Enhance Your RVing Experience With


Side Trips

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     Let's face it, RVing can provide plenty of less than encouraging moments that can leave you feeling more pathetic & unappreciated than charmed & inspired. But those moments are fleeting growth opportunities, and you shouldn't let them loom too large over the limitless, almost too good to be true aspects of this amazing opportunity that RVs give us.

     I can get as obsessed with practicalities like logistics and efficiency as anyone. But with time and reflection, I've learned that we don't buy RVs to maximize miles traveled per day, draw the straightest line across a map, or to fill gas cans and propane tanks. We buy RVs to get a change of scenery and have worthwhile experiences while maintaining some measure of control over our accommodations – all at a better price and with more flexibility than traditional travel options.

We've all heard, “The pictures don't do it justice.” It isn't just that the Grand Canyon is enormous, colorful and shaped like no other formation on the planet. There is something psychological that happens when you're physically there, among the landscape. It isn't a huge change and it isn't immediate. It's cumulative and it can absolutely change your life, because it has the power to change the world you live in and how you fit in among it all.

    It's sort of like taking a multivitamin or doing quick, easy exercises. You know it will improve your quality of life and even improve your mental health. But sometimes we slip into a habit of choosing convenience and expediency just to save a few minutes each day and before we know it, our quality of life is less than it could be.

     Taking a few extra hours or even adding a day to your trip to bend your route a little out of your way is worth it if it leaves you with a brighter outlook and improves the world you live in, or at least the parts of this world that you consider yours for the taking.


1. Harvest Hosts

     The number one simplest way to enhance your RVing experience is to buy a Harvest Hosts membership and use it. They have great locations all over the country, so it's easy to find one close to your route. We use Harvest Hosts locations to make our first night in an area a little more charming and set the tone for how we experience the area. The hosts are usually very welcoming, accommodating, and make you feel at home.

     Another way our Harvest Hosts membership enhances our trips is that multiple-day drives are no longer broken up by uncomfortable overnights in whatever make-do spot is close to the highway and available. Kansas is no longer painfully boring. Texas is, well, it's still a ridiculously long drive from state line to state line, but it's more gratifying and the charming parts of our world (or at least the ones we've experienced personally) expand every time we drive across it.

Staying at a Harvest Hosts location for a night is a little thing, but doing it regularly has made a big difference in the good feelings we take away from our trips. Click Here to receive 15% off your membership.


2. National Parks

     One great thing about the national parks is that they're almost all larger than life, awe-inspiring settings in one way or another. And you don't have to “do Yosemite” in full every time you pass by it to enhance your overall trip and enrich your general outlook. All you have to do is stand on the roadside and stare at El Capitan for 30 minutes, trying to wrap your head around the scale of this enormous piece of rock face.

     That's all it takes to let a little of the magic rub off on you and continue on your journey. It wasn't a big time commitment, but you were there, going about an activity of your own in an inspiring setting, and you begin to see not only that wonderful and interesting things abound in this world but that there is a place for you as part of it.


3. Museums

     A lot of people think to visit the national parks but it never really occurs to them to visit the national museums. Some of them are tremendous journeys into the biggest and best aspects of our society. Being there and taking some of it in can get you thinking more about what is possible, why some things are worth extraordinary effort in this life, and some really great things that can still be discovered and accomplished in this country.

(Not every museum that calls itself “national” has been formally recognized by Congress. Here's a rundown of the official ones: https://joyofmuseums.com/most-popular/national-museums-united-states/)

     Other, more local museums can be unexpectedly charming discoveries too. If you've never been to the Martin and Osa Johnson Safari Museum in Chanute, KS, you've probably had at least one trip through Kansas that was more boring than it had to be. You can spend the rest of the drive through Kansas talking about how cool it was that this fateful couple was able to make their oversized mark on history in the really cool ways that they did.



In Summary:

     Great photography can give you an appreciation for a beautiful, charming, or awe-inspiring landscape or other wonder. It can be encouraging to see in pictures that there is more good in the world than we normally have the time and occasion to think about. But letting your unconscious view of your self see you as a physical part of all that is amazing and wonderful and worth all the effort you exert on an average RV trip is not just inspiring - in the long run, it can be transcendent.


Take some Virtual Tours. There are some great RV video producers out there!

Harvest Hosts: https://youtu.be/iD8gAYmdw2s

National Parks: https://youtu.be/OfuXvH7t99Q

Museums: https://youtu.be/JvktzUEIE8Y