When G&I got married last September, we planned to wait until November to take a 9-day honeymoon to Costa Rica over Thanksgiving. Unfortunately, days before we were scheduled to leave, G was injured during an indoor soccer game. Injured meaning, two ER visits and two nights at St. Luke’s hospital while doctors monitored the swelling in his leg. He was released the day before our plane left for San Jose, and we cancelled the honeymoon of our dreams. [Note: He’s recovered fully, despite the scary injury!]
Once we were able to talk about a new honeymoon, we dubbed it “the honeymoon of our reality.” Costa Rica during spring break wasn’t in range anymore, so we looked for a spot within driving distance of Jacksonville that offered similar adventures and new places to explore. Asheville was a popular recommendation from friends the first time I posed the question on Twitter. After some Googling, I found that Asheville offers the white water rafting, zip lines and hiking we had been looking forward to doing in Costa Rica. There were cabins in the woods, fresh farm-to-table restaurants and the Biltmore Estate among the hills and mountains of Western North Carolina…so different than the typical Florida vacation!
Through VRBO.com (Vacation Rentals By Owner), I discovered and booked a downtown condo for the week of G’s spring break. March is too early to do a lot of the big adventure things we originally wanted to do, but we planned to at least see the Biltmore, drive the Blue Ridge Parkway, make spa appointments and take the Asheville Brews Cruise during our stay.
The honeymoon week, bookended by the Gate River Run 15K that I ran Saturday morning before we left and Corndog Day on the following Saturday. We detoured through Atlanta to say hi to friends, made an unplanned lunch stop in Greenville, SC on the way to Asheville, and then enjoyed five great days together — our first vacation getaway that was 100% ours.
We’ve recapped the honeymoon in cliff note style, which I’ll post throughout this week with some of our favorite pictures. Asheville and WNC are beautiful to explore, wonderful to visit and charming to experience. We’re already talking about going back as early as the summer…or at least on a future anniversary. Thanks everyone who gave us tips and hints, and pointed us to sights and tastes that made our trip so great.
UPDATE – click on the links below to read the series of posts about our big trip.
Final posts coming soon…