Monday, December 4, 2017

Looking for Pet Friendly Holiday Vacation Spots?

Want to get away for the holidays?  We always love getting away right before Christmas, before all the holiday parties start and the house guests arrive.  Even if it's just a simple long weekend, it helps us recharge and get ready for the crowds and chaos that typically starts by the 15th of December.  It also gives us some fun alone time with our dogs!

Here are a few of my favorite pet friendly getaways for the holidays.

Historic, Educational, and Fun Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia


During the American Revolution, which lasted the from 1775 - 1783, ordinary citizens living in Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia helped shaped our history.  At the heart of Colonial Williamsburg is the area known as The Revolutionary City, a historic and educational re-creation of life in Colonial Williamsburg during that volatile time in our history.  


Phoebe and I explored the Revolutionary City, a historic re-creation of life in Colonial Williamsburg during the American Revolution.
Colonial Williamsburg is one of my favorite holiday destinations in the Northeast.  History comes alive in a fun way in the Revolutionary City!

Christmas in this historic place is a beautiful sight.  The decorations are gorgeous, most of which have a traditional and natural theme.  One of the unique holiday decorations they are most known for are the beautiful, festive wreaths.  These handcrafted wreaths often feature shells, dried native plants, and fruits such as pineapple, apples, oranges, cinnamon sticks and dried quinces.  I'm getting hungry writing this!  

These ingredients may not sound spectacular when fashioned into a holiday wreath, but I can assure you these wreaths are a sight to behold!  The artisans that create them are so talented and resourceful. Every wreath is totally unique.  Take a look at some of the images here in this Pinterest Link that includes Colonial Williamsburg Wreaths.  You can even buy one as you stroll through the city's re-creation of late 1700's life.


Colonial Williamsburg was named Best Town in America for Christmas Celebrations by Architectural Digest!

The Revolutionary City looks and feels so authentic.  American “Colonists” not only dress in period costume, they wander the town in full character, re-enacting scenes of daily life during the period of America's Revolution.  You may see someone standing on a crate in the middle of the city, pontificating about the issues of the day.  They will often engage with tourists in 1700’s conversation as well!  


One gentlemen approached us, eyeing our Siberian Husky, Icy, curiously. That’s a fine looking animal you have there, sir!” and proceeded to make us an offer to purchase her for 100 quid!  We had some fun banter with him, explaining that our precious FurKid was NOT for sale, not even for a million quid!  

When I visit historic towns, one of my favorite things to do is take guided tours.  Colonial Williamsburg has quite a few tours, one of them being a Tavern Ghost Walk.  The last time we were there, a small group of us met late in the evening for a guided Ghost Walk tour.  We gathered in front of a historic tavern to begin the tour.  Our guide fascinated us with bizarre ghost stories, where people have sworn they’ve seen and heard ghosts that still haunt the old buildings.  It turns out the historic Revolutionary City, with many of it’s original buildings still in tact, has quite a haunted past!  


Icy got chummy with this statue of a 1770's Colonial Williamsburg man!
It was wonderfully eerie as we walked thru the dark streets of the Revolutionary City by candlelight, while our guide recounted fascinating ghost stories. I highly recommend going on a Ghost Walk!  

If you're not up for ghost hunting by candlelight, there is lots more to do within the Revolutionary City.  There are guided historic walks, decoration walks, and workshops you can attend.  You can take an enchanting carriage ride through the City as well.  There are several historic taverns to dine in and a cheese shop we loved! 


It's a great trip.  It's historic, educational, and FUN!  There are a couple of pet friendly hotels within the Revolutionary City.  Dogs can stroll around the city with you and grab a bite to eat at the cheese shop - their outdoor patio is dog friendly.  Dogs are not allowed inside most of the places especially since most are historic.


Christmas In New York City Is Spectacular!


What can I say about New York City during the holidays?!  It is truly spectacular, pretty much everywhere you go in the city.  

The most popular sites are the amazing holiday window decorations at Macy's, Sak's, Lord & Taylor, and other famous retailers.  And of course THE Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center.  The massive tree with ice skaters and the festively decorated plaza surrounding it is a sight to behold.  There's a reason why the sights of NYC at Christmas time appears so frequently in movies and TV shows!


The most popular things to do in the city during the holidays are gazing at all the decorations of course, seeing the Rockettes, attending a Broadway show, and visiting  Central Park (but NOT after dark, please!)  Take a photo with your dog at the famous Balto statue in Central Park.




Believe it or not, New York City is very dog friendly!  You wouldn't think so with all the crowds, traffic and expensive stores, but NYC actually loves dogs.  They can't accompany you to a Broadway show, but there are lots of pet friendly hotels and stores all around the city.  And Central Park is like a giant amusement park for dogs!  Don't be afraid to take your pet along with you on a holiday trip to New York City, just be careful of massive holiday crowds, like in Rockefeller Center.  Bring along a stroller for smaller dogs or carry your dog in these areas.  Be mindful of your dog's tolerance for crowds and decide whether to bring the dog along or not! 


Santa Loves The Southwest too, Especially Sedona, Arizona!


I say this a lot and it's true, Arizona is the most dog friendly place I've ever been to!  We lived in Phoenix for nearly 10 years and during that time we visited Sedona often.  They don't do it up too much for the holidays, their decorating is a lot more subtle than New York City or Phoenix.  Sedona is all about the natural beauty of their stunning red rock region, and they don't like anything to take away from that.


Icy on one of the many beautiful dog friendly hiking trails in Sedona, AZ
It's still a wonderful place to visit during the holidays.  It doesn't get swamped with people and there isn't any "hype".   The weather is great in December, you can hike endlessly on hundreds of miles of dog friendly hiking trails and stop for lunch at an outdoor dog friendly cafe!  You can take a Jeep tour or rent a Jeep yourself and go exploring in the desert.  Some of the Jeep companies will allow your dog to accompany you!

You can get some holiday shopping done too, finding lots of unique gift items to bring home.  I absolutely love the little candle shop in town, where they craft beautiful unique candles, many in elaborate shapes and styles.  There are a lot of terrific art galleries in Sedona as well.  The Tlaquepaque (pronounced Ta-Lok-A-Pok) arts & crafts village has lots of unique specialty shops and a few art galleries.  It's a dog friendly village with several outdoor places to eat that welcome dogs on the patio.

From the slopes to the seaport, New Hampshire is a Winter Wonderland


We love New England, and New Hampshire is one of the prettiest places to visit pretty much any time of the year.  There are so many quaint little towns all up and down the New England coastline, most are decorated beautifully for the holidays.  


Dog friendly hiking trail in the Waterville Valley ski resort area, New Hampshire
There are quite a few places to ski or snowboard in New Hampshire, mainly in the White Mountain region.  You can stroll through quaint villages with your dog or hike along many dog friendly trails.  

We loved the dog friendly cross country ski trail in the Waterville Valley ski resort.  Bring Fido has a great list of dog friendly hiking trails in NH.


Well, there you have it, some of my favorite places to spend time with our dogs at Christmas time!  I hope you enjoyed reading about these dog friendly places.


Do you like to take a little downtime for yourself and your pets during the holidays?  Tell us about it in the comments, we Love hearing from you!



10 comments:

  1. Those are some furbulous locations! We hope to spend a Christmas in New York but the boys will have to stay behind since Mom lives in a fourth floor apartment (walk up) and they would hate Manhattan! BOL!

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    1. These are some of my favorite dog friendly places to visit. I think the boys would be ok in NYC, especially if they go to Central Park! The walk up would probably feel like hiking for them, LOL!

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  2. Sedona is fun any time of the year - I just love it there so much. I have never traveled to Williamsburg but it sounds so quaint and I love historic places - also love ghost walks!

    My aunts who lived in New Jersey used to take me to see the Christmas show at Radio City when I was a little girl. I loved it - Lassie used to come out at the end as I recall. I still want to take my daughter there some day.

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    1. We love Sedona too, definitely one of my all time favorite dog friendly places! When we lived in Phoenix we went often w/ the dogs. It's the best. Oh, I bet your daughter would love the Christmas Show in NYC, what a great trip that would be for the two of you! I hope you get to go soon.

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  3. Ah I remember last Christmas spending Christmas in NYC. Loved it. For a very special milestone birthday for hubby and to celebrate Christmas in one. Nice choice! Hmm I haven't been to New Hampshire before. That's one for the bucket list.

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    1. NYC is so unique, and such a fun interesting place to spend Christmas. New Hampshire is so beautiful and there's a lot of space up there, not so cramped! We love it.

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  4. All of these look like great destinations. Theo and Sophie don't travel well, but Nelly loves an adventure, as long as I'm with her.

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    1. These are definitely my top choices for pet travel. I bet you & Nelly would have some great times in any one of these places! It's great that she loves adventures with you.

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  5. I'd LOVE to visit Colonial Williamsburg. I'm a huge history buff, and just your photos alone make me want to visit. I definitely have visiting NYC during Christmas on my bucket list. My sister lives there so I'm sure I'll get out there in the next couple of years.

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    1. Oh wow, you would Love Colonial Williamsburg! You can definitely get lost in the history of it all. I can see you conversing with "colonists" as you stroll along the authentic streets of the Revolutionary City. It's so perfect for history buffs, and such fun. And dog friendly too!

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