On my bucket list has always been to go on a road trip– and I really thought I was going to have to wait until Caleb was older to go, but he is such a great baby when my mom and I talked about it- we decided that of the two kids, Colton would be the tough one and so we went.
We had a condo booked in Ormond Beach, Florida that we knew we would stay in for a week on the beach- but the real adventure was how would we get there? So we packed up mom’s car and the kids- factored in 12-14 days worth of clothes and everything we would need for that time for 2 kids… and we were off- Three Generations, Two Single moms, One car… and 3000+ miles ahead of us.
In a nut shell… this is what we did:
First Stop! Cave City, Kentucky: We arrived a little later than we had hoped- with two kids, that was expected though. We made it to our destination, checked into the hotel- dropped what we needed to get out the door and headed to Mammoth Cave National Park. Unfortunately we were too late to get in on a cave tour that first night, but we got our tickets for the next morning. And we did not waste that day at all. There are plenty of surface trails that we were able to hike.
The next morning we woke up bright and early and headed to our 2 hour cave tour. During this tour we went down 150 feet underground and into Mammoth Cave. This was a first for all of us- none of us had ever been inside a real cave. It was really cool and something I would love to do again!
Stop #2: Memphis, Tennessee
That day we were back in the car and headed toward Memphis- we got there around the same time in the evening, went to the hotel and headed to Beale Street for dinner. This is something we were told we HAD to do in Memphis. Beale Street is definitely a hang out spot, during the day and early evening definitely okay for families, but as we were leaving we could tell it got a little more party-like at night.
Mom and I shared a King’s Feast of Southern food at Kings Palace Cafe. The food was DELICIOUS and we enjoyed having the opportunity to try a variety of southern, cajun foods. If you go to Beale Street- definitely stop in here and try the Kings Feast Sampler- it was really delicious and affordable, and the music was good too- they had live music on the patio so sitting inside, it wasn’t too loud, but we could hear what was going on out there.
We decided to go back to the hotel early, go swimming, and get to bed early so we could wake up and do some touring.
The first tour we did was Graceland, The home of Elvis Presley. There are many tours available, but since we were on a time crunch to get to another scheduled tour, we only toured the mansion. This was really educational for all of us and visiting his home helped me to understand more about him, his love for music, and his family. His home and the property is beautiful and I am very glad that the Presley family opened his home for tours.
Up next was a really great tour- and one I HIGHLY recommend- Backbeats Tours We did the 90 minute Mojo Tour. This was a ride through history, on a bus, lead by singing musician. They handed out shakers and tambourines and it wouldn’t be Memphis without music. The guide was funny, told some fun facts, and sang some really good memphis songs.
The Backbeats Tour is definitely one I recommend going on if you want to know ALL about the history of Memphis. We got to check out Leavitt Shell, the first place Elvis performed, drove by Sun Studio, see the early homes of Elvis, B. B. King, and Johnny Cash, and many other locations- with lots of fun facts along the way.
After this we headed to Atlanta, GA for an evening of rest at the Wingate by Wyndham. My mom and I still say this was the best night’s sleep and most comfortable bed we slept in during the entire trip. Colton’s favorite part, free breakfast the next morning. They really took good care of us here, and helped with anything we needed. As an added plus, we could have walked to Six Flags from this hotel if we wanted to (although we did drive because we didn’t realize how close it was).
And the next morning we headed to Six Flags Over Georgia for a fun filled Halloween adventure. Caleb got to ride his first ride, and Colton enjoyed all the fun roller coasters (that he was tall enough for). Since it was Halloween, they had everything decorated for Halloween and had trick-or-treat stops and other fun fall activities for the kids. We definitely had a great time, Colton says his favorite ride was the Great American Scream Machine.
Last stop was our destination- Ormond Beach, Florida- Plantation Island. AKA BEACH FRONT RESORT FOR A WEEK.
While we were in Ormond beach, we did take two days away from the beach, one to spend the day at Legoland Florida– SO MUCH FUN. Colton and I have been here a few times, and one thing is always the same, we always have a good time. Even my mom said she was surprised at how much fun SHE had at Legoland.
We also got to go to a behind the scenes tour of Daytona International Speedway. This was really cool. We got to learn a lot of Nascar history, see the driver’s meeting room, the pits up close and personal, took a visit to victory lane, and see the new developments of the track (ladies MORE restrooms!). We also got to learn some cool Nascar facts, like did you know you have to go 70 MPH around the embankments to stay on them– otherwise, gravity takes it course and your vehicle will fall down them.
And on the way home- we only made one stop in Savannah, GA. We ate at Lady and Son’s (Paula Dean’s Restaurant) and walked to check out some popular historical buildings. The town was very historical and we enjoyed learning everything we could.
We had originally planned to stop two more times on the way home, but both kids were sleeping and we decided to take advantage of that and drive more so we cut our trip a little short and got home a day early. I think all of us were tired after 12 days on away from home.
Be on the look out for more posts! I will zoom into some of these attractions for tips and more info- and I will be doing a TIPS FOR A ROAD TRIP WITH KIDS post I know you will love