Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Genoa, NV - Perfect Tahoe side trip

I mentioned Genoa in another post. It deserves more than just a mention.  There is very little to it, but we loved that little spot so much that we ended up going back before our week in Tahoe was over. The drive over there is really pretty. You wind your way down the mountain and get to look for miles and miles over the desert floor.
The reason we even decided to go see Genoa was the Genoa Bar. It is Nevada's oldest bar. It was visited by Teddy Roosevelt, Mark Twain, Jonny Cash, John Wayne, etc . When you step onto the porch of the Genoa bar, it really feels like the OLDEST bar in Nevada. I'm sure it's the oldest bar I've ever set foot in. The inside is just as I imagined - dim, wooden, and dusty. The walls are covered in random artifacts that I believe have never ever been dusted. Even the dustiness of the place is cool..hahaha!  They are famous for their bloody Mary, so of course we had to try those. I believe that was the first time I had ever ordered one. What better of a place for it?  The bar doesn't serve food, but they do allow you to bring in some from across the rd or they even have menus for you to call in an order to be delivered to you at the bar.
  There are just a few little shops in town including a really small, but very neat antique store just down the street. Anyone who is a gun collector would really want to check that out. There were several things we would have purchased if we weren't a couple thousand miles from home.
  There is a small museum that is a neat little thing to do and a small park that is perfect for a picnic. So that is an option. Bring a picnic, sit at a table at the park, then visit the bar.  The locals told us the mule deer frequently come down from the mountain and take over the park in the evenings and you can just sit there and watch them. We didn't get to do that. Maybe next trip.

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Lake Tahoe - my all time favorite trip.

Just off  Rubicon Trail

If you are even slightly wondering if you would enjoy a trip to Lake Tahoe, let me help you decide. YES! GO!  It is my unexpected favorite place, and I can't wait to return.... or even better   - move there. I loved every single day of our trip and I'm going to try to list everything that is worth doing that we did.
 First off... we flew into Reno and spent our first evening down town. We stayed at the Silver Legacy, which had plenty to do and plenty to eat. A few blocks away was the Truckee River, which was pretty low and slow do to the lack of rainfall out there. However, it's still a neat stroll along the paths, there was live music at the park, with food vendors and people sitting on patios of various bars and grills. It is a very lively area.

The next morning after a super delicious buffet breakfast, we took the free hotel shuttle back to the airport to pick up our car at the car rental area. Easy. NOW the trip REALLY begins.
Hot August Nights - Virginia City
First destination : Virginia City, NV, an old mining town that grew from the Comstock lode. I really recommend making the short trip up there. And it is UP there! What a fun ride, though! It's maybe 30 or 40 minutes away from the airport and a big chunk of that time is winding up the mountain with super awesome views as you climb. Our trip was during Hot August Nights, which is one of the biggest car events in the U.S. That day classic cars filled the town.
Red Dog Saloon
The town is pretty small. Just basically a main strip of really old downtown and some outlying streets with homes. The shops are so neat, and you feel like John Wayne should step out of one of the saloons. Yes, it has really old ,still functioning saloons. We of course had to pop in one and have a drink.  I would love to stay there for a night the next time we make the trip out there. It really feels like you're in the old west. I would opt to stay here over Reno. The coolness factor is pretty high.

 After spending a couple of hours checking out Virginia City, it was finally time to head to Lake Tahoe. Our Destination was Tahoe Summit Village in Stateline, NV -our home for the next week. Here are my thoughts on that location. 
Sunrise from Tahoe Summit Village
Pros - Sitting at around 7-8000 ish?? Ft, we had pretty nice sunset and sunrise views. In the evening we'd stroll over to one side of the property to see the sunset over the lake ,and in the morning the sunrise to the east was gorgeous. ( Pictured to the left )
Beautiful Trail accessed a minute away
  There is a hot tub on the property, but we never used it, and nice gas grills that we did use one evening. I liked the fact that it was an easy ride down the east side of the mountain from the condo and we could be in Genoa, NV. I will post more on that gem of a town later. Also it was only about 10 minutes down the other side of the mountain to South Lake Tahoe and all the hustle and bustle. The last point I liked was the closeness to trail access. Just a 1 minute ride on down the street was a trailhead to the Tahoe Rim Trail. We did some hiking on that trail and we Really enjoyed it.
Cons- The only " con " I can come up with is the dated condo. That really didn't bother us too much. We aren't picky. We pretty much only use a place to eat and sleep. But the condo did look like it hadn't been updated in a decade or so. Everything was functional. I just mention this because there are some who can't tolerate dated furniture, etc. AND there is no AC which was pretty crazy to us southerners. We quickly learned that a night in August out there is just fine with a fan blowing. We were completely comfy with no AC.
  There's a quick, but not really quick (oops ) intro to our lake Tahoe adventure. More recommendations to come!

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Good Deal to China!

I just found an awesome deal to Beijing from American Airlines. Right now they have Tickets for less than $700 round trip to Beijing from Dallas, Charlotte, Philadelphia, Miami, and Phoenix. Dallas would be a good one. Usually you can find a deal to fly to Dallas. Wow! That's crazy! The time frame for that price range is mid October. I was checking departures on Saturday Oct 17th. Talk about a trip to the other side of the world!  I wish I was free to take advantage. I'd love to see the great wall! That is on my bucket list. :o)

Go deal seeking!  American Airlines booking page

Thursday, April 23, 2015

How I almost always get money back on travel

Never book, a hotel, car rental, air, etc without utilizing Ebates! I LOVE Ebates! I get a check from them several times a year and I don't do anything other than what I would normally do to book travel.  If you don't have an Ebates account ( it's totally free ) , I will give a referral at the end of this post. Trust me, you will earn cash back. It is not only for travel, but for basically anything you shop for. There are TONS of stores in their database. I use Ebates for walmart.com purchases pretty often. I even got back $13 from Turbo Tax!  So, click the link HERE  to get set up and browse around. I believe you receive a $10 bonus after you do $25 worth of shopping within 3 months, which is pretty easy to do.  And they usually give a nice little referral bonus if you refer one of your friends too. ( ehhh HUM, so please use my link ;).  
  Now that you have an Ebates account, you can search the travel section.  Hotel Club is on there. I like using Hotel club because #1 I usually find the cheapest rates on there. #2 You earn cash back through  them also!  The more nights you book, the higher your cash back % is. Then you just rack up funds in your Hotel Club account that you can use to pay for future bookings.  By shopping through Ebates, you earn cash back Then you will also earn cash back Within your hotel club account. Example : Right now Ebates is paying 6% for Hotel Club purchases. When I book Hotel Club, I am earning 7% in that account. So I get to kind of double dip and earn cash back 2 ways! if I spent $100, I would get 6% back in my ebates account and I would get 7% credited into my hotel club account. So basically There's $13 for free.  Tada! Orbitz is the same way with earning money back ( Orbitz bucks ) Orbitz is also on the Ebates site.  So there is a little way to put just a little more jingle back in your pocket when you are booking travel.
 One more time click HERE to go set up your Ebates account and get started!