As we drove the Blue Ridge Parkway deeper and deeper into the heart of south-western Virginia, we passed regional landmarks like Round Meadow Creek and the Mayberry Trading Post before turning onto Squirrel Spur Road, which snaked through the mountains on a scenic and serpentine path. Then, a sign: It’s a blink-or-you’ll-miss-it moment, but [...]
Tag Archives | Luxe
World class spas. High thread-count sheets. Epic views. 5 star restaurants. Prime locations. Top-notch service. Luxurious spas and activities and amenities galore… Yes, I’ll admit it. I’m a sucker for a nice hotel. Here is my list of some of the dreamiest hotels in the mid-Atlantic, in no particular order. Some of these I’ve already visited, while others are [...]
I sit in a stone nook inside a very warm, dimly-lit room. In my nook, I’m secluded as I stare, transfixed, at the glittering walls that surround me. Blue mosaics sparkle as tiny overhead lights slowly change from white, to blue, to green. The scent of lavender dances all around me, pulling me deeper and deeper [...]
Earlier this year, my grandmother gave me a stack of her already-read Southern Living magazines. As I leafed through them, glancing at the recipes and decorating tips, I was stopped in my tracks by one article, The South’s Grand Resorts, Revisited. The article highlighted four of the South’s most historic and luxurious properties– The Greenbrier, The [...]
I created my 55 Places Bucket List in 2008, long before I heard of Volt Restaurant and chef Bryan Voltaggio. Like many others, I jumped on the Volt bandwagon after Voltaggio’s successful 2009 run on Top Chef, where he was runner-up to his younger brother, Michael. Both supremely talented, Bryan’s thoughtful precision battling against Michael’s creativity made [...]
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, [...]
On a warm spring evening, I left DC and headed 3 hours north to the historic town of Wayne, Pennsylvania. I had plans to spend just one night there before venturing further south to explore the expansive gardens of the Brandywine Valley. I knew that Wayne was developed as part of the prestigious Pennsylvania “Main [...]
Last week, I met a man on the train between Toronto and Ottawa. We exchanged the normal how-do-you-do’s, bonded over the unparalleled perks of VIA Rail business-class train travel and started to chat about our journey. When he discovered I was a travel blogger headed to Canada’s capital city, he furtively looked around the cabin [...]
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 [...]
In just a few days, I embark on a week-long trip to Ontario, Canada. I’ve got ambitious plans for such a quick trip, with stops in both Toronto and Ottawa on the agenda. Ontario’s slogan is “Yours to Discover” and I have no doubt that I will be discovering a ton about our neighbors to [...]
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...