Travelrific® Travel Journal

A blog for travel enthusiasts. Listen to our podcasts on the blogroll at Travelrific® Radio. Visit our Wanderful Places® Travel Shop for travel-inspired merchandise!

Archive for U.S. travel

Chrome in Chino

By Linda Tancs

Enveloped in chrome and shiny aluminum, Yanks Air Museum is an aircraft lover’s dream. Located in Chino, California, the facility is a showplace for carefully restored historical aircraft and boasts legends like the P-40 Warhawk and the F-86 Sabre. Its collections range from early aviation (1903 – 1918) to modern jets. The site also has drones, helicopters, vehicles, missiles, model airplanes and aircraft in the boneyard currently being restored to flight-worthy status using period materials.

 

Advertisements

Take Your Valentine to Valentine

By Linda Tancs

How do you celebrate Valentine’s Day? Maybe with some chocolate and a candlelit dinner. Well, there’s so much more awaiting you in Valentine, Nebraska, where of course you can obtain a postmark to commemorate the day of love. But most visitors travel there to start a float trip or to tour the river valley, a good starting point for the 76 miles of the Niobrara National Scenic River that winds through  bluffs, waterfalls and fossil resources along a largely undisturbed shoreline. Less than one percent of U.S. rivers have received a scenic river designation by the National Wild & Scenic Rivers System, an honor reserved for those that are flee flowing with clean water and a largely undeveloped shoreline. The area features notables like the Allen Bridge; listed on the National Register of Historic Structures, it’s the longest single span bridge across the Niobrara. You can paddle among sandstone cliffs and visit public landings like Fort Niobrara National Wildlife Refuge and Smith Falls State Park, both of which have beautiful views of the river.

History, Horses and Hospitality

By Linda Tancs

Belle Meade Plantation in Nashville, Tennessee, is the land of history, horses and hospitality. Historically, native tribes used the woodlands and meadows as a place to hunt wild game, carving a trail over time that was eventually known as the old Natchez road by European settlers. John Harding, a skilled farmer and businessman, purchased some of those hunting grounds in 1806 for farming and thoroughbred breeding, calling the property Belle Meade (beautiful meadow). Harding expanded the family home in 1853, introducing the Greek Revival style mansion seen today. In its heyday, the old Southern plantation was a popular destination for luminaries like President and Mrs. Grover Cleveland, Robert Todd Lincoln, General U.S. Grant, General William T. Sherman and Adlai E. Stevenson. Belle Meade Plantation is open daily, with mansion tours starting every 30 to 45 minutes.

An Epic Tall Ship

By Linda Tancs

A living testament to the “Age of Sail,” Elissa is a three-masted, iron-hulled sailing ship built in 1877 in Aberdeen, Scotland, by Alexander Hall & Company. According to a descendant of her builder, the tall ship’s name was taken from the epic Roman poem The Aeneid, which follows the story of Dido (originally a Phoenician princess named Elissa), who fled from Tyre to Africa and founded Carthage. Like her poetic counterpart, the barque is a survivor, securing a second life (following decades as a freighter) as a fully-functional vessel that continues to sail annually during sea trials in the Gulf of Mexico. She’s located at Texas Seaport Museum, Pier 21, in Galveston, Texas.

Miracle Water in Georgia

By Linda Tancs

Aptly named, Providence Spring in Andersonville, Georgia, is a matter of divine providence in Civil War lore. The story goes that thousands of Union soldiers were dying of thirst in the summer of 1864 at a prison camp in Andersonville, one of the largest Confederate military prisons during the war. The cries of thirst ended when a spring mysteriously erupted in the stockade. The site is covered with a memorial house and is accessible via a road behind the National POW Museum, part of Andersonville National Historic Site.

Preserving Native American Culture

By Linda Tancs

Located along the banks of the Missouri River in Chamberlain, South Dakota, the Akta Lakota Museum & Cultural Center tells the unique stories of the Lakota Indian tribe from the perspective of both the past and the present. An educational outreach program of St. Joseph’s Indian School, the museum strives to preserve and promote the Lakota (Sioux) culture through art, artifacts and educational displays that depict the proud heritage of the Lakota people. Admission to the center is free but donations are gratefully accepted.

Surfing in Santa Cruz

By Linda Tancs

Santa Cruz proudly claims to be the location of the very first board surfing ever in North America, at the “Rivermouth” break in 1885. A strong surf culture still prevails today, enhanced by the locale’s dedication as a World Surfing Reserve in 2012. An initiative of Save the Waves, the program serves as a global model for preserving wave breaks and their surrounding areas by recognizing and protecting the key environmental, cultural, economic and community attributes of surfing areas. At least 23 consistent surf breaks are sited along this marine protected area, including the world-class breaks of Steamer Lane and Pleasure Point. Not surprisingly, the city hosts a surfing museum overlooking Steamer Lane tracing over 100 years of surfing history in town. Winter is always the best time for surfing consistent waves, and the breaks are rated from “expert” to “beginner.”

%d bloggers like this: