Now you can travel monthly! Not everyone can travel extensively, or even very often, but thanks to a brand new company, Explore Local Box founded by Jessica Larrabee, you can! Receive a monthly box, or one time box, that explores the local flavors and cultures of other locales! I just went to Boston, and it was an awesome little trip! The box is so cute and I was excited to receive it. Anyone who loves to travel, and/or loves food, will love this gift. Just in time for Mother’s Day, and as a bonus you can use the code TWT10 to get 10% off your one time box, or the first box of a subscription! Check out Explore Local Box, and get your Travels with Tam discount!
Florida is home to about 20 million people, it has world-famous theme parks and a number of the craziest food festivals on Earth! If you are looking for creative gourmet food, you will find it in the small villages of the state.
Williston, Florida is a small town in central Florida, and has 3,000 inhabitants. What it lacks in size, Williston makes up for with original ideas. The proof: the “Central Florida Peanut Festival” . On October 1, 2016, everything revolves back to the peanut. Whether boiled, baked, roasted or fried – every first Saturday in October, each peanut Gourmet here his personal Mecca. In addition, numerous rides and live music make for the right atmosphere. Not crazy enough? Every year the “Little Peanut Royal Family” is chosen as a highlight, including Queen and King Peanut and of course Little Peanut Baby.
Fellsmere, about 130 kilometers southeast of Orlando, is only slightly larger than Williston. There is the annual “Fellsmere Frog Leg Festival”. And if you don’t like frog legs, you can try the alternative, fried alligator. Over 80,000 visitors are expected from 19 to 22 January 2017. The event is in the Guinness Book of Records – for the largest number of frog legs consumed in a day. Rounding out the event there are numerous competitions such as frog-hopping betting and numerous live bands.
“The Best Stinkin ‘Party in South Florida” – otherwise known as “South Florida Garlic Fest” is in Delray Beach. It takes place Feb 10 – 12, 2017. Even garlic connoisseurs will find many useful tips and tricks for using the “stinking rose”. Garlic ice cream, garlic barbecue, garlic cake, you can have whatever your taste buds desire. The event is organized by volunteers, the proceeds of approximately $ 500,000 goes to educational and arts organizations for young people.
You cannot forget the “Florida Strawberry Festival” which lasts a total of eleven days from 2 to 12 March 2017. The festival dates back to 1930’s. Of course, there are strawberries in every way: raw, pie, wrapped in chocolate, in a salad or as an earring. But beyond that numerous competitions take place. There is a Strawberry Queen, and a fastest pig race.
After so much food is a visit to the “Miami Rum Renaissance Festival” seems just right. Rum producers and experts arrive from 22 to 23 April 2017 from all corners of the earth to sample the rum festival and to talk shop. As a highlight, the RumXP International Rum Expert Panel will award prizes in several categories. Pur, “on the rocks” or as a cocktail – Cheers!
Buccano’s at Night is a restaurant in Cozumel that is open only Friday and Saturday evenings. Believe me, one looks forward to the weekend in Cozumel!
A beach club by day, Buccano turns into a fine dining experience on Fridays and Saturdays. The Caribbean Sea laps quietly at the shore while torches and glittery lights give it atmosphere. Foodies, the food is absolutely out of this world! I recently went to Cozumel for 2 weeks, and I ate at Buccanos twice. Here’s why:
I have written about Buccanos at Night prior to this post, but the location and food are so fabulous that I just had to show it to you again!
I think everyone knows how much I love the OC! (Orange County, California, of course). When I received word about the OC Bucket List Challenge for Buena Park, I had to copy it down and share it with you right away!!!! These Challenge activities have something for everyone, so pack along the kids and grandparents if you’d like, or just run off by yourself, or with someone for a romantic getaway. Any which way, this trip is a winner!
Buena Park, CA – Immerse yourself in the ultimate Orange County vacation by exploring hot spots that the locals don’t want you to know about. Our bucket list has something for everyone from cruising scenic harbors, hiking to breath-taking vistas and getting sworn in as a pirate to discovering hidden restaurants and splashing around one of the longest water park lazy rivers. Go to VisitBuenaPark.com/Challenge to take the challenge this summer and see how many you can check off your list!
1.) Get Launched 83 Miles-Per-Hour in 2.3 Seconds on Xcelerator
Enjoy over 30 exhilarating rides including the famous Timber Mountain Log Ride, visit the loveable Snoopy and the Peanuts Gang at Camp Snoopy and pan for gold at the only authentic 1880’s Ghost Town at Knott’s Berry Farm in Buena Park. Save $33 on adult and $7 on kid’s admission at VisitBuenaPark.com/deals.
2.) Be a VIP at the West Coast’s Largest Shopping Center
South Coast Plaza is Southern California’s premier shopping destination and home to over 250 boutiques, personal shopping services and upscale amenities. Stop by the California Welcome Center in Buena Park to pick up a free carousel ride and VIP Passport, full of exclusive offers.
3.) Hike Past Ancient Oak Groves
Irvine Open Space Preserve invites visitors to hike past ancient oak and sycamore groves and rough rock outcrops in Bommer Canyon; conquer the three-mile Orchard Hills loop for a breath-taking vista from Loma Ridge that consumes the coastal ridge; and explore Irvine’s southern wilderness via the Quail Hill Trail, the only trail that allows dogs.
4.) Cheer on Your Favorite Knight
At Medieval Times Dinner and Tournament in Buena Park, visitors are transported back in time to an era of jousting, sword fighting, brave knights and a meal fit for a king. You might recognize the dinner show from several television shows and feature films including the 1996 movie, Cable Guy with Jim Carrey and Matthew Broderick. Get a free Royal Upgrade: VIP seating, cheering banner and more at VisitBuenaPark.com/deals.
5.) Check Out the World’s Largest Surfboard
Huntington Beach offers 10 miles of uninterrupted coastline and an International Surfing Museum. The free museum is home to a 42-foot surfboard that holds the Guinness World Record as the ‘World’s Largest Surfboard’ and an artifact exhibit honoring Hawaiian surfer, Eddie Aikau.
6.) Explore a Presidential Helicopter
At the Richard Nixon Library and Museum, history buffs can step aboard Marine One, the presidential helicopter that traveled the world with Nixon as well as Kennedy, Johnson and Ford. Visitors to the museum will also find an exact replica of the White House East Room, Nixon’s childhood home and the memorial sites of the President and First Lady.
7.) Graduate from Skipper School
Secret tip: After riding the Jungle Cruise at Disneyland®, ask the skipper for a map as you disembark. The maps are given to sailors who complete skipper school by making animal noises from some of the creatures that are seen along the ride.
8.) Salute the Martini Flag and Enjoy the Sunset
Every evening since the 1930’s the bugle is sounded and the “martini flag” is raised at 5pm to signal the end of a work day and time to relax at The Beachcomber Café. Located on Crystal Cove Beach, the restaurant offers outdoor patio seating for watching spectacular sunsets and dolphins playing in the waves.
9.) Brave 63-foot Waterslides on Old Man Falls
Knott’s Soak City, a 13-acre California beach themed waterpark in Buena Park, features one of the world’s longest lazy rivers, a rolling wave pool, dozens of waterslides and kid’s splash area. Save $12 at VisitBuenaPark.com/deals.
10.) Get Sworn in as a Pirate
At Pirate’s Dinner Adventure in Buena Park, Captain Sebastian the Black is seeking new recruits for his crew. Young landlubbers to the “World’s Most Interactive Dinner Show” may be called aboard to take the pirate’s oath and join the crew on their adventure. Save some treasure with a buy one-get one free offer at visitbuenapark.com/deals.
11.) Dine Aboard A Floating Restaurant
Well-known for their delicious brunch and dinner cruises, Hornblower also offers a two-hour Sunset Cocktail Cruise during the summer. The scenic boat ride in Newport Beach includes complimentary appetizers, music and cash bar. Save a boatload with a buy one get-one free deal at Visitbuenapark.com/deals.
12.) Uncover the Hidden Door to a 1920’s Speakeasy
The Anaheim Packing House is a foodie’s paradise, with a collection of unique restaurants, outdoor activities and live music. Hungry patrons will find fresh seafood, made-to-order popsicles, gourmet grilled cheeses and authentic southern food. Want a refreshing cocktail? Well, you’ll have to find it first. Behind a non-discreet wall of sake barrels with a small black rabbit on it lies a speakeasy appropriately named, the Blind Rabbit.
13.) Bonus Challenge – Pig Out on Award-Winning Ice Cream
Take a step back in time to a wildly fun, turn of the century ice cream parlour and restaurant awarded “The Best Thing I Ever Ate” by the Food Network. For over fifty years, Farrell’s has been serving up splendidly oversized ice cream treats like the Pig’s Trough, Hot Fudge Volcano and the mother of all desserts – The Zoo! See if you can devour the oversized sundae, which includes 30 scoops of ice cream topped with chocolate sauce, strawberries, marshmallow, whipped cream, cherries and bananas.
VISIT BUENA PARK
Located just 5 miles from Disneyland®, 10 miles from beaches and 20 miles from Los Angeles is the charming town of Buena Park. A vacation hot spot, the city is home to world-famous entertainment, interactive dinner shows and one-of-kind shopping. For more information contact Visit Buena Park at 800-541-3953 or www.visitbuenapark.com.
Don’t miss out on the Challenge, hurry and book today! They have special offers and deals on just about everything at http://www.visitbuenapark.com/visitors/special-offers/!!!
A guest post from Suzanne Stavert of Adventures of Empty Nesters! A dream come true, a foodie walking tour in Laguna Beach!
The view from the deck of the Wyland Gallery, downtown Laguna Beach, CA.
Our fun group of foodie travel bloggers standing in front of an amazing Wyland tile painting.
While attending the Women in Travel Summit, we were invited by Savor Laguna to experience one of their super-fun, guided walking food tours in downtown Laguna Beach. The Women in Travel Summit is the first and only travel blogging event by and for women, organized by Wanderful.
The iconic Hotel Laguna was the first hotel in Laguna and the first substantial business building.
We began the tour at the historic Hotel Laguna and finished about 3 hours later smiling ear to ear with happy memories of the delectable local food we had just tasted! It began with pizza on the beach and ended with divine gelato… with a sassy margarita and authentic Mexican food in the middle. We managed to enjoy a fabulous sampling of some of the tastiest foodie finds of Laguna Beach. Thank goodness we were walking, it did help us digest a bit before the next stop!
Here is Jeanne, sharing all of her great stories. She is so friendly and knowledgable and makes the tour extra enjoyable!
It was so enjoyable and easy to let Jeanne take us through the idyllic downtown streets, pointing out important landmarks, exquisite views, unique shops and some innovative bites of food! So yummy!
No trip is complete without a local Laguna Beach t-shirt or sweatshirt!
Our first stop was the Pizza Lounge where we sat just a block from the beach enjoying a slice of fresh pizza made especially for us! For all of their customers they are happy to deliver right to the sand! Just imagine chillin’ on your beach chair waiting for your delicious Pizza Lounge pie to arrive! Love it!
There was a lot of ground to cover so we quickly moved on the to next stop on our tour, the beautiful Wyland Gallery where we were captivated by Wyland’s extraordinary vision and talent. Since 1978, Wyland Galleries has been the art community’s preeminent showcase for the finest in marine life paintings, sculpture and photography. We also had a chance to walk by the famous Main Beach of Laguna with picturesque views and the charming lifeguard tower. A perfect stop for a group photo!
Have you ever heard of Clam Chowder Fries with Bacon?? Oh my goodness! “SLAPFISH brings you real American seafood, redefined with simple flavors and a healthy slap of FRESH. No white tablecloths or fancy silverware, just a boatload of deliciousness in a fast-casual setting.”
SLAPFISH offers a new perspective on “boat to plate” dining by serving the freshest fish and shellfish sourced from well-managed, responsible suppliers of sustainable seafood. This type of careful attention to the ocean and sea life is quite admirable and I am happy to support restaurants like this!
Clam Chowder Fries with Bacon from Slapfish – So innovative and delicious!
The “Lumberyard” contains some of the oldest buildings in Laguna Beach. Check out the artistic brick patterns.
If you are not familiar with the artist and sculptor, Richard MacDonald, a visit to the Dawson Cole Gallery and sculpture garden will take your breath away. His genius and masterful techniques are unparalleled. How lucky were we to be able to spend time enjoying the sculptures as well as the paintings and sculptures inside the gallery as well. This is a wonderful addition to the food tour. Savor Laguna captures the essence of Laguna Beach and offers rich history and access to art that tourists may not be aware.
This piece is a smaller version of one he created for the Olympics in Atlanta. The detail is unbelievable.
Authentic, warm pita bread and three kinds of hummus from GG Cafe And Bistro – So Good!
Time for a libation… at Tortilla Republic!
Authentic Mexican food and a fine margarita!
Tortilla Republic sets the bar very high by serving bold, fresh flavors of updated and modern Mexican cantina fare. The House Made Margaritas are made with freshly squeezed juices – Cheers!
Sweets for the sweet! It was nearly impossible to choose from these flavors of Italian Gelato from Gelato Paradiso. These were only HALF of the options in the case!
I opted for my two favorites: Double Chocolate and Stracciatella (Chocolate chip with vanilla)
Although I was quite full from tasting the menus of these fantastic local restaurants, there is always room for gelato!
Savor Laguna offers great tours that will please the locals from Orange County and tourists from around the world. Check out their schedule and register early, summer is coming and Laguna Beach is the happening spot.
Thank you to Jeanne Lange and Savor Laguna for your generosity. I had a blast learning more about a city I have visited for years and tasting some great food! It is such a fun and delicious way to spend an afternoon.
The next time you are in Orange County I recommend you take in Laguna Beach! Your tummy will thank you!
I do have a few trips planned for 2016, but I need to do some more travel planning! Any ideas?
In January, I am headed to Lake Tahoe to see the lake in the snow…and, of course, to gamble. I am hoping my cousin will come along and that my friend from Sacramento will meet me for a day or so. Thank you, Caesar’s Group!
February will take me to the Revillagadoes Islands to dive with Humpback Whales, Giant Mantas, Dolphins, Sharks, and hopefully, a whale shark! The diving there has been incredible as the whale season gets started. 9 days of diving on the Solmar V! I cannot wait!
Early March will take me to Kentucky where my niece is expecting her first baby! Mid-March I am off to California for the Women In Travel Summit in Orange County, California and I plan to stay a while after the conference. Randy and I are planning to drive from Dallas to California, checking out a few sights along the way. I love Orange County and plan to show you why! I’m planning fine dining, luxurious hotels, water sports, and who knows what else? There is always something going on in Orange County.
Late June and July takes me to Australia, Bali, and a Citizen Science dive trip with Marine Megaafauna Foundation‘s Dr Andrea Marshall (Queen of Mantas) in Komodo, Indonesia on the luxurious Arenui! I am so excited for this one…I have never been to Indonesia! I am still trying to figure out where to stay and dive in Bali, and also on the Great Barrier Reef.
So…where else should I go? I would love to go to Europe, and Antarctica. Oh, and Morocco and Israel. And on an African safari. And Japan. Palau. Canada! Can you believe I have never been to Canada? I lived 3 hours from the border until I was twenty, and never went. I still haven’t seen so many of our beautiful national parks! Yosemite and Yellowstone are a must see. Oh, and Alaska! I must go to Alaska. We’d need a small ship though, since my husband’s double lung transplant his immune system isn’t great, so a large ship isn’t possible. Randy definitely wants to see Alaska. Montana? Jackson Hole? I want to see a big Moose. A live one. And a wolf. And a bear.
I want to go to Britain and follow the footsteps of Richard III, the Plantagenet King who was killed in 1485 by Henry Tudor. His remains were found a couple of years ago in Leceister, in a car park. I have been to Leicester and visited the battlefield, but I now want to see the tomb honoring Richard, and also take a Ricardian route through northern England. Scotland, Wales, and Ireland too. And I’d love to dive in Cornwall. I love Cornwall.
In other words, I want to go everywhere. I would love to do a Christmas cruise through Europe for the Christmas markets! I know my readers would love to hear about all of these trips, and I would so love to inform them about the locations. I would be in photographic heaven! Oh! Let’s not forget the Exumas, and Bahamas…I want to dive with sharks! I forgot the Maldives, Hong Kong, and New Zealand. The Amalfi Coast! Lake Como! Venice! Florence! Sienna! And the Alhambra in Spain. The Costa Brava. The French countryside and beaches. Ghosts in Bordeaux.
Where would my readers like to go?? What is your dream trip?