Photo Girl Travels

Taking the Road Less Traveled

Biltmore Estate Decked Out

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People who know me know I LOVE the holidays. It starts with Halloween and my giddiness extends through Christmas. Yes, my house is the one decorated for Halloween in September and Christmas in November. Unlike many if you I gasp in delight when the Christmas decorations are decked out in the stores in September. So when I was looking into a trip location in November I was thrilled to find out one of my favorite places would be decorated for the holidays: The Biltmore Estate. The photos below are ones from my visit. The first one is of the tree in the dining room. Here’s a close up.

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The tree is a 40 foot fresh cut tree a and the smell is incredible. They said that they decorate so early that on December 3rd they will take this one down and put a fresh on up overnight. They would decorate the tree hanging the presents on the branches so the estate keeps the same tradition which you see in the above photo. It you’re lucky they will be playing Silent Night on the organ and the music will float throughout the house. Here are some more photos.

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Above are the trees across the room from the 40 foot tree by a massive fireplace. You have to stop and imagine what the room was like with the fires a blaze and the lighted and decorated trees glowing on Christmas Eve….

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The library.

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Many of the rooms have period dress which is very interesting to see. The women must have been no taller than 5 feet tall. The dresses are tiny!

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After your tour, head over to the area with the shops and order a hot chocolate and stroll through the gardens and shops. Me, by my favorite lion.

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The first day photo with my lion.

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Actually during the first photo I got photo bombed by the cutest kid πŸ˜‰

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Second day… Yes I am obsessed with this handsome guy.

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And the last day the put a bow on him!❀️❀️❀️

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If you are able to tour the Biltmore Estate over the next two months I hope you do!!! You will not regret it. Also, now they are doing evening candle light tours who’s must be incredible. We will your the grounds in my next blog and also take a walk out to bass pond throughout the wooded forest. Sending everyone early holiday cheer!

Some links for more information:Β  http://www.biltmore.com/Β and http://www.biltmore.com/visit

 

#BACON Anyone? My Breakfast at the #Biltmore

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While staying at the Biltmore Inn, I am on what they call the bed and breakfast package. I have to confess I usually don’t eat breakfast and consider the large amounts of cream that I pour into my coffee to be enough. But the Biltmore Inn has one of the best so I splurge and load up for the day. The photos below are a combination taken over the last two days.

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I personally LoVe the buffet which offers a lox area with everything you could ever want to load onto a slice if salmon.

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Fresh fruit.

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You can also have them make a custom omelet (I always order everything with extra spinach). And the bacon is some of the best I have ever had.

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And my lox plate.

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Finally, the topper is that the have cheese grits which melt in you mouth!

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Here’s the omelette bar where they will cook it to order. And some photos of the restaurant where can either sit by the window and watch the sunrise, or maybe you’d prefer to sit by a crackling fire, perfect for a fall morning.

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This is where I’m sitting right now, I’ll finish and then one last walk to the Estate. So sad this is my last day.

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Sorry, the omelette bar didn’t upload and I’m attempting all of this on my phone and can’t figure out how to insert an image above πŸ˜‰

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And finally a photo of the most amazing bacon ever! (Not including Vermont bacon.) off to the Estate!

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#Biltmore Inn – Absolute Heaven

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After a 6 hour drive from the Monticello area in Virginia I arrived at one of my favorite places- The Biltmore Inn and Estate. I swear, any stress you may have is left at the door. The place is enchanting! I was here for the first time two years ago in the spring so I hope you’ll take a look at those posts (note Biltmore tab over on the right) since these include how to get there, my secret walk, etc, I’ll use these posts as a way of sharing my stay during the fall season. One huge difference is that everything is decorated for the holidays which I LOVE! But first, before I take you to the Estate I’ll share some photos of the Inn. The one above is the view from my room. You can see the pathway that takes you past the vineyards to the winery and Antler Village. Now, let’s take a look inside.

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I love this room (above photos) just off the lobby. You can sit by the fire and enjoy a drink. In the morning they offer complimentary coffee (I love when hotels do that) below are some photos of my room.

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The next photos show the veranda where I sit every evening.

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The long beautiful hallway where I walk each morning to exit the hotel for my walks.

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In the next blogs I’ll take you outside so you can see the grounds, have you join me for breakfast and an evening glass of wine. I’ll show you the farm and Antler village. We’ll wine taste and of course visit the Estate. Please click on the follow button for email updates on my posts.

Ash Lawn-Highland Historic Home of James Monroe

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When you’re visiting Monticello it a short 2.5 mile drive to the home of President James Monroe. This home is actually quite modest but very interesting as 80% of the furnishings are original to the house. While Jefferson was President, Monroe helped negotiated the Louisiana Purchase which doubled the size of the US. It also gave us control of the Port in New Orleans and the Mississippi. He purchased everything from Napoleon for the sweet price of $15M.

The grounds allow you to step back in time and the are truly worth the visit.

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The road that leads to his home.

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His home.

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The changing leaves in the parking lot!

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On one side the leaves where still on the trees… On the other side where the sun was setting the leaves were all gone. Hope you get a chance to visit! You won’t be disappointed!

Enchanting Monticello!

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20131105-193124.jpg When I was little we took a lot trips… which is probably why I love to travel so much. But we didn’t fly, we drove all around the United States in a camper my Dad built. Which is most likely why I love to drive so much. One trip I will always remember is when we drove through Virginia to the historic Monticello estate, the home of Thomas Jefferson. I remember it like it was yesterday. And to this day it is still one of my favorite places to visit. I hope these photos inspire you to add this destination to your bucket list. In my humble opinion two of the best times are on the spring and the fall. Here are my fall pics from a few days ago: as you can see… I LOVE this place!

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Arriving

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The gardens.

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The little house in the photo was glass enclosed and where Thomas Jefferson would stay for hours and do some of his “best thinking”.

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Sipping hot chocolate (it was chilly outside)

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The walking path down to the visitors center from the estate.

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Thomas Jeffersons grave…he died on July 4 exactly 50 years after the signing of the Declaration of Independence. You see this on the walking path.

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The end of the walking path just before the visitors center.

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One last kiss and jump before I said good bye. Until the next time!!!!

Keswick Hall Hotel Escape

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After dodging deer and totally getting lost on some remote Virginia back roads I finally pull into the Keswick Hall Hotel. It’s a beautiful historic hotel and one of my favorites. Because of the time change it was just about 5 and the sun was about to set. I threw my luggage in my room and went out to my favorite patios overlooking the golf course and ordered a glass of local wine. I only wish my most amazing peeps were there with me. Here are some of the photos I took during my stay at the hotel…

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As I’m writing this I’m having breakfast and it’s really good. Poached eggs, cheese grits and yes…. BACON!

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Along with the staff, thanks to Cork and Max in the upstairs patio area and TJ in the breakfast area for the wonderful service!