IMG_0873-225x300I have a large family. With 4 growing kids, we don’t do as many spontaneous road trips. It’s not that my kids don’t travel well. It’s that it is not so easy to find an affordable place for our family to stay. This is why we were thrilled to take on the Northern portion of the Country Inns and Suites Ocean Country drive.

This drive took us from Port Hueneme, California to Ventura with a scenic coastal jaunt to Santa Barbara. It’s a trip we’ve wanted to take for some time. Despite living in Southern California for a decade, we’d never made it up to this area.

While there we made stops at the Ventura Harbor to wander and get dinner, at the Ventura County fair, where we enjoyed the local color and flavor. We spent the day biking around the beach and waterfront in Santa Barbara and ate a fabulous lunch at Stearns Wharf at the Santa Barbara Shellfish Company.

Each night it was so nice to return to our Country Inns and Suites room, which was spacious and comfortable. We stayed in suites that offerred ample space, beds for all the kids (no sharing!) and a kitchenette with microwave, stove, full sized refrigerator and sink etc. Our room in Ventura was more like a two bedroom apartment, than a regular hotel room. My kids wanted to move in. Country Inns & Suites also included breakfast for all each morning. There were waffles, cereal, eggs, bacon & sausage, and more. The hotel also treats guests to a manager’s reception in the evening where snacks (veggies, popcorn, chips) are served.  Much to the kid’s delight, cookies are served throughout the day at the front desk. We also took advantage of the Read it and Return it book lending program in the hotel lobby, reading Peter Pan throughout the journey.

It’s not too late to take that last road trip of the summer, or plan an early fall weekend away. Check out Country Inns & Suites itineraries and know that you will have a great trip, with a comfortable place to land.