Schlitterbahn – the world’s number one waterpark

Schlitterbahn

Schlitterbahn

Schlitterbahn is the most popular summertime waterpark in the United States and has been rated the world’s number one waterpark by the Travel Channel. It has over three miles of tubing, 17 waterslides, the world’s first surfing machine and three uphill water coasters. Sounds awesome!

The Master Blaster is definitely one of the best rides at Schlitterbahn. It propels riders in inner tubes with water jets uphill and downhill, through figure-eights and finally the riders are dropped into a dramatic pretzel-shaped, downward spiral.  Sounds awesome, just be careful to not lose your suit. 🙂

And then there’s the Black Knight a very unique ride where you fly through a dark tube that allows in no light.  You’re literally flying downward in complete darkness.

Lagoon Hot Tub

Lagoon Hot Tub

With all this craziness it’s good to know that your basic wading pool and hot tub can be taken advantage of when you need some relaxation. (Or are just to scared to do a water roller coaster in complete darkness.)

Up next: Accomadations

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Wilkommen to New Braunsfels

On this cold February day, visions of summer and water parks can’t be avoided.  New Braunsfels, Texas is a popular destination during the summer with it’s old-world German charm and it’s world-famous waterpark, Schlitterbahn.

New Braunbsfels Tubing

New Braunsfels Tubing

New Braunsfels was founded in 1845 by German farmers and you can still dance to oompah music and dine at bier gartens there.  In fact, every year in early November, a ten-day sausage festival called Wurstfest celebrates the rich heritage of this community. (Sounds like fun but I want to visit in the summer.)

Guadalupe River

Guadalupe River

Many tourists come to New Braunsfels to go tubing down the clear waters of the Guadalupe River and the Comal River and there are a few different companies that will offer tube and raft rentals, as well as, independent guides. Rockin’ River Rides and Gruene River Company.

Gruene Dance Hall

Gruene Dance Hall

Another popular spot to visit is the Gruene Historic District where you can practice your two-step at the Gruene Hall, which is the oldest continually running dance-hall in Texas and where country singer George Strait got his start.  Antiquing is also a popular activity in Gruene Historic District, I actually have a moonstone ring I bought there while antiquing when I was 16.  Clothes, handmade furniture and pottery, Texas gifts and home furnishings are also available in downtown Gruene.
Up Next: Schlitterbahn

Universal Studios – The Nightlife

Citywalk

Universal Citywalk

Reggae, latin dancing, piano bars, gourmet food and the Blue Man Group are not necessarily things you would associate with a kiddie theme park, but Universal Citywalk is prepared to keep your nights packed with delicious food and fabulous activities.

Citywalk is a 30-acre entertainment complex with live-music, casual and formal dining, shopping and a movie theater.

Emeril's Restaurant Orlando

Emeril's Restaurant Orlando

I can’t wait to try some of the restaurants when I’m there on my honeymoon.  Emeril’s Restaurant Orlando is at the top of my list, how could I not try some of the this famous chef’s food.  Also, his restaurant has a wine gallery with 12,000 bottles of wine, wow!

Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville is next on my list.  With live music every night and a unique combo of Key West and Caribbean foods, it’s gonna be so much fun!

And then there’s the Hard Rock Cafe, Russ and I have eaten at a Hard Rock everytime we’ve traveled together and it would be bad karma to break this tradition on our honeymoon.

Blue Man Group

Blue Man Group

The next stop I’ll have to make in Citywalk is a Blue Man Group performance.  The Blue Man Group is world-famous for their show that combines music, comedy and multimedia theatrics.  I’ve never seen them perform before but every review I’ve ever heard has been glowing.  Be Warned: The first four rows of the theater are called the “Poncho Section.”  This section is provided with ponchos because it is the most “interactive” section and the performers work with some materials that could splash. Fun.  I think I’m gonna pass on sitting in the “Poncho Section.”

Citywalk Map

Citywalk Map

Social Media advice from Ellen Degeneres?

In Social Media class last week, we had a guest speaker from the Oklahoma Regional Food Bank.  Her name is Natalie Wright and she is in charge of all of the social media endeavors for the food bank.  Wow.  There are very few non-profits in the Oklahoma City area who have a single person dedicated to social media.

Natalie focused on helping us to think about how we communicate through different media.  She stressed the importance of speaking as you normally would, not speaking as if it’s a media release at all times.  This helps to build trust and relationships.

In other parts of the social media world… This weekend while watching TV, I heard Ellen Degeneres give advice to an audience member on how to update her Facebook status and America’s Next Top Model encouraged viewers to go on Twitter and discuss their views on the show. Wow.  Social Media really has infiltrated the mainstream.  Also, on Twitter I’ve found and am following Ashton Kutcher (aplusk), Demi Moore (mrskutcher) and Soleil Moon Frye (moonfrye).  It’s pretty fabulous to feel like you are on the inside track with a celebrity, I love it!

Universal Studios – my honeymoon

Universal Studios

My future husband and I have decided to go to Universal Studios for our honeymoon.  Doesn’t that sound fun?  Riding rides, seeing shows, stuffing our faces with lots of yummy food, in general, acting like little kids.

Hard Rock Hotel - Unviveral Orlando

Hard Rock Hotel - Universal Orlando

We’ve decided to stay on site at the super hip Hard Rock Hotel. With more then $1 million worth of Rock and Roll memorabilia and the pool’s underwater sound system we’re bound to never get bored.  We also plan on eating at least once at the Palm Restaurant located inside the hotel, this steakhouse, famous for its NY location, will have to be tried by two kids from Oklahoma where beef is king.

Another perk to staying on site is the Universal Express pass, which allows us to skip the regular lines and stand in much shorter lines, woo hoo.

Jake and Elwood in Universal Studios Florida

Jake and Elwood in Universal Studios Florida

There are several different rides and shows at Universal that my man and I are excited to experience.  Shrek 4-D, where we can see, hear and feel what’s going on with Fiona and Shrek.  MEN IN BLACK Alien Attack, where we get to play with laser guns.  But not TWISTER… Ride It Out; why in the world would we want to experience that when we could stay at home and see the  real deal? The shows I really want to see are Beetlejuice’s Graveyard Revue, where all the famous classic movie monsters perform a rock show, and The Blues Brothers because Jake and Elwood are the epitome of bad-boy blues!

Here’s a video of Dracula singing in Beetlejuice’s Graveyard Revue. You Shook Me All Night Long

Enjoy and I’ll catch ya next time.

The Not So Beaten Path

This blog is going to be focused on my fiance’s and my dream travels; we’re always talking about all the wonderful places we want to visit and all the super cool things we want to do when we’ve earned some money and are no longer broke college kids.

This is going to be a collection of information about the fabulous places we plan to travel to someday.  The only requirements are that the travels meet my need for culture, his need for adventure and our mutual need for delicious food and drink.

Enjoy!