Update that I’ve had in draft form for 4.5 months…
So, it’s been a while. And unfortunately, we haven’t had much time for traveling. Lots of work, school, and family stuff happening.
This winter has been surprisingly mild; the Farmer’s Almanac predicted a terrible winter with lots of snow. We’ve only gotten snow a handful of times and I believe there was only one week that got into the teens. And yet…I still wanted a spring break. We wanted a less expensive trip than what we’ve done in the past, so of course we booked a flight/rental car combo…for southern Florida. Without looking at hotel prices. So yes, our “cheaper” vacation certainly ended up being more expensive. But, it was kind of nice to get away from the all-inclusive resorts – we were able to go where we wanted, when we wanted, and eat the food we wanted, and didn’t have the “trapped” feeling we sometimes get at resorts in foreign countries.
Our first four nights we stayed at the Bahia Mar – a Doubletree in Ft. Lauderdale. The hotel was right across the street from the beach, and it even had a walkway over the road to the beach. The beach itself was aquite nice – and even when it was windy, the sand wasn’t blowing all over and making it uncomfortable. The water was very pleasant and the sunshine was awesome. So nice to get away from the grey Michigan skies.
After exploring the beach for a day, we traveled down Las Olas Blvd to Ft. Lauderdale’s Riverwalk district. It wasn’t as impressive or as lively as we expected; it was a nice quiet stroll along the Tarpon River. Most of the nightlife was further north along Las Olas. However, there was one impressive part of the Riverwalk: the yachts. I’ve never seen such big boats in my life. In fact, there were a couple that I’m pretty sure are 2-3 times bigger (square footage wise) than our house.
We also checked out South Beach and the Art Deco district in Miami. Of course it started raining so we didn’t have a lot of time to check it out, but we got some great pictures and had breakfast at a nice little cafe.
Probably my favorite, though, was Everglades National Park. I’ve always wanted to go there, and it was super neat to see all the alligators and other wildlife. It was really interesting to learn about how even an inch of elevation difference can impact the sorts of plants that can grow.