This week we took an impromptu 4 day trip to South Carolina to attend a family member’s annual July 4th party and visit with other relatives. We also spent one night in Savannah at the Andaz with a Hyatt free night certificate, which I’ll review in a separate post. As summer is a prime time for a getaway, I thought I’d share with you my packing technique and $5 secret for packing like a pro!
The Pack Like a Pro Technique
Initially addressed in this post, below is a more detailed demonstration of my heavily road tested packing method.
For Father’s Day we went to the 60th Annual Classic, Antique & Collectors Car Show at Stan Hywet. Both Natty Guy, a nephew and my father-in-law are dedicated car enthusiasts and it had been quite a few years since any of us attended this event! Late morning we gathered up the group of us (12 in all) and walked over to the Seiberling estate, set smack-dab in the middle of a gorgeous west Akron neighborhood. The weather held out and we were able to see a wide array of cars from 1915-era Full Classics to cars from the 1990’s.
Would you believe me if I told you that you could get a safari-like experience without ever leaving the mid-West? Well, I’m about to tell you just how!
Nestled on a reclaimed strip-mine property located in Guernsey County, Ohio, The Wilds came into existence in 1978, when the Ohio DNR, Ohio Zoos and private sector formed a public-private partnership with the goal of transforming the land into a refuge for endangered wildlife and habitats. Open to the public since 1994, the project has expanded considerably in the past 20+ years. The Wilds now boasts a diverse array of animals, from the common trumpeter swan to more exotic varieties such as Grevy’s Zebra and Southern White Rhino.
The Wilds offers a variety of daily tours as well as several specialty tours (fishing safari, horseback safari, zip line safari, etc.) But the real fun starts with an overnight stay! The Yurts at Nomad Ridge provide adult-only accommodation with sweeping views of the animal pasture areas. Far from city lights and traffic, you’ll marvel at the dense night sky as you listen to the various animal calls while enjoying a wine at the fire pit.
As you can see from the pictures below, these aren’t real roughing-it style yurts. The adventure began right after check-in when we met our group for a sunset safari. You get really close up to the animals during this special tour that includes large cat feeding and a trip to the rhino house. The safari was followed by a buffet dinner in the visitor center then back to the yurt to pick up some wine and sit by the fire pit. Some of the other yurt guests also opted for fire time and we had a great time with new friends. Tons of stars were visible on the walk back to the yurt. Some of the animal noises made for a restless, if not interesting night! We got up and after a quick shower had breakfast, again at the visitor center. After check out we stayed and did the regular daytime tour with lots more animals on view!
There are 12 yurts available in three different configurations that vary in amenities but all yurt packages include:
an open air safari tour for each guest
dinner and breakfast for two
24-hour staff concierge
Below is a sneak preview of what you can expect to find at The Wilds!
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