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Travel Tip For Today

Bring one pair of comfortable walking shoes as well as a pair of sandals or Tevas. Before you leave home, break in your new shoes so you're not uncomfortable on the road.

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Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas

Introduction & Brief History

The American southwest lures many looking for sunshine or moonlight, quiet or excitement, history or the future, new beginnings or retirement. The focus tends to be outdoor life and riches. How you wish to experience this life and wealth is up to you. The southwest has seen oil strikes, silver strikes, Las Vegas jackpots and successful cattle ranches larger than some states. Nature provides a Grand Canyon, a painted desert, wonderful rock formations, amazing plant and animal life, and opportunities for hiking, spelunking, off-reading, ballooning, rock climbing, and horseback riding ‘til the cows come home—because you’ll have to bring them in.

Take Time To Enjoy Texas With The Family

Dalas Skyline

Texas is the epitome of the southwest for many. Texas covers over quarter million square miles, encompassing lush semi-tropical areas along the Gulf of Mexico to very flat, dry and arid land up in the north and west. Rivers have always been important in Texas life, and rivers, the Rio Grande, of course, largely define the northern, eastern and southern borders being the best known.

Aside from the obvious pleasures of vacationing on the Gulf of Mexico, southern Texas offers such unique spots as the Alamo in San Antonio, Space Center Houston, numerous nature preserves, Fiesta Texas in San Antonio, and many more finds in a state that proudly displays its past while welcoming the future.

Cactus in the Southwest

Northern Texas is the country America thinks of as the true home of the cowboys and the get-rich-quick oil strikes. And at one time that was true. A tour will introduce the family to the land of cattle rising and cattle drives would include Amarillo, Lubbock and Abilene. The oil boom side of things is best explored in Dallas. Dallas is a diverse and exciting city with parks and entertainment throughout. Lakes and rivers provide water sports, and of course professional sports are well represented.

Outstanding Oklahoma Attractions For The Whole Family

Texas’ neighboring oil-rich state is Oklahoma. Many families have become quite wealthy living off these rigs, including Native American families originally from the South who was forced into Oklahoma via the “Trail of Tears”.

Oklahoma is the home of the Dust Bowl and Will Rogers and cattle drives. Quite arid in the western panhandle, eastern Oklahoma has rivers and lakes enough for anyone looking for water sports and hiking terrain.

Never Ending Family Fun In New Mexico

Anyone who has seen a New Mexico license plate knows it is “The Land Of Enchantment,” and only a short visit will prove that true. An average-sized average-shaped state on our Mexican border, New Mexico is full of unique surprises.

New Mexico’s flavor is a blend of cultures and eras. Native American, Spanish, Mexican, American and European cultures mix in almost every aspect of life. And all is overshadowed and shaped by the landscape. With near-desert conditions to the south, there are snow skiing areas to the north. The landscape has drawn large numbers of artists to centers like Albuquerque and Taos, most notable perhaps being Georgia O’Keefe. The ancient indigenous peoples’ heritage draws many to the state for the archeological exploration and visits to the cliff dwellings and Anazi ruins, the pueblos and current Native American culture and arts, the awareness and study of traditional spiritual practices, and the current struggles of Indian nations such as those in the Four Corners region.

For the family looking for something different and exciting, New Mexico can be an ideal choice. Outdoor sports opportunities include traditional camping, hiking, climbing, riding and off-road driving, plus air sports and water sports. Keep an eye out for rodeos and horse racing events as well. And don’t forget to take a trip down into Carlsbad Caverns, a cool, magical world hidden beneath the hot dry sun. If shopping and artistic exploration is preferred-no problem—Santa Fe and Albuquerque are well noted for these more refined pleasures, as well as fabulous restaurants and museums.

Awesome Arizona-A Family Must See!

Family Time at the Grand Canyon

Arizona drives a variety of folks looking for warm dry air, a stay at a dude ranch or a baseball spring camp, the Grand Canyon and maybe a little winter golf. This is also a good spot to try out your equipment and your stamina if you’re headed down to Baja California for an adventurous journey.

Another major aspect of Arizona is the Indian reservations. These are sovereign nations and private residences of the people who live on them. Contact a tribe before you go, or check in local towns if you want to meet or talk with any given group. Don’t just head onto the land to hike, sightsee or knock on the doors. There are numerous culture centers, museums, and universities where you can learn more about the indigenous people of an area. And, be warned, once you fall in love with the southwest, you will want to meet the people who have been part of it for so long.

Nevada puts yet another spin on wide-open vistas and desert-like conditions. From Las Vegas in the south to Reno in the northwest to the Salt Flats stretching outward to the east, Nevada provides opportunities for you to accept and turn into an adventure.

Lucky Las Vegas & Reno–Family Friendly Attractions

Lucky Las Vegas

Las Vegas was one man’s dream that has become a booming city with a very stable and loyal population. Aside from the tempting casinos and nightclubs, many folks go to Las Vegas to shop, or to use as a home base while visiting more remote areas of the southwest.

In the Lake Tahoe/Reno area there is a lively nightlife with casinos, including shows and theater. The history of an area is exciting and somehow familiar—including tales of the Donner Party and the truly difficult journey over the Sierra Nevada’s, and the Ponderosa country of the Bonanza series, which often feature old Virginia City and Carson City (the Nevada state capital).

Reno has a reputation all its own. It is a fine university town, has casinos and nightlife. And in August Reno draws car buffs from all corners for its Hot August Nights. Whatever you go for, you’ll enjoy the scenery and find the locals very friendly.

Dining in the Southwest States

Dining in the Southwest States

The cuisine in New Mexico consists of two major staples-the red Chile and the green Chile. Spice up or spice down your enchilada, burritos, Chile con queso, or flauta, and indulge in true Mexican “comida”. For dessert, do not miss out on the famous New Mexican flan, Bizcochito, or Empanada. While dining with the family in Oklahoma, stop into any local diner and feast on the official state meal consisting of any of the following; fried okra, squash, cornbread, barbecue pork, biscuits, sausage and gravy, grits, corn, strawberries, chicken fried steak. Save room for some pecan pie, as Oklahoma produces the most pecans in the nation. The freshly harvested pecans will blow you away! While traveling in Las Vegas or Reno, the food choices are absolutely unlimited, as these two gem cities offer any fare on the map. Choose from a five star restaurant, a comfortable diner, or a quick meal on the go. Either way, the family will be satisfied.

Burgers, tacos, only the best cut meats, fresh salads-there is no limit in these cities. Nevada is known for it’s beef jerky and sourdough bread-so if the family is in need of a nice snack, be sure to grab these popular items. The family will love Texas barbecue. Enjoy hip, fun eateries with western themes and lively country western Texan folk. Be sure to grab some sweet tea, bbq ribs, and a fresh corn on the cob-of course saving room for some delicious cream, chocolate, or pecan pie. Arizona is home to the artisan bakery & family diner restaurants. The menu options are endless, with the whole family in mind.

Anywhere in the Southwest will surely entertain the whole family, as this lively part of the US is booming with attractions, great food, and amazing sites. The family will be completely satisfied with their travels after visiting these warm and welcoming states.


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