The Ultimate Roadmap For Your 30 Days in Texas

The Lone Star State is the biggest in the contiguous United States, with an even bigger personality. Texans are proud, (sometimes loud), and among the friendliest people you will ever meet.

30 days may not seem like enough time to visit the second largest state in the union (after Alaska) but if you follow this guide and apply some Texan gumption then it is more than enough time.

Lake Texoma (Days 1 – 7)

Texas may be big, but most of its major cities lie in a narrow corridor from north to south (with the exception of El Paso in the far west), so this is the route that our trip will take. We’ll start in the far north, right on the border with Oklahoma at Lake Texoma.

Attractions

Lake Texoma is one of the largest man made lakes in the country, turning the dry grasslands that surround it into some of the most fertile farming land in the country. The area has two wildlife refuges, two state parks, fifty four USACE-managed parks, twelve marinas, twenty-six resorts, hundreds of campgrounds and a variety of excellent golf courses.” Popular pastimes include, camping, fishing, powerboating, sailing (Lake Texoma has some of the best inland sailing anywhere in the country), water skiing, windsurfing, swimming, and more. Suffice to say there is a lot to do.

Anglers should be aware, however, that you may need to obtain a fishing license from both Texas and Oklahoma to fish in this area.

Where to Stay

Lake Texoma RV Campground is the best choice for RVers looking to enjoy all this area has to offer. Located right on the shores of Lake Texoma, the resort offers RV and open air camping along with all the amenities that you need to make the most of your time in this amazing part of northern Texas.

Lake Whitney (Days 8 – 14)

Just a short drive south from Lake Texoma is the less famous, but equally beautiful Lake Whitney. Whereas Lake Texoma is 223 square miles, Lake Whitney is just 32. Still, people flock from across the state to golf, swim, fish, hunt, powerboat, sail, and relax on Lake Whitney. In 2005 the Texas state legislature even named the area Texas’s “Getaway Capital”. More importantly, it is close to the Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington area.

If you love sports, then this is the area for you. Comprised of, well, Dallas, Fort Worth, and Arlington, the area is home to over 7 million people and MLB, NFL, NHL, and MLS teams as well as 4 college football teams.

Then there is the Dallas World Aquarium, the unmistakable Reunion Tower, the Dallas Museum of Art, the Sixth Floor Museum in the book depository building from which Lee Harvey Oswald assassinated President Kennedy, the Dallas Zoo, the botanical gardens, and the Meadows Museum (home to more Spanish art than almost anywhere outside of spain).

Where to Stay

Lake Whitney RV Campground is right on the shores of Lake Whitney, and only a short drive from Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, so whether you want to spend more time on the water, or explore one of the country’s largest metropolitan areas, Lake Whitney RV campground is in the perfect location.

Lake Conroe (Days 15 – 21)

Just over 3 hours south of Lake Whitney is Lake Conroe. Like both Lake Whitney and Lake Texoma, Lake Conroe is a reservoir and while it is smaller than Lake Texoma it is more than double the size of Lake Whitney. Unlike both its northern counterparts however, Lake Conroe is surrounded by the beautiful east Texas landscape full of rich pine wood forests.

Lake Conroe is just an hour north of Houston, making it the perfect distance for a day trip (or two) into the city. Houston is home to just over 2 million people, making it less than ⅓ the size of the Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington area, but there is no shortage of things to do and see. The city is home to an MLB, NFL, MLS, and NBA team as well as the Grand Prix of Houston, the Houston Open golf tournament, and the Houston College Classic and Texas Bowl.

Of course we couldn’t mention Houston with out talking about NASA. Houston is home to the Johnson Space Center which has a huge visitors center that really is a must-see. Learn about the illustrious history of the Space Center and the bright future of NASA focusing on future missions to Mars. Show up on a Friday between 11 and 1 and you might even meet an astronaut! There is also the museum district, Zoo, Buffalo Bayou Park, great restaurants, and much, much more.

Where to Stay

Lake Conroe RV Camping Resort is right on the shores of Lake Conroe and includes a boat ramp on site so you can get boating as soon as you arrive! With an expanded marina and new beach, this is the perfect resort to relax and catch some rays. In fact, Lake Conroe RV Camping Resort is all about fun on the water, and if you don’t have a boat you don’t have to miss out on the fun. You can rent jon boats, paddle boats, kayaks or canoes.  

Medina Lake (Days 21 – 25)

At just over 9 square miles Medina Lake is by far the smallest of the lakes that you’ll visit, but it still is great for relaxing. Interestingly the dam which forms the reservoir was privately financed in order to improve irrigation to the surrounding farmland, and at the time was the largest concrete dam in the country. It is now a historical site.

Nearby San Antonio is smaller than Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington and Houston, but it is home to the most iconic location in all of Texas: the Alamo. In the center of the city is the historic battleground where the Republic of Texas defenders fought to the last man against General Santa Anna’s invading army. Although they died and the Alamo was lost, ultimately the Mexican forces were forced out of Texas. Visiting the Alamo is free and will likely be the highlight of your trip

Where to stay

Medina Lake RV Campground is a tranquil escape from the big city life of San Antonio, complete with beautiful lake views, and whitetail deer that roam the grounds. With a junior Olympic sized pool, you’ll be able to sit poolside with a refreshing beverage while enjoying the beautiful scenery and wildlife that this campground is known for.

Harlingen, Texas (Days 26– 30)

Just four hours south of Medina Lake is Harlingen, Texas, a great last-stop for RV’ers who are on route to Mexico. Harlingen is a premium shopping destination and has several epic golf courses and nature hotspots. With year-round tropical weather, visitors can enjoy surfing, horseback riding, and kayaking. Outdoorsman (or woman) will enjoy the plentiful fishing and hunting opportunities.

This area is part of the Rio Grande Valley, which is known to have the best birding opportunities in the country. That’s because the Rio Grande Valley is home to beaches, wetlands and lakes. Be sure to check out the Lower Rio Grand Valley National Wildlife Refuge System, and South Padre Island, where you may be lucky enough to see a sea turtle (or two).

Where to stay

Lakewood RV Resort in Harlingen is minutes from the Padre Island National Seashore, which offers amazing views and glimpses of protected wildlife like the Kemp’s ridley sea turtle, and over 380 bird species. The Padre Island National Seashore is a protected park with 70 miles of coastline and dunes, and is one of the few hypersaline lagoons remaining in the world.

Fun-N-Sun RV Resort and Sunshine RV Resort are both right in the heart of the Rio Grande Valley.  With beautiful sandy beaches, these RV resorts live up to their names —you’ll enjoy lots of sunshine here.  

Where to Next?

By following this itinerary you’ll see everything that Texas has to offer, but RVing is all about freedom, so go ahead and create your own path if you choose! Our customer service team is happy to help you build a customized vacation itinerary. Give them a call at 1-877-570-2267 or visit RVonthego.com to plan your own trip.    

 

Top 8 RV Resorts for Sports & Recreation

For sports and recreation lovers, RVing is about living an active lifestyle, which is why so many of our RV resorts have focused on developing strong sports and recreation facilities.

Fitness centers, pickle ball, cycling, biking, exercise classes, swimming pools, water aerobics, baseball, lawn bowling, bocce ball and golf are just a few examples of the activities and facilities that can be found at several of our RV resorts.

Check out a few of our recommendations for the best sports and recreation RV resorts across the United States.

Voyager RV Resort and Hotel – Tucson, Arizona

Voyager is the top-rated RV resort in Arizona. It offers a feeling of community and friendship as well as an endless list of neat activities to participate in. Opportunities abound for horseshoes, pickleball, swimming, volleyball, tennis and hiking and these are just a few of the sports that can be found at Voyager resort. The Voyager even offers boxcar racing! If you can think it, it’s probably offered here.

ViewPoint RV and Golf Resort – Mesa, Arizona

The ViewPoint is the perfect RV resort for golf lovers. It has beautiful views and an engaging community dedicated to active seniors. Right on the resort there is an 18-hole championship golf course and a 9-hole executive course where many guests enjoy spending the morning hours playing a round of golf with fellow campers.

If you love sports, but not golf, then check out their fitness centre and basketball, volleyball, tennis, pickleball and shuffleboard courts. You’ll stay busy here, and you can also count on avoiding crowded pools during your swim – this resort has four swimming pools on site!

If you love nature, then you’ll love ViewPoint’s great trails for biking and hiking. Many of the walking trails wind through nearby parks (and a dry riverbed) and offer unique opportunities to view nature at its finest.

Paradise RV Resort – Sun City, Arizona

If you are looking for something unique, Paradise RV Resort is one of a few that offers lawn bowling. In fact, it even hosts and sponsors large international leagues from places such as Japan, Germany and Switzerland! Paradise RV resort takes the love for sports and recreation very seriously. In addition to lawn bowling, it offers other unique amenities such as seven spring training baseball and hockey facilities.

It’s no wonder this resort won the distinct honor of being the 2017 Mega Park of the Year. Here, RVers can enjoy hiking, tennis, swimming, volleyball and shuffleboard while in Paradise!  

Araby Acres RV Resort – Yuma, Arizona

With a full calendar of activities each month, sports lovers will never run out of things to do at Araby Acres. But what makes this resort unique is its floor curling court. With so many northern guests, the staff at Araby wanted to give their curling-loving Canadian visitors a piece of home away from home! Without the ice rink, converting one of the resort’s shuffleboard courts made this dream a reality. With rocks made especially for this awesome floor curling court, guests here can curl while enjoying Yuma’s beautiful, warm weather.

Victoria Palms RV Resort – Donna, Texas

Victoria Palms, located in the tropical Rio Grande Valley in Southern Texas, offers a restaurant, pool, outdoor spa and fitness centre. Additionally, the resort offers amenities for sports and recreation lovers such as shuffleboard, a tennis court, bocce ball, bike trails, horseshoes and pickleball. Those who like to keep busy will thoroughly enjoy their stay at Victoria Palms as there is always something active to do. With an average yearly temperature of 73° Fahrenheit, outdoor activities are on the top of everyone’s to do list here!

Fun-N-Sun RV Resort – San Benito, Texas

Fun-N-Sun RV resort offers exactly what its name suggests – fun in the sun! Keep yourself busy working out, swimming or playing games of volleyball, basketball, billiards, bocce ball, pickleball or horseshoes. This resort even has a large R/C car track for enthusiasts from all over! When you need a break from all the sports and recreation, enjoy citrus fruits from the Rio Grande Valley, sit and relax on a sandy beach, or bird watch in the warm, clear climate.

Goose Creek RV & Camping Resort – Newport, North Carolina

Goose Creek is slightly off the beaten path making it a unique gem among RV resorts. It is located on Bogue Sound along the Intracoastal Waterway and is only a few minutes away from the ocean by land or water! The resort offers several undisturbed beach vacation spots that are hard to come by anymore. As well, because of its location, Goose Creek borders waters that offer some of the best saltwater fishing.

Tropical Palms RV Resort – Kissimmee, Florida

Interested in making sure you catch some sun? Tropical Palms is a fantastic spot for swimming and biking. This pet-friendly resort offers bocce ball, volleyball, fishing, and a top-notch fitness centre; everything active guests need to make the most of the RV lifestyle.

Want to make the most of your vacation? Visit some of these fantastic RV resorts. With so many activities to pass the time, you’ll wish you could stay longer. So, what are you waiting for? Book your stay today! Interested in what other activities our resorts have to offer? Visit RVontheGo.com for more info.

6 Must-Have RV Apps

RVing gives you the opportunity to relax, escape from your busy life and enjoy the outdoors, but this doesn’t have to mean a technology-free experience. In fact, technology is very useful when RV’ing, especially when you have the right apps. Here’s our list of top RV’ing apps to make your trip smooth and stress free.

Google Maps [Free for Apple & Android]

Google Maps is a widely used maps app and is well known for its accuracy. Both Apple and Android mobile devices support Google Maps, which is constantly up-to-date. This means that Google Maps will give you the fastest routes with accurate updates on construction and traffic delays.

Whether you know the exact address of the place you are looking for, or just the name Google Maps will help you get to your destination. You can sit back and enjoy your drive as the built in voice guided GPS tells you where to turn (with lots of warning).

GasBuddy [Free for Apple & Android]

To help you cut back on gas expenditures, GasBuddy helps you find the cheapest gas options in your immediate vicinity. With a large tank to fill, climbing gas prices are a concern for every RVer. GasBuddy helps you save on gas, so you can get the most out of your vacation budget. In fact, we’re so confident you’ll love this app, we’re betting that you’ll end up using it outside of your RV’ing adventures too!  

Roadtrippers [Free for Apple & Android]

Roadtrippers is a map app specifically tailored to those travelling on a road trip. Supported by both Apple and Android devices it provides a list of nearby attractions with ratings organized into categories such as restaurants, hotels, services, shopping and more. You can use Roadtrippers to plan your vacation online or from your mobile device by downloading the app. Roadtrippers makes it easy for you to stay organized because it syncs all of your saved places across all your devices, so you can plan your trip at home without worrying about accessing those plans while you’re on the road.  

Camp USA App [Free for Apple & Android]

The Camp USA app allows travellers to quickly research and book stays at over 190 Encore and Thousand Trails RV resorts and campgrounds across the United States. With ample amounts of information on each park and simple, built-in payment features, your RV site will be ready for you when you arrive!

Sanidumps RV Dump Station Locator [Free for Apple & Android]

While it’s not as fun as finding a great park to stay at, this app is practical – RVers need to be able to locate dumping stations for their full waste stations. This app makes finding a dumping station simple and will save you a ton of time. Of course, this job stinks, but with this app it’ll be as painless as possible.

RV Checklist [$0.99 for Apple & Free for Android]

Don’t you hate it when you get on the road and then realize you have forgotten a series of important items? The RV Checklist app makes sure this doesn’t happen by helping you plan and organize before you leave. You can create and customize your own list and save it to reuse each time you head out on an RV adventure. This app will help you cut down on your preparation and packing time and get out of the door quicker!

These are just a few examples of the amazing and affordable apps that exist for mobile devices to help make your RVing adventures more enjoyable! When downloading, be sure to check out the other suggested apps in the app store.

Let us know about some of the apps you use during your RV adventures!

6 Benefits of RVing for Adults +55

Have you always loved camping, sightseeing and the great outdoors? Are you looking for a fun and convenient way to see more of the US? If so, RV’ing may be for you. With your kids grown up and retirement fast approaching, taking to the road in an RV has many benefits.

Time

With kids and limited time off work for vacationing, in the past you may have planned trips that minimized travel time. Now you have time to spend travelling, which means you can take your time planning an extended vacation, enjoy getting to your destination and see more things along the way through a relaxing road trip.

A Second Home

With an RV that is your own, you have the freedom to customize it to your liking. Most RVs are quite spacious and have room for you to make it your second home. Your RV can become the backdrop for many memories and will feel more personal and convenient than a hotel room or a bed and breakfast.

Community

Although campgrounds are not the only option of places to stay in your RV, they are a popular one. Many RV parks are known for their welcoming and inclusive culture and their strong community.

You’ll find your fellow RVers share your sense of adventure and are keen to get to know you, share a meal, or sit around a campfire. Likewise, many campgrounds and RV resorts offer activities, programs, sports and recreational facilities to help you fill your time and enjoy your stay to the fullest.  

Affordability

For seniors who want to travel, but must budget carefully in their retirement, RVing offers many affordable options. Compared to a cruise or all-inclusive resort, the RV lifestyle is much more affordable.

For anyone who is contemplating RVing, consider renting an RV first to ensure that it’s for you. Then, when it’s time to purchase your own RV, explore your options. If a new RV is not in your budget, consider purchasing a used one. Many of them are in near perfect condition and this route can save you a lot of money.

While you will need to consider maintenance and operational costs, being able to stay in your vehicle means eliminating the rising costs associated with staying in a hotel. You can also save money on food since you can cook in your vehicle rather than eating out for every meal (which is also much better for your health).

Convenience

If you have always enjoyed camping but do not have the energy or man power to do all the work involved with setting up and taking down your tent and campsite, then try an RV. You’ll enjoy the same benefits that camping provides (like communing with nature, relaxing under the stars, and seeing new places). One of the greatest aspects of RVs is that everything is ready to go, just hop in the driver’s seat and head out on your next adventure whenever you feel like it!

Visiting family and friends

For people with friends, family, or kids who live across the country, an RV is an affordable option for visiting. If you have the time, then you can save on the cost of a plane ride and get more visits in throughout the year. You can park the RV in their driveway or stay at a nearby RV resort. This gives you some personal space, doesn’t put your hosts out and still allows you to spend lots of time together.

Having an RV is like having a mobile cottage. By purchasing an RV later in life, you are making an investment in the quality of your retirement, opening doors to travel and trying new things, while forming and maintaining relationships. What better time to hit the open road than after 55?

Any other benefits we may have missed? Let us know in the comments below!

The Ultimate Roadmap for Your 30 Days in Arizona!

Although Arizona has many RV resorts throughout the state, most of them are age-qualified (which means they’re for guests 55+), which is why the state is famous for the snowbirds who flock here every winter from Canada and the colder northern states. However, it is just as majestic and full of life in the spring, summer, and fall.

Regardless of when you visit, you’ll have more than enough to fill 30 days in Arizona if you plan your trip with our roadmap to the Grand Canyon state. Just remember that if you’re a young family ask if the campgrounds that you plan to stay at are age-qualified or family-friendly.

We’ll travel from the south east of the state, up through Phoenix, to the Grand Canyon, and then back down, stopping at a location that might surprise you, before catching the 3:10 to Yuma in the south west.

Tucson (Days 1-5)

We’re starting in the southeast of the state because this route is the best way to see the full variety of Arizona’s surprisingly diverse geography, but it also fits in nicely with a cross country drive. Coming from El Paso Texas you would take Highway 25 clear across the bottom of New Mexico to arrive in Tucson.

If you have your heart set on Albuquerque then it may be better to travel through Arizona from North to South, but we definitely recommend making the extra effort to see Tucson.

Why?

Well, at just over half a million people, Tucson has all the amenities of a big city while still maintaining a small town feel – all set in a stunning location.

Where to Stay

Voyager RV Resort is perfectly located to provide you with an opportunity to see everything Tucson has to offer, but you might find yourself reluctant to leave the resort. When they say ‘resort’ they mean it. Voyager has everything that an RVer could want and more including: a pool, bocce ball, billiards, golf, pickleball, a spa and sauna, and a clubhouse (just to name a few amenities)

What to Do in Tucson

The Black Hill

The name Tucson is derived from a Native American word meaning ‘at the base of the black hill’ and one look at Tucson explains why. The city is located at the base of what is now called Sentinel Peak which is primarily made of dark volcanic rock known as basalt. It not only makes for a great backdrop, but also for hiking and a view of the city as well.

Alpine Forests and Skiing

Yes, you read that right! Often when people think of Arizona they only think of barren desert, but Tucson is located high on a plateau and Mt. Lemmon which sits north of the city is so high that it is home to an alpine forest!

In the winter months there is even skiing in the Mount Lemmon Ski valley. This is also a good time to stress that, because of its altitude, it sometimes snows in Tucson so if you are looking for a mid-winter escape from the cold, look elsewhere in the state.

Explore Nature

Tohono Chul (a garden bistro), the Tucson Botanical Gardens, the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, and Saguaro National Park East and West (home to thousands of Arizona’s most famous cacti) make Tucson a nature lover’s paradise.

To escape the heat you might want to venture down below ground to explore Colossal Cave Mountain Park or Kartchner Caverns State Park.

Phoenix – Mesa (Days 6-12)

Less than two hours from Tucson is the capital and largest city: Phoenix.  Over 16 million people flock to Phoenix every year and it is no secret why: Like the mythical creature it is named after Phoenix is hot. If sunbathing is your goal then there is nowhere better in the US. and sits at the centre of what is called ‘the valley of the sun’.

Where to Stay

Mesa Spirit RV Resort is popular because of its large size – with over 1600 spaces and all the amenities of a traditional campground (including three pools, hot tubs, fitness, mini-golf, tennis courts and a banquet hall) there are lots of activities going on here. In fact, with event coordinators on site 24/7, this resort is a good place for a long-term stay.

Monte Vista RV Resort at the base of Superstition Mountains is one of the few all-aged RV parks in Arizona. This campground is huge, with its own coffee bar and lots of sports and activities to keep you busy. But with its spectacular mountain backdrops, it’s likely that you’ll want to sit back and enjoy the view.

ViewPoint Golf & RV Resort  is also located in popular Mesa, Arizona, and boasts a well-maintained golf and RV community set at the base of the Superstition Mountains. Just outside the Tonto National Forest, Viewpoint offers scenic views that can be enjoyed from your on site RV or mobile home.

What to Do

Montezuma’s Castle and Montezuma’s Well both provide a unique (and breathtaking) look into the lives of the native population that once dominated the area.

Lake Havasu is home to London Bridge…yes that London bridge, an entrepreneur named Robert Paxton McCulloch purchased the old london bridge, shipped it brick by brick and rebuilt it on the lake (a rumour claims that he thought he was buying the iconic Tower Bridge but locals deny this myth).

Phoenix is a sport lover’s mecca. You’ll find the Phoenix Suns (basketball), Arizona Diamondbacks (baseball), Phoenix Coyotes (NHL), and Arizona Cardinals (NFL) here. Tonto National Park is just a short drive away, as is Sonoran Desert National Monument.

Flagstaff Arizona (Days 14-23)

Flagstaff  is in close proximity to some of the most amazing sites in the entire United States. Not bad for a town of just over 70,000 in northern Arizona.

Where to Stay

The best place to stay near Flagstaff is definitely Verde Valley RV Resorts, best known for its expansive desert and mountain backdrops. Situated on the Verde River, this 300-acre oasis in the high desert of Arizona, this resort has it all – the majestic beauty of the Red Rocks to the north, Mingus Mountains to the west, the Hackberry Mountains to the south and it is adjacent to beautiful Alcantara Vineyards (perfect for an evening of wine-tasting)!

While you’re here make sure you take advantage of the kayaking and make time for a scenic drive through Sedona. It’s the perfect place to stop along I-17 whether you are heading south to the sunbelt or driving home. Temperatures range from 8C (46F) to 26C (78F) from early fall through to late spring. There’s plenty of sunshine and warm weather here to go around.

The Grand Canyon

Ask anyone what they know about Arizona and more often than not they will bring up the Grand Canyon. This natural wonder of the world is 277 miles long, 18 miles wide in places, and over a mile deep. Camping in Grand Canyon National Park is available and probably the best way to make the most of this amazing site.

The Pueblo considered the canyon a holy site, and even if you don’t share their beliefs you will immediately understand why. Seeing the Grand Canyon is a truly a once in a lifetime experience.

Meteor Crater

Often overshadowed by the Grand Canyon, Meteor National Park is relatively close to Flagstaff. Although not as big as the Grand Canyon, it is just as impressive in its own right. At over 3,700 feet wide and 560 feet deep this 50,000 year old impact site is remarkable to behold. The meteor which caused this massive impact is believed to have been made of nickel-iron and was over 160 feet across.

Lowell Observatory

One of the oldest and most important observatories in America, the Lowell Observatory has become a tourist attraction for scientists, science lovers, and people just passing through. Lowell is where Pluto was discovered, and despite first being established in 1894, it is still in operation as an observatory today.

Yuma (Days 24-30)

Yuma is in the far southwestern tip of the state of Arizona bordering Mexico and California, making it the perfect place to stop if you are headed to the Golden State. Yuma may not have the majesty of the Grand Canyon, the natural beauty of Tucson, or the big-city attractions of Phoenix, but if you came to Arizona for the weather then this is the place to be.

Yuma is the driest, the sunniest, and the least humid place in the contiguous US. It also boasts the most days with a maximum temperature of 90 degrees fahrenheit or more – 175 days a year to be exact – and claims to be the sunniest place in the world with sun during 90% of daytime hours.  

Where to Stay

Yuma’s weather and location make it a popular destination which is why there are so many RV resorts here. Araby Acres is one of Yuma’s most popular campgrounds because of it’s beautiful landscapes, but you’ll also find beauty and lots of amenities at Desert Paradise RV Resort; Foothill Village RV Resort and Mesa Verde Resort.

What to Do

The Imperial National Wildlife Refuge stretches along the Colorado River and offers sites of both desert and wetlands, making it a prime spot for anyone interested in hiking, bird watching, fishing, or boating.

Gateway Park offers beaches and a relaxing, lazy river environment for families who want to spend some time communing with nature. If you’ve got a dog, they’ll love spending some time here!

The Yuma Crossing National Heritage Area is a historical tribute to the Yuma Crossing, and also offers a number of beautiful parks and historic walking areas.

The Camel Farm is a great place to see camels, yes, but also a wide variety of animals. Kids will love the petting zoo, and nature lovers will enjoy a chance to see water buffalo in their natural habitat.

Whether you’re headed home after your stay in Yuma, or you’re off to explore Mexico or California, you’ll be glad you took the time to enjoy the beauty and weather of this historic location.

Make This Trip Your Own!

This itinerary is just a starting point. Whether you choose to follow it, or create one of your own, if you’re looking for tips about where and when to visit Arizona, give our customer service team a call at 1-877-570-2267 or visit RVontheGo.com for more information.

3 Ways to Avoid RV Electrical Problems

3 Ways to Avoid RV Electrical Problems

When it comes to your RV, it’s important to understand how the electrical system works, especially considering all the appliances you’re probably running on a regular basis.

As long as you stay within your available wattage (overall power) then things should run smoothly. If your voltage is too low or too high, then you’ll have problems like a power surge, which could seriously damage your RV, ruin your appliances, or even cause an electrical fire.

These three simple steps will help you avoid a serious electrical issue:

1. Know Your RV’s Capacity

Protecting your RV means buying one with adequate power for your needs. RV veteran Rob Lily suggests leaning towards a 50-amp RV if you plan to run a lot of amp consuming appliances. “You need at least 50 amps, which have two legs, giving you 100 amps’ total,” he says. “Considering that the average RV’er spends at least 30.8 amps on their A/C unit alone, a 30-amp RV may not give you enough power over time.”

If you have a 30-amp RV you may experience some electrical woes, especially if you want to run a lot of electrical devices like a microwave, A/C, fridge, hot water tank, and lights.

2. Monitor Your Power Usage

Even if you have a 50-amp RV, you’ll still need to monitor your power usage. “You should get a meter that will plug into a 110 outlet in your coach, it will tell you how much power you’re really using,” Lily advises. You’ll also need to be aware of how much power the appliances you’re using are drawing from your RV and ensure you don’t exceed your RV’s capacity.

Most of your appliances come with manuals that detail the required power (in watts or amps) needed to run it, but you can also find general outlines on the Internet for the most common appliances and electronics that RV’ers commonly use, like this list:

  • Coffee maker – 8.3 amps
  • Converter – 8 amps
  • Hair dryer – 9 to 12 amps
  • Microwave – 13 amps
  • Refrigerator – 2.8 amps
  • Roof A/C 13.5 amps
  • TV – 1.5 amps
  • Toaster – 8 to 10 amps
  • VCR – 2 amps
  • Electric skillet- 6 to 12 amps

You may be surprised by some of the items on this list – would you think that your electric skillet uses more power than your fridge? That your hairdryer uses more than your TV? If you’re not aware of how much power each electronic device uses, then you run the risk of operating too many things at once, which could cause an electrical issue.

3. Use a Surge Protector

A surge can fry your microwave, electrical oven, or even your battery. Surges aren’t always caused by using too much power. The campground could lose a neutral in the ground or lose part of a hot line, which can cause a surge. With a surge protector, as soon as that excess power, loss of power, or excessive power drain is noticed the protector will kick in and shut everything off, to protect your appliances and electrical components from damage.

That’s why it’s so important to always use a surge protector. “I would never run my RV without a surge protector,” Lily says. “The first reason is safety. It’s just not safe to run your RV without one. I’ve seen lots of RV electrical fires, and a surge protector should shield you from that. The second reason is to protect your coach from damage. The cost of a surge protector is small in comparison to the cost of replacing a damaged microwave or A/C unit,” he says.

Troubleshooting Problems

“If the surge protector picks up any problems, it will shut everything off and give you a code to tell you what has happened,” Lily explains. “You should get used to checking the surge protector and your meter every day,” he says.

Surge protectors are portable units, or you can get one hardwired into your RV. Both types do the trick and can be found at your local RV store. In addition to protecting your RV from a power surge, your surge protector will show you how much voltage you’re getting from the RV park. “With 6-8 RV’s hooked up on to the same box the person who is closest to the box generally has the best source of power,” Lily says. In other words, if you’re furthest from the box you may not be getting as much power as your neighbors.

If you’re having problems with your power, go to your park’s maintenance manager and have them check the box to see if there is a problem. Ensure that the maintenance manager also goes into your RV and turns off the main appliances and then checks the box again, Lily advises. “It’s important to see if there is a problem when the RV is underloaded, not just when it’s running at full capacity,” he says.

High voltage and low voltage are both problematic for your RV. Anything outside the range of your RV’s capacity (usually between 108-132 currents) can cause problems. To protect yourself, your family, and your RV, it’s important to understand and respect your RV’s power capacity, to monitor your power usage, and to protect your RV from electrical issues with a surge protector.

Trip It: The Ultimate Roadmap for Your Northeastern Adventure

Two weeks to explore the Northeastern U.S. might feel like a lot of time, but with so many things to do you may be wondering where to start, or how to pack it all in. To make the most of your time prioritize the top destinations. Start with a trip to the ocean, see the mountains, and of course end at the beach! With our roadmap, planning your two-week adventure has never been easier.

Days 1-4: Bar Harbor, Maine

Where to Stay

What better way to start your vacation than to camp on the ocean? Imagine being able to wake up to a beautiful, panoramic ocean view, and fall asleep to the sound of the waves. At Mt. Desert Narrows RV Resort you can park your RV or pitch a tent right on the water. While you may not want to leave Mt. Desert Narrows RV Resort, if you do you’ll find Acadia National Park and Bar Harbor are a short drive away.

Local Attractions

Acadia National Park

Maine’s rugged coastline is beautiful and diverse. This popular birder destination is home to a variety of plants and animals as well as the tallest mountain on the U.S. Atlantic coast. At Acadia National Park you can hike amongst the mountain’s granite peaks, bike along it’s historic trails, or relax and enjoy the ocean scenery.

Historic Bar Harbor

Bar Harbor has been a popular destination for vacationers for over a hundred years, but although the area is well known, it’s not overrun with tourists, so it’s perfect for anyone looking for a quiet island escape. Although the pace is relaxed in Bar Harbor, there’s lots to do on this famous island, including Seaside Cinema nights and Taste of Bar Harbor pub and restaurant tours scheduled throughout the summer.

If you’re planning to visit over Memorial Day or the Fourth of July, then book early – these are popular times of celebration on the island.

Day 5: Explore Manchester, New Hampshire

Once you’ve explored the Bar Harbor area, we suggest that you make the eight-hour drive to the Adirondacks in New York State. Whether you start this trek in the morning or afternoon, consider stopping in Manchester, New Hampshire (which is 4.5 hours from Bar Harbour) for either lunch or dinner.

While in Manchester, you can check out a local brewery (Stark Brewing Company, Third Colony Brewery and Winery and Candia Road Brewing Company are popular choices), or if you prefer to add some culture to your trip consider stopping in at the Currier Museum of Art or catch a show at the Palace Theatre before driving the remaining 3.5 hours to New York state.

Days 6-10: Explore the Adirondacks in New York State

Where to Stay

The Adirondacks are a geographically expansive area, so it can be difficult to figure out where to focus your time. We recommend Lake George. Surrounded by the six million-acre Adirondack Park, it’s no surprise that Lake George Escape is one of the top RV parks and camping getaways in New York State.

Located just 15 minutes from the Village of Lake George and Saratoga Springs, the park offers guests a passenger bus to these popular nearby destinations so you don’t need to worry about how you’ll get around. That is, if you want to check out the nearby attractions! You may prefer to stay in the park where you can spend your days swimming, fishing, canoeing or hiking, and your evenings sharing memories and making new ones while watching holiday fireworks displays.

As you can imagine, Lake George Escapes is a popular destination, especially during the holidays so you’ll need to book in advance if you’re planning to go over a long weekend. But if you want to explore the area and haven’t pre-booked your trip, try nearby Lake George Schroon Valley Resort. Here, you’ll have access to a full scope of camping options including RV sites, cabins and tent camping.

Located directly on the Schroon River, and nestled in the foothills of the Adirondacks, Lake George Schroon Valley Resort is popular for its river pursuits including swimming, kayaking, canoeing, tubing and fishing.

Local Attractions  

No matter which park you choose to visit, we suggest taking a few days to explore these nearby attractions:

Adirondack Park

Designated in 1892 by the State of New York, Adirondack Park is a diverse mountain landscape that is home to waterways, forests and huge mountains. New York State owns 2.6 million acres of the park, making the region the largest publicly protected area in the United States.

Over 50 species of mammals live in the Adirondack Mountains, including moose, black bears, beavers, star-nosed moles, red and gray fox, bobcats, and river otters. If you love nature, then plan to spend some time here!

Saratoga Springs

Saratoga Springs is a bustling area with golf, horseback riding, and even hot air balloon rides! You’ll find amazing shopping, spas, dining and more here. If you love to watch horse racing, polo matches, or want to check out a farmer’s market, local winery or even a craft brewery then take a day or two to explore this area – there are plenty of fun activities to keep you busy at Saratoga Springs.

Days 10-14: Hit the Beach

If you’re looking for a drop dead gorgeous beach then Pulaski, New York is the place for you. Just a 3.5-hour drive from the Lake George area, Pulaski is located on the eastern shores of Lake Ontario, which means you won’t have to travel south to experience a relaxing beach vacation!  

Stay at Brennan Beach RV Resort and you’ll have the unique experience of beach camping in New York where you can soak up the sun on the white, sandy shores or go for a refreshing swim. The sunsets here are one-of-a-kind. In fact, this RV park is so popular that during the peak months of July and August Brennan Beach RV Resort bookings are for a minimum of one week (so depending on when you’re traveling you may want to plan to extend your stay here and reduce your time elsewhere).

Whether you choose to follow this itinerary, or create one of your own, if you’re looking for tips about where and when to visit the Northeastern states, give our customer service team a call at 1-877-570-2267. They know all the ins-and-outs of the Northeastern United States and can give you the insider details and perspectives that will make your trip a memorable one.

Maximize Your RV Adventures with a Thousand Trails Pass

From geocaching to “roughing it” in the British Columbia interior, the Thousand Trails membership has opened-up a world of possibility and adventure for retirees Glenn and Eva Hamakawa. The couple have been living in Langley, British Columbia for 18 years, but you’ll be hard-pressed to find them at home.

Thanks to the Thousand Trails pass these two happy campers spend at least seven months of the year in their RV —4 months down south during the winter, and “dry camping” in the B.C. interior during the summer months from June to September. “But just because we’re in our RV doesn’t mean you’ll find us at home,” Glenn says. “When we’re not RV’ing, we’re cruising,” he laughs.

“The last two years we’ve had the membership we’ve been able to explore and go on new adventures affordably,” Eva says. “Being retired we couldn’t go to all these places without it.”

Glenn and Eva’s neighbors had the pass and invited the couple to a road show in Langley so they could check it out too. “We weren’t sure about going,” Glenn says. “We weren’t RV’ers at the time, we preferred camping. But it turns out we liked it, it eased us into RV’ing and gave us more time to spend in our trailer during the winter season.” What’s the difference between camping (also called dry camping) and RV’ing? According to Glenn, it’s the hook-ups!  

“During the summer we do more back country camping,” Eva says. “Our RV has solar panels and a large fresh water tank, so we’re self-sufficient. We love to go fishing and enjoy the lake in the interior. But when the winter hits and our water start to freeze, then it’s time to go south.”

In the past, Glenn and Eva travelled to the U.S. before getting a pass, but couldn’t stay for as long. “We’ve done trips that were 5 weeks in Washington and Oregon, but we were paying $30 – $50/night. It was too expensive,” Glenn says.

Explore More with Thousand Trails

Now, with the Thousand Trails pass Glenn and Eva have been living the RV lifestyle to its fullest – going to different places at their leisure, visiting new parks and going back to their favorites. “We really enjoy traveling and going to new places,” Glenn says, “but our favorite park is Cultus Lake. It’s close to home and a spot where we can get the trailer set up and ready for summer or winter, depending on which direction we’re headed.”

Last winter, with the Thousand Trails membership Glenn and Eva went to California for the first time. Using the pass in the Southwest Zone allowed them to ease themselves into the snow bird lifestyle. “California was great, but a lot wetter than we expected,” Eva said. “When we left there was a foot of snow here in B.C. We went through Washington, Oregon and then California. Our plans took us to Seattle in March,” she says. “We went to Idyllwild [in the San Jacinto Mountains] where we were at a 7,000 ft elevation and there was lots of snow, but overall we enjoyed the park.”

Roughing it during summer in the back country of Canada and the Northwestern states, then RV’ing at different Thousand Trails parks during the winter months allows Glenn and Eva to extend the time they can spend in their RV. “When we’re in the parks we’re usually in the hot tub in the evening after dinner, it’s very relaxing,” Glenn says.

Venture Off the Beaten Path

Hot tubbing is great, but when it comes down to it one of this couple’s favorite activities is geo-caching. “We really enjoy geo-caching, and the pass allows us to visit new areas, geo-caching in towns and cities you don’t normally go to, and we always find new and interesting sites,” Glenn says.

“Going to all the different parks lets you explore, too,” Eva adds. “You go off the beaten trail to get to some of these parks and you can explore and see cities you wouldn’t otherwise see. That’s one of the nice things about Thousand Trails, is it takes you off the beaten path,” she says.

Even though they’re far from home, the “staff are very friendly and make you feel welcome at all the parks,” Glenn says. “That’s really important to us.”

So, if you’re looking for an affordable way to get the most out of your RV, or just want to test out the RV lifestyle, then consider a Thousand Trails membership. Like Glenn and Eva, you’ll be able to maximize your RV adventure while gaining affordable access to hundreds of parks throughout Canada and the United States. Visit ThousandTrails.com for more information.

The Ultimate Roadmap for Your 30 Days in Florida!

So, you have 30 days to explore Florida; lucky you! But it’s a big state, with lots of activities, sights and resorts to choose from, so where do you start? Check out our roadmap below, which takes you through the top must-see areas of Florida. But, before you book your accommodations and activities, we encourage you to take the season into account. Rates are often higher at peak tourist times, not to mention there are more crowds and limited availability.

Days 1 – 5: Crystal River – Homosassa Region

Where to Stay

Crystal Isles RV Resort offers the best of Florida’s scenic West Coast including beaches,
golf courses and fishing in nearby rivers and streams. But book early, because Crystal Isles boasts waterfront sites that are in high demand.

With plenty of restaurants and nearby shopping, plus fishing, golf and beaches there’s lots to do during your time here. Depending on the time of year you visit we suggest making time for…

 

Manatees

Did you know that Crystal River hosts a year-round population of Manatees? Although you can see them any time of the year, the best time is January – March. During the winter season the manatees crowd around the warm water springs that are unique to the Crystal River area. Also, the visibility is better during the winter months because the water is clearer. Plan to visit mid-week (when it’s less busy), and book your viewing in the morning, when the manatees are more active. River Ventures and Plantation are a few of the region’s top manatee tour operators.

Scalloping

Scalloping is a popular activity in Crystal River during the summer and early fall. The scalloping season generally runs from mid June to the end of September. With some basic snorkeling equipment, you can dive for scallops and enjoy the sights of fish, plants and coral that inhabit the Gulf of Mexico’s coast. Again, check out River Ventures and Plantation, which offer scalloping tours along with a number of other local operators.

Days 6-8: Tampa

Tampa is only 2 hours from Crystal Bay, and offers so many attractions, it’s a definite must-stop on your trip south. Top tourist spots include Busch Gardens, The Florida Aquarium, The Tampa Museum of Art, Adventure Island Water Park, and Big Cat Rescue.     

Where to Stay

There are a number of RV resorts and Parks in the Tampa area to choose from like Topics RV Resort in Spring Hill, although golfers may prefer the Silver Dollar Golf, Trap Club & RV Resort in Odessa.

Days 9-13: Fort Myers

Fort Myers is one of the top stops in Florida, and it’s only a 2.5-hour drive from Tampa. With lots to do here, you’ll want to give yourself time to explore the area.

Where to Stay

The Fort Myers Beach RV Resort provides the friendly, fun atmosphere of a close-knit RV community, while also giving you the opportunity to explore the barrier islands of Sanibel and Captiva. Located just three miles from Fort Myers Beach and pier, you may be tempted to spend your week on the beach, but there’s lots more to do in the Fort Myers area, including:

Golf

There are too many top-notch golf courses in Fort Myers to choose from, so if you like to golf this is the place to be. You could also consider staying at Clerbrook Golf & RV Resort, which boasts its own exceptional, 18-hole golf course.  Check out this article from Golf Advisor, which lists some of the top ranked golf courses of the area.

Edison and Ford Winter Estates

Whether you’re into history, architecture, or are just curious, plan to spend time visiting the winter estates of Thomas Edison and Henry Ford. You’ll be amazed at what you learn and see.

J.N. “Ding” Darling Wildlife Refuge

If you like wildlife, then this is a must do on your trip to Fort Myers. On Sanibel Island you can take a tram tour where you’ll have the opportunity to see birds, dolphins, manatees and alligators in their natural habitat at this wildlife refuge.

Days 14 – 20: The Florida Keys

It’s quite a trip south to the Florida Keys, but it’s worth the 5-hour drive from Fort Myers to stay in this tropical paradise. If you visit during lobster season make sure to try some fresh lobster, or consider experiencing the thrill of hauling in lobster traps on a fishing charter.

Where to Stay

Fiesta Key RV Resort & Marina is a spacious 28-acre resort located on its own island in the Florida Keys. Sunshine Key RV Resort & Marina is located on the 75-acre island of Ohio Key, and has an adjoining marina that offers unprecedented water access to a tropical island environment that’s perfect for fishing, swimming or relaxing on the water. Stay at one, or both resorts and enjoy a tropical paradise adventure that includes days of swimming, beaches, fishing, and snorkeling, all from the comfort of your RV.

Although it’s tempting to stay on the beach during your time in the Florida Keys, there’s lots of sights to visit should you get tired of sitting around relaxing. If you’d prefer to explore, consider visiting:

Day 21: Miami

From the Florida Keys, you can make your way north to the Orlando area, which is a 7.5-hour drive, but we suggest breaking that up with a stop in Miami, which is just 3.5 hours from the Florida Keys area. Miami is known for it’s shopping and world-class restaurants, so it’s the perfect place to enjoy lunch or an early dinner before traveling to your resort in Orlando.

Days 21 – 25: Orlando

There’s lots to do and see in Orlando, but Disney is one of the most famous attractions. From Universal Studios to Epcot, there are lots of amusement parks in this area and you could easily spend a day or week (or more) exploring them, but there are also lots of great golf courses, restaurants and shopping areas nearby, so give yourself time to fully explore the Orlando area.

Where to Stay

Clermont, Kissimmee and Winter Gardens are all close to Orlando, and offer a wide range of RV parks to choose from, including Orlando RV Resort,  Winter Gardens RV Resort, Tropical Palms RV Resort, Lake Magic RV Resort, and Sherwood Forest RV Resort.

Days 26 – 30: Daytona Beach

Daytona Beach is only a 1.5-hour drive from the Orlando area, and it’s a great place to end your Florida adventure. This beach, which has been called the “world’s best beach” since the 1920’s hosts an abundance of shopping, dining and golf options.

If you love speed and cars, then make sure you schedule a visit to the Daytona International Speedway, which hosts the Daytona 500 and attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors each year.

Where to Stay

There are a number of excellent RV resorts in the Daytona Beach area, including Sunshine Holiday Daytona RV Resort (which is just minutes away from the Daytona Speedway), and Rose Bay RV Resort which is located next to Daytona’s famous white, sandy beaches, and is well-known for it’s amazing fishing.

Whether you choose to follow this itinerary, or create one of your own, if you’re looking for tips about where and when to visit Florida, give our customer service team a call at 1-877-570-2267. They know all the ins-and-outs of the Florida area and can give you the insider information that will make your trip extra-special.

Did you find this road trip plan helpful? Do you have any suggestions? Let us know in the comments below!

Thousand Trails Camping Pass – A RV’ers Best Kept Secret

What if you could enjoy the RV lifestyle for less? With Thousand Trails, you can! Thousand Trails is a membership program for avid RV’ers that provides priority, pre-booked access to 86 RV resorts in 5 zones across the US and Canada.

How it Works

With your Thousand Trails membership, you get:

  •         Access to Thousand Trails and select Encore parks in one zone
  •         30 nights free per year, and a fee of $4 per night for additional nights
  •         Advanced reservations
  •         1 year subscription to Trail Blazer magazine – includes member exclusive deals
  •         Member discounts including reduced rates at over 80 Encore RV Resorts.

There is no fee to enroll in the Thousand Trails membership, you just pay the annual membership fee which is $565 USD.

Do the Math – How Much Will You Save?

The average fee at an RV campground is $50/night, so if you camp for 30 nights, you’ll spend about $1,500 – or three times the cost of the pass! RV owners who are camping for 11 nights or more will save money with this membership, and the more you camp, the more you save.

Too Good To Be True?

Sounds good, but you may be thinking, what’s the catch? No catch! If you camp more than 11 nights a year then you’ll get your money’s worth out of the pass, plus you’ll be able to make reservations at the parks you’re planning to visit, up to 60 days in advance.

Experienced RV’ers know that many parks pre-book a year ahead, so how can you get a spot if you’re booking two months (or less) before your visit? Thousand Trails parks are for members, which means member spots are set aside for you. All you need to do is tell us what days you plan on coming, and once you get a reservation we’ll make sure that there’s a spot there for you (but we don’t reserve specific sites – you select your site on a first-come, first-serve basis).

How Are Spots Kept Available for Members?

To ensure that there are spots for our members, we have a 14 night in/7 night out of the system policy. This means that you can spend up to 14 consecutive nights at a Thousand Trails resort, then you’ll need to have at least 7 nights out of the Thousand Trails system to book again. This strategy ensures that there are spots free for members when they need them, and it works very well for RV’ers who are looking to explore different parks, or travel across a zone.

With the discount at Encore resorts, many Thousand Trails members plan to stay at an Encore resort for a discounted rate (often 20% or more) for their 7 nights out of the system, which saves them even more money.

Who Uses Thousand Trails?

If you’re a snowbird then it’s worthwhile to get a Thousand Trails pass, you’ll still save big time on your camping fees, especially during your journey down south where using the (14 night in/7 night out) 4 nights park to park policy is ideal.

The Thousand Trails pass is also popular amongst weekend RV’ers (those who work Monday – Friday and camp on weekends, or camp for a few weeks once or twice a year).

Full time RV’ers are Thousand Trails members too, and many upgrade to an Elite membership which is designed for longer stays.

Although having an RV is preferable, it’s not necessary to take advantage of the Thousand Trails pass. With discounts on rental cottages at their parks, anyone who is looking to test out the RV lifestyle, or who wants a place for their family to stay during a visit can save.

Get a Thousand Trails Membership for Less

Keep an eye out for online specials for the Thousand Trails membership –these specials offer $100- $150 USD off the pass. Plus, it’s worth it to go to an RV show, where RV’ers can often get a dual special -$100 off the pass plus a second zone for free.

Ready to start saving? Why wait? Get your Thousand Trails pass now and enjoy the RV lifestyle for less.

 

Ask how you can camp all year long with our Thousand Trails Camping Pass!

Our Thousand Trails Camping Pass is offered by MHC Thousand Trails Limited Partnership, an affiliate of Equity Lifestyle Properties, Inc., Two North Riverside Plaza, Chicago, IL 60606. This advertising is being used for the purpose of soliciting sales of resort campground memberships and this offer is only available to new customers. This document has been filed with the Department of Licensing, State of Washington as required by Washington Law. Value, quality or conditions stated and performance on promises are the responsibility of the operator, not the Department. The filing does not mean the Department has approved the merits or qualifications of any registration, advertising, or any gift or item of value as part of any promotional plan.