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This trip was hosted and put together for me by Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Tourism, but ALL opinions, as always, are uniquely my own. Duh. 😀
What are the Top 4 Must-Haves for a Girlfriend Getaway/ Road Trip?
I know what you’re thinking.
- A White Noise Machine
- Poo Pourri
Clearly, some of you have been on one or two of these.
But, luckily for me, on my completely sponsored Girlfriend Getaway/Road Trip, all of these CRUCIAL needs (at least they were crucial for any OTHER Girlfriend Getaway Trip I’ve ever been on) were already met. I was invited by Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Tourism who reached out initially to Jamie Reeves of Blonde Mom Blog. They planned an entire itinerary for us, that included NO NEED for any of the 4 items on that initial list. That’s because their getaway plan included a condo with four separate bedrooms, and four separate bathrooms, plus, a well-stocked kitchen!
No, my advice would be to pack all those things if you and your girlfriends are not sleeping separately, but IN ADDITION to those crucial 4 things, here is my list of the
Top 4 Must-Haves for a Girlfriend Getaway/Road Trip.
You’ve got to have some girlfriends if you’re going to have a Girlfriend Getaway Trip. That would almost go without saying, right? But I’m here to tell you that in our case, having girlfriends to get away with wasn’t exactly a given! Since we were invited to attend this trip, I left the house kind of hoping for the best – that the friendships would follow! Three other bloggers were invited as well: Jamie Reeves, of Nashville, whom I mentioned before as the author of Blonde Mom Blog, and whom I’d only met once. Angela Roberts, of Spinach Tiger, who was my only “already” girlfriend, whom I met through the Nashville Food Bloggers. And finally, Desiree Miller of Stress-Free, Baby!, and the Atlanta area, whom I met only once, at the
Type-A Parent Conference in Atlanta in 2015.
I looked at my husband before I left, and said, “This will likely be either really, really good, or really, really unfortunate.” Happily, for me, it turned out to be the former.
There’s something about the Gulf Shores/Orange Beach Area that almost ensures you’re going to have a good time! Our hosts absolutely bent over backwards to make sure we had not only a good time, but also had tons to do, and my only regret about the whole trip is that I would have loved to have had one more day to just lie on the beach, perhaps part of the time in the shade of an umbrella, and maybe read a book. There is no sweeter song, I’m convinced, than the song of the waves.
2. A Sweet Ride
I think I was fated to make this road trip in a Nissan! The week before, I had been in Las Vegas, at my favorite blogging conference, the BAM conference, which stands for Bloggers at Midlife. Nissan was a very generous sponsor of that event, and I got an up close and personal look at the sleek, sexy Murano. Do you think I might have been just a touch smitten?
So, when Jamie told me we’d be riding in a Nissan Pathfinder she’d been loaned to review, I just about squeeeeeed. The sporty looking Pathfinder was the perfect vehicle for a road trip: plenty of cargo loading area (and we needed a LOT of cargo area), super nice leather interior, super comfortable seats, some safety features that I’m coveting in my own vehicle. Namely, beside the rearview mirrors, on the interior of the car, a little light lights up when there is someone in your blind spot. And if you put your blinker on, it will make a little “beep” to let you know, “Hey, dingus. DO NOT jump into that other lane!” I love that. The same thing with the “empty” light on your gas gauge: not only does it light up, it gives you a friendly “beep” noise, to catch your attention. I could use BOTH of these features on my own car, now!
So two thumbs up, and wiggling, on the 2016 Pathfinder, and a shoutout to Nissan: I’d love to partner with you on my next Travel Gig!
3. Good Road Food
While Jamie, Angela and I were on the road, we entrusted our palates into the excellent care of Angela, who really wanted to avoid fast food. I was great with that, since she had a plan for seeking out where we would eat. She searched locations on Trip Advisor, and came up with a couple of winners, which were worth the slight detour.
Let me briefly digress by telling you that on our stop for lunch on the way down to the beach (which was about an 8 hour drive for us, from Nashville), we missed the exit to the café Angela picked out for us to eat at. There was another exit almost immediately, about a half a mile later, so we took it. The GPS took us away from the interstate, over hill and dale, on little two lane country roads that were only barely paved, but undergoing some kind of sewer digging project, past propane tanks, and Rebel flags. And if we’d actually stopped to ask for directions, I’m pretty sure they would have been, “Take a right at the second donkey on the left”. But what’s a road trip without a little adventure????
Anyway, it was on our trip home that Angela found us the REAL jewel, which was called, Café Acadiana, and it’s located in Silverhill, Alabama. Café Acadiana offers truly authentic Cajun cuisine, and they served me the Shrimp Po’ Boy of My Dreams. I have thought about it almost every day, ever since. The shrimp was light, and crisp, perfectly seasoned, and perfectly cooked. The fries were equally light and crisp.
Chayse, the son of the owner, Gerald Ardoin, was our server, and his service was polite, and helpful. I’m so glad he recommended we try the Boudin Balls as well for an appetizer, because I’ve never had boudin before, and it really didn’t taste like I expected it to. It was much creamier – and spicier – than I thought it would be. But the creamy aspect of it kept the spice from being overpowering, and they were delicious, too! Gerald, the owner, could not have been friendlier nor more hospitable, and my only sadness is that this native of Louisiana didn’t decide to make Nashville his new home, when he moved away from Louisiana. The next time I head to Orange Beach, I will FOR SURE take a slight detour off the beaten path, to get to Silverhill, and Gerald’s place: Café Acadiana.
4. A Great Destination
Last on my list, but CERTAINLY not least important for a great road trip is that you’ve GOT to have a great destination to go to! And what could be a better destination for a Girlfriend Getaway/Road Trip than the beach??? We got so excited when we saw these signs out our window!
When we got to our condo, you can imagine how happy we were when we saw how nice it was! We stayed in a condo at a property called The Edgewater, and this unit is managed by Gulf Shores Rentals . I’ll just share a few pics with you of this gorgeous, spacious unit that has, as I mentioned before, 4 bedrooms, and 4 bathrooms. (And 2 kitchens!)
And waiting on the kitchen island were 4 beautiful beach swag bags from Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Tourism, with towels and cups, and notebooks! A perfect gift for writers, at the beach!
And delicious rum cakes by The Rum Sisters of Gulf Shores was waiting on us as well! (My favorite, it should come as no surprise to my OWN sisters, was the Twisted Sister.) Because hey, it’s the beach! Why not???
Well, that’s my list of the Top 4 Must-Haves for a Girlfriends Getaway/Road Trip:
- A Sweet Ride
- Good Road Food
- A Great Destination
I’m planning a couple more posts to follow up on this one to tell you precisely why I fell in love with the Gulf Shores/Orange Beach area, and why I can’t wait to go back. And hopefully, my next trip will be a romantic getaway with my husband. In my next post, I’m going to tell you about some of the great activities there are to do, and in the one after that, I’ll tell you about some of the wonderful restaurants I enjoyed.
Gulf Shores/Orange Beach was a pleasant surprise for me, and I hope to convince you, too, to take a closer look at making this a vacation destination for you and your girlfriends. (Or family. Or significant other.)