Buttermilk Falls Ithaca New York

 

I had first heard about Ithaca New York about ten years ago, when a co-worker of mine at the time spoke very fondly of it. She had gone to school up at Ithaca College, and mentioned that the region was breathtakingly beautiful with no other area specifically like it on the East Coast. Her enthusiasm had stuck with me, and I tucked this information away in my mind in case if I ever traveled up north to that location. Over the years, close friends have also recommended a visit to this unique spot. Recently, my husband’s family suggested a trip to this region, I also had to agree with them that there might just be something magical about this area, and it would definitely be fun to check out. It was definitely a great idea!

Buttermilk Falls Ithaca New York

We live in the Philadelphia area, so the drive took us a little over four hours to get there. After settling in, we decided to make our first stop at the famous Buttermilk Falls. These falls are actually located within the Buttermilk Falls State Park, which spans over 800 acres.

Buttermilk Falls Ithaca New York

The waterfall was named Buttermilk Falls, because the water has a foaming cascade, which makes it look milky. This is created from the Buttermilk Creek as it flows down the very steep valley to the Cayuga Lake. When you see it in person, to me, it honestly did remind me of a stack of pancakes with milk flowing over it. The size is also very impressive, and Buttermilk Falls itself is 165 feet (or a little over 50 meters.)

In addition to the main one, there are numerous smaller cascades as well that you will see traveling up the hiking path. The park also had restrooms, hiking trails, camping, and even picnic areas. (I am sure that camping times may be affected seasonally and weather permitting, so make sure that you check out their official site for the most current information for this. I will leave a link for it at the bottom of the post.)

I do have to say that I was very impressed how close the waterfall was to the entrance of the park. I had recently sprained my ankle prior to this excursion, and luckily, it was not too far of a walk to see it. The area at the bottom also seems fairly flat, so I would say that it is fairly accessible and not too far of a walk from the parking lot. As a side note, there is a stairway path that goes along the waterfall to an upper region. If you go up the stairs, at the top you will see a really nice overlook region, so that is worth the trek if you can do it. I would also suggest to be careful when you climb the steps as they may get slippery. If you do enjoy hiking, the park as a whole does offer opportunities for this with ample hiking trails through the woodlands, and you can even go up to the lake at the upper park.

I would highly recommend checking out the Buttermilk Falls, and it is a must see if you are visiting Ithaca New York. Let me know in the comments if you have also traveled to this location, and what you thought about it as well. Remember to click that subscribe button, and have a wonderful day!

https://parks.ny.gov/parks/buttermilkfalls/

 

The Holiday Garden Railway At The Morris Arboretum

The Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania has been a place that we have wanted to visit for some time now. We love to explore gorgeous nature settings, and when we heard that they had a special holiday garden railway, we knew that we wanted to check it out.

The Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania

Before traveling to this location, I personally had not known what an arboretum was. On the website for this particular arboretum they state “The Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania inspires an understanding of the relationship between plants, people and places through education, research and horticultural displays.” It is basically this expansive public garden that is also used in the education of ecosystems and conservation, which is pretty awesome if you ask me. I believe that the more people are aware of how much we truly do need to cherish our environment, they more that we can work together as a team to build a stronger planet.

Very Neat Bronze Bell At The Morris Arboretum

I was pretty excited as we were walking up to the railway, because they had a really nice paved path to get to it. This may seem like a small thing to get excited about but there were some reasons behind it (besides my currently sprained ankle.) Sometimes, in different parks and nature spots that we have traveled to in the past, you can get really lost into the forest, but everything was very nicely laid out at the Morris Arboretum, and very walkable. I will also provide a link to their website at the bottom of the post that you can check out if you need additional information about different services that they provide for accessibility.

Ample Seating At The Morris Arboretum
A Sweet Quote On A Bench

When we arrived at the area with the railway, we saw a very neat sign that asked if you could find all the fairy houses in their Garden Railway. This honestly just added to the charm of this unique area, and even as an adult I have to admit, I was pretty excited to look for these fairy homes.

As we meandered around this immaculate system of railways, cars, and spectacular decorations, we loved how they really payed homage to the Philadelphia area. In fact, this location is right at the Northwestern region of Philly.

Replica Of Independence Hall in Philadelphia
Replica of the famous Love Sign in Philadelphia
Replica of the iconic Betsy Ross House
A pretty epic Rocky replica

One of my favorite displays was definitely Boathouse row. I loved it because they had Boathouse Row with the Waterworks, which is pretty much how it is really laid out in the city. It was a really detailed replica of it, and we were impressed!

A replica of Boathouse Row and the Philadelphia Waterworks
Replica of Boathouse Row and the Waterworks

After visiting “The Holiday Garden Railway” we did explore the arboretum a bit. We stumbled upon this “Swan Pond” that you absolutely have to check out when you visit. The pond was inspired by English and Romantic landscapes, and is truly a place of beauty.

The Swan Pond At The Morris Arboretum

Another spectacular area to see is the “Loop de Loop” stickwork sculpture by Patrick Dougherty. In March of 2019, this artist worked with a group of volunteers to create a whimsical and fairy like art piece that is specific to this location. This structure was made completely of natural and organic pieces such as willow sticks and saplings. This magnificent work of art is to remain in its natural environment and was estimated to last for several years. Patrick Dougherty has created about 300 large scale temporary sculptures that are featured in gardens, museums, and universities all around the world, and I will leave a link on the bottom of this post if you would like to learn more about him.

Loop de Loop” Sculpture

I highly recommend a visit to the Morris Arboretum during the holidays for this unique display. Let me know in the comments if you have ever visited this location and what you thought of it as well. I hope you are having a wonderful day, and remember to click that subscribe button. Happy Holidays!

https://www.morrisarboretum.org/

https://www.stickwork.net/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/04/27/boathouse-row-the-iconic-philadelphia-landmark/

https://northeastallie.com/2020/12/08/a-very-philly-christmas-village/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/06/08/spruce-street-harbor-park-a-fun-philly-destination/

The Historical Valley Forge National Park

We have so many parks in Pennsylvania, but I have to say one of our favorites has to be the Valley Forge National Historical Park. In truth, I must say that I have never seen so many gorgeous nature focal points in conjunction with a past that coincides with the forefathers of the United States.

Valley Forge National Park

When you visit Valley Forge, the first area that I recommend stopping at is their visitor center (1400 N Outer Line Dr, King of Prussia, PA 19406.) There is a very nice sized parking lot there, and some really cool services in the center that I recommend taking advantage of. The park has rangers on site that provide so much historical and tour information which is pretty sweet. Sometimes Valley Forge has special concerts or historical reenactments, so make sure that you check to see what is happening around your visit to the area (either checking with the park rangers, or under the event schedule on park’s website. I will leave that resource right under this post. Their site is also a fabulous place to get really in depth historical information too.)

Valley Forge National Park

It is important to learn about the historical context of the region, before we review the areas within in. (If you have been following this blog awhile, you know that I always like to dive into the histories of the areas that we talk about.) Of course, it is specific to Pennsylvania, but there was a major national impact as well in so many aspects. Valley Forge is the location of the famous winter encampment of the Continental Army under General George Washington (who later became our first president in the United States) in 1777-1778. It was at this very spot that the Continental Army really emerged as a disciplined and cohesive fighting force. The army had begun as a collection of various colonial militias that were supported by camp followers and allies.

Valley Forge National Park

In the year 1777 the British had Philadelphia occupied, so George Washington set up camp at Valley Forge for the winter, because this location was only a day’s march into the city. The nice thing about Valley Forge is that it is a natural plateau which made it easier to defend. It also gave the troops an opportunity to train and recoup from the years battles. The harsh Pennsylvania winter made many road unpassable and scant supplies stopped fighting as well.

Valley Forge National Park
Valley Forge National Park

This particular winter in 1777 through 1778 was not the coldest or worst in the Revolutionary War, but there was a considerable amount of freezing and thawing along with snow and rain. The shortages of their provisions and supplies made living conditions difficult, however, rather then just waiting in these conditions, they decided to take matters in to their own hands the best that they could. The army procured supplies, constructed gear and clothing, built log cabins, and cooked subsistence meals of their own concoctions to make it through this time period.

Provisions were more in supply in the early parts of winter, and in January of 1778, army records state that the men received an average daily ration of one-half pound of beef per man. It became more difficult in February, when the men sometimes went days without meat. There were also some shortages of clothing, the worse of which occurred in March, when the army listed 2,898 men unfit for duty due to lack of clothing. Many soldiers did still have a full uniform at this time, so during this time period, the well-equipped units did take their place and forged, patrolled, and defended the camp. A lot of people think of Valley Forge, and how many of the soldiers went without supplies, but the forces did really pull together as a team to do the best that they could to help each other. Those that did have the supplies really stepped up, and there was a lot of community involved here.

Valley Forge National Park

Another focal point that you take note of as you walk through Valley Forge currently, are the large amounts of reconstructed log cabins. If we take a moment and look back in the winter of 1777/1778, one of the major remedies against the harsh weather was the construction of the log cabin. This particular winter encampment was the first that thousands of men had to build their own huts. The officers of the army literally put the men into construction squads and had them build cabins according to a 14 foot by 16 foot model. One officer is quoted as to say that the cabins “had the appearance of a little city” when viewed from a distance. Also, in addition to these cabins, the soldiers had created miles of trenches, earthen forts called redoubts, and a state of the art bridge over the Schuylkill River (this was inspired by Roman designs.) One thing is for sure, this army certainly wanted to take their destiny into their own hands as much as possible!

Valley Forge National Park

On December 19th in the year 1777, 12,000 soldiers had marched onto Valley Forge, with 400 women and children. The encampment itself was also very diverse, with men, women, and children being from all walks of life of every occupation, different ethnic backgrounds, and many different religions as well. While most at the time were of English decent, African, American Indian, Dutch, Austrian, Germanic, French, Italian, Irish, Polish, Portuguese, Prussian, Scottish, Spanish, and Swedish persons also filled the ranks. The 400 women were the wives of enlisted men that followed the army all year, and also several general’s wives came on extended visits too.

Through the time period of the encampment, George Washington inspired his soldiers with his own resilience and a sense of duty too. With his persuasion, he enabled Congress to reform the supply system and end various shortages. He also managed to attract many experienced officers to his cause, including the former Prussian officer Friedrich von Steuben. Friedrich von Steuben trained the soldiers in new military skills, and also how to fight in more of a unified army. These particular reforms were in fighting tactics and supply systems, in addition to military hygiene and army organization that became the foundation of the modern United States Army.

Valley Forge National Park
Valley Forge National Park
Valley Forge National Park

In June of 1778, George Washington’s spy network informed him that the British were about to abandon Philadelphia. He swiftly took action and with a small force that went into the area, and took possession of the city. A lot of the army swiftly advanced from the north side of the Schuylkill River and southeast camp toward the Delaware River and New Jersey to bring about general engagement.

It was on June 28th, at the Battle of Monmouth New Jersey, that Washington’s army forced the British from the field utilizing their new battlefield skills. By the summer of 1778, it was known that the war effort was going very well. That decision to occupy Valley Forge and maintain a strong offensive pressure on the British was a smart one. When the British army did abandon Philadelphia, they had little to show for their past year’s efforts. Philly was once again under Patriot control, and because of the contributions of Friedrich von Steuben and others, the Continental Army was more unified then ever before.

There are so many longer gained successes that can be attributed to Valley Forge. The very concepts of basic training, professionalization of officer corps, and distinctive branches of the army such as the corps of engineers, all had their start here. Valley Forge National Park provides a memorial to admire and discover the Continental Army’s sacrifices and achievements. I know I feel this massive sense of gratefulness to the soldiers that changed our lives forever.

Valley Forge National Park
Valley Forge National Park

If we look back to this particular place that is so special to the United States, it is important to review its beginnings and remember the individuals who really put their lives on the line for the country. This post has definitely went more in depth historically. I truly believe though, especially when a place has a major significance, and not just in the Revolutionary War, but an impact on our lives today, it is so important that we take the time to study and learn about it.

Now, lets get into some really neat areas in the park that I recommend checking out on your visit! After you arrive at the visitor center, you will want to follow the path along the road of North Outer Line Drive. As you walk down the path, you will see this massive mound of earth that is seemingly emerging out of the land. This was an “Redoubt Earthwork Defense System.”

Redoubt At Valley Forge National Park
Redoubt At Valley Forge National Park

These were constructed by the soldiers in the war as fortifications connected by miles of entrenchments that were created to strengthen the natural advantages of the terrain. (Also, as a side note, the word redoubt means a place of retreat in French.) This particular redoubt was one of five, and it was used as an overlook towards the direction of Philadelphia, so that the area could be protected from an attack.

The officers utilized telescopes to observe longer ranges as well. Another thing that you have to take note of is that back in 1777, this view to Philadelphia was completely open since there were not trees or buildings here at the time. Philadelphia location wise is about 20 miles southeast of this area. As we walked around the redoubt, it was you really do get the sense of what it would feel like as a solider fighting for independence at that time. We were very impressed with the recreated cannons as well that were pointed out of the redoubt.

Cannon At Valley Forge National Park
Cannon At Valley Forge National Park

As you travel down this same path, by the North Outer Line Drive, you will notice a lot of reconstructed log hut cabins. These are really neat, and you can actually walk inside of some of them. You can see that there was a bunk bed set up in the cabins, and the wooden fire place was lined with clay to keep the room safe and warm from the harsh Pennsylvania winter.

Log Cabins At Valley Forge National Park
Log Cabins At Valley Forge National Park
Inside Look At A Cabin In Valley Forge National Park
Fireplace In A Cabin At Valley Forge National Park

The next spot I recommend is right where the North Outer Line Drive and Gulph Road Intersect which is the National Memorial Arch itself. It is really picturesque and quite magnificent. This particular arch was constructed to commemorate the arrival of George Washington and the Continental Army into Valley Forge.

National Memorial Arch

The designer of it is Paul Philippe Cret, and his vision was to make a simplified version of the Arch of Titus in Rome. In classical tradition, it is known that the triumphal arch of one or three openings was erected to honor emperors or generals. This particular arch with its single opening is classically proper as a national tribute to George Washington and the troops that he lead. It is truly magnificent in person, and has an elegant reverence that exudes from it.

Another historical building that you have to check out is located on the other side of the park. It is called Varnum’s Quarters. James Mitchell Varnum was an American lawyer, legislator, and general in the Continental Army. He was from the state of Rhode Island, and in the winter of 1777, he was in correspondence to his home state and Congress, and had tried to procure provisions for his troops. After the winter, he did return to Rhode Island for special military duties. The actual building of Varnum’s Quarters was built in the early 1700s. There have been some renovations over the years, but we were impressed with how this very historical structure has held up!

Varnum’s Quarters Valley Forge National Park
Varnum’s Quarters Valley Forge National Park

My final must see recommendation (honestly the whole park is truly filled with so many historical gems, but just to keep on the highlights of the park) is of course George Washington’s Headquarters. As you walk up to the headquarters, you will see the Valley Forge Train Station. (This beautiful area was constructed in 1911 to receive visitors to the park. Now, the National Park service actually uses this 1911 passenger station as an exhibit space. The railroad tracks are still visible and being utilized by Norfolk Southern Railroad as a freight line.)

Path To The Valley Forge Train Station
Railroad At Valley Forge National Park

The house known as Washington’s Headquarters was originally built sometime in the 1750s by the Potts family. At the time of the Valley Forge encampment, a relative of the Potts family rented the house to George Washington and his military family. This gorgeous house is a two-story Quaker-German house, and it is just so amazing that this structure has been preserved for us to look at today.

Washington’s Headquarters At Valley Forge National Park
Washington’s Headquarters At Valley Forge National Park

When you do plan your visit to Valley Forge, I highly recommend taking the full encampment tour, and walking around the whole park area. The areas that I reviewed are some of my favorite stops in the park, but there is honestly so much history here, and I would recommend really taking your time to walk around the area to fully absorb the richness of it, and also the immense beauty of the Pennsylvania nature as well. I hope you enjoyed my photo perspectives and stories from inside the park. This place is so beautiful in its own reverence.

Valley Forge National Park

As a side note and another stop that I recommend if you are in the area is the Valley Forge Memorial Chapel (this is on Route 23 right in the park.) It is a national memorial to George Washington, and is currently an active Episcopal church. They are not formally affiliated with the Valley Forge Park, but this beautiful building is such a wonderful example of Gothic Revival in the United States.

Washington Memorial Chapel
Washington Memorial Chapel
Washington Memorial Chapel
Washington Memorial Chapel
Washington Memorial Chapel
Washington Memorial Chapel
Washington Memorial Chapel

Let me know in the comments if you have visited the Valley Forge National Park, and what you have thought of it as well. I hope that you are having an amazing day, and remember to click that subscribe button!

https://www.nps.gov/vafo/index.htm

http://wmchapel.org/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/06/22/wissahickon-valley-park/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/03/23/perkiomen-trail-pennsylvania/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/04/13/shuman-point-the-poconos/

Northeast Allie Restaurant Review-The Farm & Fisherman Tavern

Thanksgiving is always such a fun time of the year. I feel like this holiday is just so much more relaxed, and of course it is amazing to celebrate with our families. We usually try our best to split up the holidays, and this year, we ending up taking my mom out the day after Thanksgiving to a spectacular spot in Horsham Pennsylvania called The Farm & Fisherman Tavern. We actually stopped by this location a couple years ago, and we remembered that she really enjoyed it, so we knew that this would be a fantastic spot to enjoy delicious food in a relaxed atmosphere.

The Farm & Fisherman Tavern

Horsham is only about 10 miles north of downtown Philly. It is actually one of the oldest municipalities in Montgomery County, and the township was incorporated in the year 1717! The name Horsham originates after the town of Horsham in Sussex in the Southern region of England. William Penn’s engineers actually drew up the survey lines of the land, and it is one of several townships in Montgomery County to be created in this manner. Another very cool historical fact is that the mother of Ulysses S. Grant, the 18th President of the United States (her maiden name was Hannah Simpson) was born in Horsham Pennsylvania.

As we stepped into The Farm & Fisherman Tavern, we were greeted right away by their very sweet staff! We also noticed that there were some really cool decorations that really brought their restaurant theme to life. I loved the wooden fish I spotted and it had some pretty intricate details on it. Of course the Santa hat was super cute too.

Very Cool Fish At The Farm & Fisherman Tavern

I must note that this establishment was actually a James Beard semifinalist in 2012 for the “Best New Restaurant in America” award. On their website its states that they are “Proudly working to promote the area’s farmers, including those from neighboring Lancaster County, with some of the richest-producing non-irrigated soil in the country.” It also says that Chef and Owner Josh Lawler “In partnership with Chef Todd Fuller, have established their aspirations to pair preparations of regional produce and proteins with carefully-selected wine, spirits, and local drafts in a comfortable, family friendly, tavern environment.” There are so many culinary accolades that these chefs have, so make sure you check out the restaurant website to learn more of their spectacular history. You really have to appreciate the art, dedication, and skill it takes to create an oasis of culinary skill that stands alone in its magnificence.

So, back to our celebrations! After we checked out the menu, we started with the “Jersey Potato Skins.” This dish has a combination of Benton’s bacon, herbs, jalapenos, and a cheese sauce. It was really good and was the perfect appetizer to kick off our feast! For our entrees, we decided on “Pork Schnitzel” with argula, the “Horsham Burger” with cheddar, red onion, and tomato, and finally, the “Turkey Rueben” with swiss cheese, sauerkraut, 1,000 island, and an IPA mustard on sourdough. You do have the option to add on fries as a side to your sandwiches, so we did add them on as well.

Jersey Potato Skins
Horsham Burger
Pork Schnitzel
Turkey Reuben

After we had the delicious dinner entrees, we had to try some of the desserts, especially because we were celebrating Thanksgiving! My mom ordered the “Gooey Butter Cake” which had vanilla ice cream and sweet brioche, and my husband and I split the “Apple Pie” with ice cream as well.

Gooey Butter Cake
Apple Pie With Ice Cream

Let me know in the comments if you have ever gone to The Farm & Fisherman Tavern before, and what you thought of it. I am sure that the menu may change seasonally as well, so make sure you check out their website for the latest information regarding that. If you are in the Philadelphia area, I think it is definitely worth the visit! As always, I am not affiliated with this establishment in any way, and all opinions in this post are my own. I hope that you are having a wonderful day, and remember to click that subscribe button!

https://farmandfisherman.com/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/11/22/northeast-allie-restaurant-review-source-urban-brewery/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/11/18/northeast-allie-restaurant-review-house/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/10/08/northeast-allie-restaurant-review-brick-brew/

https://northeastallie.com/2020/11/18/unique-british-restaurants-to-visit-in-the-philadelphia-area/

Northeast Allie Restaurant Review-Prince Street Cafe

While visiting Lancaster a few weeks ago, after going to dinner with our friends, we stopped by the Prince Street Cafe to get a little coffee pick me up with treats! (I will link that post as well if you are interested in my review of The Pressroom.)

Prince Street Cafe

This establishment originally opened in 2006, and it has been a favorite of my friends, the community, and also my own as well. One of my first memories in this unique spot was visiting in my early professional career, sitting down with a friend, and making my very first resume. Also, through the years, it has always been the perfect spot to just relax and have an amazing coffee. Everyone in the area always seems to speak fondly of it, and you can tell why as you walk through the doors.

Prince Street Cafe

On their website they state “We offer only the best selections for our customers. From quality beans and local fare, to engaging environments and sustainable relationships, we work hard to create a meaningful experience.” Also, I must add that even thought we ordered coffee and treats when we visited, they do currently offer a variety of breakfast options (these are served all day), delicious sandwiches, rice and grain bowls, soups, and salads as well. They also have a nice selection of coffee beverages, smoothies, and teas. I am sure seasonally, some of the items may change.

When we walked in, we were absolutely enthralled with the gorgeous pastries and the very kind staff also greeted us right away. We ordered a mocha and latte, with designs on them that were super cool. They were so beautiful in addition to being tasty! My friend ordered a brownie, and I decided on one as well that had oats in it. We were both really happy with these treats!

Prince Street Cafe
Prince Street Cafe
Delicious Brownie At Prince Street Cafe

If you have been a reader of this blog for awhile, you know that I love to incorporate a little history into the posts, so that you really get a sense of the area as well. The very interest thing about the Prince Street Cafe is that it is literally right next to the Fulton Opera House, also known as The Fulton. The Fulton Theatre was named after Robert Fulton, who was a creator of the first functional steamboat, and was a pioneer of this technology of that time. The early beginnings of the theatre were a bit darker. The building was once a pre-Revolutionary jail, and in 1763 a vigilante gang known as The Paxon Boys massacred the Conestoga Indians that were being held there at the time under protection. Years later, in 1852, the renowned Philadelphia architect Samuel Sloan, recreated the building as a community center for lectures, meetings, concerts, and theatre productions. This particular theatre is reported to be the oldest working theatre in the United States.

You Can See The Fulton Out Of The Window At Prince Street Cafe

If you are visiting the Lancaster area (it is only a little over an hour and a half drive from Philly) you should definitely check out the Prince Street Cafe. Let me know in the comments if you have ever gone here as well, and what you thought about it. I hope you are having a wonderful day, and remember to click that subscribe button!

https://princestreetcafe.com/

https://thefulton.org/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/11/24/northeast-allie-restaurant-review-the-pressroom/

https://northeastallie.com/2020/12/02/photoshoot-in-lancaster-pennsylvania/

Northeast Allie Restaurant Review-The Pressroom

A couple weeks ago, one of my best friends Marisa and I were talking, and we really wanted to have a get together double date and catch up. (You may remember Marisa from other blog posts, she is an incredible photographer based out of the Lancaster area in Pennsylvania.) After some discussion, we decided to go to The Pressroom.

Lancaster is well known in Pennsylvania for its expansive Amish communities, and the region is also very rich in American history as well. The area was once part of the 1681 Penn’s Woods Charter of the famous William Penn, and eventually incorporated as a borough in 1742, and later into a city in 1818. Another not well known fact is that Lancaster was the capital of the United States for one day during the American Revolution at its court house. Actually, on October 13th, 2011, Lancaster’s City Council officially recognized September 27th as a holiday celebrating this fact every year.

Another interesting historical note is that Lancaster was also the capital of Pennsylvania from 1799 to 1812. (Later, our Pennsylvania capital was moved to Harrisburg.) Lancaster has also had a long standing relationship with Philadelphia, and the very first paved road in America was the Philadelphia and Lancaster Turnpike, connecting the regions and this also promoted trade and commerce in the state. Some historical figures to hail from Lancaster are James Buchanan (our fifteenth President), Thaddeus Stevens (a powerful member of the House of Representatives and famed Republican abolitionist), and of course Robert Fulton (a creator of the first functional steamboat and namesake of the Fulton Opera House.)

As we walked up to the restaurant to meet our close friends, you can not help but to notice how much Lancaster really does take pride in its history. In the city, the buildings maintain that historical allure, but everything is so well taken care of. I also thought that the stained glasswork on the entrance to The Pressroom was very beautiful.

On their website it states “The Pressroom Restaurant serves award-winning cocktails and a creative menu of American fusion cuisine. Each dish is built around locally-sourced, fresh ingredients.” “The original stained glass storefront continues to welcome new guests. Inside, you’ll find exposed brick walls and original wood floors that span the bar and seating areas.” Personally, I think it is so amazing when a place really takes the time to appreciate the original building, and preserves that elegance that can be so fragile, yet is so important. The structure was once the 18th century Steinman Hardware building.

The Pressroom

The friendly staff greeted us right away and we sat down in a very cozy and comfortable booth. We started our meal with super delicious chorizo gravy duck fat fries, and took a little more time to check out the menu. After reviewing the tempting entrees, we decided on the Classico Pizza (this dish had tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella, Parmigiano-Reggiano, and red pepper flakes), the Funghi Pizza (a wonderful combination of mushrooms, fromage, caramelized onions, mozzarella, and finished with Parmigiano-Reggiano with fresh baby arugula and truffle oil.) My friend Marisa ordered a very neat combination of Roasted Vegetables (this had their seasonal vegetables tossed in a maple glaze and a spicy ricotta mascarpone), and the Carpaccio (a flash-seared yellowtail fish, chow-chow, wasabi yuzu vinaigrette, and red onion relish.)

Gravy Fries
Classico Pizza
Roasted Vegetables With Carpaccio

Everything was really delightful, and the amazing cuisine with the unique backdrop of this spectacular restaurant was simply superb! After dinner we checked out the dessert list and decided on the walnut cake (this dish had layers of vanilla buttercream with a decadent side of elderberry crème anglaise.)

Walnut Cake

In addition to the dishes that we ordered, the menu also listed additional salads, pizzas, small and large plates with ample dessert options, so I really think that you can find a nice variety of options if you are looking for that. I am sure that this may change seasonally as well, depending on the time of year. This place was a really nice spot to catch up with our friends, and I would recommend it to anyone traveling to the Lancaster area.

The Pressroom
The Pressroom
Beautiful Stained Glass At The Pressroom

As always, I am not affiliated with this establishment in any way, and all opinions in this post are my own. I hope that you are having a wonderful day, and remember to click that subscribe button!

https://pressroomrestaurant.com/

https://northeastallie.com/2020/12/02/photoshoot-in-lancaster-pennsylvania/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/10/08/northeast-allie-restaurant-review-brick-brew/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/11/22/northeast-allie-restaurant-review-source-urban-brewery/

https://northeastallie.com/2020/11/18/unique-british-restaurants-to-visit-in-the-philadelphia-area/

Northeast Allie Restaurant Review-Source Urban Brewery

A couple weeks ago, we were out in the city (Philly) on our way to a concert at the Fillmore. To give you a little history on the area, the Fillmore was once part of the historic Ajax Metal company. In the early 1900s, this factory, made up of seven sections, smelted refined brass and bronze at the plant and was part of the expansive industrialization boom in Philadelphia at the time.

Mural In Fishtown Philadelphia

The night we went to this location one of our favorite musicians Andrew McMahon was playing. I also wanted to mention that because the restaurant that we are reviewing in this post is literally around the block from the Fillmore. (As a side note, if you like comedy, the Punch Line Philly is right around the corner as well. We have stopped by this facility before, and it is a very nice set up for shows.) So, distance wise, the brewery is really close to a lot of really popular areas.

Source Urban Brewery
Source Urban Brewery

As you walk up to the Source Urban Brewery, the building yields an elegant design that has hints of historic Philadelphia in its frame. Venturing inside, you will see a long bar area, however, there are many tables available as well. Also, there are strikingly beautiful chandeliers dressing the ceiling that just add to the ambiance.

Chandelier In Source Urban Brewery
Chandeliers In Source Urban Brewery
Source Urban Brewery

We were immediately greeted by the friendly staff, and we had made reservations so we sat down very quickly. The menu comprised of a decent sized beverage list, and had a nice variety to chose from. There was a beer called “Mermaid Lore” my husband ordered which was a very fruit forward sour beer with hints of vanilla. I picked out a non-alcoholic rich iced coffee brew because I knew it would be a long night with the concert and wanted a lot of energy.

Source Urban Brewery
Source Urban Brewery

The food menu is also a decent size, and we decided to split Autumn Sprouts (brussels sprouts, fried cherry peppers, shaved radicchio, crispy shallots in a lemongrass vinaigrette), a Jersey Boy (a stuffed pretzel containing pork roll and cheddar cheese), and a Philly Reuben (a delicious coffee crusted brisket on rye with slaw, Carolina gold, and dill pickle.)

Autumn Brussels Sprouts
Jersey Boy Pretzel
Jersey Boy Pretzel

I am a huge fan of treats, and they had a very yummy option. Listed under “Sweet Treats” on their menu was a cheesecake brownie sundae, and it was quite amazing. The warm rich chocolate cheesecake brownie paired with the vanilla ice cream was a decadent and delicious way to end the meal.

Cheesecake Brownie Sundae

Everything was so amazing, and unique as well! Although the menu items varied in what the dishes were, when you have them together they worked amazingly in flavor and combination. We are looking forward to taking our friends and family here, so that they can try it too! I also believe that items on their menu may change seasonally, so depending on when you visit, they may have a different variety of things to chose from.

I would recommend the Source Urban Brewery to anyone traveling in the Fishtown region of Philadelphia. As always, I am not affiliated with this establishment in any way, and all opinions in this post are my own. I hope that you are having a wonderful day, and remember to click that subscribe button!

https://sourceurbanbrewery.beer/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/11/18/northeast-allie-restaurant-review-house/

https://northeastallie.com/2020/11/18/unique-british-restaurants-to-visit-in-the-philadelphia-area/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/10/08/northeast-allie-restaurant-review-brick-brew/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/11/01/northeast-allie-restaurant-review-interstate-drafthouse/

Northeast Allie Restaurant Review-House

I am going to be honest with you all, one of my absolute favorite foods is a truly amazing sandwich. I feel like if a place does it right, they really do it right, and I would one hundred percent list House as one of those places that just gets it. If you are looking for an amazing assortment of elevated sandwiches, soups, salads, large plates, and an expansive brunch menu, you will want to check out House in Media Pennsylvania.

As always, I like to dive right into the history of an area that we are talking about, because in Pennsylvania (and many areas in the Northeast) our roots are heavily influenced by our beginnings here. It is so much fun to wander streets and really get the sense of who may have walked there before us, and how that impacts where we are today.

Media is located about 13 miles west of the city of Philadelphia, and is the county seat of Delaware County. This area actually goes back to the time of William Penn, who was a proprietor of the colony of Pennsylvania in 1681 by King Charles II of England. It was predominantly rural until the twentieth century, with the early village of Media including a wheelwright shop, tailor shop, blacksmith shop, barns, and other small shops and buildings as well.

Media also has a famous location that was in the Underground Railroad, as the John J. Tyler Arboretum farm (which was donated in a public trust in 1944 by their eighth generation descendent.) On a scientific note, the region also is home to the Delaware County Institute of Science, which was formed in 1833. Also, like other Pennsylvania spots, there are major ties to the railroad system, with the West Chester and Philadelphia railroad being built here in 1854. As for more recent events, in 2006, Media became the first town in the United States to attain fair trade certification. This basically means that the region makes sure that there are a range of fair-trade products (coffee and tea) available for local businesses as well as in local government offices.

Now that you know more about the area, we should talk more about the spectacular restaurant House that we stumbled upon a couple weeks ago. Since we are located in the Philadelphia area, Media is not far from us to visit, so we decided on a warmer autumn day that we should walk around the borough. We discovered this really sweet and whimsical restaurant, and we knew that we had to try it.

House
House
House

As we walked into the restaurant we were greeted right away with a warm positivity from the staff that made us feel at home. The location was very clean, and the set up inside the restaurant was very inviting. As we checked out the menus we decided to try a couple “Boylan Root Beer” sodas, three different sandwiches (one would be an appetizer) and also a side of the these delicious cheesy potatoes with bacon that they had for a special that day. The sandwiches that we ordered were the Stilton Grilled Cheese (this had aged white cheddar with organic apples and gorgonzola), the Memphis Panini (a delicious combination of BBQ pork, melted cheddar, and apple slaw), and my husband chose the SBLT (this dish is like a BLT, but it has smoked salmon, bacon, greens, tomato, and a delicious garlic aioli on their marble rye.)

House
Cheesy Potatoes At House

To try a bit of everything, my husband and I will split up all the sandwiches so that we can sample the menu. Each dish was so unique, fresh, delicious, and standout on its own. You can tell that this place puts a lot of thought, energy, and creativity into its menu. On their website, they state “We refuse to compromise on quality in our restaurant. That’s why we source our fresh ingredients seasonally and as locally as possible. No matter what time of year, you can be sure you’re eating the best of the season.” I can honestly agree with their statement, and I know that we will keep going back. This is another place that I would personally recommend to my family and friends, and I know that they would enjoy it!

Memphis Panini At House
The Stilton Grilled Cheese At House

Let me know in the comments if you have gone here, and what you thought as well. It really is super convenient if you are traveling to Philly, or live in the surrounding areas. Also, as a reminder, I am not affiliated with this establishment in any way, and all opinions in this post are my own. I hope that you are having a wonderful day, and remember to click that subscribe button!

https://eatathouse.com/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/10/08/northeast-allie-restaurant-review-brick-brew/

https://northeastallie.com/2020/11/18/unique-british-restaurants-to-visit-in-the-philadelphia-area/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/11/01/northeast-allie-restaurant-review-interstate-drafthouse/

Chasing Sheep In The Land Of Fire And Ice

I think this may be one of my favorite topics to write about in regards to Iceland. As you may have guessed from the title of this post, we are going to talk about Icelandic sheep today (of course I promise you I did not chase down any sheep, but I may have walked beside them on some of the roads, so hopefully that keeps you reading!)

Icelandic Sheep Grazing By The Road
Icelandic Sheep
Icelandic Sheep

Even before we made the journey over the Atlantic to Iceland, I have always been obsessed with sheep. They just seem so gentle and kind, and really make my heart happy. Through researching a little about Iceland, I thought there may be a possibility to drive by a farm here and there, but I was in for a big surprise. Much to my delight, there were sheep over much of the beautiful country side.

Icelandic Sheep

On our first tour that explored the city of Reykjavik, our guide gave us the low down on all the sheep. He said that usually in the spring, the farmers will let the sheep out of the enclosed areas on the farms to go enjoy the fields and mountains on their own. The farmer has their own tag or symbol on the sheep, so that when they bring them back to the farms in autumn, they will know what specific area that they belong to.

Icelandic Farm

Typically, in America, we do have a lot of farms. Even around the Philadelphia area, where I reside, the famous Lancaster region has so many farms because of the rich fertile land. Although we have many many farms here, it would be uncommon to see sheep roaming on their own. Typically, you may see a cow or goat farm, and the animals have plenty of room to enjoy it, but it is still an enclosed space.

Icelandic Farmland
Icelandic Farmland

Through our adventures in Iceland, we did see that there were some farms that had enclosed areas (a lot of these had horses as well), but most of the sheep just enjoyed themselves eating fresh grass by a mountain, or sometimes even literally on the mountain itself! The one feat I will say is truly amazing with these sheep is that even though their hooves seemed relatively small, these athletic animals were scaling the sides steep cliffs. It was very incredible, and I must say that I am truly amazed at the capabilities of sheep.

Although sheep are the stars of this post, I do have to mention Icelandic horses as well, because they are also extremely prevalent in the region. We did see many horses on our travels, but as I mentioned earlier, most of them were on farms. Although I must add that they seemed to have a lot of land to enjoy, even on farms.

Icelandic Horses

We also have a lot of horses locally in the Pennsylvania area, but there were unique features to the Icelandic horses that caught my eye. They seemed a bit shorter and stouter, almost like a pony. They were also very muscular, and had absolutely gorgeous coat and hair colors.

Icelandic Horses

To give you a little history on the Icelandic horses, they originally arrived in the country between 860 and 935 AD. It is thought that the animals were chosen because of their short and sturdy stature. This horse has adapted much to its surroundings, and has a thick winter coat in the colder months, and then sheds it once spring arrives. In 982 AD, the government in Iceland passed laws to prohibit any importation of other horse breeds into the country, which means that this particular breed has been keep in entirety on the island. Today, the horses are used for riding, races, tours, shows, farming, sheep herding, and a small portion of the population for slaughter.

Icelandic Horses

Icelanders take great pride in protecting this horse, and they are very healthy and live a very long time. This horse breed is very friendly since they do not have any predators in their environment, and are known to be spirited and gentle. The people treasure these beautiful animals, and are regarded as a loyal friend that are loved by all.

I do want to state that it is important that if you come across horses or sheep, it is pertinent that you do not pet them, feed them, or trespass onto any private property. It is very crucial that we all respect the farmers, and the animals as well.

Icelandic Sheep

Sheep wool, meat, and milk are very crucial to the Icelandic economy. The wool in Iceland is quite amazing, and you will often find little shops in various towns that will sell goods made from it. Typically, a very famous clothing item in the area is the wool sweater, and from its beauty to its functional uses in the Nordic climate, you will want to pick one up yourself if you are traveling to Iceland!

Icelandic Sheep By A Road
Icelandic Sheep

The sheep and horses in Iceland are so sweet, and it warmed my soul so much to see them enjoying the beautiful land there. Let me know in the comments if you have visited them as well, and what your experience was like. I hope that you have a wonderful day, and remember to click that subscribe button!

https://www.visiticeland.com/

https://guidetoiceland.is/nature-info/the-icelandic-horse-a-comprehensive-guide

https://northeastallie.com/2021/07/21/exploring-reykjavik-iceland/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/07/27/the-spectacular-landmarks-of-reykjavik/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/09/21/the-magnificent-landscapes-of-iceland/

Northeast Allie Restaurant Review-Interstate Drafthouse

Philadelphia, and especially the area of Fishtown, has become this center for the very hip (some may even say hipsters) and professionals that creates this unique scene filled with art, shops, and amazing culinary feats as well. Fishtown was once a working class Philly neighborhood, with a lot of the original residents working in the shipyard.

In the 1700s and 1800s many of the inhabitants of Fishtown were employed as shipwrights, shipbuilders, ship joiners, and ship carpenters. Other popular jobs at the time were wharf builders, rope makers, mast makers, and blacksmiths. Philadelphia was the largest ship building center in the original colonies, and even attracted Benjamin Franklin to the city, who became publisher of “The Pennsylvania Gazette.” I think it is really cool to think about the historical significance of a place, even in modern times. You never know who could have walked down the city streets before you, and how they impacted the history of our country.

When we go into the city, we love to stop at different local spots, and one of our favorites over the years has been the Interstate Drafthouse in Fishtown. It is such a unique relaxed spot with delicious food and an expansive drink list as well. We have celebrated birthdays here, large get togethers, and even just met up with our friends from Philly to catch up. For this post, I will be writing about our most recent visit with two of our close friends on a double date around the time of Halloween.

To start with, you will immediately recognize the facility, because they have this really cool bold Interstate Drafthouse sign that literally looks like one you could see on a highway right in their window. As you walk into the tavern, you will notice that they carry this theme throughout, with the famous “Interstate 95/Interstate 76” signs on the walls. (For your reference, I-95 runs from Miami Florida to the Houlton-Woodstock Border Crossing between the Canadian province of New Brunswick and Maine. I-76 runs from Ohio to New Jersey. Anyone in Philly knows this as the famous “Schuylkill Expressway” that goes from Valley Forge, through Philadelphia, and crosses the Walt Whitman Bridge into New Jersey.)

They also have a lot of signs that pay homage to the local culture from references to the hit television show “It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia” to movies, pop icons, and even the locally famous “Fish Town Iced Tea.” Many local residents can attest that during their childhoods, Artic Splash from which this spectacular beverage has been created from, was extremely popular.

Interstate Drafthouse
Interstate Drafthouse
Interstate Drafthouse

After browsing the menu, my husband, his best friend and girl friend decided on beer tastings and a cider. I decided on a soda because I was craving something as a sugary treat for Halloween! When our drinks came out, we were impressed because on the beer tastings, they had written in chalk what each beer was under it. It was listed on the menu as an “Interstate Road Trip” and it included any four (four ounce pours) from their draft list. This provided a very cool opportunity to try a nice variety of brews in a sitting!

The Interstate “Road Trip” Tasting

For our appetizers we ordered the “Black Bean Nachos” and the “Ancho Honey Chicken Wings.” We were really delighted with them, and both were table favorites!

Interstate Draft House Black Bean Nachos
Interstate Drafthouse Ancho Chicken Wings

For our entrees, my husband and I ordered the “Cajun Cheesesteak” which had a delicious cajun spice to it with peppers, onions, and cheddar cheese. It was so good, and I highly recommend this dish if you enjoy a good cheesesteak! Both of our friends ordered the “Grilled Chicken Sandwich” and that had a really nice marinated chicken breast, applewood smoked bacon, caramelized onions, avocado, colby jack cheese, and a cilantro-lime mayo.

They also said that their meals were very enjoyable as well, so I would recommend that dish too. At the time we went, the Interstate Drafthouse offered a choice of fries or tots with the sandwiches, so we each got something different. Again we were really impressed!

Interstate Drafthouse Cajun Cheesesteak

Also, as a side note, this establishment also has many vegetarian, vegan, or options if you are interested. They also list these right on their menu, which makes it super easy to order this way if you wanted to. To me, this is another reason why they are so spectacular, because you can tell that they are making the extra effort for all of their guests.

If you are looking for an amazing Fishtown tavern that is full of local flair, delicious drinks, amazing food items, and a very friendly staff, you will love the Interstate Drafthouse. They also are very into the community, and have a lot of fun events that we took note of from “Dog Photos With Santa,” participation in local festivals, and even Quizzo. Make sure that you visit their website for the most current information regarding these events as well. I can imagine they may change seasonally, but there definitely seems to be a lot of really neat activities that they host or participate in, so you will want to check that out.

Also, in addition to the regular dinner menu, they also have a brunch Saturdays and Sundays, if you are interested in that. Whether you are traveling to the Philadelphia area, or are from here, I think you will really enjoy this amazing location! Let me know in the comments if you have ever eaten at Interstate Drafthouse, and what your experience was like as well. Remember to click that subscribe button, and have a wonderful day!

https://interstatedrafthouse.com/

https://www.visitphilly.com/

https://www.history.com/topics/us-states/philadelphia-pennsylvania

https://northeastallie.com/2020/12/08/a-very-philly-christmas-village/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/04/27/boathouse-row-the-iconic-philadelphia-landmark/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/06/08/spruce-street-harbor-park-a-fun-philly-destination/

The Skogafoss Waterfall

As we jumped off of the tour bus, our guide spoke to us in an uplifting, yet somewhat serious tone “You are about to see the most beautiful waterfall in all of Iceland. Do not be surprised if you start to cry when you see it. Its magnificence is like no other.” I am going to be honest with you. I totally did cry that day.

Skogafoss Waterfall

The Skogafoss Waterfall is not too far away from the capital of Reykjavik. It is almost a two hour drive (97 miles/155.5 km) so you could definitely do this as a day trip if you wanted to. It is in southern Iceland, right by the town of Vik. (I will link my post about Vik at the end of this article if you are interested in learning more about it.) Location wise, this waterfall is right on Route 1 in Southern Iceland.

Skogafoss Waterfall

Another great feature if you are visiting the Skogafoss Waterfall is that it is a fairly easily accessible spot. It is not far off of the road and the land is pretty flat to walk up to it, which is pretty amazing if you do not want to do a long hike. Of course, if you are feeling a bit more adventurous, there are stairs along the side the waterfall which will which give you a view from the top on an observation deck. If you do decide to take the stairs up, please use caution, because the waterfall itself is very misty. Also, during the winter months, it could also be snowy or icy.

Skogafoss Waterfall

We also noticed a lot of campers set up by this waterfall. That is because there is the Skogar Campsite near it, and a lot of people stay here to really relax and take in the views. We did not camp during our stay, but I can see the allure of it with this gorgeous nature spot!

Skogafoss Waterfall

After our tour guide’s speech, I was really excited to get off the bus and see this waterfall in person. It is truly the most magnificent waterfall I have ever seen in my life. I swear in my mind I heard the “Jurassic Park Theme Song” playing in my head as I looked up at it. I could not believe that such an area of great beauty could exist.

The water drop is pretty impressive at 197 feet (60 meters) and a width of about 82 feet (25 meters.) It was once an ancient sea cliff, and the current coastline is about 3 miles (5 km) from this area. The Skogafoss Waterfall is located on the Skoga River, and is very popular with fisherman as it holds ample amounts of char and salmon. We also saw many birds flying around the top of the waterfall, and they seemed to really enjoy the area as well! On very sunny days, we were told that you can also see a rainbow, so you may want to plan your visit in accordance to the weather if you are interested in that.

Beautiful Cliff At The Skogafoss Waterfall

This waterfall has been in popular culture as well, being featured on shows and movies such as “Game Of Thrones,” “The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty,” “Thor: The Dark World,” and the History Channel’s “Vikings.” It was also in Justin Bieber’s music video “I’ll Show You.”

Skogafoss Waterfall

There is an old legend surrounding this region, and it is said that one of the first Viking settlers, Prasi Porolfsson, buried a treasure in a cave right behind the waterfall. The story continues with the local Icelanders finding the chest years later, only to grasp a ring on the side of it, before it vanished once more. It was rumored that the ring was given to a local church. To this day it is often wondered that maybe if you look hard enough, it might just be possible to retrieve this mythical treasure beyond the waterfall. (As I side note I do not recommend attempting to go under the waterfall for safety reasons of course.)

The Skogafoss Waterfall will always hold a dear spot in my heart, and of course I highly recommend it to everyone traveling to Iceland. Let me know in the comments if you have traveled here as well, and what your experience was like there too. Make sure that you click that subscribe button, and have a wonderful day!

https://www.visiticeland.com/

https://guidetoiceland.is/travel-iceland/drive/skogafoss

https://guidetoiceland.is/connect-with-locals/regina/the-beautiful-skogafoss-waterfall-and-the-legend-of-the-treasure-chest

https://northeastallie.com/2021/10/25/why-you-should-visit-the-seljalandsfoss-waterfall-in-iceland/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/10/06/gullfoss-falls-iceland/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/08/17/magical-vik-iceland/

Why You Should Visit The Seljalandsfoss Waterfall In Iceland

One of my dreams has been to step behind a waterfall and see it from that unique perspective. I was really excited when we finally had that opportunity on a day tour in Iceland while visiting Seljalandsfoss.

Seljalandsfoss Waterfall
Seljalandsfoss Waterfall
Seljalandsfoss Waterfall

If you are into waterfalls, Iceland is the spot to go. In fact, during all of our tours, while checking out the landscape, we often found many of them spouting right off of a cliff or mountain. This was also the case as we were on the way to this waterfall, and we noticed a lot of smaller ones as we got closer to it.

Little Waterfalls In Iceland

Now, for this adventure, the walking path will start out fairly regularly, but it does circle right behind the waterfall into a cavern which is super cool. We were wearing light jackets, which was a good idea honestly, because most likely you will be in a misty area you get closer to it. Another clothing item I would recommend on this trip would be sturdy shoes (perhaps a good hiking boot) just in case if the path was a bit slippery.

Seljalandsfoss Waterfall
Seljalandsfoss Waterfall

Also to provide you all with a little history on this spot, this waterfall is part of the Seljalandsa River, and actually originates from under the glacier Eyjafjallajokull. Also, you can probably remember that Iceland had a volcano eruption in 2010, and that was beneath this expansive ice cap, and caused a lot of havoc at European airports. It was on the news a lot in the States at the time as well, and it was a pretty big deal.

The water has a 200 foot (60 meter) drop from where the Icelandic coast line once resided. Currently, the ocean is 5.6 miles (9 Km) south of this waterfall, which really puts into perspective how much the landscape has changed since ancient times.

Seljalandsfoss Waterfall

In popular culture Seljalandfoss was featured on the hit show “The Amazing Race” during the beginning of season 6. Also, the famous singer Justin Bieber used this location in his music video “I’ll Show You.”

Whether you are taking a tour, or using a rental car to see Iceland, this is a must stop location. It is so elegant, magical, and enchanting with a serene natural beauty that will inspire you. Let me know in the comments if you have traveled here before, and also what you thought of it! Remember to click that subscribe button, and have a wonderful day!

https://www.visiticeland.com/

https://guidetoiceland.is/travel-iceland/drive/seljalandsfoss

https://northeastallie.com/2021/10/06/gullfoss-falls-iceland/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/08/17/magical-vik-iceland/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/09/21/the-magnificent-landscapes-of-iceland/

The Geothermal Park In Hveragerdi Iceland

After discovering geysers on the famous “Golden Circle Tour” in Iceland, we wanted to see more of these epic natural wonders before we left. While doing some research, we found another active site about 28 miles (45 km) away from the capital of Reykjavik where we were staying. It was located within the Hveragerdi village in Iceland, and we were super excited to check it out!

Geothermal Park In Hveragerdi Iceland

To give you a little history of this unique spot, the town is surrounded by the Hengill central volcano, and is extremely geothermally active with frequent earthquakes. Also, the town itself has many greenhouses that are heated by the hot springs that this volcano provides. The Varma River runs through the area and provides ample trout and salmon for fisherman.

Geothermal Park In Hveragerdi Iceland

When we first arrived at the Geothermal Park, we were greeted right away by a sweet woman, and she told us how to use the walking path in the park. Then she also added that they offered the Icelandic black bread (a delicious rich rye bread that utilizes the geothermal ground as an oven), egg boiling (using the hot springs), and if you were interested, you could also soak your feet in a natural clay foot bath. Since we were on the road for awhile that day, we tried their black bread with a little bit of butter, and it was truly some of the best bread that we have ever had. If you stop by the Geothermal Park, make sure that you try it!

Geothermal Park In Hveragerdi Iceland
Geothermal Park In Hveragerdi Iceland
Geothermal Park In Hveragerdi Iceland
Geothermal Park In Hveragerdi Iceland

As you walk around this unique park, you will see active areas and geysers, and also geysers that were more active at one point, but have since dried. We thought that was pretty cool, because you could get a viewpoint of them from a landscape perspective, and see how the environment reacted to them there as well. We were impressed how deep they seemed to be! We also came across hot springs with a soft mist coming off of them from the heat, and a much more active geyser as well.

Geothermal Park Hveragerdi Iceland
Geothermal Park In Hveragerdi Iceland
Geothermal Park In Hveragerdi Iceland

I definitely recommend the Hveragerdi Geothermal Park. It is more off the grid, but it is still very educational and beautiful. Everyone there is super sweet, and you can really take your time and study the geysers, and even relax afterwards in a clay foot bath! Let me know in the comments if you have ever traveled here. Make sure that you click that subscribe button, and have a wonderful day!

https://www.visiticeland.com/

https://www.icelandtravel.is/attractions/hveragerdi/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/10/18/geysir-geothermal-area-iceland/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/09/21/the-magnificent-landscapes-of-iceland/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/08/31/hiking-the-kerid-volcanic-crater-in-iceland/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/08/24/exploring-a-lava-tunnel-in-iceland/

Geysir Geothermal Area Iceland

If you are looking for something more adventurous and explosive on your travels, you will definitely want to check out the Geysir Geothermal Area in Iceland. I know what you are thinking, is geyser spelled correctly here? In this post I will be referring to it as geysir, because the name geysir came from the Icelandic verb geysa which means to gush. In fact it is from the Old Norse language. Isn’t that cool? I bet you did not think you would get a fun vocabulary lesson when you clicked on this page!

To give you a bit of history on this area as well, it has been estimated by scientists that the region has been active for about 10,000 years. It has been recorded that back in 1294, earthquakes in the southern part of Iceland created changes in the geothermal region, and thus created more hot springs.

Geysir Geothermal Area

We ended up traveling to the Geysir Geothermal Area when we were on the golden circle tour. This was the second stop, and we were blown away by the expansive geysirs. As we walked up we first found the “Litli-Geysir” which is an adorable tiny baby one. Then as we ventured closer, we noticed larger ones as well.

Geysir Geothermal Area
Geysir Geothermal Area

The geysirs seemed to get larger and larger as we walked the region. They had such a cool blue hue to them, and around the sides, you can see a nice mineral crust. They seemed to go fairly far down, the shaft actually travels about 65 feet (20 meters) below the surface.

Geysir Geothermal Area
Geysir Geothermal Area
Geysir Geothermal Area

After we explored the smaller geysirs, we found that there was a very large crowd gathered around one in particular. This was called “Strokkur.” For safety reasons, even with the crowd, everyone did keep some distance between them and the spouting water. (In the feeder tunnel the water reaches around 250 degrees Fahrenheit/125 degrees Celsius.) Also, its pretty evident that there is some heat in there with hot mists floating in the air.

Strokkur Geysir
Strokkur Geysir

Strokkur is such an amazing geysir, and is known to spout water at about 100 feet (30 meters.) Historically, the height of the reach has changed as well, with it being affected by natural occurances, such as earthquakes. My estimation was just from our visit in 2019, so it is possible that the heights may be different at your time of travel depending on seismic activity. We were really impressed with it, and it was shocking in a cool way to see this great feat of nature. As you probably remember if you have checked out my other Iceland posts, the country was created from the North American and Eurasian Plates moving apart. This makes for some pretty intense and unique structures here!

Geysir Geothermal Area

The ground water in the geysirs heats up as it comes into contact with hot bedrock, and builds pressure within it, and this creates the spectacular geysirs that are there today!

Geysir Geothermal Area

I highly recommend checking out the Geysir Geothermal Area in Iceland. It is such a neat place to see, especially if you enjoy learning about the environment and earth sciences. Also, as a fun side note, you can also purchase the famous “hot spring bread” in the visitor area, so make sure that you try it. It is a rye bread that is baked in the earth, and it seemed to have the consistency of a very moist and delicious pound cake in my opinion. Let me know in the comments if you have also visited this place and what you thought about it. Remember to click that subscribe button, and have a wonderful day!

https://www.visiticeland.com/

https://www.icelandtravel.is/attractions/geysir/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/10/06/gullfoss-falls-iceland/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/08/31/hiking-the-kerid-volcanic-crater-in-iceland/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/08/24/exploring-a-lava-tunnel-in-iceland/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/09/21/the-magnificent-landscapes-of-iceland/

Oktoberfest And Pierogipalooza In Bethlehem Pennyslvania

Autumn brings with it pumpkin spice, chilly evenings, apple picking, farmers markets, and of course Oktoberfest. It is held every year in Bavaria Germany as a folk festival running from late September to early October. It is such a huge part of the culture, and has actually been held since 1810. An enormous amount of beer is typically consumed, and the Germans enjoy traditional foods, amusement rides, and various games. In Pennsylvania, I have really started to see the Oktoberfest theme start to be more prevalent in restaurants, and various festivals as well. This year we happened to see that Bethlehem Pennsylvania was holding an Oktoberfest with a Pierogipalooza, so we definitely knew that we would have to check it out!

Bethlehem Oktoberfest

Before I even start to talk about the activites and delicious food at this venue, you will want to know a little about the history of Bethlehem Pennsylvania, where these events were held. This particular area was a center of trade and industry during the industrial revolution in the United States. Bethlehem Steel was a leader in American manufacturing and was a major supplier in both World Wars providing armor plates and 1,100 war ships. The company ran from 1857 to 2003 and has truly had an impact on a global level. If you are interested in learning more about this crucial period in history, you will want to check out the area and visit the The National Museum of Industrial History located right in Bethlehem by the Steel Stacks. I know personally, it is important to really understand the history of an area to get that perspective and also to really learn about the people and places in it.

Bethlehem Pennsylvania
Bethlehem Pennsylvania
Bethlehem Steel Stacks

After we parked our car (the area has a decent sized parking lot which is amazing for a venue) we noticed that there were two different areas set up for Oktoberfest and Pierogipalooza. We decided to check out the pierogies first and see what flavors they had. My husband and I are super fans of pierogies and it is one of our favorite dishes to make too, so we were interested in seeing the variety that they had.

Buffalo Chicken Pierogi
Jalapeno Pierogi

So, Oktoberfest was the central area of the festival, and then on the outside of it, there were different stands set up to pick up the pierogies. We were excited to see that there was ample seating with tables as well, so that after we picked them up we could relax for it a bit. The flavors available were loaded baked potato, buffalo chicken, jalapeno popper, philly cheesesteak, reuben, and sweet potato pie with maple and marshmallow. They were all so good! My two personal favorites were the buffalo chicken and the sweet potato pierogis, although I would definitely eat them all again.

Reuben Pierogi
Sweet Potato Pie Maple Marshmallow Pierogi
Ample Seating Was Provided For Pierogipalooza (You Can See The Reflection Of The Steel Stacks In The Window Too!)

After we sampled the pierogis, we headed over to the main Oktoberfest area. As we entered, there were sweet greeters and they gave us maps of the different areas. I liked how they did have people to talk to in case if we had any questions. The festival was outside, but there were a lot of tented areas and little shops that lined the path. There were also bathrooms available if needed. (Another very important fact you should know before going to a venue or event!)

Bethlehem Oktoberfest
Sweet Treats At Bethlehem Oktoberfest

I thought it was really neat how many games that were going on as well. Right away we noticed a huge crowd around a line of people holding beer. I later found out that this is called “Steinholding” and is a traditional Bavarian contest where you have to hold a full one-liter beer stein as long as you can. The ladies holding the contest reported that there was a person that had held his beer for 12 minutes, and honestly that seemed very impressive because after watching the contest, it appeared that most of the people were out by 2 minutes. Unfortunately, we did not see it, but apparently, they also have “The Pennsylvania State Steinholding Championship” here as well.

Bethlehem Oktoberfest
Bethlehem Oktoberfest
Bethlehem Oktoberfest

There was also axe throwing, weiner dog races (dachshunds), a weiner dog parade, live music, beer gardens, and lots of areas to get traditional German food and snacks. There was also a very cool glass blowing area and shop set up that we were watching for awhile. It was called the Hot Glass experience by Arts Quest a glass studio. Their creations were simply magnificent, and the artists were so talented. They also have classes if you are interested in learning glass blowing yourself at the Bethlehem Banana Factory Art Center, and I will leave a link at the bottom of the blog if you want to check that out.

Bethlehem Oktoberfest Axe Throwing
Bethlehem Oktoberfest Axe Throwing
Art Quest Glass Studio At Bethlehem Oktoberfest

The Oktoberfest event spanned over several weekends, so there were a lot of other events as well, these are just some of the things that we saw when we went. In general as well, there are so many activities to do if you are traveling to Bethlehem Pennsylvania from the Christmas Market, historical tours, music concerts, amazing restaurants, a great shopping district, and even a casino (Wind Creek Bethlehem.) Location wise, we are pretty lucky too, because it is literally just about an hour and a half drive from Philly, so it would be an awesome day trip spot too if you are staying here as well.

Bethlehem Oktoberfest

Let me know in the comments if you have visited the Bethlehem Oktoberfest or Pierogipalooza and what you thought of it. I will also leave links for the events, and other blogs about this spectacular and unique area as well, so make sure you check those out. I hope you are having a wonderful day, and remember to click that subscribe button!

https://www.steelstacks.org/festivals/oktoberfest/

https://bethlehempa.org

https://www.bananafactory.org

https://northeastallie.com/2020/12/02/bethlehem-christmas-market/

https://northeastallie.com/2021/03/09/bethlehem-steel-stacks/