Vacation in the Poconos
There is something so relaxing about the Poconos. I think it’s 50% the serene hiking and 50% the amazing bed and breakfast we stayed in, but I always come back home feeling rejuvenated. This is our second time staying in the Poconos, and it was just as memorable as the first time.
Mike and I’s first vacation ever was our ten year (dating) anniversary trip when we came to the Poconos. We had gone to his shore house, but we had never taken a trip together. We stayed at the same bed and breakfast and had such a relaxing wonderful time that we had to come back.
We left Friday much later than I would have hoped! My original plan was to sleep in, drop the animals off at my mother in laws, and drive up to the Poconos getting there around 3:00. However, my husband was not on the same page! He slept in late, we had to make a trip to the vet to get the animals nail’s cut (which took an hour!!) and then of course he had to play with the car. You would have thought we were going away for the week with all of his last minute prep!
We finally arrived, much later than I wanted to, and checked into the bed and breakfast. I cannot say enough about Cherry Valley Manor. The rooms are luxurious, gorgeous suites and the breakfasts are to die for. The hosts, Julia and Stan, are so kind and welcoming. When we checked in this time, they remembered us from two years ago and even remembered our favorite breakfast desert! They are truly wonderful people and have created a 5 star experience.
We went to a place in town for dinner, Garlic. It was upscale and expensive, however I do not believe the food was worth the price. Our waiter was very nice, but it is always a turn off when someone says their favorite thing on the menu is the most expensive thing, which in this case was a 5 course individualized tasting menu. My first thought was, wait how can it be your favorite thing on the menu if it’s individualized and changes? We both ordered specials, Mike the chicken parmesan and I ordered the salmon. Mine was very healthy, and very bland. Mike’s had good flavor however it was served with too little sauce. We decided that would be our only fancy meal of the trip, we’re both just so used to large portions and delicious food at Italian restaurants!
After a wonderful breakfast, courtesy of Julia and Stan, we headed to Bushkill Falls about 20 minutes away. We had been to Bushkill previously, but we did not remember the amount of stairs you had to climb. My tracker said it was over 6000 stairs, and 31 flights! It was beautiful, but get ready to work for these views!
We wasted away the afternoon relaxing and sitting on the deck. We then made our way to a town called Shawnee on the Delaware, a small town on the Delaware river that is quaint and charming. We went to dinner at the Gem and Keystone Pub, which was packed! We waited for a table, because this meant we were finally going to get a great dinner. We were not disappointed at all. The portions were huge and the food was delicious. Our waitress was the best waitress I think I’ve ever had in my life, she was amazing. I would absolutely recommend this restaurant to anyone I come across.
After another wonderful 4 course breakfast, we went to the New Jersey side of the Poconos. The drive over the I-80 bridge was gorgeous. The colors were vibrant all up and down the mountains. We got off the first exit over the bridge and followed some cars looking for a trail. After driving up the side of a mountain about five miles, we found a place to park. We ended up parking right near a gorgeous overlook of the Delaware River and we saw people kayaking, canoeing and fishing. We took a long walk down a camping road and enjoyed the beautiful scenery.
Again, in the afternoon we relaxed. We broke out our wedding cake to celebrate our one year wedding anniversary and ate it on the deck. We then took a long drive back up toward Shawnee on the Delaware and drove along a few one lane gravel roads. In the 80’s Mercedes it was a little nerve wracking for me if we were going to make it up the hills, but Mike of course lives for this. We ended our large circular drive back in East Stroudsburg where we stopped at Trackside Bar and Grill for dinner. The food was cheap and very good, just what we wanted! We then made our way back to the bed and breakfast to relax for the night.
Monday morning began as a sad day knowing we had to check out. All we did this long weekend was hike and eat, and truth be told if there was a way that I could do this all the time, I would! We took our 2.5 hour journey home slowly so we could enjoy the ride together. When we got home, all of our sadness melted away when we saw our two pets, Milo and Luna. A perfect ending to a perfect anniversary weekend.