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Orlando

3 Reasons Camping Over Christmas Break Is the Best

By Arizona, Bus Travel, Charleston, Florida, Grand Canyon, Orlando, South Carolina

3 Reasons Camping Over Christmas Break Is the Best

The holiday season conjures images of twinkling lights and blankets of snow. Camping, however, is a decidedly less common visual that might not even cross your mind as you’re busily planning for your winter vacation. The beauty of going on an outdoor adventure when it’s cold outside is that there aren’t that many people doing the same thing.

Sure, there are bound to be quite a few of your fellow thrill-seekers out there, but the majority of people who travel during wintertime tend to gravitate toward warmer locales or luxury ski resorts. Going camping gives you a great excuse to escape the big crowds and enjoy some quality time reconnecting with the great outdoors, all while exploring beautiful new locations. Here are a few reasons you may want to add camping over Christmas break to your winter itinerary.

Festive Scenery Awaits

You aren’t going to go camping in the middle of a city bedecked with lights, but you do have the option to book your stay at a campground that’s nearby beautiful holiday scenery! Towns across the country go all out when the holiday season arrives. Among the most memorable places to visit is Charleston, South Carolina. The city hosts its annual Holiday Festival of Lights at James Island County Park, featuring three miles of awe-inspiring light displays. You can set up camp at James Island RV Park, then head out and enjoy it all: a gift shop, a festival train, a visit with Santa Claus and his elves, live entertainment, delicious food, and so much more.

If you typically travel to Walt Disney World each winter, change things up a little by staying at The Campsites at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort instead. This campsite includes an outdoor pool with a waterslide, a hot tub, horseback riding, canoeing, archery, and 750 acres of beautiful grounds to explore.

If you’ve always wanted to visit one of the country’s great national parks, now is an excellent time. Grand Canyon National Park, for example, is ideal during winter because there are far fewer crowds and the temperatures are a lot more tolerable. You have your choice of camping locations, too. If you’re with the kids, make your way to the Grand Canyon Railway situated in the Grand Canyon Village, which gets transformed into the Polar Express during the Christmas season!

More Starry Nights

Part of the joy of camping is gazing up at the night sky and witnessing the beauty of the stars as they twinkle in the pitch blackness. During winter, that experience is amplified tenfold because the brightest stars happen to shine at this time of the year. Moreover, cold air is naturally less humid than warm air, which means it’s clearer and therefore much easier to see the stars.

Another advantage of camping over Christmas break is that the nights are longer, so you have even more time to snap that perfect shot of the gorgeous starry skies. You don’t even have to worry about mosquitoes ruining your experience! The little pests are nowhere to be found when temperatures plummet, so you can enjoy every minute of your outdoor time without a second thought.

Make New Memories

The holiday season is all about making memories and spending valuable time with the ones you love the most. When you travel at Christmas, it also opens up the possibility of inviting others, like the extended family members you may not get to see as often.

Put some extra effort into planning a truly festive vacation that centers around togetherness. For example, you could host a campfire gift exchange. Bring along some colorful holiday-themed marshmallows and enjoy some seasonal treats, like hot cocoa that you can sip while you enjoy morning walks in the woods together. Embracing the spirit of the experience and the uniqueness of your environment is key to making the most of camping over Christmas break.

Go Camping Over Christmas Break

Indulge your inner adventurer this winter and enjoy a Christmastime camping trip unlike any other! Head to BusTickets.com to book your journey today.

References

https://www.holidayfestivaloflights.com/

https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/resorts/campsites-at-fort-wilderness-resort/rates-rooms/

Best Bakeries in the U.S.A.

By Addison, Bus Travel, California, Florida, Los Angeles, New York, New York City, Orlando

The 4 Most Incredible Bakeries Throughout The US

We admit it. Pinpointing the best bakeries in the U.S.A. is difficult. Impossible, actually. The country is so large and the variety so plentiful that you could never visit all the best bakeries in the U.S.A. in one lifetime. With that said, we have come up with a list of the top bakeries in New York, Florida, Texas, and California. So, if you’re a die-hard foodie with an insatiable sweet tooth and you find yourself in any one of these four states, make a point of visiting one or all of these bakeries.

New York

Most people who visit New York are familiar with the esteemed Magnolia Bakery. And while that famous bakery is definitely worth visiting, there are a few other hidden gems throughout the city. Honestly, in New York, it’s essentially impossible to proclaim that one bakery is absolutely, irrefutably the best one because there are so many world-class bakeries in the city. A bakery beloved by New York residents is Martha’s Country Bakery, found in Brooklyn and in two locations in Queens. Yes, that means you’ll have to trek to the outer boroughs, but that is really where all the city’s best kept secrets are. Martha’s Country Bakery, at any one of the three locations, provides outdoor seating. So if you’re visiting New York during the spring, summer, or fall, you’ll definitely want to grab a table outside and bask in the scenery. This bakery is known for its killer espresso bar as well as delicious cakes, pastries, cookies, and gelato. Dedicate a couple of hours to leisurely sipping coffee and nibbling on dessert before browsing the items one more time for things you can take home.

Florida

People think more about beaches and summery cocktails than bakeries when the state of Florida comes to mind. But some of the best bakeries in the U.S.A. are in Florida and are not to be overlooked. If you find yourself in Orlando, a visit to Gideon’s Bakehouse is an absolute must. It’s known for having the best cookies in the state, according to Delish. The ambiance of this establishment is just as enticing as their extensive dessert menu, but, of course, the main attraction is the bountiful supply of fresh, homemade baked goods. You would be remiss to pass up Gideon Bakehouse’s Classic Chocolate Chip Cookie, the restaurant’s signature dessert item on the menu. They have many other cookie options, including the Cookies & Cream cookie, Candied Walnut Chocolate Chip cookie, Pistachio Toffee Dark Chocolate cookie, and the Roasted Coconut Caramel Chocolate Chip cookie. Note that all these cookies are absurdly large, so one should be plenty. If you’d like to sample a variety, go for the cookie bites option and get a little taste of everything.

Texas

Out of all the best bakeries in the U.S.A., Nothing Bundt Cakes is the premiere cake place for cake addicts. They are experts at creating a unique selection of Bundt cake styles, flavors, and sizes. If you want mini Bundt cakes, you can purchase a Bundtlet tower, a gift-wrapped set of three mini Bundt cakes in various flavors. If you decide to dine out at the Nothing Bundt Cakes restaurant in Addison, Texas, you can order your own mini Bundtlet. They also specialize in large Bundt cakes and large orders of cakes for parties and other special occasions. The bakery has every flavor imaginable, including classic vanilla, chocolate chip, and red velvet, as well as other flavors like confetti, pecan praline, marble, and lemon. Order a cup of coffee with your mini Bundtlet (or a 10-inch Bundt cake, no judgment) and you are golden.

California

California is home to some of the most health-conscious people in the country, but that doesn’t mean they have totally given up their sweet treats. Whether you want a healthy dessert alternative, a paleo option, a vegan option, or just a good old-fashioned bad-for-your-health sugary donuts, California has everything. If you happen to be in San Francisco or Los Angeles, check out Tartine Bakery & Cafe. They bake their bread from scratch every single morning and boast a vast selection of sweet and savory menu items. It’s the perfect place to visit for a light lunch or late afternoon pastries and coffee. Although Tartine is a great place to sit and people watch as you munch on your baked goods or meal, you will not want to leave without getting a few fresh loaves of bread to take home with you.

 Ready to Start Exploring the Four Best Bakeries in the U.S.A.?

Or do you have another destination in mind? Start planning your trip today by buying your ticket on BusTickets.

References

https://marthascountrybakery.com/

http://www.gideonsbakehouse.com/

https://www.nothingbundtcakes.com/

https://www.tartinebakery.com/

Make the Most of Your Winter Disney World Vacation

By Bus Travel, Florida, Orlando

Make the Most of Your Winter Disney World Vacation

Going to Disney World in the winter is a _phenomenal_ idea if you love the park but hate the endless crowds. Competing for your place in line and dealing with the inevitable onslaught of foot traffic that accosts you as soon as you leave your hotel room can transform an otherwise great getaway into something that’s kind of a hassle. A winter Disney World vacation is considerably more appealing for the very fact that the crowds are less abundant. To maximize the value of your trip, keep these suggestions in mind to ensure an unforgettable holiday.

Attend Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party

There are some events that you just have to experience if you ever visit Disney World. But if you’re there during the winter, it’s a no-brainer: You need to attend Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. Assuming that you and your family love a friendly Disney face or two, you won’t be disappointed when you join in the festivities. The party is held from early November through late December each year. During the event, Disney World is transformed into a true winter wonderland, complete with merry music and festive decorations that make you feel like you’re truly living in a fairytale. Enjoy face-to-face meetings with your favorite characters, experience holiday-themed adventures on some of the park’s most beloved rides, including Splash Mountain, Dumbo the Flying Elephant, and Space Mountain, and savor mouthwatering holiday treats, including milk and fresh cookies. Of course, there’s also a brilliant parade, a fireworks show, a dance party at Club Tinsel, and a little bit of _Frozen_ fun, courtesy of Queen Elsa herself.

Plan Your Holiday Dining Itinerary Carefully

It’s pretty hard to resist the delicious foods that pop up on Disney World menus during the holiday season. No matter where in the park you happen to be, odds are that you’ll encounter something sugary sweet during your trek. Don’t try to hold back — how often do you book a winter Disney World vacation, after all? One event not to be missed is the Epcot International Festival of the Holidays. You’ll experience a broad spectrum of cultures, all under a single roof. There are plenty of themed kitchens where little elves busily prepare delicious meals for hungry guests. You can pop over to Bavaria Holiday Kitchen and indulge in traditional German fare, including potato dumplings, pork schnitzel, and black forest roulade. Feel like enjoying a little taste of home? The American Adventure Pavilion offers the types of dishes that are as good as homemade, from slow-roasted turkey to chocolate pecan tarts. When your sweet tooth hits, grab a peppermint sundae, a mug of piping hot cocoa, or a holiday apple pie sundae. If you plan to go all out, make sure you pace yourself each day. Big dinner in the evening? Keep breakfast light so you can really enjoy every single bite.

Take Advantage of the Incredible Weather

Orlando is distinctly different from other parts of the country during winter. It’s typically very mild, and most people are comfortable walking around in light tops and cardigans at most. That’s good news if you want to take advantage of the park in its entirety. Why worry about lugging around a hefty winter coat, a scarf, and a pair of chunky boots? There’s no need at Disney World! The pleasant conditions make it exceptionally easy to go for a swim in a heated outdoor pool at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, or to enjoy sunrise yoga if you’re staying at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa. There are also plenty of outdoor activities, including golf, tennis, and basketball. Many of the grounds feature jogging trails, and there are also playgrounds for the kids to enjoy.

Make Some Time for Disney Springs

A visit to Disney Springs should be required of every winter Disney World vacation. There’s a good reason to stop by, especially if you have small children. They’ll be dazzled by the beautiful sights and sounds that transform an already festive shopping center into a completely magical world. There’s even snow on Christmas Tree Trail, along with a soundtrack of holiday tunes and pretty trees everywhere you turn. Let the merry carolers serenade you as you wander on the promenade overlooking the water. Stop into Santa’s Chalet and snap a few photographs with the big man himself. Naturally, Disney Springs is also the ultimate place to stock up on gifts for everyone on your list!

Book Your Winter Disney Vacation Today

You won’t know true winter magic until you book a fantastic winter Disney World vacation with your family today. While visions of sugarplums dance around in your head, visit BusTickets.com to click your way to a merry holiday season.

References

https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/events-tours/magic-kingdom/mickeys-very-merry-christmas-party/
https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/dining/epcot/holiday-kitchens/
https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/events-tours/holidays-at-disney-springs/

Are you a Harry Potter fan? Check out these top locations to visit and have the time of your life.

5 Magical Travel Ideas for Harry Potter Fans

By Bus Travel, Chestertown, Florida, Maryland, Orlando, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia

For decades past the traditional entrance age, many Harry Potter fans are still waiting for their Hogwarts acceptance letters in adulthood. Thankfully, the wait is over! The popularity of the series has spawned a massive selection of fun activities for witches, wizards, and muggles of all ages. Grab your wand and broom because you won’t want to miss these five travel ideas for Harry Potter fans.

1. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter — Orlando, Florida

If you long for nothing more than visiting Hogwarts in person, put The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ (TWWHP) by Universal Parks and Resorts at the top of your travel list. While there are now also locations in Osaka, Japan, and Los Angeles, CA, the original attraction in Orlando, FL, takes the House Cup for creating the most immersive fan experience. In fact, the magical destination is so expansive it’s been split into two theme parks — TWWHP Diagon Alley™ at Universal Studios Florida and TWWHP Hogsmeade™ at Islands of Adventure.

Head to Diagon Alley first to get all your supplies. Stop by Ollivander’s to find your wand, grab some magical tricks at Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes, and dive deep under the surface on the Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts ride. Once your bags are full, step aboard the Hogwarts Express to visit TWWHP Hogsmeade for a bite to eat and a glass of Butterbeer at the Three Broomsticks. Be sure to catch the Frog Choir and Triwizard Spirit Rally performances, as well as an airborne adventure on Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure, while you’re there.

2. Witches & Wizards Festival — Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Every year the Philadelphia’s garden district, Chestnut Hill, transforms into a magical destination for Harry Potter fans with the Witches & Wizards Festival. Formerly known as the Harry Potter Festival, the two-day event is held in October and officially begins with the Brews & Broomsticks Pub Crawl. Consisting of around 10 local bars, restaurants, and beer gardens, adult witches, wizards, and muggles get the chance to mingle while indulging in magical-themed foods and drinks for a $25 fee. Most other attractions over the weekend, like the Chestnut Hill College Brotherly Love Cup quidditch tournament, are free.

3. Wizard & Witches Beer Festival — Various Locations

When it comes to travel ideas for adult Harry Potter fans, the Wizard & Witches Beer Festival is at the top of the list. Rock Star Beer Festivals launched a brand new magical-themed event series in 2019 aimed at the thirstiest of Potterheads. The one-night festival takes place in various cities across the county, including Boston, MA, and Philadelphia, PA. Attendees get the chance to sample over 20 Harry Potter-themed drinks — including craft beers and cider — dance to live music and DJs and even get sorted into their Hogwarts house. Whether you dress up in your best wizard attire or blend in as a muggle, you’re sure to have an unforgettable three hours of fun.

4. The U.S. Quidditch Cup — Various Locations

Even muggles outside of the fandom understand the significance of quidditch, and thankfully, the sport has leaped off the page and into reality. Since officially launching in 2010, the U.S. Quidditch organization has helped the sport spread across the country, inviting players of all ages to hit the pitch. The popularity of the collegiate and community leagues has even launched the U.S. Quidditch Cup tournament — an absolute must-see event for every Harry Potter fan.

Typically occurring in April, the site of the tournament changes each year with past ones being set in locations like Columbia, SC, Kissimmee, FL, and Round Rock, TX. If you really want to bring your HP dreams to life, start your own team and work your way up to the Cup. You might even make it all the way to the Quidditch World Cup, which is held every four years in various locations around the globe.

5. Chestertown HP Festival — Chestertown, Maryland

Occurring the first week of October annually, the Chestertown HP Festival in Maryland is the perfect gathering for magical families. The all-ages festival offers two days filled with activities, special events, and vendor booths. Take a potions masterclass; get measured for a hand-crafted wand at the WandMakers Co-Op; watch paintings come to life at the Magic Hall of Talking Portraits; and show off your canon knowledge at trivia. There’s also an all-day quidditch tournament on Saturday, so don’t forget your broom.

 

Book Your Magical Getaway Today

Ready to get your magic on at one of these five travel ideas for Harry Potter fans? Join your fellow witches and wizards with the help of BusTickets.com. With our user-friendly platform, booking travel is so easy you don’t even need a wand. Simply select your destination, compare prices, and choose the most affordable option. You can even bring your coven along for the ride with our charter bus quote service. The sorting hat awaits — book your bus tickets today!

Are you looking for a great place to travel with kids? Washington, D.C is kid friendly and educational.

Best Places to Visit in the US for Families With Kids

By Boston, Bus Travel, Florida, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, New York City, Ocean City, Orlando, Washington D.C

Planning a vacation is hectic enough and when you factor in finding a destination that is both relaxing and family-friendly, it can feel like an even more stressful endeavor. However, when you are familiar with the many fabulous, family-friendly cities throughout the United States, it makes planning your family vacation so much simpler. In this post, we’ll take a look at some of the best destinations in the US for a family vacation.

Washington, D.C.

The country’s capital is a delight to visit for all people, regardless of age. In addition to visiting all of the historical landmarks including The White HouseThe Washington MonumentLincoln Memorial, and The United States Capitol, there is a smorgasbord of interactive museums that are perfect for kids. Start off at the famous Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum before walking over to the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History and the Smithsonian National Museum of American History. After hitting up all three, take a tour of the International Spy Museum. Once the whole family has built up an appetite after a long day of exploring the city, dine out at one of the many family-friendly restaurants in Washington, D.C. including the Potbelly Sandwich ShopBolt Burgers, and the ever-familiar Hard Rock Cafe.

New York City, New York

Cliché though it may seem, there really is no city in the world quite like New York City. And although it may be best to save a trip to the Big Apple for when the kids are a little older, it’s a trip well worth making. The city is chock-full of incredible, world-famous eateries, show-stopping Broadway performances, and unbelievable landmarks and structures throughout Manhattan. Make sure to spend some time strolling Central Park, snapping selfies in Time Square (at night is best), catching a Broadway show, getting sung to at Ellen’s Stardust Diner as you eat a hamburger, riding the Staten Island Ferry (for free) around the Statue of Liberty, and going to the top of the Empire State Building. The great thing about New York is that, although known for being expensive, there are many great things to do for free (or cheap)! Hit up a 99 cent pizza shop for a mid-afternoon snack, walk across the Brooklyn Bridge, or marvel at the architectural beauty of Grand Central Terminal.

Boston, Massachusetts

Like Washington, D.C., Boston is absolutely steeped in rich American History, thereby offering a plethora of amazing places to visit throughout the city. For anyone overwhelmed by the idea of taking children to New York City for the first time, Boston is an ideal alternative. After all, it’s often considered the cleaner, smaller version of New York. An absolute must for anyone visiting Boston is The Freedom Trail, which will take you and the family through 2.5 miles of historical landmarks including the Massachusetts State House, the Paul Revere House, and the USS Constitution. Naturally, a vacation filled solely with educational and historical activities isn’t the most fun for kids, so balance it out with a trip to Fenway Park to see the Boston Red Sox compete against the visiting baseball team. Other fun things Boston has to offer families include the New England Aquarium, the Museum of Science, and the Boston Children’s Museum.

Disney World, Orlando, Florida

Disney World is arguably the most family-friendly place in the country since it’s designed specifically for families and kids. In addition to all the Disney parks and activities including Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Animal Kingdom, Disney Springs, and Disney Hollywood Studios, you can spend the day at SeaWorld and Discovery Cove. If you’re able to travel a bit, there are many stunning beaches about 90 miles outside of Orlando. Some beaches worth mentioning include Cocoa BeachAugustine Beach, and Clearwater.

Ocean City, Maryland

Nothing says “breezy, laid-back summer vacation” like a trip to the beach, and Ocean City, Maryland, just so happens to have the perfect beach for families. Complete with a bustling boardwalk, Ocean City has something for everyone, including those who would prefer lazing around on the sandy beachfront and those who would like to get up to all the activities on dry land. Spend the day sitting in the sun and splashing in the salty ocean water before drying off to gorge on cotton candy from the boardwalk, buy touristy T-shirts and other souvenirs, enjoy views from atop the Ferris wheel, and ride the rides at Jolly Roger Amusement Park. There are also plenty of family-friendly restaurants around Ocean City including establishments with good old-fashioned American fare like burgers and fries and oceanside shacks with fresh seafood.

Ready to start planning your family vacation? Buy your bus tickets today!