RV Camping – Zion National Park – Zion Ponderosa Ranch Resort


On our recent road trip we spent 5 nights at Zion Ponderosa Ranch Resort. Wow! This place has it all. In fact it was named one of the top six adventure resorts in America.

Here is what US News and World Report has to say about this resort: “Located just outside of Zion National Park, Zion Ponderosa Ranch Resort offers plenty of activities for those who love the great outdoors, including canyoneering, horseback riding, ATV tours, rafting, rock climbing wall, zip lining and other family-friendly adventure activities — and that’s just on its property.”

Glamping site

Zion Ponderosa Ranch Resort has every type of accommodation to suit your needs. Tent sites, group sites, cabin suites, Cowboy cabins, glamping tents, and full hookup RV sites.


We had dinner at Ray’s Restaurant on the property one night. This is a nice, reasonably priced restaurant. The fresh homemade bread with honey butter that they bring to your table is out of this world. I must say that we probably most definitely ate way to much of it! Portions were large and very tasty. If you have been in the park all day and just don’t feel like cooking, this is an excellent choice. Breakfast is buffet style and they also serve lunch.


The pool area is super nice. It has two hot tubs and two pools. There are also a couple of water slides for the kids. I am sure that in the summer months this is a happening place.

Laundry facilities, showers, and all public areas are really well kept up and clean. We were there the week before Memorial Day and there were plenty of employees around getting ready for the crowd.

While we were there they were working on road improvements so there was some dust. They were getting ready to pave a lot of the roads so some of them were a bit bumpy. The paving should be done early June and I think it will be a huge improvement.

We stayed in RV site #8 and had a majestic view of a plateau full of pines. The only negative thing I would say about this particular site is that it was difficult to level our 40 ft motorhome due to the incline. The area for the picnic table and to set up your cooking area outside your rig was also on an incline. Otherwise, hookups were easy and we got great satellite reception. They offer free WiFi and it is just what you would expect in an RV park. Ok but not super fast or reliable.

The resort is about a 20 minute drive to the beautiful Zion National Park. Spend the day exploring and then head back to Zion Ponderosa Ranch Resort for a relaxing evening. Or spend the day at the resort taking advantage of all the adventure activities they have to offer.

 

You Can Take the Girl Out of LA but ……….

I am a LA girl deep down inside. I love the Dodgers, Dodger Stadium, Tommy’s, Griffith Park, the Hollywood Bowl, Travel Town, Giamella’s, Porto’s, the Smoke House, Damon’s, and so much more.

I grew up in LA. Burbank to be exact. Say what you want about Los Angeles but there is just something about it. It is a pretty exciting place to be. Ed and I headed up there on Saturday to see Billy Joel at Dodger Stadium. Pretty awesome. Billy Joel! Dodger Stadium!

Our first stop was at Philippe the Original for french dip sandwiches. If you have been to LA and have visited them, you need to! There is nothing like a french dip from Philippe’s.

Philippe’s is an LA institution. They have been in business since 1908. The french dip sandwich was invented by Philippe Mathieu. According to Philippe’s website, “One day in 1918, while making a sandwich, Mathieu inadvertently dropped the sliced french roll into the roasting pan filled with juice still hot from the oven. The patron, a policeman, said he would take the sandwich anyway and returned the next day with some friends asking for more dipped sandwiches. And so was born the “French Dipped Sandwich,” so called either because of Mathieu’s French heritage, the French roll the sandwich is made on or because the officer’s name was French. The answer is lost to history.”

Our next stop was in my hometown. Burbank. Yes, Beautiful Downtown Burbank. It has changed so much since I grew up there but one thing that has not changed is the tea cakes from Martino’s Bakery. Yes, they have changed their location but it is still the Martino’s I love.

How do you describe a Martino’s tea cake? Well, if you are from Burbank you know exactly what one tastes like. I can’t describe it any other way than, “tea cake.” It is a honey-y, cake-y, maybe a tinge of citrus flavor that is so so good. Especially with a cup of coffee. When I was a child every Girl Scout meeting, every PTA meeting, every Woman’s Club Tea had them.

Martino’s also has other amazing baked goods but if you go there, you must try a tea cake. (Or a dozen!)

Last stop of the day was Dodger Stadium. Let me tell you. If there is one place that reminds me of my childhood it is Dodger Stadium. I spent many a warm summer night there with my dad and my brothers watching my Dodgers play. Love them!

The reason we were there at Dodger Stadium was to see the Billy Joel concert. He did not disappoint. What a great venue for him to perform at! He sang for over two hours. He also had two surprise guests for us. First Pink came up and sang with him. She has such a great voice. Then a little later Axl Rose came up and he and Billy did a cover of Highway to Hell. The best part of my night was seeing my sweet Bible study friend rocking out to it! Amazing concert. And Dodger Stadium.

All in all, it was a great LA day. A little bit of a trip down memory lane, a little childhood food, and a little rock and roll.

The Tastes of Kauai

After ten days on Kauai by ourselves, the hubs and I were ready for some company. Our son, daughter-in-love and their two kids (ages 5 and 7) arrived and the trip completely changed from a romantic getaway to a fun filled family vacation.

Snorkeling, kayaking, hiking, swimming, hanging at the beach, playing games and of course eating were all on the schedule.

My son and DIL are experts at finding the best eats wherever they are. They were on TripAdvisor just as soon as they landed and mapped out some places that we NEEDED to try! Some of our favorites were The Fresh Shave, Fresh Bite Kauai, Kalalea Juice Hale, Duane’s Ono Char-Burger, Da Crack, Kealia Poke, Trucking Delicious and NOM Kauai.

The Fresh Shave was amazing. Everything was organic, natural and fresh. Great menu of flavors combos. My favorite was the Dirt Squirrel – cold brewed coffee, cream and sugar. The Caterpillar was a favorite of the kids – orange and creamsicle topped with fresh oranges and sweet cream. YUM.

The acai bowls at Kalahea Juice Hale were so so good and fresh. We told the kids it was purple ice cream and they loved it! It’s purple. It has coconut milk. And it’s frozen. Ice cream. Right?

Yummy acai bowls at Kalalea Juice Hale

I had the Power Salad with added seared ahi at NOM Kauai. It was a large portion and the perfect lo-carb lunch.

NOM Kauai

We bought burgers and fries at Duane’s Ono Char Burgers more than once and took them to the beach for the gang. Good, messy, perfect!

Menu at Duane’s Ono Char Burger

Da Crack was a little family owned hole-in-the wall place over by Poipu. You can pick a burrito, bowl or taco and then you choose your protein, ricin’s and beans, salsa and topping. I had the tacos and they were excellent. And, once again, fresh!

Trucking Delicious in Hanalei serves awesome coconut shrimp and delicious plate lunches. The order of  pork and cabbage fed me for three meals!

One thing that I appreciated about this trip was how easy it was to get good food in Hawaii and not spend a total fortune. Yay for food trucks and hole-in the wall joints! Check out our favorite places to grab a bite on Kauai and enjoy.

Aloha!

Kauai fun – Just us two

 

 

 

Our first 10 days on Kauai were just for us. This gave us some time to settle in and do some exploring. We rented a 4 bedroom, 4 bathroom house in Princeville for the month. It was gorgeous! We quickly unpacked and started our adventures.

One of the first things we looked for was food! We had decided that we were going to eat healthy while we were here. Yeah, that lasted a couple of days. But…the first place we did find was super good for you. No guilt eating here! Take a look at this acia bowl from Kalalea Juice Hale. After convincing the hubs that he would like it we ordered. Amazing! So fresh, healthy and yummy. We ended up making many return visits to this great little place.

We spent time lazing on the beach reading, going for walks and drives, cooking with fresh Hawaiian ingredients and just enjoying each other’s company. The days flew by in a tropical haze.

Fresh homemade pineapple salsa

Since we have been home we have discussed whether it would be better to have our “alone” days at the beginning of the trip, the end of the trip, or split them up. Right now I think we are leaning towards splitting them up a bit.

Next post……. kids and grandkids arrive!

Kauai fun

The hubs and I just got back from an incredible 4 weeks on the beautiful island of Kauai. So. Much. Fun! We had time to ourselves, time with immediate family, time with extended family, kid time and grown up time. In truth, the company you keep changes the entire feel of the trip. It felt like we had 4 different vacations. (Yay for variety!) Oh the logistics of it all!! It took a lot of planning, some schedule changes and lots of Venmo transactions!

Would I do it again? That is a definite YES! Everyone had a blast, and when I say everyone, I mean everyone. There was not one single person who did not have a great time. All the family said they want to make it an annual event. We might not be able to do Kauai every year but I sure would love to do something. There is just nothing like having everyone under one roof. We hung out at the beach, ate way too much shave ice, went in search of the best food trucks, played cards, laughed and made memories.

I will give you some of the highlights and suggested beaches, food and fun things to do in later posts. Just wanted to check in and give you a flavor for this blog. Aloha!