Packed Suitcase - A (mostly) Mid-Atlantic Travel Blog
home,paged,page-template,page-template-blog-masonry-date-in-image,page-template-blog-masonry-date-in-image-php,page,page-id-8582,paged-6,page-paged-6,ajax_fade,page_not_loaded,,qode-title-hidden,qode_grid_1300,hide_top_bar_on_mobile_header,qode-content-sidebar-responsive,qode-theme-ver-13.2,qode-theme-bridge,wpb-js-composer js-comp-ver-5.4.5,vc_responsive
About me
Get in touch
Stay connected
Have weekend travels worthy of the Monday morning water cooler… without having to take a lot of time off of work.

As we drove the Blue Ridge Parkway deeper and deeper into the heart of south-western Virginia, we passed regional landmarks like Round Meadow Creek and the Mayberry Trading Post before turning onto Squirrel Spur Road, which snaked through the mountains on a scenic and serpentine path. Then, a sign:   It's a blink-or-you'll-miss-it

The first weekend of November, I packed up my car and headed out to discover the "Old School" side of Virginia. Found all over the state -- from the largest city to the smallest town-- Old School Virginia shares glimpses of a simpler time. A nostalgic blast from the past where

The amber sunlight came streaming through the waning trees, hitting my face with a staccato rhythm. As we drove a 60-odd mile stretch of the Blue Ridge Parkway between Roanoke and Meadows of Dan, Virginia, the sun felt closer than normal, the shadows more defined... a reminder that autumn has nearly come

World class spas. High thread-count sheets. Epic views. 5 star restaurants. Prime locations. Top-notch service. Luxurious spas and activities and amenities galore... Yes, I'll admit it. I'm a sucker for a nice hotel. Here is my list of some of the dreamiest hotels in the mid-Atlantic, in no particular order. Some of these I've already

When attempting to fly fish, stealth is key. Every decision -- from the fly you use, to where you stand, to the subtle way you flick your wrist -- either helps you blend into the natural environment... or announces your presence to the underwater world below. Being stealthy when fly fishing isn't

  I’ve always considered Harrisonburg, Virginia to be the quintessential college town. Well, I guess I should clarify... From 1999 to 2003, it was my quintessential college town. I loved calling it my home during those few fleeting years that I attended James Madison University. It was a really affordable and fun place

All throughout the mid-Atlantic, a change is taking place. Yes, friends, it’s time to say goodbye to summer and celebrate fall once again! Fall is arguably my favorite time to plan a weekend trip in this part of the U.S. The weather’s consistently temperate and mild, the natural scenery is at

Hello, friends! I've taken a little blog breather since I have so many upcoming travels that I'll be writing about over the next few months. But a new "Ask Chris" question has me back in action once again! This question comes from Facebook. And, here we go! Dear Chris, I'm going

Today's #FriFotos theme is "WINGS." It brought back fond memories of my summer trip to Alaska... and my flight in a float plane! It was terrifying at first – made even scarier by the fact that I witnessed a similar plane CRASH INTO A BOAT right as I was set to

As a fledging “mid-Atlantic travel expert,” I’ve been road-tripping around the region practically every weekend for the past year in an effort to find the best and most unique experiences the mid-Atlantic has to offer. As a result, I frequently receive emails from people looking for help planning specific travels

For the past 30-some years, minstrels-in training, ladies, lasses and squires, beggars, wenches, knaves and even kings have been conveying on a 27 acre bit of forested land in Crownsville, Maryland each fall. No, it's not a time machine. It's the Maryland Renaissance Festival! Here, people come to step back in time, to

It's September. The leaves aren't turning-- yet-- but the yellow busses filled with chattering school children are just the first indication that summer is coming to an end. After trips to far-away places like Toronto, Ottawa and Alaska, and local travels to the Shenandoah Valley, Hot Springs, Hampton, Solomons Island, Dewey