Monday, February 2, 2015
St. Paul MN—Orlando, FL
We are back on the road with Trip 1 for 2015, 53 nights in Florida. Several aspects of this trip differ from our usual road trip. One, we are flying to Florida and renting a car. Since we have put 70,000 miles on our 2001 Saturn in just two years, and since the Saturn has gone over 212,000 miles, we decided to keep the Saturn for more local trips and probably extend its life. The cost difference is minor since we save on the travel costs for 1300 miles one way from Saint Paul to our first stop in Florida. In addition, the scenery is bland and fewer sites are open to visit on a driving trip in winter. We will fly into Orlando and out of Miami; air fares are reasonable from these locales and it suits our travel plans.
Second, we are spending more time in each locale and using that location for side trips in each area. There will be fewer daily drives to a new location and just visiting attractions along the way of that day trip.
Third, we are actually checking a suit case for the air flight. Normally for an air flight, the trip is only two to three weeks and we just take our two small carry-on suitcases. When we drive, the trips are 4-7 weeks and in the trunk of the car we add miscellaneous travel literature and supplies like laundry detergent, first aid, back packs, groceries, etc. We will be in Florida for almost eight weeks and rather than buying items like beach towels and leaving them behind when we fly back, one suitcase should handle most of the items we plan to take with us.
Fourth, despite the fact that we live in Minnesota, we have been to Florida previously and know that the weather is not all sunny and 70 degrees. Our early days will be in the Florida panhandle and peninsula which is 400 plus miles north of Miami. Temperatures for our first weeks are likely to have highs in the 50s and maybe low 60s (Fahrenheit). But for us, while this may not be sunning at the beach weather, it is very pleasant touring weather.
Our hope is that we will be able to do more hiking, biking, and canoeing on this trip than on previous trips, while still exploring gardens, parks, museums, historical sites,etc.
Ed and Chris