Family vacations are the best! Initially, I felt challenged to find a fun trip that everyone would enjoy-especially one involving fun activities that were more nature-based, since a little technological distance can be much-needed sometimes. However, a two hour-drive and a few state lines north, I found the perfect getaway in the Cumberland Valley of Boiling Springs, Pennsylvania!
Living in DC, most people think you have to travel much further north to experience a pure seasonal change (sometimes, it feels like we get all four in a single week!). However, in early and mid-October, Pennsylvania’s temperatures are already cooler and the leaves have all changed colors, which makes for a beautiful fall experience.
For a weekend residency in Cumberland Valley, my family rented a cottage house in Boiling Springs’ Allenberry Resort. Ella, Logan, Dave and I were more than comfortable in the three-bedroom cottage. Sometimes it can be challenging to find a good residence that can accommodate a family of 4, and Allenberry was perfect! The beds were absurdly comfy, and the decor was super neutral and contemporary with traditional accents. Overall, it was seriously peaceful and homey for us, and made our vacation that much more relaxing.
After dropping our bags off at the cottage, we checked out the United States Army Heritage and Education Center. The museum aims to inform and educate visitors on the U.S. Army’s history and culture, and I felt greatly privileged to have visited it. Many of my followers might not know this, but my dad was in the Army during the Vietnam War. He thankfully made it back home safely, and in exchange for his service he was granted U.S. citizenship, which is the reason I’m able to be in the country today. I am so grateful for his sacrifices, and to see the photos and memorabilia from other soldiers’ numerous battles across history was truly inspiring. There are so many members of the armed forces out there who defend our freedom every day, and that’s a service I believe is too large to ever be truly repaid.
We took a dinner break to the Brick Kitchen, where I had a reuben sandwich that was out of this world! I know I’ve found a restaurant worth re-visiting when there are no leftovers to bring home, and this fit the bill perfectly. The American fare on the menu all looked so delicious that I had a tough time choosing just one course! I also loved that it’s locally owned and operated by couple Maura and Mark Bricker, which I thought was so sweet. Be sure to check it out when you visit Cumberland Valley or are in the Boiling Springs area!
After dinner, I decided we had to visit the Pennsboro Pumpkin Fest while it was in town over the weekend. Ella and Logan loved the farm animals they were able to pet and feed, and I enjoyed seeing so much farm equipment and local vendors. It felt just like a county fair, and the kids and I loved it!
The second day of our trip started with a walk to Yellow Breeches Creek. It felt so peaceful to be out in nature, seeing the woods and hearing the water rushing past. I felt like there was nothing that could break the serenity, and it was so calming.
For brunch, we visited the Allenberry Resort. Our Eggs Benedict and omelets were out of this world, and it’s always great to start the day with a family breakfast!
We topped the weekend off by visiting TCO Outfitters, which partners with Allenberry to provide fishing experiences for visitors. I wanted to try something new, so I signed the family up for a fly-fishing course! It was already pretty fun to explore Yellow Breeches in the Allenberry Meadowlands, but being able to put on waders and search for fish with the kids took it to a whole new level. Our guide, Jake, from Relentless Fly Fishing taught us how to cast into the waters so we could catch, and it took a few tries (surprisingly, fishing is harder than it looks!) but I was so happy when I finally did it! Practice makes perfect, after all-and we loved it so much that we’re definitely be re-visiting fly-fishing in the spring.