Month: May 2017

How to Travel with Your Parents

How to Travel with Your Parents

Travel with parents, grandparents, first-timers and other novices is a different experience and requires a little different preparation. A couple of weeks ago, I traveled to Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, with my parents. My dad has Lyme disease and we were told a specialist there might 

Being Pampered in Foreign Lands

Being Pampered in Foreign Lands

Have you ever got back from your vacation and thought, “Man, I need a vacation?” B and I like to pack as much into our travels as possible, but it’s important to remember that a key part of a vacation is relaxation. One way to 

Killing Time in Coeur d’Alene

Killing Time in Coeur d’Alene

This post finds me killing time in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. I am here with my folks. My dad is seeing a specialist about his Lyme disease and to say my parents are terrible travelers is kind of an understatement. So I offered to come along and hopefully make the trip a little easier for them.

Killing time at Coeur d'Alene Resort in northern Idaho on a sunny day
Coeur d’Alene Resort in northern Idaho.

Spending time in Coeur d’Alene (or CDA as the locals call it) is anything but a hardship. This area of my home state is beautiful and there is plenty to do. I have done a couple of things with my folks, but mostly I am on my own and without a car. Luckily, it is not too hard to have a good time here, even without a car. Below are some suggestions for what to do if you are like me and have a little time to kill in beautiful Coeur d’Alene, Idaho.

Take a bike ride around Coeur d’Alene Lake

This area is rife with options for riding your bicycle. I won’t touch the subject of mountain biking since I could not be less informed. I just know that if you like to do it, there are plenty of places to go. For those of us who like a nice paved path, one does not have to search too hard to find a good one. Both the Trail of the Coeur d’Alenes and the Route of the Hiawatha are super close to CDA. But if even those are too far, you can do what I did and hop on the North Idaho Centennial Trail, a 23-mile long trail that runs right through town. It is not too hilly and has fantastic views.

If you do not arrive with your own bicycle, there are a couple of shops in town that can set you up. I headed to Vertical Earth, a friendly shop that had me riding down the street in under 15 minutes. A half day cost me $25. I rode around for a couple of hours, taking in the beautiful sights around me. It was an excellent way to see both the city and the surrounding area.

Red bike at Coeur d'Alene Lake
Biking around CDA.

Eat at Hudsons Hamburgers in the heart of CDA

There is a reason this hamburger joint has been in business since 1907 and is a favorite with the locals. It is small and a little overwhelming if you do not know what you are doing. Luckily, the menu is limited so it is not too hard to make a choice on the spot (which is what happened to us). There were seats available when we walked in, but we wanted to eat outside since the weather was so nice. By the time we got our burgers, there were no seats available and the line was out the door. It was a very good burger and super cheap. I definitely recommend it. Just prepare yourself to wait in line and/or be a little overwhelmed when you first walk in.

Hudsons hamburgers when you are killing time in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
Yum, yum!

Hike around Tubbs Hill

This little gem is located within walking distance of downtown. Tubbs Hill is over 120 acres with several miles of hiking trails. Lake Coeur d’Alene borders three sides of it so the scenery is nothing short of spectacular. There is a 2.2 mile interpretive trail (pick up a guide at the visitors center) that follows the perimeter. You can complete that in under an hour, or find a secluded beach and relax. Either way, Tubbs Hill makes a great place to go if you are killing time in Coeur d’Alene.

Tubbs Hill and lake views for killing time in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
Not a bad place to spend an hour or two.

Follow the boardwalk around Coeur d’Alene Resort

The boardwalk around Coeur d’Alene Resort is the longest floating boardwalk in the world. Sounds impressive, right? Well, it will not take long if you decide to walk around it. It is just under ¾ of a mile. Whether you think that is far or not, it is a fun thing to do. If you are lucky, you will have sunshine and blue skies. This gives you the opportunity to take some great photos.

Boardwalk on Lake Coeur d'Alene, blue skies
The boardwalk at Coeur d’Alene Resort.

Cruise the lake

I’m not going to lie, this was not the most exciting thing I did. In fact, as we were docking, I overhead another passenger say, “Well that was kind of boring but very relaxing.” But if you have some time to kill, Lake Coeur d’Alene Cruises offers a couple of options for getting out on the lake. I signed up for the 90-minute scenic cruise which takes you around part of the lake and provides commentary on the area and its history. You get to see some incredible houses and catch a view of the floating green (Coeur d’Alene Resort Golf Course boasts the world’s first, floating, movable green). But there is a lot of downtime. And I do not think I would enjoy the cruise in less-than-fair weather. But I did enjoying views and I learned a lot.

Cruising around Lake Coeur d'Alene is a great way to kill a couple of hours
A great way to relax.

To really kill some time in Coeur d’Alene, splurge at Wolf Lodge

A local told us that Wolf Lodge was her favorite place to eat. Lucky for us, were we in the area (it is perfect for killing time in Coeur d’Alene since it is located about 20 minutes east of CDA…in the middle of nowhere). We arrived just after they opened for dinner (they are not open for lunch) and a good thing we did. This place is very popular and reservations are recommended. Had we not arrived early, we would not have gotten a table. After trying the steak, I can see why this place is so popular. The atmosphere and décor also contribute to a fun and unique experience.

Wolf Lodge restaurant is perfect for killing time in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
This one is worth the drive and the price tag.

Kill time in Coeur d’Alene by going shopping

Downtown CDA is not large. In fact, you can easily see it in a day in my opinion. But there are fun shops to slip into and explore. My bag will definitely be a little heavier going home. I especially enjoyed KnitKnit and Mix It Up. Both had unique offers and made for a fun shopping experience.

colored yarn at KnitKnit in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
Yarn for days.

Take a break treat yourself at Shenanigans

A coworker of mine told me about Shenanigans Toy Emporium. She said it was an ice cream shop that made delicious crepes. She was right. They serve up other tasty treats as well. Given they also sell toys, I was worried they might be trying to do too much. But I have no complaints about my order and would definitely recommend this place. However, I did not do any toy shopping so I cannot vouch for that part of the shop.

Shenanigans Toy Emporium in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
Try the crepes…or the ice cream…or the chocolate!

Killing time in Coeur d’Alene conclusion

Coeur d’Alene is beautiful and fun city in Northern Idaho. Whether you find yourself killing time or planning a special vacation, you will not be disappointed.

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Foreign Food Advice

Foreign Food Advice

One of the main things people ask when B or I return from a foreign country is ‘how was the food?’ Food is something everyone can relate to because no matter where you go and what you see, you still gotta eat. This post offers