This blog post is in collaboration with Mazda.
This past Labor Day weekend, Michael and I traveled from Washington, DC to Sacramento, CA to embark on a weekend road trip with his family from Sacramento to Lake Tahoe to Napa Valley! Michael’s family flew into Sacramento from New Orleans. We met one of his sisters and her bf at the Sacramento airport and hopped in our Mazda CX 9 for the weekend!
Sacramento to Lake Tahoe
It’s a 2.5 hour drive (depending on traffic) from the Sacramento airport to South Lake Tahoe. The Mazda CX 9 was perfect for our party of four! The trunk was spacious and fit all of our rolling carry-on bags plus a few extra purses and duffle bags. We even made a pitstop along the way to pick up groceries for our Airbnb, and they easily fit in the back too!
A cool back-seat feature of the Mazda is that there are shades you can pull up to cover the windows to block out any sun glare. We were driving through the mountains around sunset so our back-seat passengers made great use of this feature! Another perk was that Micheal (my co-pilot) could easily connect his phone to the car’s radio system via bluetooth so that we had tunes for our trip. A road trip must!
As the driver, there were two things that stood out about the Mazda CX 9 to me. First, even though it’s actually a SUV, it drives like a car. This was great for driving up into the mountains! The curves were no joke, and the car handled them perfectly. Second, the Mazda has a really cool feature that I’ve never seen before. It had a reflective display in the windshield, right above the steering wheel where it showed the speed limit and the actual speed at which I was traveling. It was incredibly convenient to not have to keep looking down at the dash board to check my speed.
Lake Tahoe to Napa Valley
We were only in Tahoe for two nights before packing up and heading to Napa. All four of us jumped in our Mazda CX 9 early that Saturday morning to make the 3 hour drive to downtown Napa. Again, everyone, along with all of our luggage, fit so comfortably. Driving there in the night was a bit daunting, but once I had on my yellow night driving glasses, it wasn’t as bad as I thought, plus, the place was beautiful so it meant that I was able to take it all in.
As a side note, even though we only had four people traveling in our car, the Mazda CX 9 fits seven people total. There’s a third row of two seats that pops up if needed. Since we had luggage with us, we kept the third row down for our road trip.
After hanging out in Napa for two days, we packed up again and headed back to the Sacramento airport, which is roughly an hour drive. We headed to the airport early Monday morning, no traffic! The Mazda CX 9 was the perfect car for our quick road trip from Sacramento to Lake Tahoe to Napa and back to Sacramento!
If you have any questions about the car itself, feel free to shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Photos by Michael McHugh
Thank you to Mazda for lending us the CX 9 for our weekend road trip!