Miami Beach Trip

Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Day 4 | Day 5 | Day 6

Day 1

Good Evening Camp Courageous,

Happy New Year!! WOW 2017 is here and we are on our first trip of the year. The special thing about this; is this is the first trip of 35 trips!! Very excited for all these wonderful new trips and so are the campers!! Today’s trip began at 1pm today and everyone was on time! 4 campers showed up at camp, 2 showed up in Marion, 2 in Coralville, and 2 in Walcott. We have three new campers attending our first trip of the year, Julea Neher from Waterloo IMG_9561 (1)and Erica Gingerich and Beth Gingerich from Iowa CityIMG_9567. Great to have you here ladies; and for all those returning veteran travelers, thank you for all your continued support for Camp Courageous Travel! It is great to have you back! IMG_9566

After all our pick-ups we made our way to Chicago. We stopped in Peru, IL to have dinner at Culver’s and made it to our hotel (Chicago Marriott). IMG_9564The hotel is not too far from Chicago O’Hare and we will have a shuttle waiting for us in the morning to take us to the airport.IMG_9568

It will be an early morning, so have a good night and we will talk again tomorrow once the travel group is in Miami!!IMG_9562



Day 2

Good Evening Camp Courageous,


What a BIG day we had traveling to Miami. IMG_9569We started off our day pretty early, waking up around 2:30am and catching our 6am flight out of Chicago O’Hare. IMG_9575It was a smooth trip though security, with us pre boarding right on time and our flight taking off pretty early. It was a 2 and half hour flight to Miami. IMG_9576It was a pretty windy ride to Miami. Even though there was turbulence, that didn’t stop our crew from sleeping throughout the entire flight! Nothing can wake our folks!IMG_9580Before we knew it, we arrived in Miami and the sunshine and warm weather was waiting for us! Even though the locals thought it was a cold day, we were in heaven with the weather.IMG_9579 Once we arrived, we made our way to baggage claim, grabbed our luggage, called over to our hotel for the shuttle and made our way to the SpringHill Suites. IMG_9583The hotel was very accommodating, checked us in early and we unloaded our luggage to our rooms.IMG_9585
There is a restaurant at the hotel, so we had lunch at the restaurant and then made our way downtown to explore Miami’s History.IMG_2653

Our shuttle dropped us off at the nearest metro rail station, where we took the rail downtown and head towards the History Miami Museum. IMG_2652Once we arrived, we had a tour guide waiting, named Monique. She is a Miami resident, born and raised, and she was proud to share the history of this city.DSCN0013 We explored the museum and then Monique took us on a walking tour of Lummus park. Here we saw old houses that dated back to when Miami wasn’t even a city. DSCN0012The houses were of course refurbished, but it was great to see where people in this area lived at the time.DSCN0009 Monique, then decided to take us on a stroll down the city’s riverwalk, we had the opportunity to see some boats come though and of course take a picture of this beautiful river.IMG_2658

DSCN0024After the tour, we made our way back to the museum so thank Monique and say our goodbyes.DSCN0028 We then made our way to dinner, which was not to far from downtown and afterwords we made our way back to the hotel to get some much needed sleep!DSCN0023

DSCN0038Tomorrow we have a big day of more touring, shopping, and having fun in the sun! Have a great Tuesday everyone!DSCN0043



Day 3

Good Evening Camp Courageous,

Today was our official full day in Miami. DSCN0052We were well rested for the day and had plenty on our plate to accomplish. DSCN0056Once we got ready, we made our way to breakfast, and then it was time to explore. DSCN0050We took the metro rail and the metro mover to the Big Bus tour company spot.DSCN0066 Big Bus tours around Miami and tells us the history of the city and many fun places to visit.DSCN0059 We started off our tour at Bayside central station, where we hopped on a bus and made our way to Jungle Island.DSCN0077

Jungle Island is a big tourist attraction and a fun zoo to visit. But it’s unlike any other zoo we have been too.DSCN0080 This zoo has the biggest collection of hybrid animals. Regular zoos have a policy where they cannot keep hybrid animals. which animals from a different species mate.DSCN0081

IMG_2664Like a Lion and a Tiger, which is called a Liger. They donate there animals to places like Jungle Island.DSCN0088 We saw many different types of animals, from white Tigers and Lions, to Flamingos and a brown skunk! Just to name a few.DSCN0103

IMG_2682The campers really enjoyed this visit. Most of the campers either pet a snake, fed a goat or even touched a Kangaroo. DSCN0106It was a pretty exciting day. We had a ton of animals to see and enjoyed every minute.IMG_2690

Before we knew it, it was time to shop and head back to the Big Bus tour company.IMG_2692 Once on the bus, we made our way back to Bayfront/Central Station to shop and have dinner. IMG_2693It didn’t seem like a busy day, since we were having a ton of fun, but we sure enjoyed traveling around the city.IMG_2695


DSCN0111After dinner, we made our way back to the Hotel and we are now resting for the night. IMG_2701

IMG_2675Tomorrow is another big day, since we head to Miami Beach to put our feet in the sand and ocean!IMG_2679

IMG_2676Should be a great time. I hope everyone has an awesome Wednesday.DSCN0117




Day 4

Good Evening Camp Courageous,

Today was Miami Beach day!!DSCN0128 YAY!! WHOOT WHOOT!! So, incase you were wondering, Miami and Miami Beach are two different cities.DSCN0126 We are staying in Miami and today we visited Miami Beach. We took the Big Bus shuttle to Miami Beach where we had the opportunity to jump on the Miami Ducks tour! DSCN0132That’s right folks, Miami Beach has a Duck and they were quacking away. Both the Big Bus and the Duck gave us the history of Miami Beach, but what the Big Bus couldn’t give us was a ride on the ocean!DSCN0131 We danced, we sang, we cheered and we listened to a wonderful lady speak about Miami Beach. IMG_9636We learned about the three islands close to Miami Beach, where all the rich and the very rich live aka Oprah, Mark Cuban, etc. etc.IMG_9634 We learned about where to shop for the best gifts, which we of course stopped to check out (Alvin’s Island). IMG_9628It was a fun trip around Miami Beach and we learned so much about Art Deco and the buildings featuring Art Deco.

IMG_2705After this fun tour, we made our way to the beach! We cannot come to Miami Beach, without having fun by the Atlantic Ocean!!IMG_2706 We walked on the beach, sat on the beach, played in the sand, and we even put our feet in the water.IMG_9646

IMG_2708 It was warm enough to swim in it if we truly wanted to. We stayed at the beach for about an hour and it was not enough time!IMG_2711 It went by too fast. Some people like camper Erica Gingerich haven’t seen the ocean or beach before.IMG_2720 So we made sure she walked on the beach (barefoot) and then put her feet in the water! She loved every minute of it!IMG_2722

Before we knew it, it was time to head back to the Big Bus. So we hopped back on the bus, toured the rest of Miami Beach and went back to Bayside shopping district to have dinner at Chili’s.IMG_2725 It was such a fun day, everyone is going to be out tonight! Tomorrow is our last day in Miami, so we are making sure we live it up!IMG_9645

Have a great night everyone!


Day 5

Good Evening Camp Courageous,

The travel group had an AWESOME time on their last full day in Miami.IMG_2729 Our day was spent at the Seaquarium on Biscayne Bay island. It is kind of like Sea World, but with no rides. They had some amazing shows.IMG_2759

IMG_2758They had a dolphin show, which featured the retired dolphin Flipper.IMG_2732

IMG_2733If you remember the old TV show Flipper, this is where he is retired. He had some awesome jump moves and the campers loved seeing him and all of his dolphin friends.IMG_2740 But the big highlight of the day was the chance to meet Flipper. Camper Tom Kulcsar really wanted to meet and take a picture with Flipper, so him and 5 other campers went down to the dock after the show and had a chance to pet and meet Flipper!IMG_9710 You should have seen their faces! It was so priceless! If you have Facebook check out the Camp Courageous Facebook page to see the video I took.IMG_9708

After the show, we saw a killer whale and dolphin show, saw some manatees, stingrays, penguins, and other sea life. It was an awesome day. IMG_2731Once we were done, we made our way back to the hotel, relaxed at the pool, and had some pizza delivered for dinner. IMG_2767The campers were really appreciative of this, since we have been on the go all week. After dinner the campers made it back upstairs to rest.IMG_9685

Tomorrow we head head out from Miami airport. IMG_9709Not so early, but we will be up around 6am. We will then arrive around 10am into Chicago and drive to camp. We will be at camp around 6pm for pick-up.IMG_2797 Please pray or give good thoughts for us as we travel!


Day 6

Good Evening Camp Courageous!

The Travel Group has made it back from Miami! We started off our morning bright and early at 6am to get ready for the day. We hopped on the hotel shuttle at 7am and headed to the airport. It was a busy day at the Miami Airport but we checked in and made it through security without any trouble. We grabbed some breakfast at the food court before heading to our gate. Our flight to Chicago was smooth but as soon as the traveler’s felt the cool Chicago air, they all wanted to go back to Miami! One traveler was picked up at the airport. We grabbed a quick lunch at the airport then hopped on another shuttle to take us to our bus. Our drive back to Iowa went well. The travelers got some rest and watched a movie along the way. The rest of the travelers were picked up at camp.

1 Response

  1. Jo Ellen Marconi says:

    Thank you Camp Courageous and Miami staff for such a great trip