A Family Getaway
We knew we wanted to plan a trip for Daniel’s spring break, but didn’t know where to go. There were some really important items we considered as we thought about destinations.
- This is a family trip, but just us, no grandparents
- We have a week and not much wiggle room on dates
- We need to stay totally connected and close enough to get back if needed
- We don’t want to spend a lot of money or use airline miles
- We want to go somewhere with good weather
- We want to do outdoor activities
Our natural instinct was somewhere warm by the water, but needing to stay close enough to get back limited the destinations. Then we started to look at airfare and it was significantly more than we’d usually pay to go to Miami or the Bahamas… That’s when Todd did a search of all the airfare from Cleveland within our dates.
The airfare to Las Vegas came up as the most reasonable... interesting… Las Vegas doesn’t really shout family vacation, but we knew that a lot of awesome places are within a few hours driving. We spent some time researching and found that there are tons of trips to do out of Las Vegas… the Grand Canyon, Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon, and Palm Springs are just a few.
Our first inclination was to go to the Grand Canyon, Zion National Park, and Bryce Canyon. These are all beautiful and offer tons of outdoor activities. However, we went back to one of our biggest travel preferences: we don’t like to move around every day… we like to be a bit more relaxed and spend enough time to get to know the places we visit.
We ultimately decided on Zion National Park and Bryce Canyon… we’ll tackle the Grand Canyon on another trip.
Day 9 – After a relaxing day exploring the Venetian and hanging out at the pool we headed back to Cleveland, OH.
Day 8 – Before heading back to Las Vegas, we had breakfast at Café Soleil… we had lunch at Café Soleil the first day in Springdale and it was so good we had to repeat! The trip back to Las Vegas was approximately 2.5 hours, and we arrived in time for a couple hours of pool time before having a great dinner at SushiSamba.
Do: I hiked in a humongous snow storm, and the weird thing is that it was muddy! I also did a 2.5 mile hike from shuttle stop 4 to shuttle stop 6 in Zion.
See: On our first hike I could barely see anything because of the snow! The next day we saw lots of rivers.
Eat: I had the best pizza again, but it was at 9 East in Springdale, Utah. I recommend 9 East for families! I switched my usual trail breakfast from pancakes to grilled cheese and bacon. It was great and the chef Preston at 9 East invited me to make it myself!
Day 7 – Daniel started the day with a job – he was invited back to 9 East to make breakfast – it was the highlight of his trip! We drove through the beautiful Kanab area and later took a hike along the Virgin River in Zion.
Day 6 – Snow again! We weren’t deterred and took a beautiful hike through Zion… very interesting to see the trees budding, wildflowers blooming, and cacti covered in snow. We went to 9 East in Springdale for dinner… this is a special place… great food and great people!
Day 5 – Could we be impressed after experiencing Bryce Canyon and the Grand Staircase? Yes – Zion National Park is awesome! We took a scenic 1.5 hour drive to Zion, drove through the park (about 45 minutes), and arrived in Springdale, Utah. Springdale is a great little town at the south entrance of Zion – lots of places to stay, great restaurants, and local shops.
Day 4 – After a sunrise hike and a full tour of Bryce Canyon’s lookout points we took the afternoon off to relax.
See: I saw so many canyons and rock formations… One looked like a spiral mountain… I thought it was pretty interesting
Eat: There were not a bunch of options in Bryce City… the best thing I had was Subway. I had the best pizza of my life at Escalante Outfitters. Check it out – it’s on Main St. about 60 miles from Bryce City.
Day 3 – Our day started with snow, but it didn’t stop us… we took a beautiful sunrise hike in Bryce Canyon and then drove through Grand Staircase – Escalante National Monument.
Day 2 – Onto Bryce Canyon… we rented a car and drove about 250 miles to Bryce City, Utah. About half way through the drive we made a quick pit stop at the Walmart in St. George, Utah to pick up some supplies. When we got to Bryce City we went straight to the canyon – which is absolutely amazing – for a quick hike.
Day 1 – Our trip started with a quick night in Las Vegas, Nevada before heading to the national parks.
Do: I went on an airplane to Las Vegas, it was beautiful.
See: I saw so many canyons at first I thought they were sand dunes, and by the way, this was on the airplane to Las Vegas.
Eat: We ate at a restaurant called Great Lakes Brewing Company at the Cleveland airport… I had the best hamburger ever!