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New Mexico

Dog Bark Park Inn

Quirkiest Hotels in America

By Bus Travel, Cottonwood, Farmington, New Mexico, Oregon, Portland, San Luis Obispo

Quirkiest Hotels in America

If you seek something greater from your travels than the usual stay at a basic hotel, you don’t have to look far. The quirkiest hotels in America offer plenty of excitement in the form of unexpected décor, unusual rooms, and imaginative designs that set them apart from the usual chain options. Before you book your next bus getaway, keep these intriguing destinations in mind.

Dog Bark Park Inn Photo

Photo Credit Dog Bark Park

Dog Bark Park Inn

Also known as the world’s largest beagle, the Dog Bark Park Inn is a true Idaho treasure. Situated in Cottonwood, a small town known largely for this very hotel, the property is just as charming as it sounds. If you love the idea of staying in a homey bed-and-breakfast that just so happens to resemble a gigantic dog, you’re absolutely in the right place. There’s just one suite in this memorable hotel, and it provides all of the creature comforts of home. There’s a full bathroom, a kitchenette, and a selection of books and games (beagle-themed, naturally). Continental breakfast includes a variety of mouthwatering treats to start your day, including their family recipe granola, fresh pastries, eggs, bread, cheese, yogurt, and more. There’s also a furnished deck where you can enjoy some peace and quiet while taking in the views. Keep in mind that the property is only open from April through October before they close for the season.

McMenamins Kennedy School Hotel

Is it a school … or a hotel? Think of McMenamins Kennedy School Hotel in downtown Portland, OR, as the best of both worlds. The property opened in 1915 as an elementary school. During the 1990s, with the building completely abandoned and in a state of disrepair, the McMenamins hotel company decided to transform it into something more useful. After complete renovations, it reopened as a fun and funky hotel. Former classrooms today serve as guestrooms (yes, the chalkboards are still there), and what was once a cafeteria filled with kids from the early 20th century is now a lovely restaurant. The hotel also includes several bars, an on-site movie theater, a pool, and a pub, and its walls are adorned with old-school artwork and remnants of the past. It’s all very fun, playful, and perfectly fitting for one of the quirkiest hotels in America! Where else would you find rooms named for authors like Beverly Cleary and Frank Delaney?

Kokopelli’s Cave

It’s the rare hotel that’s actually situated inside a genuine cave, which is what makes Kokopelli’s Cave such an enticing spot. Situated some 70 feet below ground, the manmade structure in Farmington, NM, is easily the state’s most iconic and unusual property. It offers beautiful views of La Plata River Valley and is only accessible via a long sandstone footpath. Once upon a time, it actually served as an office — but today, it’s an incredible property with genuine stone walls, rough-edged doorways, and warm lighting to illuminate the space. When you check-in, you’ll enjoy quality time in what is easily one of the quirkiest hotels in America. There’s a bedroom, naturally, along with a surprisingly lavish bathroom that includes a hot tub and a waterfall shower. There’s also a living room, a kitchen, and a dining area. Remember to pack lightly; you’ll have to walk the entire trek down, and you don’t want to worry about injuring yourself on the way into the cave. Think backpacks, not hefty suitcases! Kokopelli’s Cave is closed from December through February.

The Madonna Inn

California is packed with beautiful hotels, but few are as memorable as the lovely Madonna Inn in San Luis Obispo. A single glance at the 110 uniquely styled rooms is enough to understand why the property earns such accolades. Each is designed with a particular theme, and all boast incredible character, rich color palettes, and all the amenities that you could possibly require of a hotel. There are even two-story suites with multiple bedrooms and kitchenettes — perfect if you’re traveling with the entire family and need the extra space. Several rooms are equipped with rock showers, too. The property opened in 1958, and it’s been a pop culture mainstay through the decades. It’s appeared in several music videos from artists like Roxette and Lady Antebellum, and an episode of _The Bachelor_ was filmed there in 2010.

Book a Stay at the Quirkiest Hotels in America Today

If you’re dazzled by the possibility of escaping from the usual chaos of everyday life and enjoying something just a little bit unexpected, book a stay at one of the quirkiest hotels in America. Visit BusTickets.com to browse affordable tickets to the destination of your choice!

References

https://www.dogbarkpark.com/lodging-bed-and-breakfast/
https://www.mcmenamins.com/kennedy-school
https://www.kokoscave.us/

Ready for a history lesson? Head to one of these historic cities for the adventure of a lifetime.

5 Historic US Cities to Check Out This Fall

By Bus Travel, Charleston, Florida, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Portsmouth, South Carolina, St.Augustine

For history buffs, travel is more than just a chance to relax; it’s an opportunity to look into the past. Thankfully, the arrival of autumn means you’re able to explore while also bypassing the long lines and heat of summer. If you’re looking for an intellectual weekend escape, use this list of five historic US cities to visit this fall for your travel inspiration.

1. St. Augustine, Florida

Established back in 1565 by Spanish explorer Don Pedro Menendez de Aviles, St. Augustine, FL, is the oldest city in the continental U.S. With such a long history, it’s not a surprise that the city offers an abundance of historical landmarks. The best place to spot these magnificent structures is the city’s beloved Historic District.

As the name suggests, the Oldest Wooden School House is the oldest wooden schoolhouse in the country, dating back to the late 1700s. Today, the property stands as a museum with visitors partaking in a self-guided tour of the school, homes, and gardens that remain intact. While you’re in the area, visit the Oldest House Museum, the Old Jail, and the Peña-Peck House.

Another must-see historical spot in the district is the Father O’Reilly House Museum, which was built in 1791 — the second oldest structure in St. Augustine. The museum is only predated by the Castillo de San Marcos. The masonry fort is over 320 years old and offers tours, special programs, and daily canon firings.

2. Annapolis, Maryland

Coming in at just under 40,000 residents, Annapolis, MD, is fairly small in size. However, with a history dating back to 1649, the city offers a surplus of significant locations and structures. Make the first stop on your historic tour the Maryland State House. Built in 1772, the building has served both state and federal uses throughout its long history. Congress even ratified the Treaty of Paris there back in 1784.

When it comes to impressive architecture in Annapolis, it’s hard to beat St. Anne’s Episcopal Church. Erected in 1682, it was the first church in the city and is renowned for its Tiffany stained-glass windows. The property is also home to a cemetery where some of the community’s most famous residents reside.

Many of the city’s notable historic homes are also open to the public for tours. For a peek into colonial life, visit The Hammond-Harwood House for a guided tour of the property, featuring an impressive collection of John Shaw furniture and artwork from Charles Willson Peale. Just outside of Annapolis, the Historic London Town and Gardens offers guests free reign of 23 acres of gardens and homestead.

3. Santa Fe, New Mexico

As the oldest state capital in the country, Santa Fe, NM, has long been committed to preserving its past. While it was founded by the Spanish in 1610, native tribes called the site home for thousands of years prior to colonization. With such a rich history, it definitely deserves a spot on your list of historic cities to visit this fall.

The Plaza of Santa Fe is a historic landmark, which still serves as a community gathering spot today. There are both modern and traditional eateries surrounding the square as well as street vendors serving up authentic grub and selling handmade jewelry and crafts. Completed in 1878, the Loretto Chapel is a locally beloved spot, featuring eye-catching architecture and a unique helix-shaped spiral staircase. Other sites you won’t want to miss include the San Miguel Mission and the Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi.

4. Charleston, South Carolina

When it comes to charming southern cities, history buffs won’t want to miss a chance to explore Charleston, SC. Originally designated “Charles Town,” the city was founded in 1670 and is the oldest town in the state. Fortunately, many of its antebellum structures are still standing today, including the Heyward-Washington House and the Nathaniel Russell House. While you may not have time to fit in all the city’s significant spots into one trip, be sure to hit the Historic Charleston City Market. The market covers a four-block radius and has been a Charleston tradition for over 200 years.

5. Portsmouth, New Hampshire

Settled in 1630, Portsmouth, NH, is renowned for its historic architecture. The city still boasts beautifully preserved homes dating back to the 1600s and 1700s. One of the most impressive is the Wentworth-Coolidge Mansion, which features 40 rooms on waterfront property. Can’t get enough Georgian architecture? Take a tour of the Moffat-Ladd House and Garden as well as the Jon Paul Jones House — both built in the mid-18th century. While Governor John Langdon House serves as an impressive example of high-end design, the Jackson House provides insight into life for the average person as the oldest wood-framed home in the state. The New England city also offers some of the most spectacular fall foliage in the region, making autumn the ideal season for a visit.

Step Back in Time with BusTickets.com

With so many historic cities to visit this fall, you may find it hard to choose just one. Thankfully, with BusTickets.com, you don’t have to. Our user-friendly platform allows you to compare prices and routes in real-time so that you find the most affordable rate for every trip. Don’t let history be forgotten — book your bus tickets today!

References

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/travel/us-oldest-city-st-augustine-florida-180956434/ https://oldestwoodenschoolhouse.com/ http://www.oreillyhouse.org/ https://msa.maryland.gov/msa/mdstatehouse/html/home.html https://stannes-annapolis.org/ https://hammondharwoodhouse.org/ https://www.historiclondontown.org/ http://www.lorettochapel.com/ https://www.charlestonmuseum.org/historic-houses/heyward-washington-house/ https://www.historiccharleston.org/house-museums/nathaniel-russell-house/ https://www.thecharlestoncitymarket.com/ http://wentworthcoolidge.org/ http://moffattladd.org/ https://www.historicnewengland.org/property/governor-john-langdon-house/ https://www.historicnewengland.org/property/jackson-house/

Looking for the perfect fall hike? Look for the best hiking the u.s in a city near you.

The 5 Best Cities for Fall Hiking in the U.S.

By Maine, Massachusetts, New Mexico, Tenessee

From the fair weather to the vibrant foliage, fall is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful times of the year. If you truly want to take in the beauty, there’s no better way to do it than with a hike. Yet, with the plethora of options out there, it’s tricky to narrow down your choices. Luckily, we’ve done all the work for you. Here are our picks for the five best cities for fall hiking in the U.S.

1. Bar Harbor, Maine

Located on Mount Desert Island, the charming small town of Bar Harbor, ME, is one of New England’s top destinations for outdoor adventures. Its seaside location and proximity to Acadia National Park provide virtually endless opportunities for hiking and exploration, along with unforgettable sights. If you want to take it easy, the Bar Harbor Shore Path is ideal. The trail begins at the town’s pier and follows the breathtaking shoreline of Frenchman Bay and even provides a glimpse of the Porcupine Islands.

For a more immersive experience, head next door to Acadia National Park. The park is home to over 45 miles of carriage roads, which offer fairly easy treks — perfect for traveling with kids and pets. There are also over 100 miles of hiking trails to choose from. For a moderate climb, hit the Cadillac Mountain North Ridge Trail, featuring mesmerizing views of the harbor and the bay. Or, push your limits by heading up the strenuous yet rewarding South Ridge Trail. Round out your visit with a relaxing, gentle walk around the loop nature trail at Jordan Pond on the east side of the park.

2. Milton, Massachusetts

While it’s technically a suburb of Boston, Milton, MA, feels far removed from the hustle and bustle of the city. In fact, the quaint town is nestled in-between the Blue Hills and Neponset River, providing thousands of acres of a lush, natural landscape to explore. At the Neponset River Reservation, the kid-friendly Quincy Riverwalk trail offers two-miles of spectacular views alongside the waterfront. Even though it’s short, it’s an excellent way to start off your hiking expedition.

When you’re ready to dive into nature, head to the Blue Hills Reservation. Spanning over 7,000 acres, the reserve offers 125 miles of trails for all experience levels and is dog-friendly. The Braintree Pass Path and Wolcott Path Loop in Milton offer an easy trek and shouldn’t take more than three hours apiece, so you can actually tackle both. Looking for a challenge? Try the three-mile Skyline or Buck Hill loops. If you’re visiting in the early part of fall, enjoy a post-hike cool off with a swim at Houghton’s Pond Recreation Area.

3. Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Known as the Gateway to the Great Smoky Mountains, Gatlinburg, TN, is one of the best cities for fall hiking in the U.S. The Smoky Mountains are beautiful year-round, but in autumn, the rich reds, oranges, and yellows blanketing the hillsides are breathtaking. As a result, it’s a must-stop on every fall nature getaway.

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park covers over 500,000 acres, making the biggest challenge deciding which trails to hit first. If you want to get up close and personal with a waterfall, take the Pigeon Creek Trail to Mingo Falls or the Laurel Fall Trail to Laurel Falls. To break a sweat, trek the Alum Cave Trail, or for unbeatable views, try the Chimney Tops Trail. Planning a family hiking trip? The Kephart Prong and Porters Creek trails are both kid-friendly.

4. Camden, Maine

It’s hard to beat the autumn views found in Maine, and Camden isn’t an exception. Resting on the Penobscot Bay, the idyllic town is surrounded by nature and offers some of the most majestic fall views in the entire country. When it comes to hiking, Camden Hills State Park is the place to go. The 5,700-acre park’s most popular trek is the Mount Battie Trail, but the Cameron Mountain Trail is a close second. For a slightly less challenging option, try the Adams Lookout Trail or the Bald Rock Trail.

5. Santa Fe, New Mexico

The landscape surrounding Santa Fe, NM, is a living piece of art with picturesque mountains, towering pine forests, and lush wildflowers. Resting in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, nearby Hyde Memorial State Park is one of the top spots for hiking. While the West Circle Trail covers over two miles of hilly terrain, the rocky Waterfall Trail provides a well-earned cascade prize at the midway point. For a more diverse selection, take on one of the Dale Ball Trails featured throughout Santa Fe County, including the dog-friendly Atalaya Trail.

Hit the Trails with BusTickets.com

It’s hard to beat the visual experience provided by a well-chosen autumn hike, but sometimes budgets get in the way. Luckily, you can enjoy a trek for yourself without breaking the bank with the help of BusTickets.com. Our easy-to-use price comparison tool allows you to compare travel prices from the industry’s top providers in one spot. Simply search, browse, and buy — all within a few clicks of a button. What are you waiting for? Book your bus tickets to the five best cities for fall hiking in the U.S. today!

References

https://www.visitbarharbor.com/ https://www.nps.gov/acad/index.htm https://www.mass.gov/locations/neponset-river-reservation https://www.mass.gov/location-details/quincy-riverwalk https://www.mass.gov/locations/blue-hills-reservation https://www.mass.gov/location-details/hiking-in-blue-hills https://www.nps.gov/grsm/index.htm https://www.maine.gov/dacf/parks/trail_activities/camden_trail_conditions.shtml http://www.emnrd.state.nm.us/SPD/hydememorialstatepark.html

Are you looking for a wild west vacation? Check out this town for the most authentic experience.

Where to Go for an Authentic Wild West Vacation

By Arizona, Bus Travel, Cody, Gallup, New Mexico, Tombstone, Tucson, Wyoming

Whether you’re inspired by your favorite western movie or just want to treat yourself to an unexpected adventure, booking a vacation in the so-called “Wild West” is a great way to experience life off the beaten path. Offering opportunities for leisure and activity alike, these destinations are some of the best in the nation. Here are a few Wild West vacation ideas to help you make the most of your next getaway.

White Stallion Ranch – Tucson, AZ

It’s likely you’ve heard of dude ranches, but have you ever been to one? You’ll enjoy the full experience at White Stallion Ranch in Tucson, AZ. Designed with tradition and comfort in mind, the family-owned property is one of the country’s most renowned. Here, life is simple and down-to-earth. You’ll enjoy the creature comforts of an unforgettable vacation, including a heated outdoor pool, a spa, and a fitness center, along with warm, inviting guest rooms equipped with wood furnishings and private patios overlooking delightful cactus gardens and corrals. Their intimate restaurant is helmed by chefs who proudly serve fresh, homestyle meals all day long. It’s the activities that make it a truly Wild West getaway, however. While here, go for a hike, enjoy horseback riding, climb rocks, or join the ranch’s certified instructors and learn how to shoot on their private range. You’ll quickly learn to appreciate the wonders of the great outdoors while you’re here.

El Rancho Hotel – Gallup, NM

Make like a real Hollywood old-timer and book a stay at the El Rancho Hotel in Gallup, NM. Situated on old Route 66, the hotel has been a mainstay in the city since it first opened in 1937. It played host to hundreds of movie stars who filmed western films in the area during its formative years, including Humphrey Bogart, Lucille Ball, John Wayne, Jackie Cooper, Ronald Reagan, and Rita Hayworth. At the time, it was the epitome of grandeur, class, and luxury, and today, the rooms reflect the same comfort and warmth that visitors expect of their accommodations. Best of all, however, is that the hotel puts you within steps of the area’s best Wild West-worthy attractions. You can learn how to ride horses, pay a visit to the trails at El Morrow National Monument, explore Native American artwork at the Zuni Pueblo, or learn more about local culture during the Indian Ceremonials event held each August.

Tombstone Monument Ranch – Tombstone, AZ

Designed to replicate an actual cowboy town, Tombstone Monument Ranch in Arizona will put you in a Wild West state of mind right away. The property’s rooms all face the street, and each is built to reflect a building you might actually see in another era — a blacksmith, a jail, or a grand hotel, for example. Even the saloon features genuine swinging doors, and it’s here that you can enjoy a whiskey while playing a game of cards or listening to live music in the evening. Enjoy a comfortable horseback ride into town and learn about the area’s incredible history as you navigate the dirt-packed roads. You can even enjoy riding lessons if it’s your first time! Naturally, there are plenty of modern amenities to ensure you have a peaceful vacation, too, including a hot tub and a pool. There’s a warm sense of community here. If you’re seeking a Wild West vacation idea that truly transports you to a different time, this is it.

Monster Lake Ranch – Cody, WY

Planning a visit to Cody, WY makes sense if your goal is to plan the most authentic Wild West vacation imaginable. The gateway to Yellowstone National Park has it all — and how could it not, considering it was founded by the revered “Buffalo Bill” Cody? It’s got all of the spirit you would expect of a frontier town, along with beautiful lodging at Monster Lake Ranch. The property is steps away from Quick Lake but is otherwise largely secluded from the rest of the world. It’s an apt choice for outdoorsy types who can’t get enough of the Old West. Here, you can camp in an Indian teepee, go horseback riding along the rocks, observe wild mustangs at play, and enjoy filling meals in a restored barn. Don’t miss all that Cody offers, either; you can go whitewater rafting, enjoy a genuine street shootout, or catch Cody Nite Rodeo anytime in the summer. It’s a fun option if you’re traveling with the family, as there is something for everyone in your group to enjoy!

Book Your Wild West Bus Vacation

The heroes of the Old West may have relied on horses, but you can trust the transportation provided by BusTickets.com to get you there in complete comfort. Their buses are equipped with modern amenities, and you’ll enjoy beautiful views along the way. If you’re inspired by these Wild West vacation ideas, visit the website to book your affordable tickets today.

References

https://www.whitestallion.com/ https://elranchohotelgallup.comhttps://www.nps.gov/elmo/index.htm

http://www.ashiwi.org/https://www.tombstonemonumentranch.com/ https://monsterlakeranch.com/

elranchohotelgallup.com/

www.tombstonemonumentranch.com/

monsterlakeranch.com/

Are you looking for the best places to visit in New Mexico? Check out these beautiful locations.

5 Memorable Places to Visit on Your New Mexico Vacation

By Bus Travel, New Mexico

From deserts to mountain ranges, New Mexico offers an incredibly diverse and inviting landscape. Consequently, it’s become a top vacation destination for travelers of all ages. Whether you want to traverse caves or go scuba diving, you’re sure to find an adventure suited to your tastes. Here are five places to visit in New Mexico you won’t want to miss on your getaway.

1. Carlsbad Caverns National Park

Carlsbad Caverns National Park offers over 100 spectacular limestone caves ready for exploration. Beautifully contrasting the dry, hot Chihuahuan Desert above, the cool caverns are open to the public year-round, accepting guests on a daily basis. While they’re not dog-friendly, there is a kennel available at the entrance, along with more options in the Carlsbad, NM, area.

During your visit, start at the visitor’s center to learn more about the caves and the history of the site before taking on a self-guided tour. Check out the Big Room Trail to explore the largest cave chamber in the U.S. or opt for the Natural Entrance Trail. While it’s a more strenuous journey, the pathway covers popular attractions, like the Devil’s Spring and Iceberg Rock. There are also ranger-guided tours available.

After finishing up, stick around for the Bat Flight Program to watch thousands of bats leave the caverns for the evening. On certain nights during the summer, the flight is followed by ranger-guided Star and Moon Walks through the reserve. The entrance to the park is $15 for visitors ages 16 and up, but the additional programs are all free.

2. Ghost Ranch

Located about an hour outside of Santa Fe, NMGhost Ranch offers 21,000 acres of peace, quiet, and creative inspiration. The former home of famed artist Georgia O’Keeffe now serves the various needs of visitors through spiritual retreats, art classes, and outdoor exploration. Stop by the Florence Hawley Ellis Museum of Anthropology and the Museum of Paleontology before stepping outside for a horseback trail ride. If you prefer to stay on two feet, go for a hike on one of the ranch’s three trails.

3. White Sands National Monument

Of all the places to visit in New Mexico, White Sands National Monument is one of the most breathtaking. The white sand dunes cover 275 miles and welcome guests of all ages as well as leashed dogs. While you can trek the area on your own during the day, the monument offers special full moon festivities monthly with hikes and live music. There’s also the ranger-led Sunset Stroll, which is available daily.

Before you head out, don’t forget to grab an Adventure Pack at the visitor center for the kiddos. They’re free to use, and each one is filled with helpful information about the wildlife in the area. If you want to take your bus trip to the next level, pitch a tent at one of the 10 backcountry camping sites. A reservation is required, and you need to bring your own gear.

4. Valles Caldera National Preserve

Ever wanted to visit a volcano? Put Valles Caldera National Preserve at the top of your bucket list. The site is home to one of only three volcanos in the U.S. While Valles Caldera is inactive, the preserve offers incredible views, lush vegetation, and diverse wildlife. In fact, the hardest part of planning this trip is deciding what to see first.

To truly understand the beauty of the preserve, go on a hike. There are a variety of trails in the area that can be completed on foot, mountain bike, or horse. If you’re not ready to tackle it on your own, there are also guided hikes and van tours available. Regardless of how you choose to explore, you won’t want to miss the East Fork of the Jemez River or the historic Cabin District.

5. Blue Hole

The Blue Hole in Santa Rosa, NM, is like a mirage come to life. Surrounded by desert, the vividly blue lake is 80 feet deep and attracts divers from all over the world. However, you don’t have to use scuba gear to enjoy it. The site is open to the public and allows swimming, so just be sure to pack a bathing suit.

Score Fantastic Deals on New Mexico Bus Travel

Don’t miss out on your New Mexico adventure because of budget concerns! Instead, use BusTickets.com’s price comparison tool to find the best travel rates with a simple click of a button or tap of your screen.