Over the past 18 months, the small town of Marion, Virginia has experienced an incredible revitalization. Prompted by a community-wide determination to stimulate the local economy, new entrepreneurs and small businesses are flooding the historic downtown district to show that in terms of tourism, Marion means business. Located about a mile off route I-81 in Southwestern Virginia [...]
Tag Archives | Budget
Before last weekend, I had never stayed at one of Shenandoah National Park’s lodges, opting instead to “rough it” and camp outside with friends. After one glorious night at the historic Skyland Resort… well— sorry, friends— I don’t think I could ever go back to camping again! Here in the heart of Shenandoah National Park, honestly it’s a luxury [...]
The Christmas holiday may feel long gone, but with the upcoming President’s Day and Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday, ’tis is the season for the 3-day weekend! If you’re tight on vacay-days, then a 3-day holiday weekend is the perfect solution for your restless and travel-deprived soul. A 3-day weekend allows you to have a little adventure [...]
I’ve always considered Harrisonburg, Virginia to be the quintessential college town. Well, I guess I should clarify… From 1999 to 2003, it was my quintessential college town. I loved calling it my home during those few fleeting years that I attended James Madison University. It was a really affordable and fun place to live, energized by [...]
Hello, friends! I’ve taken a little blog breather since I have so many upcoming travels that I’ll be writing about over the next few months. But a new “Ask Chris” question has me back in action once again! This question comes from Facebook. And, here we go! Dear Chris, I’m going to be in DC [...]
As a fledging “mid-Atlantic travel expert,” I’ve been road-tripping around the region practically every weekend for the past year in an effort to find the best and most unique experiences the mid-Atlantic has to offer. As a result, I frequently receive emails from people looking for help planning specific travels of their own. I’ve been [...]
A few weeks ago, I waxed poetic about the wonders of Ottawa after my very first visit to Canada’s capital city. Today, the sheen still hasn’t worn off. I dream of returning and revisiting some of the places that I discovered on my trip. Thankfully, Ottawa’s just a brief plan ride from many North American cities, [...]
Growing up, I visited Maryland’s Calvert County beaches just one time each summer. My great-Uncle Tip and great-Aunt Ann would host dozens of guests to celebrate summer in a most traditional Maryland way: a crab feast! It was so long ago that my memories are hazy. Images float to mind, of picnic tables draped with red [...]
Last Thursday, I spent the night sprawled out on a row of benches in Toronto’s Pearson Airport. Would you believe it was my first time sleeping in an airport? Considering how much travel I’ve done in my lifetime, that’s no small feat! But there’s a first time for everything, and this time, the perfect storm of circumstances [...]
Trip Overview: This DC Road Trip takes you into the heart of Virginia’s picturesque Rappahannock County. Farm-fresh produce stands, artisans, wineries, taverns and hidden-gem natural wonders are along every mile of the route as you drive out of the city and towards the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Total Mileage: Around 180 miles, roundtrip Time [...]
Welcome to Packed Suitcase!
Packed Suitcase is a travel blog featuring quick, satisfying trips that can easily be done in a weekend from a mid-Atlantic home base.
All throughout the site, you'll find inspiration, tips, gorgeous photography and itineraries for the best quick-trip destinations, with special emphasis on showing the awesome side of lesser-known places and experiences.
Have weekend travels worthy of the Monday morning water cooler… without having to take a lot of time off of work.
My name is Chris and I'm a National Geographic Channel producer by day and a freelance travel blogger and photographer by night.
I’m passionate about empowering and enabling readers to find accessible ways to travel within their time-off constraints to become weekend warriors.
My Most Popular Post
The Day I Drank 282 Year-Old Rum
(70,000+ views and counting!)
On a recent trip to Southern Delaware, I was given a shot of rum from a 282 year-old bottle recovered from a 1733 Spanish shipwreck. Whoa...