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Planning a Trip to Fayetteville, North Carolina

Planning a trip to Fayetteville, NCMy husband and I are trying something new this year. We’re going to be van campers. Did you get that? VAN. CAMPERS. You may wonder what that looks like and honestly, we’re still working it out but to put it in the simplest terms I can, it means we’re going to travel and sleep in my minivan. Crazy, right? Maybe, but if there is one thing that my husband hates more than anything, it’s paying to sleep in a hotel room that we spend very little time in. And if there is one thing that he enjoys more than anything, it’s a good night’s sleep in the Walmart parking lot.

I know, you’re probably surprised that I’ve mentioned this, as sleeping in the parking lot of Walmart is not my cup of tea. I’d much rather slumber in a comfortable bed in a boutique hotel. I have learned that if I humor my husband and force myself to pretend that parking lot sleeping is the best thing ever, he’ll humor me and dig into his wallet to splurge on a great property more often than not. Let’s call it a compromise. And in travel (and marriage), we all know compromise is a great thing.

Back to van camping.

Van camping is not just kicking back in your seat and trying to get some zzz’s. I’m not about that. Van camping for us means a uber comfy memory foam mattress and blackout curtains in the back of my Dodge Grand Caravan Stow N Go. We’ll pack some of our camping gear and it will be just like camping minus the tent and not so comfortable air mattress.

We haven’t actually finished making our curtains yet but when I do I’ll write an entire post about our Van Camper. I know you’re THAT interested.

Fayetteville Trip Planning

Fishing in Fayetteville

We will be using our van camper during an upcoming trip to Cumberland County and the greater Fayetteville, North Carolina area and I couldn’t be more excited! It will be the perfect trip to break it in. We plan to fish, hike and try our hand at Frisbee golf but that’s just the beginning of our adventure. If I can talk my husband into it, the list may include clay target practice as well. If the kids were exploring with us, that list would look more like zip lining, rock climbing at the indoor rock wall and Paraclete XP, for indoor sky diving.  Maybe it’s cruel of us to plan a trip without the kids, but it’s so difficult to plan trips around everyone’s work schedule these days.

Target Practice in Fayetteville

Fayetteville is home to the US Army’s most populous base, Fort Bragg. As a result, the surrounding area shows off its military heritage with many museums and memorials. As a military mom, with a son serving in a different branch, I’ve always taught my kids to appreciate and respect those past and present who have served and currently sacrifice to serve our country. I want to see as many of the museums and memorials as I can and appreciate that the Fayetteville Visitor Center has made it easy by putting together the Patriots Past and Present trail that I can easily follow with my husband throughout Cumberland County to make sure we don’t miss any pertinent stops. This trail will teach us about the patriots in our country to the formation and growth of Fort Bragg.

There are several other trails I’d like to follow in the Fayetteville area as well- the Religious Freedom Trail, the Second-hand Treasure Trail, the Historic Markers Trail, the Gaelic Beginnings Trail- oh my! Just make me stop! I’m also interested in the Greater Fayetteville GPS Trail Trek that leads participants across the entire county. I’m not sure how much my husband will enjoy the hunt for the geocaches but I do love a treasure hunt and this trail would be a great way to learn more about the area in a really fun way. Clearly, I won’t have time for all of them and I’m having a terrible time narrowing down my options.

I’d also love to stroll through the Cape Fear Botanical Garden.  As if that’s not enough, I’d love to relax on a boat ride on the Cape Fear River and visit Long Valley Farm in Spring Lake where the winter estate of James Stillman Rockefeller is located. I do have a thing for Rockefeller properties. I also found an Octagon Tabernacle in Falcon which is the birthplace of the Pentecostal Holiness Church. I think it’s cool because it’s eight-sided and that’s definitely not something one sees every day.  It was designed with eight sides to resemble a tent and made entirely of trees that were salvaged after a tornado struck.

Cape Fear Botanical Garden in Fayetteville, North Carolina

As always, you know you can count on me to find some roadside attractions. There are several I want to check out, including an Eiffel Tower replica that was built in 1971 as an advertisement for a shopping center with a French name. The other attractions like the Special Forces K9 Dog Memorial, Constant Vigilance, which honors fallen special operations dogs, are more historical and solemn than quirky this time around.

And because I KNOW that you’re curious, we are not planning to van camp once we’re in Fayetteville, only on the way there from Ohio. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that we can sleep in a cabin at one of the local campgrounds during our stay. Wouldn’t that round off our adventure perfectly?

I can’t wait to explore Fayetteville and share my trip with you. In the meantime, if I’ve piqued your interest in this all-American town, you can learn more. Simply check out the attractions you’ll find in Fayetteville.

You can also stay up to date with the happenings in and around Fayetteville on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

What would you love to do in Fayetteville, North Carolina?

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Visit NC. The opinions and text are all mine.

Danielle Desir

Saturday 25th of March 2017

I think that it's pretty cool that you are transforming you car to a lean mean travel machine! More on the curtain process please. Religious Freedom trail and some of the other trails you mention sound so interesting especially since that's the cornerstone of USA

melody pittman

Saturday 18th of March 2017

The camper van sounds like so much fun! What a fun trip. I just googled Fayetteville NC by accident when I was growing for some info on Fayetteville WV so right before reading your post, I had actually somewhat familiarized myself with the area.


Thursday 16th of March 2017

I've never been to North Carolina, but have always heard it is a beautiful state! Fayetteville sounds like a special place given its military heritage! I'd love to visit it one day!


Thursday 16th of March 2017

Wow, sounds amazing. I have been to Fayetteville with my husband and never realized there was so much to do there. His buddy was in the Air Force and stationed at the air base attached to Fort Bragg. Of course I can't remember the name of it. We went for his retirement ceremony and we stayed at the base hotel, with my husbands retired military status and discount. It was very economical.

There is an outdoor aircraft "museum" and an indoor memorabilia museum on the air base. We toured both of those. It was a very nice little trip.

Leisa Greathouse

Tuesday 4th of April 2017

It's called Pope Air Field. Used to be Pope Air Force Base before BRAC--Base Realignment and Closure Act.

Sandy N Vyjay

Thursday 16th of March 2017

Fayetteville looks welcoming. I am sure you are going to have a great experience. Especially with Van camping. Though we have never tried, preferring to rest in the confines of a good hotel. But seeing your post we may just try this out, at least once for the experience. Happy traveling and Van camping. Protection Status
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