Trip Planning: Go somewhere warm in February

bugsy playing in the ocean
(this was in St Augustine; it was warm there in January 2020)

Cold weather is for the birds. Especially during the pandemic when all our activities are outdoors. So why not go to a place where the outdoors is more pleasant? Here’s the plan:

After parking the Airstream in the driveway of family in NC and GA, we’ll shoot west and hit some of our favorites, with some new stops sprinkled in:

I’m excited to spend a couple nights in San Antonio–we haven’t been able to escape the pull of Austin in the past to visit. And we’ve enjoyed Bisbee on day trips before so we’re looking forward to a more immersive experience.

The area where we’ll spend the most time is greater Tucson, splitting it across a commercial park in town and a couple state parks in the mountains. We’ll be in Arizona for ten days. Texas is the overall winner though–we have 13 nights there.

Be like Uncle Jim and send us your recommendations!

3 Replies to “Trip Planning: Go somewhere warm in February

  1. Sounds like an awesome plan! We’re spending February & March in New Mexico, so I’ve added La Posta de Mesillas to our list for when we’re in Las Cruces (White Sands was already on our list).

    Here are some tips based on where you’ll be visiting:

    Austin:

    Arlo’s food truck on Red River St. They’re a vegan food truck but the food’s awesome nonetheless (I’m very much not vegan). I had their BBQ Burger and would’ve had no clue it was plant-based, while Shae had their Frito Pie Burger and thought it was amazing.

    Crepe Crazy – we went to the one in Dripping Springs just outside of Austin, but it looks like they have a restaurant in Austin too. Delicious savory and sweet crepes and they have gluten-free options if needed; the chicken pesto crepe was good, as were the s’mores and caramel apple crepes. The servers are all hearing impaired, so you have to point to the items on the menu (we didn’t know that at first when we visited the other day).

    San Antonio – I loved the River Walk when we were there a few years ago, but I can imagine the vibe is a little different right now due to COVID. It definitely seems like all the Missions are worth visiting; we both went to the Alamo, but I had to work when Shae visited the rest of them but she enjoyed visiting them.

    Big Bend – I don’t know if you’ve been to Big Bend Ranch State Park, but we preferred that to Big Bend National Park. It has a couple of pet-friendly trails – the Closed Canyon Trail & Hoodoo Trail – and I felt like it was even more beautiful; perhaps because everything was closer by rather than the National Park where it’s so expansive.

    Tucson – We loved it there and will hopefully be spending another week there at the end of March or beginning of April. Catalina State Park is stunning due to the nearby Santa Catalina mountains – definitely worth spending time there and they have some pet-friendly trails.

    La Fresita had tasty tacos for $1.50 each. El Guero Canelo had great Sonoran hot dogs and their tacos come loaded with meat. Frost Gelato is just down the road from Catalina State Park and has delicious gelato which tastes even better after a hike at the park.

    We had a couple of people recommend Bisbee to us, but we didn’t make it there – hopefully this coming trip we’ll have time to head down there. Give Tombstone a miss though – unless you love the history part of things, it was tacky and expensive – like a wild west Pigeon Forge.

    New Orleans – Pat O’Brien’s also has a heated patio (it wasn’t on that list of 20 heated patios); it’s home to the original Hurricane drink and is pet-friendly.

    Urban South Brewery had great beer; I’m a porter/stout kinda person, but I’m sure they have sours and other stuff like that. Laksa is a small food place in St Roch Market and served one of the most flavorful meals I had all of last year.

    The Upper Quarter is a bar in the French Quarter; not at all fancy and I don’t remember how extensive their beer selection was, but they’re open-sided and so have good ventilation, plus they’re pet-friendly inside and out. Bayou Beer Garden is pet-friendly too and has a large, outdoor patio area.

    For king cake, check Rouse’s Market which is a local grocery chain (there are one or two stores in the French Quarter). If not, there was king cake in a praline store we visited in the French Quarter.

    Beware though – we were in New Orleans for New Year’s but did our best to avoid all the crowds as mask-wearing there was abysmal.

    Have a great trip – you’ve got a ton of cool stuff on your list 🙂

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