Vegan travel isn’t nearly as complicated as it used to be. I remember 10 years ago, when I had to walk in the snow 12 miles to get to school, I’d always have to bring my own vegan food when I traveled. Now it’s easy to find a Chipotle or Panera, or even an all vegan restaurant that was referred from awesome websites like www.thehappycow.net, but what do you do when you’re in an area where you can’t *gasp* utilize your smart phone?!?
This happens to us every once in a while. We’ll sneak off to a place where there aren’t a lot of restaurants or grocery stores to fall back on. Those places are nice, because who wants to see the same old restaurants and grocery stores everywhere? But they do require extra planning. For our vacation to Cherry Valley and Oak Glen, we knew it was going to be a challenging trip. Fortunately, years of experience made it pretty snag-less (go us!) Here’s what we did to make sure we ate well, because it is a vacation, after all!
We started out in Cherry Valley for a Lavender Festival at the Highland Springs Resort. It used to be called “The Last Resort”, and was a vegetarian wellness center that Albert Einstein used to frequent (no joke!) We technically could have ventured into town and eaten at Subway or something, but who wants to leave a place that looks like this:
It was kind of like that poppy field in “The Wizard of Oz”…….poppies…………..*suddenly in a daze with silly grin on face*
So this is what we did:
1. We researched the few restaurants we could find on location ahead of time and called to make reservations and ensure they could make us a vegan meal.
2. We requested an *empty* mini-fridge for our room. They said it wouldn’t be a problem, but we discovered they’d forgotten once we were there. They were nice enough to let us store our perishables in their main fridge until they could get the mini-fridge in our room. They didn’t have a microwave in the room so we had to use things that didn’t need to be heated.
Next we went to stay at a B&B in Oak Glen. This was a little more challenging, because there weren’t any restaurants around.
3. We called the B&B ahead of time to make sure they knew we were vegan. We gave them a few simple ideas for our breakfast, and they said it would be no problem. They gave us an amazing breakfast, and asked if we had any tips for the next time they run into vegan travelers.
4. We brought sandwich items like avocado, pickles, and hummus. When we were out for the day, it was easy to find a restaurant that served sandwiches. We asked them to put as much produce as they had on the sandwiches, and made then added some yummy extras.
5. We brought some of our favorite snacks, but they only lasted about five minutes. That’s always the problem with good snacks, isn’t it?
6. We lugged everything around in a cooler until we got to our destinations. We’d asked the B&B if we could use their fridge, and they didn’t mind a bit. It was a bit of a pain, but worth it.
If you have any other vegan traveling tips, let me know. I’m always glad to hear new ideas.