately, I was pulled from all the gorgeousness of Charleston and we were back in the car for the final stretch.
On my family road trips from back when I was a kid, I remember staying in Fayetteville a few times before. There’s not much around… lots of fast food, hotels, Waffle Houses, and some strip mall shopping. But it just so happened that the Mash House Brewery was our last stop for spirits. It was also down the street from our hotel, as luck would have it.
We made it to the Mash House right before they stopped taking orders for the night. (For a Friday evening, it was super early.) We ordered the Mondo Mash (how cute is that name) to share, which features all 9 of the beers on tap. Super delicious drinks supplemented by a nice BBQ dinner.
And that’s the story of how we drove back up the coast. I so wish we would have factored in more time to enjoy the sights in other states, but we just didn’t know how great these spots would be. So much to do! So much to see! And quite a bit still left to drink! Our timing with the road trip didn’t always work either. We left Orlando too late, and probably shouldn’t have stopped in Charleston but, oh well, it all worked out for the best. We were able to sleep in at our hotel in North Carolina, even went in their pool, and got through the rest of the drive home. (The final stretch once we hit New Jersey was tough.)
I was left with this one thought: isn’t it amazing how many undiscovered places there are just in our United States? That travel bug is certainly alive and kicking!