May 20, 2019

THE HEART OF THE LOWCOUNTRY: BEAUFORT, South Carolina

As seniors, we have won the right to stroll. To stroll for hours. To stroll slowly. Strolling through the heart of the low country means walking Beaufort, South Carolina and there couldn’t be a nicer place for it.  I took my time walking the historic district “out” to The Point and had strolled my way around old Beaufort in one afternoon!     Using Beaufort as my headquarters, I explored a few of the 200 islands in Beaufort County, SC. By doing so, the diversity of the county struck me as unique in all of America.     HISTORY     Beaufort County was the site of the second landing…

May 13, 2019

REDCLIFFE PLANTATION STATE HISTORIC SITE IN South Carolina: A SCANDALOUS HISTORY

Not all southern plantations look like Tara or Twelve Oaks but all have histories that span generations. That is the case with Redcliffe Plantation in Beech Island, South Carolina. We spent an entire afternoon learning about the history of the plantation as well as the families and slaves who lived there.  The interpretative history tours at Redcliffe are superb. We learned a great deal!      Our visit to Redcliffe Plantation took us well beyond the romance of the age and any idealized version of plantation life. The documented history of the plantation and what happened there is a stark and very real view into a plantation run by a…

April 29, 2019

DISCOVER THE DONNELLEY WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT AREA ON US 17 IN South Carolina

“Your best chance to see alligators is on the causeway because the water is low”, she said. ” The birds and gators have been really active.” The three carloads of strangers who were bunched into the office of the Donnelley Wildlife Management Area  (DWMA) got excited at that news. “If you hike the trails, be sure to be on the lookout for rattlesnakes,” she added.   “As in Diamondback Rattlers?”, asked one young man. I decided right then to stick to the DWMA Driving Tour!       South Carolina’s ACE BASIN     The ACE Basin in South Carolina consists of approximately 1,000,000 acres of diverse wildlife habitats that include…

April 22, 2019

BONAVENTURE CEMETERY in SAVANNAH, GEORGIA

Poems have been written about it. Oscar Wilde called it, “incomparable.” John Muir slept for 6 days and nights in it when he took his famous 1,000 Mile Walk in America. Bonaventure Cemetery is, in the spring, one of the most beautiful man-made places I have ever seen.       We were dazzled by the artistry in the stonework, the loving and inspirational messages inscribed on that stonework, the live oak tunnels covered with long moss, the bounty of azaleas and the serenity of Bonaventure Cemetery along the banks of the Wilmington River. We wanted to stay all day and come back for more once the day ended.  …

April 15, 2019

Dorchester Academy: THIS NATIONALLY SIGNIFICANT CIVIL RIGHTS SITE IN GEORGIA NEEDS SUPPORT

DORCHESTER ACADEMY   Just outside of Midway, Georgia is one of the least-visited of the 11 stops in Georgia on the U.S. Civil Rights Trail.  Dorchester Academy played a major role in the National Civil Rights Movement.   Dorchester Academy was founded in 1868. The school was established to educate freed African-Americans following the Civil War.   In the 1960s, Dorchester was a center for the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. Septima Clark, called the “Mother of the Civil Rights Movement” by MLK, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and Rosa Parks made Dorchester Academy the headquarters of the Citizen Education Program, a vehicle for training African-Americans in the effective exercise of their rights….

April 8, 2019

HOW TO PLAN SENIOR TRAVEL

We’ve been getting questions lately about how to put together a travel itinerary. Whether you are recently retired, newly able to travel because finances have improved, or find yourself in some other new life situation, knowing how to put together a travel itinerary is crucial.          We hope this post will help you to learn how we go about setting an itinerary. Over time, you will develop your own process.         BEFORE YOU START PLANNING, YOU NEED TO ANSWER SOME QUESTIONS        QUESTION ONE:  What is the scope of travel you interested in? Do you want to go overseas? Visit North America?…

April 1, 2019

CADES COVE LOOP ROAD: DRIVE INTO A PAINTING

Following Cades Cove Loop Road in the Smoky Mountain National Park, Tennessee is like driving into a pastoral painting! This drive has been on our bucket list for many years. Friends have told us about the wildlife, the beauty and history of the road, but no description is adequate!      WHY CADES COVE?   One reason we wanted to visit Cades Cove is because wildlife of all kinds fills me with wonder and excitement.  (I should clarify that all wildlife does not include snakes!) After I retired, I lived in a 400-square foot cabin in the North Carolina mountains. My cabin was across a dirt road from a bear sanctuary…

March 25, 2019

MARK TWAIN’S HOMETOWN: HANNIBAL, MISSOURI

We are HUGE fans of the writings of Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)! His book, Roughing It, written in 1872 is a side-splitting comedic recounting of Twain’s misadventures in the Wild West.   Just think about his “River Novels”-the hair raising and hilarious tales told in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn! Have you wondered about the setting for those childhood stories of Tom Sawyer, Huckleberry Finn and others? That setting is Hannibal, Missouri!   Twain was deeply connected and devoted to the Mississippi River. We recommend reading his book, Life on the Mississippi, written in 1883.  His love for the river began when he was a boy in…

March 18, 2019

50 GREAT AMERICAN ROAD TRIPS: THE BEST BACK ROAD BY STATE

We hope spring makes you want to get on the road! To help you decide where to go, we have a treasure trove of backroads information for you. Just where are the best back roads, by state?   You already know we take back roads on every trip we take. Check out our blog post, “Take Backroads to Explore America” at: http://thetravelingseniors.com/back-roads-forever/ In that post, we share some of our favorite backroads.    As our friend, Scott of the blog, Take Back Roads, says, “America is home to countless back roads, side roads, and country roads… scenic routes, historic routes, and tourist routes… National Byways and Historic Highways…. and more road trip…