Smuggs getaway part 4: The shameless plug

by DaniGirl on September 5, 2007 · 11 comments

in Away we go

We’d originally been offered** a three-night stay at Smugglers’ Notch Resort, but due to the end of the season, the beginning of the school year and Beloved’s and my work schedules, we could only take advantage of two nights. It’s too bad, because there was a list of things as long as my arm that I would have liked to do, and even a few things that we’d planned to do that we simply didn’t get around to doing. No massage (sigh). No nature walk or hike, which might not have been a bad thing in the long run, because Simon was still fried the morning after our canoe trip and wanted to be carried everywhere. They had other way-cool stuff that I would have loved to try on site (like geo-caching!) and other stuff nearby (like outlet malls!)

Our last day, we had a breakfast buffet at the Morse Mountain Grill before heading off to fulfill Tristan’s dearest wish of a round of putt-putt (so easy to please, that one) along side a babbling brook in the shade of a gorgeous late-summer morning.

Putt putt

It would have been idyllic, if it weren’t for a potty-training accident that neccesitated an unplanned trek back across the resort for clean pants and a bloody knee requiring excessive kisses and a band-aid. Both injustices were redeemed by a visit to the three-tier pool and waterfall at Notchville Park.

Notchville Park Pool, Smuggs

Did I mention that in all the pools we visited, the water temperature must have averaged 90F or more? The air was on the cool side, and I actually kept standing up to get a bit of a breeze; the water was so warm it was making me sweat! Not that I minded. I hate cold water!

waterfall massage

After a leisurely couple of hours in the pools, we reluctantly dried off and stopped for a late lunch on our way out of the resort. The drive home was far more pleasant than the drive up, and shorter by almost a full hour. That might have been due to the fact that Simon slept almost the entire trip, or the fact that we chose a smarter route through Montreal. Our DVD player died yet again (that’s three times in three trips!) and so Tristan was left largely to stare out the window for the three hours on the Canadian side of the border crossing, but even he seemed relaxed and content.

(Although I’ve already posted a lot of them, you can see the full set of our weekend pictures on my Flickr account, by the way.)

It’s hard not to be effusive about a free vacation. And I really don’t want you to think that the glowing review I’ve been giving Smuggs is entirely about the free bit – even though you do know I love me some free stuff. I don’t want to come across as a corporate shill, nor to have you to think I’m raving simply because the trip was free; in all honesty, we loved the place and were surprised by how affordable a vacation a “resort” can offer.

Beloved and I were doing the math in the car on the way home, already planning our next visit to Smuggs. You can stay for five nights a two-bedroom condo for $1750US (early summer rate), and that includes the day camp for the kids, access to the pools, and a bunch of free activities. With the vast amount of room in the 2bd condo, we could invite my folks, or even my brother and his family along to share the condo with us. Not only does that mean splitting the costs, but the whole time we were there, we were saying how much fun it would be to share the adventure with someone.

We must have done a good job evangelizing the place to Granny and Papa Lou when we got home, too. I could see my Dad’s wheels spinning at the thought of his own Segway tour, and he opined that since we’ve pretty much outgrown our free camping weekend cottage at the KOA in the Thousand Islands, this might be just the place for our usual multi-generational extended family trip next summer. Cuz if you’re going to travel with two young boys and a newborn, it’s good to have back-up!

Thanks again to Karen and Barbara at Smuggs for making this trip (and extended narrative) possible. We hope to see you again next summer!

(Disclosure: I was offered a complimentary visit to Smugglers’ Notch Resort after Smugg’s PR folks read my Ottawa to Bar Harbor posts earlier this summer. Our condo and all activities were complimentary but in no way conditional on a favourable review.)


{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Kerry September 5, 2007 at 8:37 am

Best vacation weekend of my young life, Dani. I love that place. As a single person, I still think about going back there, and totally would if I didn’t think I’d look foolish.

I’m so glad you guys had a great time!

2 andrea from the fishbowl September 5, 2007 at 10:49 am

Wow. What a great holiday … (minus, of course, the DVD issues!) 😉
I would love to give that Segway a spin. How neat!

3 Not So Little Sister September 5, 2007 at 11:44 am

Don’t worry, the outlet mall is not all it’s cracked up to be! 🙂 Sorry we couldn’t meet up…

4 Trixie September 5, 2007 at 1:56 pm

Sounds absolutely wonderful… My own wheels are spinning now… 🙂

5 Fawn September 5, 2007 at 3:35 pm

Phew, that still sounds expensive to me, but it certainly is a luxurious place to be! I love the pic of the pool with the falls!

You know, if you want to try geocaching, it’s a really easy activity to get into. There are geocaches EVERYWHERE, and all you need is a GPS and an Internet connection.

My husband is totally into it, and I sometimes go along for the ride. It takes us to places we never would have thought of. Our daughter loves checking out what’s hidden in the caches, and she’s only 19 months old! We tried geocaching with an older kid (12), too, and he was not only fascinated, he learned a ton. You can use it to teach geography, navigation, math, encryption, respect… not to mention the thrill of keeping “geomuggles” in the dark! Kids also enjoy creating their own caches and choosing “treasures” to hide in them.

Ottawa has a geocaching club, so if you want to just give it a try without investing in a GPS right away, I’m sure you could find someone to show you the ropes.

6 Fawn September 5, 2007 at 3:37 pm

Hey again – I don’t mean to hijack this into a geocaching thread, but I just thought I’d give you the link to my hubby’s latest blog post to show you some of the cool places we went this weekend while geocaching: http://michaelpealow.blogspot.com/2007/09/long-weekend.html

7 Sharon September 5, 2007 at 4:08 pm

Sounds like fun. Maybe we should look into it for Next summer. We usually do a few days somewhere.

And taking friends what a great idea!

8 Kris September 5, 2007 at 5:59 pm

Oh, man, you had a blast! I had no idea that place had so much to offer. Interesting! Glad you had so much fun. 🙂

9 DaniGirl September 5, 2007 at 7:08 pm

Fawn, I’m fascinated by geocaching! I spent a whole morning not that long ago, looking at GPS devices on eBay, and mentioned a nice used one might make a great Christmas gift. Beloved rolls his eyes and thinks it’s another one of my crazy ideas — like, um, blogging. And Segways!

Thanks to all for your positive comments! I didn’t want to sound TOO advertorial, but I really did think it was a great vacation resort – and far more reasonable than I would have ever expected.

10 Amy S. September 7, 2007 at 8:18 am

OK, I just finished reading all about your vacation and dragged my hubby over to the computer to gawk at the pictures. I am sooo jealous!!!! We are SO gonna book a trip there for sure now. Glad you all had a great time!

11 Batman September 7, 2007 at 9:00 am

Hi Danigirl,

I’m in the process of moving into a new house and I just recently found time to catch up on some of my cyber-reading. I loved your trip to Smugglers. Looks like a really cool place to visit. Glad you enjoyed it!

I’m off to do more packing/unpacking…

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