Shannon Did What / Travel + Lifestyle Blog

cross country roadtrip

Roadtrip Round-up

TravelShannon GuerreroComment

This is a sad time you guys. I've run out of road trip material to write about.  Sad, right? Well, my cross country road trip did give me enough content for over 6 weeks of posts. If you missed any posts, don't fret!  I've made it super easy for you to see all of the content from my 10-day trip below!  These are the places you can read about/really just look at pictures:

St. Louis, Missouri
Memphis, Tennessee
Cadillac Ranch, Texas
White Sands National Monument, New Mexico
Antelope Canyon, Arizona
Horseshoe Bend, Arizona
Bryce Canyon, Utah
Zion National Park, Utah
Valley of Fire, Nevada
Seven Magic Mountains, Nevada

I've laid out reasons to visit these places, the best places to go and even tips on what to bring on your next road trip and how to plan it.  For weeks now, people have been asking me what my favorite place to visit was.  After thinking about, I don't think I can just pick one.  There were great aspects of really everywhere we went.  St. Louis, was the biggest surprise of the trip.  You can read all about it.  It's a great city.  Memphis barbecue was better than I expected and I expected it to be so good.  Cadillac Ranch is pretty out of the way, unless you're driving on Route 66.  It is a really cool site and is interactive since you too can graffiti the cars.  White Sands was so picturesque and serene.  All you could see was sand for miles and you can't forget about the sledding.  Antelope Canyon, Horseshoe Bend, Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park are the perfect places to visit.  They are so breathtaking that you really just have to see them for yourself.  So what are you waiting for? Go check them out now!

Yours Truly // Shannon

Planning Your Roadtrip

Travel, CreateShannon GuerreroComment
How to plan your Roadtrip - Shannon Did What?

It’s the summer, guys!  Get up and go on a roadtrip!  I don’t think I realized how much I loved roadtrips until last year.  It is really something else to be on an open road, sometimes with no other cars around you.  It’s a pretty freeing and liberating feeling.  I think I had always focused on wanted to get out of the country and explore other parts of this world and experience different cultures.  I forgot some of the most beautiful places to explore are right here in the US.  So, get up and get in your car and drive!  Here are a couple of things to think about when you’re planning your next trip:

ROUTE

First of all, where do you want to go?  Figure out where you want to start and end.  I know sounds silly, but think is really the first step.
 

MILES

Once you figure out your route and where you’re going, choose how many miles you want to drive a day.  This really depends on how much time you have for your roadtrip.  I discovered Google Maps was my best friend in all of this.  It can help you figure out how many miles and the time it will take.  You can even put in the specific time and day you will be travelling and it will estimate your travel time based on traffic data.
 

LODGING

I would definitely recommend figuring out where you will be staying each night before you go.   Especially if you have your mileage mapped out for each day, you should be able to know the area where you want to end up each day.  And at the end of the day, you won’t have anything to worry about.  You will already have somewhere to stay.
 

STOPS ALONG THE WAY

Look up your route ahead of time.  You may be able to find some cool or quirky places to visit on your route.  Of course detours are probably the most fun.  Don’t be afraid to stop if you see something that strikes your interest.
 

CAR CHECK

Make sure you have a full service check up on your car before you head out on your adventure.  Trust me, have them check everything.  And I mean everything: tires, breaks, fluids, air conditioning and any other car related issues (not a car expert here).  Our A/C was broken and that eastern humidity and desert heat killed on our cross country roadtrip.  Also, if you’re planning a roadtrip to move somewhere, make sure you factor in the weight of your car for your drive time.  I know our car was heavily weighed down and took longer to accelerate, stop and didn’t go as fast as an empty car.

 

If you need a little more help planning, I've also written about how to plan a trip like boss, here!  Also, I’ve made a list of the essentials to bring on your trip.  Check it out, here!

Yours Truly // Shannon

 

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White Sands National Monument

TravelShannon GuerreroComment
White Sands National Monument - Shannon Did What?

I don’t know what it is about Sand Dunes, but they are so intriguing.  Where did all that sand come from anyway?  I’ve been to the Mesquite Sand Dunes in Death Valley but there’s something different about White Sands National Monument in New Mexico.  The name alone should give it away.  The sand dunes are pure white in color.  They really are breathtaking.

White Sands National Monument is about 3.5 hours south of Albuquerque, New Mexico.  When we were originally planning our cross country road trip, it seemed a little too far out of the way.  Instead we were going to cut north through the Four Corners to end up in Page, Arizona to see Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend (stay tuned for this post!).  When our other friend decided to join us, the only and cheapest place for her to fly into was Tucson, Arizona.  So, we decided to make a giant U shape to get from Albuquerque to Page through Tucson because why stay on a straight path

 

One of the best parts of the White Sands is getting to sled down the dunes.  If you want, you can buy a disc from the gift shop for $15.  Or you can make friends with other tourists.  We happened to walk outside of the gift shop and there was a sled and wax leaned up against our car! Totally made our day.  A couple had used theirs already and thought we’d like it.  So if you can find someone to share theirs that’s the best way to go.  Remember to pay it forward after too!

Don’t forget to grab a ton of water and use the restrooms before venturing into the dunes.  The further you drive the better the dunes especially if you’re looking for the pure white, untouched ones.

Yours Truly // Shannon