Monday, April 9, 2012

AirBnB adventures in Florida and Georgia

We just came back from a road trip---Savannah, Jacksonville, Gainesville.  It wasn't a long vacation, since I'm a bit obligated to return to work tomorrow.  For some reason, schools don't seem to want to accommodate my urges for long leisurely vacations at random times.  Oh well!

For vacations recently, my husband and I have taken a liking to using a website called AirBnB to find places to stay.  AirBnB places are essentially rooms in people's homes, or their whole homes, or in one case this time, a cabin (sort of).  We have met wonderful people while we stayed at their places, and have only positive experiences.  It's also about one half the price or less of a hotel, and for the most part, much, much cleaner.

Here's a rundown of the places we stayed at this time:

Pooler, Georgia--We needed a place to stay on our way to Florida.  This home was spotless, and we had it to ourselves, meeting the owner only in the morning.
screenshot from the website
Jacksonville, Florida---This was a home in the city, close to everything.  David and I had a nice chat with the owners and got the scoop on what was fun to bike to and see.  They had a cute baby, and we were able to use the kitchen.  This was fun! 
screenshot from the website
Swan Lake, Florida (near Gainesville)--this was by far my favorite place.  We stayed at what used to be a camp of some sort.  Our abode was a cinder block cabin.  Nearby, however, was a lodge with a giant kitchen and meeting room.  At one point, this was all on the shore of Swan Lake---Florida has issues with a retreating water table, so the lake itself has shrunk leaving a massive grassy beach and abandoned piers.  I loved this for the lizards, the abandoned atmosphere, the price, and the isolation.  This place was quiet, and had a certain mystery of what actually used to happen here.  Was this cabin at one time full of giggly teenagers sleeping in bunkbeds?
      You may ask what we were doing at Swan Lake.  This happened to be near Gainesville, and near some great biking trails.  We busied ourselves seeing the area.  We checked emails at the local library, and then came back to relax, eat, and read at the camp (peace and quiet---no one around!).  I really love this so much better than hotels.
Can't beat the price!!! 39 dollars!
front door

David and his sister relaxing in luxury


the cabin--notice the bikes! This was near a great Rail to Trail.

Retreated beach left a pier high and dry.

far away Swan Lake (we did not see any swans)


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