Salem – The Most Oregon Part of Oregon

Located in the heart of Oregon’s verdant Willamette Valley, Salem inarguably offers the best of the big city combined with small-town charm. The area is a road-tripper’s dream with its award-winning wineries, historic sites, and easily accessible outdoor experiences located within minutes from downtown.

The Salem region is home to 15 significant heritage sites that offer fascinating peeks into Oregon’s past. Guests will be awed with a visit to Deepwood Museum and Gardens, a perfectly preserved 125-year-old Queen Anne style home with formal gardens designed by the all-female architecture firm, Lord & Schryver. Or, they can take in a live performance at Salem’s historic Elsinore Theatre, one of the only theaters in the world with a foyer in the Gothic “nave and aisle” design.

Sitting in one of the richest agricultural areas in the country, visitors will find farm-to-fork dining along with award-winning wine, craft beer and cider. Chefs like Jonathan Jones – a 2022 James Beard Award nominee – create inspired dishes using locally-sourced ingredients at his intimate café, Epilogue Kitchen & Cocktails. Small, family-owned wineries like Coria Estates, Bethel Heights Vineyard and Left Coast Cellars offer jaw-dropping vineyard views and intimate tasting
experiences, while local breweries such as Gilgamesh pair beer with tasty bites at their three brewery-plus-restaurant locations.

Outdoor recreation also abounds inside and outside of the city. Salem is home to a three-park connected system that offers more than 25 miles of trails ideal for walking or biking along quiet paths. Just west of town, Baskett Slough Wildlife Refuge is a 2,492-acre refuge that’s home to 230 recorded species of birds and is one of the only places in the Western United States to see the endangered Fender’s Blue Butterfly.

For more trip planning ideas and inspiration for Salem and the Mid-Willamette Valley, visit www.TravelSalem.com

Saanen Goats at Emerald Farm in Greenwood, South Carolina

Is anything more cute than goats? We don’t think so. At Emerald Farm in Greenwood, South Carolina, these friendly goats help make soaps, lotions, and other goat’s milk products right on the farm. Saanen goats are known for their friendly disposition, giving kids and curious adults alike the chance for some great pets. Getting to pet and feed the goats is only one of the many attractions at Emerald Farm, however; guests can also spot free-roaming peacocks, ride a mysterious train through acres of lush farmland, go antiquing, or enjoy a large room filled with working model train tracks.

Emerald Farm is one of many family-friendly farms that South Carolina’s Old 96 District is proud to have in their region! Old 96 District covers the counties of Abbeville, Edgefield, Greenwood, Laurens, and McCormick.

Click here to learn more about Emerald Farm and other local farms!

Southern Dozen – The South’s Greatest Motorcycle Rides

Southern Dozen – The South’s Greatest Motorcycle Rides

Answer the call of the Southern Dozen! Discover a curated series of motorcycle rides called the Southern Dozen beginning in Johnson City, Tennessee. These are rides worthy of even the most seasoned road warrior with heart-pumping curves, breathtaking scenery, historic landmarks, local gems and nearby attractions. Explore the Original Southern Dozen or the Southern Dozen Signature Rides and see all that Johnson City, Tennessee and the surrounding region have to offer.

See the itinerary and start planning your next ride here.

The Southern Dozen—Photo of the Month

Southern Dozen – The South’s Greatest Motorcycle Rides

Answer the call of the Southern Dozen! Discover a curated series of motorcycle rides called the Southern Dozen beginning in Johnson City, Tennessee. These are rides worthy of even the most seasoned road warrior with heart-pumping curves, breathtaking scenery, historic landmarks, local gems and nearby attractions. Explore the Original Southern Dozen or the Southern Dozen Signature Rides and see all that Johnson City, Tennessee and the surrounding region have to offer. Learn more and start planning your ride: southerndozen.com

 

 

Johnson City, Tennessee

Eight Reasons to Be a Visitor in Our Backyard

Designed for motorcycle enthusiasts, Northeast Tennessee’s Southern Dozen consists of 12 rides that take you past breathtaking mountain views, through switchback curves, and to historical sights, great food, and more around the tri-state region of Tennessee, Virginia and North Carolina. These rides have something for everyone, and they all begin and end in scenic Johnson City, Tennessee.

Now there’s a Signature Ride that highlights all there is to do without venturing far from Johnson City. The new Founder’s Ride is a relatively short trek of 36 miles that offers ample opportunity to really take in the sights of Johnson City itself.

Starting at the Holiday Inn northeast of downtown, riders head west toward the stomping grounds of frontiersman Daniel Boone through Boones Creek, where the early pioneer claimed that he “kilt a bar” by carving the words on a tree there in the 1700s. The ride continues through the town of Gray and past the Gray Fossil Site, where road construction in 2000 led to a previously unknown cache of fossils from the Miocene era, including the world’s largest tapir fossil and an ancient rhinoceros fossil. The East Tennessee State University Natural History Museum, with interactive activities and an active dig site, also awaits you if you’ve got the time.

The ride continues south through the beautiful Tennessee countryside toward the oldest town in Tennessee—Jonesborough. Visit quaint antique shops, an old-fashioned ice cream parlor, historic homes and any of the delicious eateries in the walkable downtown area before heading east back toward Johnson City on Highway 11E.

Once in Johnson City again, you’ll travel past ETSU into the revitalized downtown area. Along the way, you’ll notice several pieces of art that are part of the city’s Public Art Corridor that includes 16 sculptures commissioned by the Public Art Committee.

Downtown you’ll also find upscale eateries like Portico and Label, regional favorites like Tupelo Honey and an authentic German favorite, Freiberg’s. If you’re lucky, you’ll be in town for a “Founders After Five” concert at the new Founders Park. Nearby on select days there’s an amazing selection of fresh foods at the Farmers Market.

You may want to sample some of the craft beers that are plentiful at the stops along the Brewly Noted Craft Beer Trail. Participants near downtown include JRH Brewing, Yee-Haw Brewing Company, Atlantic Ale House and The Johnson City Brewing Company. Downtown also offers live music venues such as the popular and well-known Down Home or the Willow Tree, as well as nightlife hot spots, art studios and plenty of charming shops.

The ride leaves downtown traveling through some of Johnson City’s oldest neighborhoods of stately homes and finishes back at the Holiday Inn.

Once you’ve completed the Founder’s Ride, hang around to try one of the other Southern Dozen rides. Ranging in distance from a short 30-mile trek that takes you to nearby historical sites to longer rides that are up to 150 miles in length, there’s surely something for everyone on the Southern Dozen.