Aspen Travel Guide

Today, I’m highlighting what to see and do in Aspen, Colorado. We went in the off-season which means it wasn’t ski season or summer peak season. It’s called off-season because the weather can often be unpredictable. More about that in a moment.

Just a few days before this photo was taken it was in the 70s in Aspen. It started snowing the first evening we were there. It ended up snowing so much that they opened the skiing back up through June. We definitely were not prepared clothing wise.

HOW TO GET THERE:

We flew into Denver and got on a short 20 minute flight to Aspen. The runway is extremely short and only a few pilots are certified to fly into here. We got to Aspen above the airport and had a mechanical issue and had to go back. Apparently this happens a lot because of weather or winds that the plane can’t land and gets rerouted. Just keep this in mind if you fly in. We were supposed to arrive Thursday at 7 pm and did’t arrive until Friday at 9 am which was fine for us because we didn’t have a hotel to cancel or plans set in stone. The drive from Denver is 4 hours if that is something you’d like to opt for but the roads can be difficult at times.

WHERE TO STAY:

We stayed at a family member’s place but if we hadn’t done that I would recommend using http://www.airbnb.com or http://www.vrbo.com to find a condo rental. The St. Regis Hotel is another great option although can be pricey depending on the season you choose.

HOW TO GET AROUND:

We took a taxi from the airport and scheduled a car to pick us up for our departure. We walked everywhere we went. Ubers are almost nonexistent in the office season. Bike rentals are also available. If you stay in downtown you won’t need a vehicle.

WHAT TO DO:

Visit Maroon Bells. Unfortunately, there was an avalanche the week we traveled to Aspen on the road going out to Maroon Bells so it was only accessible by bicycle and you’d have to carry your bike hundreds of yards over the snow mass. We decided against that since we’re not in that great of shape. I highly advising calling the local park rangers before you visit to see current conditions. If I had done this before the day we actually wanted to visit I’d have known we couldn’t. That was a huge bummer but honestly all on me since I didn’t check before we got into town. During the summer you can actually take a bus out t

Visit shops and museums in downtown Aspen. There are so many places to explore and are an easy walk. The plus about off-season? You have virtually the entire town to yourself.

See a show at Belly Up. We saw Boombox perform one night. The reserved tickets allow you to sit in assigned seats and a waitress will come and serve you food and drinks. This is such a cool venue because literally every famous person has performed here. Their pictures are all over the walls and the date they performed.

WHERE TO EAT AND DRINK:

*Matsuhisa Sushi was good! We made reservations via the Open Table app before and shared everything we ordered.

*HOPS Culture was a lunch stop one day. They have tons of local beers on tap and great bar food. The wait staff here was very nice and enjoyable to visit with!

*Jimmy’s Bar & Restaurant was a stop one evening for crab cakes and drinks before dinner. We sat in the front part in the bar area. Great view of the mountain! (Pictured a few photos above with the drink)

*Mi Chola was dinner one night. Great Mexican food and Prickly Pear Margarita’s!

*Ryno’s Pub & Pizzeria was recommended by a local. We had lunch here one day and played games in the arcade. A fun place to hang out and eat. They do pizza by the slice here and it’s huge!

*Silver City is probably our favorite bar in the town. We accidentally happened upon it too! We were leaving the concert and heard country music playing from underground and discovered it. There’s pool tables in the back and country vibes all around. We actually came here two nights because we liked it so much!

*St. Regis Hotel Bar for appetizers and drinks. It has the coziest ski lodge vibes with couches and fireplaces everywhere! The boys enjoyed an old fashioned while the gals sipped on St. Germain Spritzers. Such a nice place to relax and keep warm while it continued to snow outside!

Hope you got some great ideas for your upcoming Aspen trip! Questions about anything we did? Feel free to leave a comment so I can answer! Safe travels!

Love,

Megan

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Venice Travel Guide

Venice was our final stop on our trip to Italy. It’s truly a city unlike any other.

HOW TO GET AROUND:

Arriving by train will put you right where the Vaporetto (Water Taxi) stop. We bought an unlimited ticket for our time there. Fortunately most of Venice is extremely walkable and we did not need to use it much. Schedule and tickets here.

WHERE TO EAT: 

We had dinner one evening outside on the canal at Trattoria da Roberto. I had the delicious lobster pasta shown above in the photo. Our other favorite dining experience was actually a to-go lunch. Baci and Pasta opens at noon and you should be there prior to that to insure a spot close to the front of the line. He has pastas of the day that change but are all delicious. I had a ravioli in butter and sage sauce and a mini bottle of prosecco for under $10 USD. It’s one man cooking and serving which makes it a truly local experience. I highly recommend.

WHAT TO DO:

Drink a bellini! No, but seriously you should. They were created here originally and they are available in every restaurant and gift shop. We visited Doges Palace and it was unbelievable. The history and architecture must be seen in person to truly be appreciated. After our visit we explored St. Mark’s Square which is full of restaurants, shops, and the best people watching. We also toured Teatro La Fenice which is the opera house. It has been burned down and rebuilt several times. Unfortunately the opera was not in session when we were there. If you are able I would get tickets to a show and attend in this gorgeous theatre.

DAY TRIP TO BURANO ISLAND:

We took the vaporetto to Burano Island which about a 45 minute trip each way. It is a gorgeous and colorful town. We walked around exploring for awhile and had Nutella crepes at a local shop that were delicious. One of Burano’s biggest claims to fame is their lace. There is even a Lace Museum. I highly suggest going as early as possible because it does get crowded later in the day.

 

WHERE TO STAY:

We stayed at Hotel Rio and the location was perfect for sightseeing and close to many great restaurants. They will also hold your luggage on your check out day until you leave Venice. I highly recommend for safe, clean, and A/C included rooms!

 

Our trip to Venice was two days and I felt like that was plenty of time. The only thing we didn’t do was a gondola ride but it was so hot that we decided against it. Have you been to Venice? What was your favorite part? Leave me a comment and let me know!

 

Love,

Megan

30A City Guide

My family has been staying along 30A in the Florida panhandle since the early 2000s. I remember when there was truly nothing out there except a gas station and a hand full of restaurants. My family typically stays in Seagrove Beach and my husband and I even got married there! 

BEST PLACES FOR DINNER AND DRINKS:

Savanna Beach Bar and Grill at The PearlMy husband and I enjoyed the beautiful rooftop and cabanas for drinks after dinner one evening. Truly the cutest hotel I’ve ever seen. It is located in Rosemary Beach just a short walk away from shops and restaurants. We didn’t eat dinner the last time we were here but all the food we saw looked delicious. If you want a highly Instagrammable location and beachy vibes, this is your place!Dress pictured above is the Kauai Kisses Hacienda Maxi from http://www.showmeyourmumu.com and his shirt is from http://www.vineyardvines.com 

Restaurant Paradis Located in Rosemary Beach just steps away from The Pearl hotel. Make reservations on http://www.opentable.com as it does fill up quite quickly for dinner. They have a wonderful wine list and great surf and turf. 

723 Whiskey BravoAnother great rooftop to watch the sun set. It is located in Seagrove Beach right on Highway 30A. We had a huge group hang out here the week of our wedding and had a great time. Delicious appetizers and I personally loved the crawfish fettucini! 

Cafe 30A I’ve never had a meal that was less than amazing here. Located right on Highway 30A. Definitely make reservations before as it gets extremely busy. Lobster in Paradise is my favorite meal of all time. My husband loves the Redfish. Great wine list and service is top notch! If you can only have one meal on vacation make it this! 

Pizza By The SeaThis is a casual dining option. There are several locations on 30A but we always go to the one in Watercolor Crossing next to Publix. You can dine in or call ahead and pick up your pizza to go. Absolutely the best pizza I’ve ever had. Be sure to call 1-1.5 hours before you want your pizza if in the evening as they stay very busy! 

Breakfast/Brunch/Lunch spots:

Another Broken Egg CafeGet there early because it gets busy! My family eats here every year and it is delicious. My personal favorites are the pineapple infused mimosas, cinnamon roll french toast and crab omelette. 

The Perfect Pig – bottomless mimosas and the cutest little restaurant, what more could you ask for? The parmesan grilled cheese breakfast sandwich is so delicious. My husband loves their bacon! 

Modica Market – located in Seaside Square you can grab a mimosa to go and breakfast. If you’ve never shopped here then you must take a look. The cutest grocery store with food to go and all sorts of neat food/drink items you won’t see anywhere else. 

Bud and Alley’s – also located in Seaside Square. We love sitting on the rooftop and enjoying lunch on a break from the beach.  My swimsuit is by http://www.showmeyourmumu.com and Macy’s is from http://www.tjmaxx.com 

Best places to stay:

VRBO http://www.vrbo.com You can find everything from small studios, condos, to beach houses on their website. We love staying in Seagrove but there are places to rent all up and down Highway 30A. 

Watercolor Inn and Resort http://www.watercolorresort.com We stayed here after our wedding. It’s a beautiful resort right on the beach with great service. They have beach chairs for rental and a beach bar for drinks. It would be a great place for a couple or family. 

Lisbeth’s Bed and Breakfast http://www.lisbethsbb.com We stayed here for a couple of nights last summer to celebrate our 1st wedding anniversary. Located right across from beach access on Highway 30A. The owners are very nice and accommodating. There was a full gourmet breakfast every morning. Our room had access to a balcony with gulf view. Extremely clean and quiet. Great for a couple!

Best place to get your sweat on:

The Boathouse at Watercolor – Rent Stand Up Paddle Boards, take TRX or SUP Yoga classes. I did a SUP Yoga class here and loved it. It is in a gorgeous location and the class really could be done by any level of fitness/yoga experience. Other fun things to do:

Goatfeathers Purchase fresh seafood and sides to fix at your place for dinner! Make sure to get there early because they do often sell out of things. 

Shore Thing Cigars – located in the Hub on 30A. The shop is owned by Luke Bryan and is the ultimate guy place. My husband loved the walk in humidor and their vast selection of cigars. I personally loved the rose they served and hanging out in their cool lounge. 

Grayton Beach Catering http://www.graytonbeachcatering.com This is the company we used for our rehearsal dinner and wedding reception. We loved them! They went above and beyond for us both nights. They also offer bonfires and low country boils on the beach. They’ll even book a photographer for your group to have pictures made. Their food is fabulous and service is fantastic!  Feel free to ask me any more questions you may have about taking a vacation on 30A. I’ll be glad to answer! 

Love,

Megan