It's hot times in the city. So how does a creamy cool down sound right about now? From drives to enjoy thick milk shakes, to behind-the-scenes looks at how your favorite flavors are made, you will discover plenty of delicious toppings, waffle cones and sundae surprises while savoring an ice cream tour, trail or festival.
Once you've come down from the sugar rush, there are a number of bed and breakfasts and inns located nearby to rest and recharge before your next ice cream outing. You can lick a sultry summer day and melt into the sweet comforts of the inn all at the same time.
Ben & Jerry's. Whether you're an ice cream expert or simply an enthusiast, the name Ben & Jerry's will probably induce cravings for one of their masterful flavors such as Chunky Monkey, Cherry Garcia or Cheesecake Brownie. The company, based in Waterbury, VT, offers tours to observe the ice cream-making process, sample the "Flavor of the Day" and visit the "Flavor Graveyard," the final resting place for flavors that have kicked the carton including Rainforest Crunch.
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Old Stagecoach Inn, built in 1826, was a former tavern, stagecoach stop and private residence. Choose one of the 11 uniquely decorated guest rooms and take advantage of the inn's amenities, including outdoor patio seating for breakfast, the library bar, and bench seating on the front porch where you can unwind. Before you get a taste of Ben & Jerry's sweet treats, be sure to grab a coupon book at the inn filled with discounts at the Gift and Scoop Shop.
Blue Bell Creameries. Steamy is the word to describe Texas summers. Blue Bell Creameries located in Brenham, TX, would be more than happy to help you chill out. During their 45-minute factory tour, you will learn about the special techniques that make their ice cream so special and then taste its sugary goodness for yourself at the end.
Nestled amongst picturesque rolling hills, Scenic Hill Bed and Breakfast brings together a collection of private cabins, including a farmhouse, treehouse and spa-themed accommodations. There are spectacular views of the hill country from the sprawling hilltop lawn and wooded paths through the six-acre property.
Maryland's Best Ice Cream Trail. This trail is sprinkled with eight dairy farms that operate creameries. If you get your passport stamped at each stop on the trail, you will be entered to win a $50 gift certificate to the creamery of your choice.
Situated in the same town as ice cream trail participant Chesapeake Bay Farms, Inc., the Waystead Inn located in Berlin, MD, is a five-room Victorian mansion set on 1.5 acres and a short stroll to the shops and restaurants along Main Street. Relax in your lounging robe in your cozy room with a good book, and then make your way to the dining room for the inn's weekly themed sit-down dinners, featuring attendant wines and a chef's narrative.
Connecticut Sundae Drives. Historic Mystic, CT, is home to a few of the ice cream shops on this trail covering the eastern portion of the state including Mystic Drawbridge Ice Cream, Mystic Sweets and Ice Cream Shop, and Twisters Ice Cream.
Originally built by Elias Brown, the House of 1833 Bed and Breakfast is a 19th-century Greek Revival located on three acres of wooded green. Spend an afternoon touring the lush gardens around the property, and then beat the heat by taking a dip in the in-ground swimming pool.
Atlanta Ice Cream Festival, July 27. Cool off in Atlanta, GA, at the annual ice cream event now in its third year, taking place in Piedmont Park, the city's premiere green space. Along with a rainbow of flavors on tap for the event, there will be crafts, merchandise, and health and wellness booths and activities.
With 12-foot ceilings, antique furnishings and heart-of-pine floors, the 3-room Inman Park Bed & Breakfast provides the ideal home base as you set out to explore the city. Explore the lush greenery in the Charleston-style walled garden, before taking a short walk to the boutiques and restaurants at Little Five Points or to the MARTA, Atlanta's rapid transit system.
New Jersey State Ice Cream Festival, July 20.The summer season is in full swing in New Jersey, even after Superstorm Sandy ravaged parts of its coastline last fall. Now in its 11th year, the state's ice cream festival taking place in Toms River will bring together games, food, rides and entertainment topped with a delicious cone of your favorite flavor.
Located in nearby Point Pleasant Beach, NJ, The Tower Cottage provides a romantic escape after a day at the festival. The five guest rooms at this restored Queen Anne Victorian showcase antique furniture and luxurious amenities, while four of the rooms boast beautiful views of Little Silver Lake. And, when you stay at the inn, you'll receive a free coupon for a cone at Hoffman's Ice Cream!
--Mary White, Founder of BnBFinder.com