When our wedding anniversary rolls around every January we are often challenged with finding a destination that will be enjoyable despite the Winter weather. We took a risk and rolled the dice by choosing Vero Beach, FL. The weather could go either way, in the end, it did not go well.
I have waited months to write about our trip because, as many of you Florida Lifers know, I work in the hotel industry. Therefore, I do not like to write about hotels – I feel that it is a conflict of interest. Because of the weather during our extended weekend the majority of our time was spent at the hotel. The entire trip was simple and sentimental. The best memories were made by the journeys we took.
The ride from Orlando to Vero Beach took about two hours. Once we made our way into the vicinity of Vero, we began to smell the salt air. Then the orange groves began to flank the roadsides. Real Florida, every inch of the way. As we caught up to A1A a satisfied grin crossed my face. I cannot call myself a Florida loving girl if I didn’t love this legendary Florida roadway. So many marvelous places are found along A1A. Work had become quite hectic and busy, but the sight of Florida’s beauty allowed relaxation to wash over me.
When visiting Vero Beach it is difficult to beat staying at the crown jewel known as Disney’s Vero Beach Resort – A Disney Vacation Club Resort. For Disney Vacation Club Members this is a beach home that dreams are made of. For other guests it is a great way to experience a more laid back vibe, much different than the vibe found at the parks. For me, it is a Native Floridian’s paradise. Everyone knows that Disney Resorts are well-themed and weave stories through all sorts of details. The story of Disney’s Vero Beach Resort is old Florida – pure and simple.
It was difficult to rid myself of the glow I exuded by being surrounded by Florida themed decor, furniture, paintings, pictures, music, and food. Citrus labels of oldhang on the lobby walls. The warmth of Florida exudes from every corner of this resort. It’s not an overly exciting destination, in fact quite the opposite – and that’s the point.
The view from our room belonged on a postcard. The emerald, blue Atlantic ocean stretched out in front of us. The sand shore hugged by the well manicured grounds of the resort. The convenience of a Publix grocery store just down the road ensured we had a fridge full of food and alcohol so that if the impeding rain caused us to have to stay in our room, we’d be just fine.
We spent our anniversary getaway dodging raindrops. Whenever the sun came out we seized the moment, grabbing our beach and pool gear as fast as can be. We enjoyed a few brief hours on the beach with a mini cooler of Landshark and attempted to put Big Red (our sportbrella) out, but the wind would not allow it. We snuck in a few hours at the pool before the rain returned and allowed ourselves to act silly, splashing each other in the pool. The rain soon returned and it was back up to the room.
And thus was the rhythm of our Vero Beach trip. Sun comes out, we sneak in a few outdoor activities like mini golf or renting a bike (both part of the resorts activities), rain rolls in and into the room we go. I wanted, badly, to go and explore Vero, prove to ourselves that Vero is so much more than the Disney resort, but the rain really put a damper on our spirits. It was the kind of disappointment you see on a child’s face when their ice creams falls to the floor.
On one particular night we finally ventured out. Of course, we ended up in the most cliche of Vero Beach establishments: Captain Hiram’s. I cannot think of a more well known Vero Beach restaurant or bar. We succumbed to the popularity… and I am glad we did. Upon arriving to Captain Hiram’s you are faced with a choice: either to dine in the original dining room or put some sand between your toes at the outdoor “Sandbar”. Having suffered from cabin fever enough, we chose the Sandbar, which is actually three bars with a seating area all right on the water. We loved the atmosphere. Service left a little to be desired, but they were very busy so we will chalk it up to that.
Although the the trip was relaxing and romantic, we did not get to enjoy the Vero Beach area nearly as much as we wanted. Which really, is not a problem… it just means we gotta go back again and give it another go, and that’s perfectly fine with me.