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5 CITIES TO VISIT UNDER $300

S U M M E R 20 18

Paradise Awaits FLORIDA & CARIBBEAN BEACH DESTINATIONS REBOUND

THE HIGHS OF EXTREME CAMPING 25 ICONIC U.S. PLACES MILLENNIAL TRAVEL TRENDS Sunrise in Islamorada, Fla.


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WildAnimalRefuge.org WildAnimalSanctuary.org


SUMMER 2018

MIAMI CULINARY TOURS

TASTY TOURS Experience an assortment of regional cuisines.

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SUMMER 2018

FEATURES REBOUND 40 BEACH Florida and Caribbean locales bounce back TRAVELERS 52 MILLENNIAL Young tripsters seek adventure CAMPING 58 EXTREME Sleep in nature with a twist

REGIONS

70 74

UP FRONT

16 18 20 24

AIRPORT NEWS BEST TRAVEL WEBSITES REMOTE RETREATS STAR-GAZING DESTINATIONS GAY-FRIENDLY VACATIONS VEGETARIAN LODGING

26 28 32 34 36 38

COCKTAILS ACROSS THE USA TRICENTENNIAL CELEBRATIONS FIREWORKS FESTIVITIES FREDERICK DOUGLASS COMMEMORATION SUMMER MUSIC FESTS CAN’T-MISS SCENIC CITIES

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Philadelphia New England Clam Cakes Amusement Parks in the Mid-Atlantic

n SOUTHEAST 82 Don Lemon’s 84 86 88 94 100 106

New Orleans Ballin’ on a Budget: Nashville Riding a Dragon Visit Biltmore Estate Find Paris in Atlanta Go Island Hopping Slow Down for Daytona Beach

n MIDWEST 110 Kristen Bell’s 112 114 118 122

Royal Oak, Mich. Ballin’ on a Budget: Indianapolis St. Louis’ Gateway Arch Park Gets a Makeover Wrigleyville Hits a Home Run Travel North Dakota’s I-94

n WEST 132 Ty Burrell’s Salt Lake City 134 Ballin’ on a Budget: 136 140 144

Salt Lake City Get Acquainted with Cañon City, Colo. Spectacular Sedona, Ariz. Rafting Idaho’s Salmon River

n PACIFIC 150 Chelsea Yamase’s 152 154 158

DESTINATIONS n MEXICO 164 Baja Peninsula Wildlife 168 Magical Towns n CANADA 172 Quebec’s Quaint Coast 176 Toronto Breweries Abound

n EUROPE 180 Explore on a River Cruise n CARIBBEAN 184 Carnival Celebrations 186 Hip Sips of San Juan, Puerto Rico

n CRUISES 190 World’s Biggest Ship n ONE FOR THE ROAD 192 Take a Leap in

ON THE COVER: Sunrise in Islamorada, Fla. PHOTO BY: Florida Keys News Bureau

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Kauai, Hawaii Ballin’ on a Budget: San Francisco Amazing Misty Fjords Sacramento’s Revival

All prices and availability are subject to change.

West Virginia

PROVIDED BY VEGGIE HOTELS: FIVELEMENTS; KIT BERNARDI; HILTON HAWAIIAN VILLAGE

24 10 14

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n NORTHEAST 66 Clinton Kelly’s Manhattan 68 Ballin’ on a Budget:


FEATURED CONTRIBUTORS PREMIUM PUBLICATION EDITORIAL

DIRECTOR Jeanette Barrett-Stokes jbstokes@usatoday.com CREATIVE DIRECTOR Jerald Council jcouncil@usatoday.com

Diane Bair is a Cape Cod, Mass.-based writer who covers travel, food and outdoor recreation with writing partner Pamela Wright. During her global travels, Bair makes it a point to try local beer, wine and spirits — perfect preparation for a story on iconic cocktails across America (page 26). In the U.S., she’s sampled lobster beer (“Yuck!”) but favors drinks made with “perfectly pucker-y” Massachusetts cranberries.

Sam Boykin has covered destinations and outdoor travels for publications such as Men’s Journal, Outside and Southbound. After living in the Carolinas for 40 years, he and his family recently moved to Sacramento, Calif. (page 158) “While Sacramento is often overshadowed by iconic cities like San Francisco and Los Angeles, (it) has experienced a renaissance over the last few years, so I couldn’t have arrived at a better time.”

MANAGING EDITOR Michelle Washington mjwashington@usatoday.com EDITORS Amy Sinatra Ayres Tracy Scott Forson Sara Schwartz Debbie Williams ISSUE DESIGNER Gina Toole Saunders DESIGNERS Amira Martin Miranda Pellicano Lisa M. Zilka CONTRIBUTING ILLUSTRATOR Ryan Inzana CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Diane Bair, Brian Barth, Amy Bartner, Kit Bernardi, Domenica Bongiovanni, Sam Boykin, Linda Childers, Lisa Davis, Shelby Deering, Hollie Deese, Robin Flanigan, Frances Folsom, Roy Furchgott, Erin Gifford, Lisa Marie Hart, Kim Komando, Alexis Korman, Rachel Krantz, Tina Lassen, Daryl Lindsey, Michael Luongo, Sarah Maiellano, Nancy Monson, Katie Morell, Rina Rapuano, Gina Roberts-Grey, Mark Rogers, Sarah Sekula, Susan Shain, Gene Sloan, Roxana A. Soto, Jerry Soverinsky, Pamela Wright, Stacey Zable

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Susan Shain has written about travel, food and personal finance for outlets including The New York Times, CNN and The Independent. As a digital nomad, she’s lived in faraway places such as Nicaragua and Korea, and one of her favorite spots was Ketchikan, Alaska. “I couldn’t believe I’d never heard of the Misty Fjords (page 154) before moving up there,” she says. “It’s one of the most majestic places I’ve ever been.”

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Alexis Korman, based in New Orleans, has written about travel and food in Wine Enthusiast Magazine, USA TODAY, New York Magazine and more. As she wrote about locales in Florida and the Caribbean that are making a comeback after the 2017 hurricane season (page 40), she realized that where you vacation can help rebuild lives: “Travelers can have a positive impact on local communities affected by recent storms just by visiting.”

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travel.usatoday.com JUST FOR FUN NAME THAT AIRPORT

Each week, we post a mystery photo and ask readers to identify which airport around the world it’s from. Join the guessing game at utodayinthesky.usatoday.com

Seafood sampler from Amara at Paraiso in Miami

DINING DELIGHTS TUNE UP YOUR TASTE BUDS

Find new takes on Asian noodles in Las Vegas, fresh seafood served oceanfront in Miami and more tempting tastes across the country as we round up the hottest new restaurants each month at uusatoday.com/travel/usa-today-eats

CONSUMER CORNER WAYS TO ENSURE A HOTEL HONORS YOUR RESERVATION

• Double-check your dates. Even veteran travelers get booking dates wrong, and professional travel agents have been known to confuse check-in and checkout dates and times, leaving travelers standing at the front desk without a reservation. • Print your reservation details. A hard-copy printout remains the most reliable evidence of your reservation. Besides, you don’t want a random hotel employee swiping through your smartphone while you’re standing on the other side of the counter.

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OUTDOOR ADVENTURES GET READY TO HOOK AND REEL IN THE BIG ONE ACROSS THE U.S.

Join us this summer in search of the nation’s best fishing spots. From steelhead in New York state to trout in Michigan, we’ll tell you where to catch the most-coveted species around at uusatoday.com/ travel

MUST-SEE VIDEO SCORE A SNEAK PEEK

The new TWA Hotel at JFK airport is one of the year’s most anticipated openings, and USA TODAY got an early look at the stylish, retro rooms. Take a virtual tour in photos and video at uusat.ly/2qIkT6r

GETTY IMAGES (2); BEN ABRAMSON; AMARA AT PARAISO; BOB DEUTSCH

• Call to confirm before your visit. Yes, even if you booked directly with the hotel, you should verify your reservation number. If possible, note the name of the hotel employee, so if something goes wrong, you can say, “I spoke with soand-so in your reservations department. He or she confirmed this.”


!

You’ve been hiking on mountain trails and scenic back country before, but there’s nothing like exploring the slot canyons of St. George, Utah. Just think, thin in just a few short hours you could be exploring miles of red rock canyons usually only seen in movies made about Mars. The landscapes are so colorful it’s like Mother Nature didn’t know where to stop with her paint brush. Just 90 minutes north of Las Vegas on I-15, and with daily ights to SGU on United, Delta and American Airlines, getting there couldn’t be easier. Going home... well that may take some convincing.


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UP FRONT I N T H E N O W, I N T H E K N O W

GETTING AROUND 10

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GO OUTSIDE 16 |

FOOD + DRINK 24

| EVENTS 28 |

ICONIC SITES 38

HISTORIC ANNIVERSARY

GETTY IMAGES

Throughout 2018, San Antonio, home of the Alamo, one of the most recognizable 18th-century fortresses in the U.S., will celebrate its 300-year history with special events, concerts, art exhibits and more. (See story on page 28.)

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UP FRONT | GETTING AROUND

Know Before You Go News from the airline and airport industry USA TODAY

HOPPING HUB

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The “World’s Busiest Airport” title for 2017 will go to a familiar location.

CUBA-BOUND CRUISES

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Carnival Cruise Line has added more sailings to Cuba for 2019. The Miami-based cruise giant recently unveiled plans for 20 voyages from Tampa to the island nation in 2019 on the 2,052-passenger Carnival Paradise. The sailings are in addition to the 17 voyages to Cuba out of Miami that Carnival previously announced for 2019 on the 2,056-passenger Carnival Sensation. “Our Cuba cruises have been met with phenomenal guest response since we began sailing to the island last year,” Carnival president Christine Duffy said in a statement. The newly announced Cuba sailings on Paradise will be five-day trips. They’ll depart on Saturdays

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and feature a daylong or overnight call in Havana, the Cuban capital, along with stops at Key West, Fla., and Cozumel, Mexico. Ten of the sailings will feature a call at Key West in addition to Havana. Six of the sailings will offer Cozumel as a secondary call. Four of the sailings will include visits to both Key West and Cozumel. Carnival is just one of several cruise lines expanding Cuba offerings. In February, Norwegian Cruise Line announced it would add seven-, nine- and 13-night Cuba sailings to its schedule. Until now, Norwegian only has offered four-night Cuba sailings. Carnival and Norwegian are among more than a dozen cruise lines that have begun Cuban sailings over the past year.

— Gene Sloan

is forecast to take that title for 2017, marking the 20th consecutive year that the airport has hosted more passengers than any other on the planet. Preliminary full-year passenger numbers from the Airports Council International (ACI) trade group show that Atlanta finished first, while Beijing Capital came in second and Dubai took third place. Rounding out the top five were Tokyo Haneda and Los Angeles, which bested No. 6 Chicago O’Hare by about 4.5 million passengers to remain the United States’ second-busiest. The biggest shakeup for U.S. airports came in New York, where previously 16th-ranked New York JFK fell out of the global top 20 — overtaken by airports in India and China. As for Atlanta, not only did it hold on to the top ranking, but it also counted more than 100 million passengers for the third year in a row. Atlanta became the first airport in the world to break that threshold in 2015, when it processed 101.5 million passengers.

— Ben Mutzabaugh

SVEN CREUTZMANN/CARNIVAL CRUISE LINE; SEAN PAVONE/GETTY IMAGES

The Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport


UP FRONT | GETTING AROUND

EYES AT THE AIRPORT

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SKY CLUB BIOMETRICS

A growing number of U.S. airports are embracing an augmented reality service that uses Google Glass-style technology or a smartphone app to offer greater mobility and independence to visually imparied and blind passengers. And, for now, the airports offering the service are doing so for free. How it works: San Diego-based Aira offers a paid subscription service that provides blind and low-vision customers smart glasses and smartphone software that connects (via a tap or a voice command) to remote live agents who use the cameras on the glasses to see what’s around the user and offer guidance. Subscribers (Aira calls them “explorers”) can call on a remote agent to assist with anything from tasks in the home to grocery shopping or traveling around the world. Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport, along with

Houston William P. Hobby, Memphis International, Minneapolis-St. Paul International, Seattle-Tacoma International, Spokane International and (soon) others, picks up the per-minute costs for the Aira app or subscription service in the terminals. While the Aira service was not specifically designed for use in airports, since the service rolled out in 2015, users have conveyed to the company how their experience at airports has been transformative. “We learned that at airports, visually impaired travelers often have to call ahead for assistance and might be met at the curb by someone who puts them in a wheelchair and just delivers them to their gate,” says Kevin Phelan, Aira’s aviation lead and head of sales. “This service allows users to be independent and enjoy the airport like everyone else. So, we’ve been meeting with airports to let them know this service exists.”

— Harriet Baskas

— Ben Mutzabaugh

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Aira advisory board member Christine Ha uses the company’s service for the visually impaired at the George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston.

GETTY IMAGES; AIRA

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Delta Air Lines, already an industry leader in the use of biometric technology, is doubling down on the technology. Customers at all 50 of the carrier’s domestic Sky Club frequent-flier lounges can now gain entry by using their fingerprints. The rollout of the Delta Biometrics effort capitalizes on the carrier’s partnership with CLEAR, a biometric technology company that enables expedited access through security checkpoints by checking fliers’ identities against their fingerprints and allowing them to gain entry. The Delta Biometrics program will be open to Delta Sky Club members who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Members who also are enrolled with CLEAR will be automatically registered. Other eligible Sky Club members will be able to sign up for Delta Biometrics via kiosks in 14 clubs. Delta says it believes the biometric entry option “has the potential of streamlining check-in for millions of club visits each year.” Customers who do not want to use the fingerprint scans may still gain access to the clubs using their boarding passes.


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UP FRONT | GETTING AROUND

Digital Deals Five best sites for stellar travel bargains BY KIM KOMANDO

IT’S NEVER BEEN easier to book online travel. Gone are the days of dusty travel agencies and dog-eared brochures. At the same time, coordinating everything yourself can be stressful. What airline should you fly? Where should you stay? How will you find the best deal? And where do you even start, with so many online companies vying for your business? Each service has its pros and cons, but these brands are comprehensive, easy to use and cater to a variety of needs and interests. And while most travelers search for the best rates for flights, hotels and rental cars, keep in mind that many of these services can book cruises and activities as well.

Need to reschedule a flight? Make sure that you’re using a secure network when changing plans. The last thing you want is your info stolen.

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Location

BOOK NOW

TRAVELOCITY

Travelocity.com is one of the largest online travel sites, and although it has similarities to other brands (such as Priceline and Expedia), I am consistently impressed with its travel packages. Instead of just booking a flight and room, you can combine airfare, hotels, rental cars and more. Like other useful travel sites, Travelocity has a free app for the Apple and Android phones that allows you to easily share your itinerary with family

and friends and see past, current and future bookings, even when you’re offline.

AIRFAREWATCHDOG

Some travelers are more spontaneous than others. For people who like to hop planes on a whim, airfarewatchdog.com will quickly become your best friend. This service sets itself apart by constantly monitoring airline sites for sales and discounts and sending you customized alerts when deals are available. The best part? Airfarewatchdog

employs flesh-andblood people, who spend their days seeking out the best fares. It’s kind of like having a personal travel shopper who does the research for you, and all you have to do is sit back and wait for the deals to rush in.

TRAVELZOO

About 28 million members can’t be wrong: Travelzoo. com has become a popular venue for great savings, as the site has partnered with more than 2,000 companies. Its search capabilities are breathtaking,


Make sure to check your carrier’s baggage fees and weight restrictions to avoid surprises at the airport.

and you can even use multiple search engines to track down the best offers. Travelzoo has won accolades for its service, especially when it comes to international flights. Want to backpack through Europe, but you’re not picky about where you start? You can even search deals by continent.

shows you a world map that highlights destinations and conspicuously cheap airfares. While a lot of services will track airfares and notify you when they rise or drop, Kayak boasts a “Price Forecast,” that anticipates the fluctuation in price before booking.

GETTY IMAGES (4); PROVIDED BY THE COMPANIES

GOOGLE FLIGHTS KAYAK

Kayak.com is particularly suited for people with openended travel plans, enabling you to find recommendations within a certain budget. The site’s “Explore” tool

It’s nice to be able to compare multiple airlines and agencies, but the real reason Google Flights (google. com/flights) excels is this: The search engine can tell the difference between

a cheap flight and a good flight. Many of us have made the mistake of booking a flight for a song, only to end up with a cramped seat, hidden baggage fees and no meal. Even if you like to rough it, there is nothing wise or convenient about a 3 a.m. departure from Guatemala City. For fly-by-night tourists, Google’s most impressive feature is searching within a date range. Suppose you want to travel somewhere in Africa in October. You can select the dates you’re available and Google will figure out the best days and destinations for you.

Check to see whether the online service you’re using has an app. It can lessen many travel challenges.

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UP FRONT | GO OUTSIDE

Happy Campers Luxurious tent resorts are the stuff of Instagram dreams BY RINA RAPUANO

IF YOU’VE EVER been camping in the rain or snow, there’s little chance you’d call the experience “heavenly.” But even the most indoorsy among us can get behind the idea of inclement weather when snugly burrowed under high-thread-count sheets and designer blankets in a luxury tent warmed by a fireplace. That Pinterest-worthy image is why glamping is more popular than ever, and companies like Reserve your Collective Retreats, which own remote operates luxury campretreat. ground resorts in remote collectiveretreats. areas outside major cities com including the mountains of Montana, a ranch in Texas Hill Country and an organic farm in New York’s Hudson Valley, are only too happy to fulfill our rustic, unplugged fantasies. “The beauty of our retreats is they do feel very remote and separate, and we choose those locations so our guests can connect and escape,” says

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Cristina DeVito, chief operating officer of Collective Retreats. “But all of our locations are close to towns and cities.” The company offers five resort sites: Governors Island and Hudson Valley in New York; Texas Hill Country outside Austin; Yellowstone near Big Sky, Mont.; and Vail, Colo. Collective Sonoma in California’s wine country is scheduled to open in 2019. Peter Mack founded Collective Retreats after a year of business travel in which he spent 250 nights in hotel rooms. “I woke up one day, and I didn’t know if I was in Beijing or Dallas,” he says. “I want people to wake up in a place where a hotel shouldn’t exist.” At the Vail location, guests sleep in fur-trimmed beds sitting inside spacious tents. Wood-burning stoves provide heat in the spring and fall, and each guest gets a box of handmade marshmallows, graham crackers and chocolates to make s’mores. Mountains ring the encampment, and herds of horses race through the nearby pastures as dusk falls. While anyone from singles to couples to families to wedding parties can book a night in these chandelier-lit tents, companies like brand communications agency INVNT, which “creates, designs and produces remarkable moments” for its corporate clients, see Collective Retreats as the perfect way to create those types of experiences. Jennifer Grace, an associate producer for INVNT, took a group to the Montana location in September on behalf of a client and can’t wait to go back. “It was just the most exquisite experience,” she says. “It was slightly different than what we had planned it to be, because nobody could

COLLECTIVE RETREATS

Hudson Valley, N.Y.


Hudson Valley

Vail, Colo.

COLLECTIVE RETREATS (3); VAIL: TREVOR HUGHES

Texas Hill Country

have planned for a foot of snow that early in the season. So we were a little bit concerned, but it was magnificent.” She says the Collective Retreats team quickly switched gears, providing warm drinks upon arrival and making sure the tents were nice and toasty. The scheduled biking excursion was off the table, and her staff decided against kayaking, but participants were still able to go fly fishing. Although there’s a bit of roughing it, Collective Retreats makes sure most creature comforts are covered. Each luxury tent has a private bathroom, regional décor and books and maps to enhance the experience. And when hunger sets in, there’s a five-star chef ready to serve you dinner under the stars or pack up everything you need for DIY grilling. In other words, there’s no problem they’re not prepared to solve — including offering coveted Wi-Fi at each resort’s lodge. “People expected coming in that it was going to be limited — not only accepted that but welcomed the short opportunity to unplug,” says Grace. “(But) if they really needed access, they could get it at the lodge.” Each resort has 10 to 12 luxury tents, which are placed throughout the site to maximize the feeling of peace and solitude.

Governors Island, N.Y.

“Some of our tents are tucked into the trees, like Montana,” says DeVito. “In other locations, they are enough apart and angled in a way so you can’t see into each other’s tents or hear, so it provides privacy.” Prices start around $400 a night during the early and late seasons and can go as high as $700, and popular weekends usually sell out. The company uses social media — Instagram in particular — to promote its service. Guests average 2.5 social media posts per stay, Mack says. They snap photos of the farm-to-table dinners, the smoke rising from the tents glowing amidst the dark sky, the packed-just-for-you barbecue lunches and French press morning coffee. “When you stay in a (typical hotel), it’s fine but it’s not necessarily something you’d share with your friends. What we’re hearing from our guests is they’re tired of the traditional travel experience,” Mack says. “Time is more precious than ever.” And the thing is, Mack notes, younger travelers who typically don’t have a lot of money to spare for vacations are among their most frequent guests. The unusual and Instagrammable setting of the camping sites is a draw: “We find that our millennial guests are willing to spend their last dollar for this kind of experience.”

— Trevor Hughes contributed to this story.

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UP FRONT | GO OUTSIDE

Star Search Enjoy a dramatic night sky at one of these dark destinations

WHILE LIGHT-POLLUTED SKIES are becoming more the norm across the globe, there are still places dark enough to see the Milky Way. Venture to these prime locations popular for their star-filled horizons: About two hours north of Phoenix is Flagstaff, Ariz., the first city designated as an International Dark Sky Place, known for its star-friendly lighting restrictions. Flagstaff is home to the Lowell Observatory (lowell.edu), where the planet Pluto was discovered, and where Buffalo Park’s pitchblack skies welcome annual star parties (flagstaffstarparty.org), held in October with telescope-viewing and night-sky presentations. TIP: To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the U.S. moon landing in 2019, Flagstaff is hosting a Lunar Legacy launch event, flagstaffarizona.org/lunarlegacy, on July 20, 2018, to honor the town’s role in the moon mission. If seeing the Northern Lights is on your bucket list, you’ll find

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FLAGSTAFF CONVENTION & VISITORS BUREAU; GETTY IMAGES

BY LISA DAVIS

The public can view stars and other objects in the night sky using the historic Clark Telescope at the Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, Ariz.


them while camping under the stars at the Theodore Roosevelt National Park (nps.gov/thro/index.htm) in Medora, N.D. The park’s remoteness and clear skies make it ideal for stargazing and viewing aurora borealis. See the stars alongside professional astronomers at Dakota Nights Astronomy Festival, Sept. 7-9. TIP: Go to aurora-service. org/aurora-forecast to track where the Northern Lights should appear. Ohio’s rural Hocking Hills area (roughly 60 minutes from Columbus) not only has dark, starry skies, but on June 21, to coincide with the summer solstice, it will be home to the new John Glenn Astronomy Park (jgap.info),

named for the Ohio native who was the first American astronaut to orbit the Earth. The park, located in Logan, Ohio, features an enclosed 540-square-foot observatory with a retractable roof and two large telescopes to view the stars and moon. TIP: In 2018, Mars will appear its brightest since 2003, and will hit its peak in late July and early August when the Earth moves between Mars and the sun. View the planet through the John Glenn Astronomy Park’s telescopes. At Northstar Resort (northstarcalifornia.com) in Lake Tahoe, Calif., you can view stars using high-powered Celestron telescopes, through Sept. 1.

GOIN’ GAZIN’ Check out these other places to see starlit skies and shooting stars, including the Perseid meteor shower in August:

uNa Pali Coast on Kauai, Hawaii

uNewport State Park in Door County, Wis.

uGlacier National Park in Montana

uUtah’s Natural Bridges National Monument, where the Milky Way rises over Owachomo Bridge

u Voyageurs National Park in Minnesota

uWhiterock Conservancy in Iowa, which hosts a stargazing event Sept. 13-16

uGhost Ranch in Abiquiu, N.M.

uDeath Valley National Park in California and Nevada GETTY IMAGES; AARON RIGSBY

uLake Pleasant in Peoria, Ariz., where you can kayak at night and search for stars

uVirginia’s Primland

Celestial aficionados can enjoy a star-filled sky and beautiful views at Hocking Hills State Park in Logan, Ohio.

resort, which has a 30-foot-diameter astronomy dome that opens for deep-space stargazing

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UP FRONT | GO OUTSIDE

Fall for Autumn Gay-friendly destinations invite travelers to soak up the season’s beauty BY MICHAEL T. LUONGO

THE BRILLIANT RAINBOW flag waves all year, but autumn brings a colorful competitor: kaleidoscopic fall leaf displays. This is especially true in the border regions of the United States and Canada, where Mother Nature hosts spectacular scenery. These areas are also some of the most popular gay-friendly travel destinations, welcoming everyone. Here, we spotlight five cities with spectacular autumn highlights. These locales are “very special for LGBTQ travelers year-round,” says John Tanzella, CEO of the International Gay and Lesbian Travel Association, which creates awareness of the multibillion-dollar tourism industry and related rights issues. “But fall adds an extra touch of romance with the colorful landscape and culinary delights only found at this time of year.”

QUEBEC, CANADA Canada’s Quebec Province (quebecregion.com/ en), home to Quebec City and Montreal, is famed for French-kissed European flair. Steven Overly, a reporter with Politico who escapes here on breaks, recommends a visit to Île d’Orléans, just outside Quebec City. “It’s a beautiful island full of wineries, cideries, cheese shops, maple syrup farms and other quaint attractions,” he says. “The rich forestry would make for a stunning change of season there.” Autumn is also when Montreal hosts the annual HIV services fundraiser, the Black and Blue Ball (bbcm.org) — a highlight of the global circuit party calendar. This year’s event is Oct. 7.

Montreal’s Gay Village

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BRIGITTE BOUCHARD; EVA BLUE; GETTY IMAGES

Île d’Orlé ans


Irresistibly adventurous. Download our free app. Be transported to unusual destinations, must-see landmarks, and the hidden gems for your inner world-traveler.


UP FRONT | GO OUTSIDE

SAUGATUCK, MICH. One well-kept secret within the gay community is Lake Michigan’s Saugatuck (saugatuck.com). “Autumn is a great time of year to experience Saugatuck’s beauty and natural splendor,” says Salvatore Sapienza, a novelist and pastor in the neighboring resort town of Douglas. “Come October, the fall colors are at their peak, and visitors can enjoy hayrides, apple orchards, corn mazes, winery tours and farm-fresh pies at a local cider mill.” The area offers bed-and-breakfast inns, retro motels and the Dunes Resort, one of the Midwest’s largest gay resorts.

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Lake Michigan

KELLY PULEIO(2); GETTY IMAGES; SAUGATUCK DOUGLAS AREA CONVENTION & VISITORS BUREAU

RUSSIAN RIVER, CALIF. A little over an hour north of San Francisco, Russian River (gayrussianriver.com) is strewn with wineries, small hotels and resorts. Two great options are the Woods Resort and Rio Villa Beach Resort. Life centers on the former logging town of Guerneville, an unincorporated community in the Russian River Valley. David Lytle, editor at large for 7x7 Magazine, vacations several times a year here with his husband and sons. “The truly tiny town of Guerneville has a quaint street lined with an ice cream shop, a five-and-dime store, restaurants in varying price ranges and two gay bars,” says Lytle. “It’s a great weekend escape from San Francisco, all nestled in pines and redwoods along a river perfect for swimming and floating.”


Carnival Week

Welcome!

PROVINCETOWN TOURISM OFFICE; OGUNQUIT CHAMBER OF COMMERCE; THE FRONT PORCH

There is plenty for all to do and see in these inviting locales.

High Hee l Dash

PROVINCETOWN, MASS. One of the world’s bestknown LGBT destinations, nicknamed P-town (province towntourismoffice.org), this cozy seaside town on Cape Cod’s tip offers travel bargains and beautiful light in autumn, according to Massachusetts native Ed Salvato, contact officer of gay travel website Man About World and co-author of Handbook of LGBT Tourism and Hospitality. “You can find an event for every genre of person, from transgender gatherings like Fantasia (Fair, a weeklong celebration and conference for the transgender community), to events for women, leather lovers, partiers and more,”says Salvato. He especially likes the restaurants Strangers & Saints and Victor’s, and recommends hiking and biking through peak foliage on surrounding trails.

OGUNQUIT, MAINE Ogunquit (ogunquit. org), whose name means “beautiful place by the sea” in the language of the Abenaki tribe, is on the rocky Maine coast, bringing to mind the fictional Murder, She Wrote town. It’s a charming, walkable city, with a downtown area full of shops and restaurants. Finding a place to hang out is easy in the district called The Village. Spots like The Old Village Inn, a pub and inn housed in one of the town’s oldest buildings, and The Front Porch piano bar are two of the main locales where everyone mingles.

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UP FRONT | FOOD + DRINK

Veggie Tales More hotels offering vegetarian options for travelers BY RACHEL KRANTZ

The Stanford Inn by the Sea, Medocino, Calif.

Willka T’ika, Peru

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VACATIONS ARE TYPICALLY filled with fun, frivolity and food. Ah, yes, the food. Whether you’re traveling near or far, there are infinite options for enjoying local cuisines, even at your hotel. However, for vegetarians, the perfect getaway can be challenging if the hotel restaurant doesn’t offer a substantial plant-based menu. Luckily, there are extraordinary vegetarianfriendly options available — you just have to find them. That’s easier than ever, thanks to travel writers Thomas Klein, Karen Klein and Peter Haunert, who created the website VeggieHotels (veggie-hotels. com) in 2011. The world’s first network of entirely vegetarian and vegan hotels and inns, the site now includes more than 600 establishments around the

Casa Albets, Catalunya, Spain

Fivelements, Bali

PHOTOS PROVIDED BY VEGGIEHOTELS: DREAMCATCHER; CASA ALBETS; FIVELEMENTS; WILLKA T’IKA; THE STANFORD INN

Dreamcatcher, San Juan, Puerto Rico


VEGAN TRAVEL HACKS

PHOTOS PROVIDED BY VEGGIEHOTELS: WILLKA T’IKA; THE STANFORD INN

Willka T’ika, Peru

globe. Thomas Klein says the number of hotels, resorts, bed-andbreakfasts and retreats seeking a listing on the VeggieHotels site has skyrocketed in the past few years, right along with the vegetarianism and veganism movement worldwide. According to Klein, Germany and other German-speaking countries, such as Austria and Switzerland, boast the most vegetarian lodging options, followed by Italy and the United Kingdom (home to one of the oldest vegetarian movements). The United States is catching up quickly. “In the USA, you have 47 hotels, but they are mostly bed-and-breakfasts,” Klein says. His favorite U.S. vegetarian and vegan accommodations include The Stanford Inn by the Sea, an eco-resort in Mendocino, Calif.; Pepper Tree Retreat in Ojai, Calif.; and the Sewall House Yoga Retreat in Island Falls, Maine. Caitlin Galer-Unti, author of The Essential Vegan Travel Guide, recommends Park Lane Guest House in Austin, Texas; and Farm Sanctuary in Watkins Glen, N.Y., a quaint bed-and-breakfast that also invites visitors to “form a bond with the sanctuary’s rescue animals.” If you’re looking abroad, Klein especially loves Willka T’ika in Peru, “a popular getaway for Americans” drawn to the luxury wellness retreat; the upscale Fivelements in Bali; and Dreamcatcher, a bed-and-

The Stanford Inn by the Sea, Medocino, Calif.

breakfast in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Galer-Unti particularly enjoys the eco-friendly hotel Casa Albets in Catalunya, Spain; and Temple Lodge Club, a vegan bed-and-breakfast in London. Vegan travel writer Wendy Werneth recommends The Mushroom Farm, an eco-lodge located in Africa’s northern Malawi. “The owners invest in a lot of projects to give back to the local community — and they serve the best food in all of Malawi!” she says. Werneth also highly recommends El Beso, a vegetarian hostel on the Camino de Santiago in Spain. There’s no doubt options for the vegetarian traveler are growing. In fact, Klein and his partners created a second site, Vegan Welcome (vegan-welcome. com), for the many hotels that are not entirely vegan but want to be known as vegan-friendly. To qualify for a listing, these establishments must offer several vegan options with every meal. If, for some reason, you can’t find a vegetarian or vegan hotel where you’re traveling, Werneth recommends simply giving your hosts a heads-up. “Be very clear about what you don’t eat when booking so they’ll be better able to accommodate you,” she advises. And even if you aren’t vegetarian, you may want to consider giving one of these hotels a try for a healthier and more compassionate vacation.

Traveling as a vegan may require a little work, but with the right planning, you’ll reap great rewards. These tips will ensure you not only stay satisfied, but have a truly mouth-watering adventure: Download Happy Cow and Vanilla Bean These apps, which are like Yelp for travelers who avoid meat, feature only reviews of vegan, vegetarian and vegetarian-friendly restaurants, complete with plenty of crowdsourced ratings. Use social media Search for local vegan or vegetarian groups on sites such as Meetup or Facebook and search Instagram hashtags. You can ask members for suggestions on where to eat and whether anyone would like to meet for dinner. Not only are you likely to get great recommendations, you’ll probably make some friends. Stay somewhere with a kitchen While eating out is convenient, having a space to cook — available at most Airbnb rentals and some hostels — will help you save money and allow you to take advantage of local farmers markets and grocery stores. Know the local lingo Look up key vegan phrases in advance. Not every language has a word for vegan, so be sure to find the most appropriate way to express your dietary preferences. Another great resource is The Vegan Passport (available through vegansociety.com), a multilingual phrasebook and guide to eating vegan anywhere in the world, available in book or app form. Pack some snacks While you’re likely to find more vegan options than you’d expect, it’s a good idea to pack a few snacks. Keeping a stash of peanut butter, power bars, trail mix or other portable nutrientrich snacks will ensure you won’t go hungry.

— Rachel Krantz

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UP FRONT | FOOD + DRINK

Classic Cocktails

SOUTHEAST

MAINE

KENTUCKY

Allen’s and Milk

Mint Julep

Allen’s Coffee-Flavored Brandy, the ubiquitous “champagne of Maine” (although it’s actually made in Massachusetts), served with milk over ice is widely known as the Sombrero.

Nearly 120,000 mint juleps are served during Derby weekend at Churchill Downs. Mix bourbon with a simple syrup infused with fresh mint; serve with crushed ice in a silver julep cup.

NEW JERSEY

LOUISIANA

Jack Rose

Sazerac

Origin stories vary, but you won’t go wrong if you order this rosy drink, made with Applejack from New Jersey’s Laird and Company, America’s oldest licensed distillery, plus grenadine, lemon juice and lime juice.

Credited to a New Orleans apothecary in 1838 (and originally made with Sazerac French brandy), the city’s official cocktail features rye whiskey, Peychaud’s bitters, sugar and absinthe.

WASHINGTON, D.C.

NORTH CAROLINA

The Rickey

The Cherry Bounce

Named for Confederate officer-turnedlobbyist Col. Joe Rickey, this drink has been poured since the 1880s. Mixologists like to get creative with this simple combo of gin, lime and club soda.

Said to be one of George Washington’s favorite tipples, the Cherry Bounce was made famous at Isaac Hunter’s Tavern outside Raleigh. It’s made with cherries, sugar and the liquor of your choice.

These state-specific drinks will whet your whistle BY DIANE BAIR AND PAMELA WRI GHT

WHEN IN ROME (or Nome, Alaska), why not drink as the locals do? That region’s signature drink might have a cool backstory, or offer a fun twist on a native ingredient. On your next adventure around the U.S., eschew the hotel lounge for a downtown tavern or local eatery, then belly up to the bar and say, “I’ll have what she’s having!”

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GETTY IMAGES; MAINE OFFICE OF TOURISM; NEW JERSEY: LAIRD & COMPANY DISTILLERY; WASHINGTON, D.C.: JW MARRIOTT; KENTUCKY DEPARTMENT OF TOURISM; LOUISIANA: ZACK SMITH; NORTH CAROLINA: ISAAC HUNTER’S TAVERN

NORTHEAST


ILLINOIS: MISTEY NGUYEN; MINNESOTA: TATTERSALL DISTILLING; WISCONSIN DEPARTMENT OF TOURISM; ARIZONA BILTMORE RESORT; MONTANA: JIM HARRIS/BOZEMAN SPIRITS DISTILLERY; NEW MEXICO: LA FONDA ON THE PLAZA; ALASKA: CISSY ROCKETT/ SALTY DAWG SALOON; HAWAII: HILTON HAWAIIAN VILLAGE; NEVADA: BOUND LAS VEGAS BAR

MIDWEST

WEST

PACIFIC

ILLINOIS

ARIZONA

ALASKA

The Southside

Tequila Sunrise

The Duck Fart

Origin stories abound, but we like the bootlegger version, tracing the drink to Chicago’s South Side during Prohibition, when strong flavors masked inferior liquor. To gin, add lime juice, mint, simple syrup and bitters.

The original Tequila Sunrise was created in the late 1930s at the Arizona Biltmore Hotel in Phoenix, and you can still get one, a beguiling blend of top-shelf tequila, crème de cassis, lime juice and club soda.

This creamy-delicious concoction of Kahlua, Bailey’s Irish Cream and Crown Royal Whisky, said to be named for the sound you’ll make after drinking one, will give you a warm feeling all over — necessary in Alaska.

MINNESOTA

MONTANA

HAWAII

The Bootleg

Huckleberry Mule

Blue Hawaii

The official drink of Minnesota is made from gin, vodka or light rum, club soda and a citrusy mix sold at Woodhill Country Club in Wayzata, Minn. Some bartenders also use fresh-squeezed juice or a lemonade-lime blend.

Whiskey and water (aka Whiskey Ditch) once ruled barrooms, but the cool kids have moved on to a drink that pays homage to the state’s wild mountain huckleberries: Cold Spring huckleberry vodka with ginger beer and lime juice.

Drink a toast to Harry Yee, head bartender at the Hilton Hawaiian Village in Waikiki on Oahu back in the 1950s. His original recipe featured vodka, light rum, blue curacao, sweet-and-sour mix and fresh pineapple juice over ice.

WISCONSIN

NEW MEXICO

NEVADA

Brandy Old Fashioned

Margarita

Breakfast Martini

An Old Fashioned is made with whiskey, you say? Well, Wisconsinites prefer brandy with sugar, bitters and Sprite. They should know: They drink more brandy than anyone else in the U.S.

One of the stars at the Bell Tower Bar at La Fonda on the Plaza in Santa Fe is the Bell Ringer Margarita, made with Tanteo Jalapeno tequila, Patron Citronge and garnished with jalapeno juice.

A hair of the dog never tasted so good. At Bound bar at The Cromwell hotel in Las Vegas, this popular drink features Bombay Sapphire gin, Cointreau, lemon juice and orange marmalade.

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UP FRONT | EVENTS

Tricentennial Celebrations New Orleans and San Antonio mark 300 years with festivities BY STACEY ZABLE

THE YEAR 1718 was an important one for both New Orleans and San Antonio, making 2018 significant as well, with each city paying homage to its 300-year-old past.

Royal Sonesta New Orleans

to 5 p.m., cheese lovers can indulge in choices Visitors can start their from France and the vacation to New Orleans U.S., while Francophiles by taking advantage of can also delight in select hotels, restaurants French wines, music and attractions offering and more. Ticket prices special deals in honor of start at $25 per adult. the city’s tricentennial. (400 Esplanade Ave.; The “New Orleans fetedesfromages.com) Tricentennial Package” The New Orleans at the Royal Sonesta Museum of Art is New Orleans, for showing example, pieces from features deluxe the personal rates that start collection of at $300 for a French Regent, two-night stay. Find more Philippe Be sure to tricentennial II, Duke of stop at the information at Orléans, whom hotel’s Desire 2018nola.com the city was Oyster Bar named after for happy in 1718. “The Orléans hour weekdays from 3 Collection” runs Oct. 26 p.m. to 6 p.m. Enjoy to Jan. 27, 2019. (One $5 house cocktails and Collins C. Diboll Circle; wine, $4 import drafts, noma.org/exhibitions/ $3 domestic drafts the-orleans-collection). and $1 oysters. (300

Bourbon St.; sonesta. com). At the inaugural

“Fête des Fromages” at the Old U.S. Mint building and grounds in the French Quarter on Nov. 17 from 11 a.m.

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Before you leave the city, stop by the

7-foot-tall NOLA 300 art installations at City Park, Washington Artillery Park and Woldenberg Park.

Philippe II, Duke of Orléans

ROYAL SONESTA NEW ORLEANS ; NEW ORLEANS MUSEUM OF ART/ MARGAUX KRANE

NEW ORLEANS


UP FRONT | EVENTS

SAN ANTONIO

Bathtime, Valencia

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The city of San Antonio was founded by the Spanish in May 1718 with the Mission San Antonio de Valero, later known as the Alamo. Though the infamous battle at the Alamo didn’t take place until 1836, the fortress itself dates back 300 years, and the city’s tricentennial is a good time for a guided tour that tells the story. Better yet, schedule your visit during one of the Alamo Tricentennial Lecture Series events taking place monthly through December. Experts discuss varying topics that focus on the history of the Alamo, San Antonio and Texas. Lunch ($15 per person) or evening hors d’oeuvres ($20 per person) are included

with the lecture. (300 from the Museums of Alamo Plaza; thealamo. Madrid” taking place org) June 22 through Sept. Seven galleries 16. On display will be provide perspective on more than 40 pieces the city’s past, including of art from collections the Battle of the Alamo in Madrid as well as and early Spanish additional works from settlement, American at a current museums. Such exhibit at The masters as El Witte Museum. Greco, Goya, “Confluence Picasso, Sorolla Find more and Culture: and Velázquez tricentennial 300 Years of will be among information at San Antonio the artists History” that will be sanantonio300. runs through represented. org Jan. 6, 2019, During the for $5 plus exhibit’s run, museum admission. the museum will also (3801 Broadway St.; celebrate the “Summer wittemuseum.org/ of Spain” with a lecture confluence-and-culture) series, a film festival and Another tricentennial weekly evening events exhibition, this one highlighted by flamenco at the San Antonio lessons, poetry, music Museum of Art, is and more art. (200 W. “Spain: 500 Years Jones Ave.; samuseum. of Spanish Painting org)

VISITSANANTONIO.COM

The Alamo


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UP FRONT | EVENTS

Barcelona

CORREFOCS

Spain

Throughout the year

Festive Fireworks Enjoy pyrotechnic parties around the world THE BOOM OF the launch, the splintering crack of the explosion, the glittering rays of light that fall gently to earth ... there’s something magical about fireworks. No matter what country you’re visiting, there’s likely a major event featuring these sky sparklers nearby. These festivals, selected by editors at 10Best.com, span the globe from Iceland to Taiwan, Dubai to Peru, U.S. to UK; there’s a time and place for everyone. So tweak your itinerary, bring your camera and get ready to ignite the night.

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India

DIWALI

India and worldwide Changes annually One of the major festivals of Hinduism, this celebration signifies the victory of light over darkness, good over evil, knowledge over ignorance and hope over despair.

JAIME REINA/AFP/GETTY IMAGES; DAVID RAMOS/GETTY IMAGES; SOUMENNATH/GETTY IMAGES; GETTY IMAGES

Palma de Mallorca, Spain

At many Catalan festivals, a group of individuals will dress up as devils and light fireworks fixed on pitchforks or strung above the route among crowds. Spectators dress to prevent burns and attempt to get as close as possible to the devils running with the fire.


SWISS NATIONAL DAY Switzerland Aug. 1

New York City

The Swiss National Day is a celebration begun in 1891 to celebrate the foundation of the Swiss Confederacy.

INDEPENDENCE DAY United States

EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ/AFP/GETTY IMAGES ; PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/GETTY IMAGES; GETTY IMAGES ; TOMOHIRO OHSUMI/GETTY IMAGES; JEAN-SEBASTIEN EVRARD/AFP/GETTY IMAGES

July 4 Americans celebrate this federal holiday commemorating the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, by the Continental Congress. It stated that the 13 American colonies regarded themselves as a new nation and were no longer part of the British Empire.

SINGAPORE NATIONAL DAY Singapore Aug. 9 The holiday is celebrated to mark Singapore’s independence from Malaysia in 1965.

Washington, D.C.

HANABI Japan

Year-round, but most commonly throughout July and August During fireworks season in Japan, shimmering displays are accompanied by a relaxed festival atmosphere, with people dressed in kimonos, and streets lined with food and game stalls.

EID ADHA

Paris

BASTILLE DAY France July 14 This festival commemorates the 1789 Storming of the Bastille, in which seven inmates were released from a political prison (the Bastille) in Paris. This event was the flashpoint for the French Revolution.

Toyohashi, Japan

GUY FAWKES NIGHT

Dubai and worldwide

United Kingdom

Aug. 21

This festival commemorates the failed 1605 Gunpowder Plot against James I, masterminded by a group of provincial English Catholics (including Guy Fawkes) who planned to blow up the House of Lords.

Also called the “Feast of Sacrifice,” this is the second of two global Muslim holidays and is considered the holier of the two. It honors the willingness of Ibrahim (Abraham) to sacrifice his son, as an act of obedience to God’s command.

Nov. 5

LA NOCHE BUENA Peru

Dec. 24 La Noche Buena, or Good Night, is the main day for Christmas celebrations in Peru. In the evening, families eat elaborate dinners and open gifts. At midnight, adults will toast with champagne and children with hot chocolate, and families go outside to watch fireworks.

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UP FRONT | EVENTS

Celebrating a Statesman Maryland and D.C. commemorate Frederick Douglass’ 200th birthday BY DEVORAH LEV-TOV AND SOPHIE KAPLAN

NATIONAL PORTRAIT GALLERY Often referred to as the most photographed American man of the 19th century, Douglass sat for more portraits during the 1800s than President Abraham Lincoln. His appreciation for photography is on display at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C. You can also see an 1844 oil painting of him in the museum’s permanent exhibition, American Origins. unpg.si.edu

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BANNEKER-DOUGLASS MUSEUM Maryland’s capital, Annapolis, is home to the Banneker-Douglass Museum, the state’s official museum of African-American heritage. On July 1, the museum will host Frederick Douglass Community Day, featuring performances, a Frederick Douglass re-enactment, guided exhibition tours and educational activities. A permanent exhibit, Deep Roots, Rising Waters: A Celebration of African Americans in Maryland, includes a Frederick Douglass speech against racism and slavery. ubdmuseum.maryland.gov

CEDAR HILL The Frederick Douglass National Historic Site in Washington, D.C.’s Anacostia neighborhood is home to Cedar Hill, where Douglass spent the last 18 years of his life. Visitors can view the home during guided tours, and on July 4, an all-day celebration will include a re-enactment of Douglass’ famous “What to the slave is the Fourth of July?” speech. Bonus: Cedar Hill is also a great spot to view the District’s fireworks. unps.gov/frdo

NATIONAL GREAT BLACKS IN WAX MUSEUM Chronicling the African-American experience from ancient Africa and slavery to the present, the National Great Blacks in Wax Museum in Baltimore hosts more than 150 life-size wax figures, including Sojourner Truth, Rosa Parks, Malcolm X and Jackie Robinson. In February, the museum unveiled a statue of Douglass. And this summer, the museum is scheduled to host a book signing with Kenneth B. Morris, a descendant of both Douglass and educator Booker T. Washington. ugreatblacksinwax.org

NATIONAL PARK SERVICE; PHOTO ILLUSTRATION: AMIRA MARTIN/GETTY IMAGES

MARYLAND AND WASHINGTON, D.C., the respective birthplace and home of the legendary African-American writer, abolitionist and human rights leader Frederick Douglass, are honoring the bicentennial of his birth. Born into slavery as Frederick Bailey sometime in 1818 in Talbot County, Md., Douglass escaped to New York, adopted the new surname and began campaigning for abolition and equal rights for all people. Douglass purchased a home, which he called Cedar Hill, in Washington, D.C.’s Anacostia neighborhood in 1877. He lived there with his second wife, Helen Pitts Douglass, until he died Feb. 20, 1895, at age 77. After his death, Helen urged Congress to create the Frederick Douglass Memorial and Historical Association to maintain the house and honor his achievements. In 2017, President Donald Trump signed the Frederick Douglass Bicentennial Commission Act, which dedicated resources to initiatives that honor Douglass’ 200th birthday. In February, Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan was joined by descendants of Douglass as he declared 2018 the “Year of Frederick Douglass.” Here are some ways to honor his legacy this year:


VISIT BALTIMORE (2); NATIONAL PARK SERVICE; NATIONAL GREAT BLACKS IN WAX MUSEUM; VISITANAPOLIS.ORG; AFRICAN AMERICAN EXPERIENCE IN ANNAPOLIS TOUR; PHOTO ILLUSTRATION: AMIRA MARTIN/GETTY IMAGES

Frederick Douglass-Isaac Myers Maritime Park and Museum

Frederick Douglass National Historic Site

Frederick Douglass-Isaac Myers Maritime Park and Museum

WILLIAM PACA HOUSE William Paca signed the Declaration of Independence in 1776 and served as Maryland’s third governor. His Annapolis mansion, the William Paca House, was built in the 1760s and restored by Historic Annapolis beginning in 1965. Today, tours and events are hosted at the National Historic Landmark and in the William Paca Gardens. On July 14, the estate is hosting a gospel brunch, which will honor Douglass’ life through music. uannapolis.org/ media/48-345-gospel-brunch

PATH TO FREEDOM WALKING TOUR Douglass came to Baltimore as a child and worked at the shipyard before setting sail from Fells Point to find freedom in 1838. Years later, he returned and built a row of houses, called Douglass Place (today’s Dallas Street) for African-American renters. Visitors can see the houses on the Baltimore Black Heritage Tours’ Frederick Douglass Path to Freedom Walking Tour through Sept. 3. ufacebook.com/frederick douglasspathtofreedom walkingtour

National Great Blacks in Wax Museum

Banneker-Douglass Museum

FREDERICK DOUGLASS DAY Maryland’s Talbot County, where Douglass was born, is celebrating the bicentennial with several events, including Frederick Douglass Day on Sept. 22, which will be observed at various locations in the town of Easton on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. A parade, lectures and musical performances will be part of the celebration. ufd200.org/events/

FREDERICK DOUGLASSISAAC MYERS MARITIME PARK AND MUSEUM Part of the Living Classrooms Foundation campus, the Frederick Douglass-Isaac Myers Maritime Park and Museum honors the contributions of African-Americans in the development of Baltimore’s maritime industry. Visitors can learn about Douglass’ early life in Baltimore as a slave, as well as the life of Isaac Myers, an African-American who was born free and later became an inspirational leader. ulivingclassrooms.org/

frederick-douglass-day

ourp_fdimmp.php

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UP FRONT | EVENTS

Hot Sounds of Summer Get into the groove with the season’s coolest music festivals BY SHELBY DEERING

AS THE WEATHER turns warmer, you can count on barbecues, pool parties and a seemingly endless number of music festivals. No longer confined to concert halls, these melodic showcases take to the great outdoors to spotlight the industry’s best and brightest. With beloved bands, amazing locations and multigenerational appeal, these festivals are sure to strike a chord:

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SUMMERFEST JUNE 27–JULY 1, 3–8 Milwaukee Don Smiley, president and CEO of Milwaukee World Festival Inc., says, “Summerfest offers the most diverse lineup available anywhere,” a mix of classic powerhouses and fresh faces. Don’t miss James Taylor, Bonnie Raitt and Imagine Dragons. summerfest.com

MATTHEW LAMB; CHANDRA RUSSELL; BRIANNA RETTIG; JEREMY KIM; GETTY IMAGES

WATERSHED AUG. 3–5 George, Wash. This festival has a nickname for its fans: the “Shedders,” who’ll scoot their boots to the country sounds of a 2018 lineup that includes Blake Shelton and Brad Paisley, all while overlooking stunning views of a nearby gorge. watershedfest. com

cult followings. This summer, catch Band of Horses and Sturgill Simpson. hinterlandiowa.com

FINGER LAKES GRASSROOTS FESTIVAL OF MUSIC AND DANCE JULY 19–22 Trumansburg, N.Y. GrassRoots isn’t just a Finger Lakes tradition where you’ll take in many genres (Zydeco, anyone? Gospel, perhaps?). You can also make crafts in the Kids’ Area, do yoga or take an African dance class. grassrootsfest.org

ESSENCE FESTIVAL

FLOAT FEST

JULY 5–8 | New Orleans With a festive atmosphere that could rival Mardi Gras, the Essence Festival boasts more than a dozen stages running day and night, welcoming R&B mainstays like Janet Jackson, Jill Scott, The Roots and Mary J. Blige. essence.com/festival

JULY 21–22 San Marcos, Texas As the only festival in the world to combine music, camping and tubing, Float Fest revelers drift down the San Marcos River to a ranch where they’ll soak up the sounds of artists like Modest Mouse and Snoop Dogg. floatfest.net

NORTHWEST STRING SUMMIT JULY 19–22 North Plains, Ore. “Horning’s Hideout is such a special festival destination,” says event promoter Skye McDonald. He’s right. The festival, highlighting indie bands’ string skills, is famous for its majestic old-growth trees. You can bring the kiddos along for their own activities, too. stringsummit.com

FRESHGRASS FESTIVAL SEPT. 14–16 North Adams, Mass. Situated on the MASS MoCA campus, the largest contemporary art museum in the U.S., this bluegrass festival will host the Indigo Girls, Yonder Mountain String Band and more. And bring your fiddle — impromptu jam sessions are encouraged. freshgrass.com

PILGRIMAGE MUSIC & CULTURAL FESTIVAL SEPT. 22–23 Franklin, Tenn. A 250-acre historic horse farm is the perfect spot for a music festival with Southern flair. Amid rolling hills, enjoy the music of artists such as Brandi Carlile, Lionel Richie and Counting Crows. pilgrimagefestival.com

MUSIC TASTES GOOD HINTERLAND AUG. 3–4 Saint Charles, Iowa Held near John Wayne’s birthplace and Madison County’s historic bridges, Hinterland music festival is anything but old-school, showcasing indie acts with

SEPT. 29–30 Long Beach, Calif. Music Tastes Good is a celebration of music and food,” says festival creative director Chris Watson. Enjoy established bands and up-and-comers as well as gourmet eats prepared by chefs. mtglb.co

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UP FRONT | ICONIC SITES

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Scenic Cities BY DIANE BAIR AND PAMELA WRIGHT ILLUSTRATION BY RYAN INZANA

2 MAG NAME XXXXXXXXXX 38 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2018

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Settle in for a geography lesson and explore these iconic landmarks across the U.S.: 1

PORTLAND, ORE. Powell’s City of Books

2

SAN FRANCISCO Alcatraz Island

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LAS VEGAS Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas sign

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CARMEL, CALIF. (aka Carmel-by-the-Sea) Point Lobos

TUCSON, ARIZ. Mission San Xavier del Bac

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BOZEMAN, MONT. Lone Peak at Big Sky Resort

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HONOLULU lolani Palace

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TRAVERSE CITY, MICH. Cherry Republic gift shop

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SEATTLE The Space Needle

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CHICAGO Wrigley Field

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SANTA FE, N.M. Taos Pueblo (Native American community) SAN ANTONIO The Alamo mission MADISON, WIS. The Wisconsin State Capitol building


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DETROIT Motown Museum (Hitsville U.S.A.)

CLEVELAND The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame

18 ASHEVILLE, N.C. Biltmore Estate 19

CHARLESTON, S.C. Fort Sumter

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NASHVILLE, TENN. Grand Ole Opry

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ST. AUGUSTINE, FLA. Castillo de San Marcos fort

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NEW ORLEANS Preservation Hall

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PORTLAND, MAINE Portland Head Light

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BOSTON Public Garden NEW YORK CITY The National September 11 Memorial and Museum PHILADELPHIA Liberty Bell WASHINGTON, D.C. Lincoln Memorial 3 39


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COURTYARD BY MARRIOTT ISLA VERDE BEACH RESORT


Tropical destinations welcome tourists after historic hurricane season BY ALEXIS KORMAN

L

ate summer of 2017 is a time that many Caribbean island inhabitants likely won’t soon forget. In the span of two weeks, two Category 4 hurricanes swept through the region, leaving a path of destruction and turning postcard-perfect beach locales into scenes resembling war-torn battlefields.

Isla Verde Beach, Puerto Rico

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Hurricane Irma, one of the caused damage elsewhere in Atlantic’s strongest hurrithe Caribbean. canes on record, pummeled Thankfully, within weeks St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin of the record-breaking Islands on Sept. 6, causing hurricanes, many of these widespread devastation. meccas for sun-worshipping On the U.S. mainland, Irma tourists were on the road to made landfall on Sept. 10, recovery, and the restoration battering parts of Florida, continues. including Miami and the Take the Florida Keys, Florida Keys, which has where nearly 80 percent of been considered the state’s all hotel units are now open. hardest-hit region. The “Lodging properties and storm destroyed portions of other tourism facilities in U.S. Highway 1, aka Overseas the Keys have made an Highway, amazing which rebound since connects the last fall,” says mainland to Jim DeKeyrel, the 125-mile Florida Keys chain of and Key West five islands, director of knocked sales for down power the Monroe lines, severed County drinking-waTourist ter supplies Development and cut off Council. cellphone In Puerto and internet Rico, many service. Irma hotels and also destroyed other lodging hundreds of sites were homes, traildestroyed, at ers and RVs, least partly. and knocked — KAREN HUTZLER, Currently, FLORIDA KEYS VACATIONER awnings off 121 hotels businesses. and 4,000 Hurricane Maria hit the restaurants are open. U.S. Virgin Islands again “San Juan is back, and a week later, then caused there is a lot of optimism staggering damage in in the air,” says Kevin Dominica, making landfall Rodriguez, a realtor from Sept. 18, before moving on Guaynabo, who notes a two days later to Puerto Rico, recent uptick in his shortwhere it left the U.S. territory term vacation rentals. in shambles — devastation With many Caribbean desso extensive that it took tinations offering uncharacmonths for portions of the teristically low prices, there’s fragile power grid to be never been a better time to up and running. Forecasthead to the beach. Here’s ers suggest it may take our guide to destinations in decades for the island to Florida and the Caribbean fully recover. The storm also that have rebounded:

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GETTY IMAGES; THE BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS TOURISM BOARD (2); FLORIDA KEYS XXXXXXXXXXXX NEWS BUREAU/ANDY NEWMAN

“WALKING DOWN DUVAL STREET, YOU COULDN’T REALLY TELL THAT THERE HAD BEEN A CATEGORY 5 HURRICANE.”


Scrub Island Marina, British Virgin Islands

BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS A favorite destination for divers, many British Virgin Islands operators such as Sunchaser Scuba (sunchaserscuba.com) and Sail Caribbean Divers (sailcaribbeandivers. com), resumed tour offerings in February. (Silver lining: The recent hurricanes exposed new structures at some of BVI’s most popular wrecks, like The Beata in Wreck Alley.)

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Overseas Highway, Florida Keys

FLORIDA KEYS “Walking down Duval Street, you couldn’t really tell that there had been a Category 5 hurricane,” says frequent Keys vacationer, Karen Hutzler, who last visited in April. “I also went in October right after the hurricane, volunteering with Samaritan’s Purse, and Keys like Cudjoe looked horrendous. Luckily, Key West was spared that kind of damage.” While some parts of

the lower Keys are still rebuilding, many attractions are now open to visitors. The Theater of the Sea (theaterofthesea. com) in Islamorada — one of the world’s oldest marine mammal facilities — is open with a restored beach and gift shops (although its shark area is undergoing repairs). Outdoor enthusiasts can visit the National Key Deer Refuge (fws.gov/refuge/ National_Key_Deer_ Refuge) and Great White Heron National Wildlife

Refuge (fws.gov/refuge/ great_white_heron). Key West National Wildlife Refuge (fws.gov/refuge/ Key_West) on Big Pine Key is set to open in the fall. The luxurious Playa Largo Resort on Key Largo (playalargoresort. com) makes for a beautiful home base for exploring the Keys. On Islamorada, Cheeca Lodge & Spa (cheeca. com) underwent a $20 million renovation, complete with a rebuilt wooden fishing pier.

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PUERTO RICO

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The Shore Club, Turks and Caicos

TURKS AND CAICOS Though many buildings suffered water damage in the wake of hurricanes Irma and Maria, structural damage was limited on Providenciales, particularly in tourist-focused Grace Bay, leaving the British territory a top choice for Caribbean travel in 2018. Located on 12 lush acres, The Palms (thepalmstc. com) in Turks and Caicos closed for a short period post-hurricane for minor repairs, but has since resumed serving guests at its luxe 72-suite resort and 25,000-square-foot spa. The Shore Club (theshoreclubtc.com) is another choice on Providenciales, with 106 ocean view suites and 850 feet of beachfront.

GETTY IMAGES; THE SHORE CLUB; COURTYARD BY MARRIOTT ISLA VERDE BEACH RESORT

Travel expert and journalist Kathleen Squires says airfares were low in the months after the hurricane: “My husband is from San Juan, and we have spent a lot of time there post hurricane. Just a walk along Loiza Street demonstrates the incredible art scene that continues, as well as new boutique shopping options.” The Dreamcatcher (dreamcatcherpr.com) — an antique-filled, vegetarian bed-and-breakfast with a bohemian vibe — reopened in the San Juan area of Ocean Park just weeks after Hurricane Maria. Family-friendly Courtyard by Marriott Isla Verde Beach Resort (marriott.com/hotels/travel/sjuivcourtyard-isla-verde-beachresort) near San Juan’s airport fared well during the storm, and has a new rooftop event space, Las Brisas. The midcentury modern La Concha Resort (laconcharesort.com) in Condado is renowned for its seashell-shaped restaurant, Perla.


BARBUDA BELLE; UNITED STATES VIRGIN ISLANDS DEPARTMENT OF TOURISM; GETTY IMAGES

ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS

While Antigua escaped the hurricane season with minimal damage, its sister island, Barbuda, is rebuilding much of its infrastructure following near devastation during Hurricane Irma. The monstrous storm hit Barbuda, causing an initial $600 million worth of damage and destroyed 95 percent of Barbuda’s infrastructure. Early estimates indicated 44 percent of the island’s structures had to be demolished and rebuilt. But determined residents are returning, and the upscale boutique Barbuda Belle hotel (barbudabelle.com) is scheduled to welcome guests in November. The island is home to a magnificent frigate bird sanctuary and boasts pink sand beaches.

After back-to-back hurricanes, St. Thomas, St. Croix and St. John continue recovery efforts, but Spirit, Delta and JetBlue have announced expanded service to St. Thomas. A message on the USVI tourism site emphasizes that the U.S. territory islands are open for business: “Our recovery from last year’s storms has been very strong. Power has been restored. Beaches and attractions have reopened ... and the USVI spirit is as warm and inviting as ever. Airlines and cruise lines have returned to our shores, and many hotels, bed-and-breakfasts and condominiums are available to overnight visitors even as our rebuilding work continues.” Perched above scenic Pacquereau Bay, the Marriott’s Frenchman’s Cove (marriott.com/hotels/ travel/sttuv-marriottsfrenchmans-cove), located in St. Thomas, began welcoming visitors in February.

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Denver

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FANTASTIC

FOOD TOURS SAMPLE REGIONAL FLAVORS WITH EXPERTS WHO KNOW THE CULINARY SCENE BY ROXANA A. SOTO

[ ]

t’s a great time to be a foodie. Not only is the culinary scene exploding in unexpected regional U.S. destinations, the food tour industry is burgeoning, fueled by travelers’ desire to explore a city through its cuisine. “You get more of an insider’s experience to the food scene because you have a local foodie on the ground that can introduce you to all their spots,” says Jessica

TIM GILLIES PHOTOGRAPHY

I

Baumgart, owner and founder of Savor Denver Food Tours (savor denverfoodtours.com). “It’s a great historical walking tour, but (you) get to eat the whole time.” After going on several food tours in her home state of New Mexico, self-described foodie Jill Jurkens was curious to see what Denver had to offer, so on a recent visit, she booked one of Baumgart’s tours. And, although she originally felt a bit uneasy about one of the food options, she had a change of >

Downtown Food Tour

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WASHINGTON, D.C.

Ben’s Chili Bowl

It’s a half pork, half beef smoked sausage chili dog conceived at Ben’s Chili Bowl, a Washington, D.C., landmark.

CARPE DC FOOD TOURS

EVER HEARD OF THE HALF-SMOKE?

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heart after she tasted it. “I was thinking, ‘OMG, a hot dog? I don’t really eat hot dogs,’ but I enjoyed that. I really did,” she says, referring to the Alaskan reindeer dog served at Biker Jim’s Gourmet Dogs, one of the stops on Savor Denver’s Downtown Food Tour. At Butcher’s Bistro, Jurkens was pleasantly surprised when the executive chef shared the restaurant’s nose-to-tail philosophy with tour participants. “I thought that was fascinating, that he came and spoke to us. Listening to him was great,” she says. These popular food tours in major U.S. cities will have you booking your next flight: We begin our culinary adventure in the nation’s capital with a foodie tour that will introduce you to a signature dish not to be missed. The half-smoke chili dog has drawn countless celebrities, including the Obamas, to the famed Ben’s Chili Bowl, operating in Washington, D.C., since 1958 — and you get to try it during a three-hour walking tour of the U Street district, formerly known as Black Broadway. “Almost every (U.S.) president has eaten there and it holds such an important location for that neighborhood and for D.C. as a whole,” says Mary Collins, who co-founded Carpe DC Food Tours (carpedcfoodtours.com) in 2014 with husband Stefan Woehlke. The other three stops on this tour include an Ethiopian restaurant, a traditional Italian deli and a teahouse run by a fifth-generation herbalist. “You learn better when you’re using all five senses,” says Collins. The tour costs $73 per person for food only, and $89 with drinks in-

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MIAMI

Bolivar in South Beach

Mojito

Pork chicharron

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MIAMI CULINARY TOURS (3); HANNA FRIBERG

Empanadas

cluded. An added perk: A portion of every sale helps feed someone in need through a partnership with a local nonprofit. From D.C., we travel south to a city that can be considered culturally closer to Latin America than to the United States: Miami. Tired of people assuming that Latin cuisine only means Mexican food, Argentinian Grace Della came up with Miami Culinary Tours (miamiculinarytours. com) in Florida’s Miami Beach in 2010. She offers four walking food tours, each exploring a different Miami neighborhood and its cuisine. She recommends her signature South Beach tour to those visiting for the first time. “That tour really gives a great perspective of Miami. It features more traditional Latin cuisine,” says Della. And by that, she means dishes like the beef picadillo (ground beef hash), malanga (root vegetable) chips and mojo sauce you’ll taste at Larios on the Beach, the Cuban restaurant owned by legendary singer Gloria Estefan and her husband Emilio. Ceviche, empanadas and Spanish tapas are also on the tasting menu in this tour that introduces foodies to the flavors of Latin cuisine. The cost for the two-and-a-half-hour walking tour, which includes six stops and a trip through Miami Beach’s art deco district, is $56 for adults and $39 for children ages 7-13. After getting our fill of Latin flavors, we move to the heart of the country. In Kansas City, barbecue is king. And although it’s the only meat you'll taste on KC Barbecue Tours (kcbarbecue tours.com), owner Bethanie Schemel promises not to >

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DENVER

TIM GILLIES PHOTOGRAPHY; KC BARBECUE TOURS

KANSAS CITY

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disappoint. “We have over 100 barbecue restaurants. If you’re an outsider, it can be a little overwhelming,” she says. So, she and husband Karl have done the legwork for you. On their four-hour, scenic Original Barbecue Tour aboard a bus, foodies visit four restaurants for $70 per person and try multiple mouthwatering meats, including ribs, pulled pork, brisket and smoked turkey, and side dish staples like coleslaw, potato salad and baked beans. At nationally renowned Arthur Bryant’s Barbeque, birthplace of the iconic burnt ends that Kansas City is known for, you’ll learn they weren’t always a menu option, but rather a way to keep costumers happy while they waited for their orders. “(Arthur Bryant) would cut the ends off of a brisket that were burnt, that nobody would want, and set them out for people to chew on,” says Schemel. And now, they’re a staple at any respectable barbecue joint. Next, we travel west to the Mile High City. Rated the fourth mostexciting food city in America by Zagat in 2017, Denver’s rapid growth has resulted in an explosion of flavors when it comes to its cuisine. The six restaurants you’ll visit on Savor Denver Food Tours’ three-hour Downtown Food Tour highlight the city’s thriving food scene, including the aforementoned Butcher’s Bistro, where foodies can sample an appetizer made of pig’s head. “We used to be a meat-and-potatoes town, but the food scene has evolved and there are cool, interesting new concepts opening up all the time,” explains Baumgart. “You can

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SEATTLE BITES FOOD TOURS

SEATTLE

learn a lot about a place through its food scene.” Prices start at $59 per person (an upgraded drink package is available). Finally, our journey takes us to the Pacific Northwest, where you’ll find Seattle Bites Food Tours (seattlebitesfoodtours.com). Unlike other tours that might expose food adventurers to several different eateries in a city, Seattle Bites showcases only what’s inside Pike Place Market — one of the Emerald City’s most recognizable landmarks and popular tourist attraction. The public farmers market, the oldest continuously operating market in the U.S., has a rich history that dates back to 1907, and for $43.99, per person, foodies will learn all about it while savoring samples from a wide variety of food vendors. “The meaning behind Pike Place Market is so much more than throwing fish and pretty flowers,” says Mark Breitfuss, who started his company with wife Jan Marie Johnson in 2008. On the two-and-a-half-hour excursion, participants get a taste of numerous cuisines from around the world: chicken tikka masala, smoked barbecue, Mexican street tacos, smoked Alaskan king salmon and more. A popular favorite is the awardwinning New England clam chowder that's served at Pike Place Chowder. There’s truly something to satiate all appetites in towns across the country, so even if you don’t consider yourself a foodie, you should give a culinary tour a try. You never know what you could learn about a city by using your taste buds. l

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MILLENNIALS

on the move

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BY SARAH SEKULA

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younger travelers are opting for memorable experiences

t RAYMOND TIDDY

he fog is thick at the top of New Zealand’s Pisa mountain range. So, when Morgan Walker, 30, and five other cyclists step out of the helicopter, it looks like they’ve touched down on another planet. Minutes later, they bike down the mountain, dodging rocks and swerving around spiky yellow plants known as spaniards. “Watch out!” warns Harriet Latchem, a guide with Wanaka Bike Tours. “They will slice your legs and your tires, too.” The group quickly drops into the long tussock track that wraps its way around the hillside, then down through the lush green paddocks and into the rocky terrain. For the next five hours, the cyclists master switchbacks and attempt tricky shortcuts. It was a bucket-list excursion on a bucket-list trip, no doubt, and it wasn’t just biking. Walker’s New Zealand itinerary included rock climbing near waterfalls, jet-boating in Aspiring National Park and hiking Queenstown’s famous trails.

Bike tour in Wanaka, New Zealand

W H O I S A M I L L E N N I A L | According to the Pew Research Center, the term millennial applies to individuals who were born between 1981 and 1996.

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MILLENNIALS

on the move CHANGING TRAVEL By 2020, 370 million young travelers are expected to take international trips, according to The World Tourism Organization.

Reshaping the travel industry Young travelers, including millennials, place a high value on trips. In fact, by the year 2020, 370 million of them are expected to spend $400 billion on travel, according to forecasts by The World Tourism

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INSTAGRAMMABLE Social media plays a large role in influencing the travel decisions of millennials. Many credit Instagram for inspiration where influencers and bloggers are exploring every corner of the globe.

EXCURSIONS Companies like Airbnb offer planned outings led by locals — activities such as barhopping and walking tours.

WANAKA BIKE TOURS; GETTY IMAGES

It certainly met all the requirements a millennial could ask for. And one that elicited countless oohs and ahhs from her friends when she posted photos and comments on social media. “Millennials are used to a fast-paced life and this seems to continue when they travel,” says Tyler Protano-Goodwin, marketing manager at Audley Travel, a London-based company with a location in Boston that specializes in customized experiential travel. “Hotels become less important because time spent relaxing in the room is far from the focus of the trip.” That said, it makes sense that millennials are seeking off-the-beatenpath adventures in destinations like New Zealand, Iceland, Italy, Greece and Thailand. “Millennials want to travel in a way that is authentic and that connects them with the people around them,” says Protano-Goodwin. “They are asking the travel industry to provide experiences that are for all five senses. A traditional walking tour of Cusco, Peru, is no longer sufficient. Millennials want to meet the local artisans and try weaving. They want to go to the markets and taste the large kernels of choclo corn and smell palo santo incense in the back streets of San Blas (in Panama).”


millennials want to travel in a way that is authentic and that connects

GETTY IMAGES

them with the people around them.

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MILLENNIALS

HIP TRIP GEAR From camera bags to luggage to water bottles, traveling in style is important to most tripsters. Perhaps most coveted are noise-cancelling headphones and smart luggage that allows you to charge your devices straight from your suitcase.

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Organization. In order to squeeze in as much travel as possible, they opt for hostels or other affordable accommodations like Airbnb, cites an AARP report on 2018 travel trends. The study shows millennials plan to spend about $6,802 per trip this year. “Millennials are shaping mainstream tourism because they are adventurous, intrepid and adopt new technologies, destinations and experiences earlier than older travelers,” says Megan Janicke, content and social media coordinator with the WYSE Travel Confederation in Amsterdam. “Youth are pioneers and trendsetters. They attract others to new destinations and places that are off the beaten track.” So it makes sense that companies are vying for their attention. Take Moxy Hotels, for example. This Marriott brand, launched in 2015, caters to the millennial crowd in targeted ways. For starters, instead of making a beeline for the front desk, guests check in at the bar. And there’s a communal living-room type space with free Wi-Fi that has the social vibe of a hostel and a huge focus on aesthetics. Why? Millennials value minimalistic, trendy spaces that are also functional, according to

GETTY IMAGES

on the move


millennial–minded travel IMMERSIVE & EXPERIENTIAL FOMO (fear of missing out) is the mindset, and YOLO (you only live once) is the rallying cry for these “millennial-minded tripsters.” So it’s not surprising that millennials are generally seeking out experiences. Opportunities to connect to local cultures, discover the unexpected and self-tailor their itineraries are key drivers.

where will your next adventure

GETTY IMAGES

take you? Millennial Magazine. Likewise, Turkish Airlines has also found success in reaching out to millennials. The company’s YouTube channel has several hundred videos that have racked up more than 630 million views. And Airbnb has a service called Trips that allows travelers to tack on experience packages like salsa dancing or surf sessions when they book lodging options with the popular online hospitality service. “Exploring other cultures, learning about everyday life in another country and meeting locals, and increasing knowledge about others and oneself, are consistently listed as top reasons for travel,” says Janicke. “So for young people, travel is a means to personal development.”

SMART CONNECTIONS Millennials often cite Instagram as the inspiration for many of the destination and activity adventures they seek. Travel decisions are often influenced by posts from bloggers and social media power players – most on Instagram and Facebook. Word-of-mouth recommendations and online reviews matter. And traveling without their smartphones is not an option. However, if they commit to not scrolling during vacation, most will continue to use their phones to take and share photos. WELLNESS MATTERS Regardless of where they are or the duration of their trip, millennials are always looking for ways to stay healthy. For some that could mean exploring the local terrain to find organic, responsibly sourced food options or booking accommodations that offer gyms or activities. For others, it could be booking a yoga retreat with a well-known yogi (whom they most likely follow on Instagram) or a cycling tour through the wine regions of southern France. The idea is that they are not just keeping fit and focusing on their well-being, but soaking up the culture. ENVIRONMENTAL STEWARDS Millennials care deeply about the planet and many intentionally seek out businesses that support their philosophy toward a more sustainable environment and socially responsible business practices. And many lodging providers are going green and making a concerted effort to keep environmental damage to a minimum while reinforcing sustainability. — Wendy O’Dea

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[ x] Hang off a cliff [ x] Hike near a grand arch [ x] Wake up with penguins BY SARAH SEKULA

Cliff camping in Este Park, Colo., above Rocky Mountain National Park

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I

JIM HOBART

bundle up next to my sister in my heavy-duty sleeping bag around 11 p.m. The sun has just set, and the snowy peaks are bathed in a pale pink hue, making everything look even more like a fairy-tale wonderland. It’s mid-November, summertime in Antarctica, and the weather is a mild 37 degrees. Around this time of year there are nearly 24 hours of daylight, so I’m not counting on getting a whole lot of sleep, but that’s OK because the show around me is spectacular. So, how exactly did I make my way to one of the most remote campsites in the world? Pretty easily: Our

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expedition vessel, the Ocean Endeavour, dropped us off for the night. Through Quark Expeditions’ polar adventures, intrepid passengers get to experience a night under the brilliant Antarctic sky. “I think most sign up for the bragging rights,” says guide Jimmy MacDonald. “To be able to say that I’ve spent the night in Antarctica is pretty cool.” Here, it’s not uncommon to wake up to penguins staring you down or to the sounds of whales feeding. “You haven’t lived until you’ve heard the seals singing and making those strange burping noises,” says MacDonald. Inside my bivvy sack, it’s surprisingly toasty and peaceful. Nothing wakes me until around midnight, when I hear what’s known as “Antarctic thunder.” With a kaboom not unlike fireworks, there is snow rushing down the mountain behind us. Thankfully, there is a ridge separating us, so it is not a real threat. Camping at the

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SNOOZE ON THE SIDE OF A CLIFF

[tip]

Bring extra layers to put on after the sun goes down.

bottom of the world is a bucket-list activity. Here are some other equally epic spots to put on the list:

Estes Park, Colo. Camping is commonplace in Estes Park (visitestespark.com). With crystalclear lakes, snowcapped mountains and abundant wildlife, it’s a magnet for those who love the great outdoors. But, what if your campsite was dangling from the side of a cliff, about 100 feet off the ground? Guests can sign up with Kent Mountain Adventure Center to spend the night sleeping under the stars on a portaledge, a nylon cot no bigger than the size of two sleeping bags. It’s called cliff camping, a 24-hour experience where you hike up to base camp, then to the top of Deville III, a nice little perch with views of Rocky Mountain National Park. Once there, you clip into fixed ropes and rappel down to the itty, bitty portaledge where you chow down on dinner and fall asleep (hopefully) until morning. After breakfast, you rappel back down to the ground.


VIEW THE NORTHERN LIGHTS FROM A MOBILE HUT Kilpisjärvi, Finland

JIM HOBART; LEAH MURR; KILPISSAFARIT

Kilpisjärvi, a remote Finnish village (http://kilpisjarvi.org/en/), is known for its beautiful Arctic tundra. This makes it the perfect viewing spot to gaze up at the northern lights. The new Aurora Wilderness Camp offers a very different way to take it all in. The camp has three mobile, two-person huts strategically placed in a prime viewing location. The roofs are made of glass, so guests not only get to stargaze, but, if they’re lucky, they will catch a glimpse of aurora borealis. Amenities include a gas stove, a bed, table, heater, waterless toilet, snowshoes and kick sleds.

to the [tip] Add adventure with a snowmobile excursion to the Norway, Finland and Sweden border.

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SLEEP BENEATH AN AWE-INSPIRING ARCH Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah There’s so much to love about the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument (utah.com/ grand-staircase-escalante). In the southwestern section, you’ll come across carved-out buttes, mesas and canyons, including one of the world’s longest slot canyons, Buckskin Gulch. In Escalante, there are loads of hikes, including Calf Creek Falls, the Peek-A-Boo and Spooky Gulch slot canyons and Coyote Gulch — home to two arches, a natural bridge and several waterfalls. Here, the Jacob Hamblin Arch is the showstopper. At 150 feet wide and 100 feet tall, it’s an awe-inspiring monument inside the narrow canyon. “You can either rappel directly down to it with a rope or you can take one of three other methods to hike in,” says Kristin Addis, creator of the travel blog bemy travelmuse.com. “Since it’s not as well-known as so many other more popular trails in Utah, you can get a nice little area to yourself directly under the arch if you want. I can’t imagine it gets much better than that.”

can be done as a day trip. However, most hikers turn it into a multiday backpacking excursion. You must apply for an overnight permit through the National Park Service.

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KRISTIN ADDIS/BEMYTRAVELMUSE.COM

Jacob [tip] Visiting Hamblin Arch


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MAP ILLUSTRATION: MIRANDA PELLICANO

150

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66 My Town: Manhattan

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132 My Town: Salt Lake City

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68 Ballin’ on a Budget: Philadelphia

84 Ballin’ on a Budget: Nashville 86 Virginia’s Dragon

112 Ballin’ on a Budget: Indianapolis

134 Ballin’ on a Budget: Salt Lake City

152 Ballin’ on a Budget: San Francisco

70 Clam Cakes

88 Three days at the Biltmore

114 St. Louis’ Gateway Arch Park

136 Surprising Cañon City, Colo.

94 Atlanta’s Parisian Flair

118 Wrigleyville Remixed

140 Spectacular Sedona, Ariz.

154 Alaska’s Magical Misty Fjords

122 North Dakota Road Trip

144 Idaho’s Salmon River

74 Mid-Atlantic Theme Parks

100 Island Hopping 106 Slow down for Daytona Beach, Fla.

158 Sacramento's Comeback

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NORTHEAST | M Y TOW N

CLINTON KELLY’S

Manhattan As co-host of the popular daytime television show The Chew, Clinton Kelly splits his time between homes in Connecticut and Manhattan, where he resides while filming the hit foodie and lifestyle show. “I could spend all day walking around Manhattan and never get bored,” Kelly says of the New York City borough known as the heart of the Big Apple. — LINDA CHILDERS

BEST PLACE FOR

A SPECIAL CELEBRATION

ENTERTAINMENT Located downstairs from the famed ’70s hotspot Studio 54, which closed in 1980, Feinstein’s/ 54 Below cabaret/restaurant features regular performances by Broadway’s finest talent. “It’s a great venue where fans of Broadway shows can see their favorite stars perform.” 254 W. 54th St. Cellar; 646-4763551; 54below.com

BEST

PARK The High Line is a nearly 1.5-milelong elevated park created on a former New York Central Railroad site that features art exhibits and cultural programs. “It’s well worth a stroll on a beautiful day.” Gansevoort St. in the Meatpacking District to West 34th St., between 10th and 12th avenues; 212-5006035; thehighline.org

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The Soho district has 1015 blocks that are jam-packed with boutiques (with) European designers and flagship stores for international luxury brands.” — CLINTON KELLY

Broadway west to Sixth Avenue and Houston Street south to Canal Street; sohostrut.com

155 W. 51st St.; 212-554-1515; le-bernardin.com

BEST PLACE TO

TAKE OUT-OF-TOWNERS “A visit to New York isn’t complete without a trip to Katz’s Delicatessen.” Featured in the film When Harry Met Sally, the iconic restaurant has been serving up traditional deli fare, including its famous pastrami sandwiches, since 1888. 205 E. Houston St.; 212-254-2246; katzsdelicatessen.com

CRAIG SJODIN/ABC; DANIELLE ADAMS; KATZ’S DELICATESSEN

BEST VENUE FOR

“My husband, Damon Bayles, and I have celebrated birthdays at Le Bernardin, a French restaurant that offers a French take on seafood and a level of service beyond what you would typically expect.” For a less formal dining experience, Kelly recommends the restaurant’s lounge, where a separate menu offers a la carte entrées.


Make hay while the sun shines. THE LONG DAYS OF SUMMER ARE THE PERFECT TIME TO ESCAPE TO OUR

Visit The Museum at Bethel Woods and the Woodstock site. See an outdoor concert. Try your luck at Resorts World Catskills Casino. Enjoy handcrafted beer and distilled spirits. Hike in the woods. Raft down a river. Savor farm-to-table meals. Rent a vacation home. Sleep under the stars at a campground. Or enjoy a full service resort. There’s more to do here than summer has weekends. ® I LOVE NEW YORK logo is a registered trademark/service mark of the NYS Dept. of Economic Development, used with permission.

SA R ATOGA C O U N T Y, N Y

1.800.882.CATS

SullivanCatskills.com

#SullivanCatskills

Adirondack B A Base Camp

Old Forge e NY

It’s Our Nature

518-584-3255 • ilovesaratoga.us

OldForgeNY.com


NORTHEAST | SAV V Y T R AV EL

The Barnes Foundation

BALLIN’ ON A BUDGET

Philadelphia Take in the best of Philly’s local flavor BY SARAH MAIELLANO

Steeped in history, Philadelphia is not just the place where America was founded. The vibrant city is home to world-class museums, quirky attractions and award-winning restaurants. A quick trip might include a Liberty Bell visit, cheesesteak for lunch and a jog up the “Rocky Steps.” But with an overnight package from Visit Philadelphia (visitphilly. com), about $150 can get you a stay in a top hotel, free parking and perks such as restaurant gift cards. With two days at your disposal and $300 in your pocket, get a full Philly experience at these top spots:

YOUR ITINERARY TOUR Take a food tour through the Italian Market — one of the oldest open-air markets in the U.S. Along the 10-block stretch, stop for cheese at Di Bruno Bros., where free samples are handed out regularly; $4 cannoli and cookies (a quarter pound for $5) at Isgro Pasticceria; and $14 pasta with red sauce at historic Ralph’s Italian Restaurant. italianmarketphilly. org LEARN One of the world’s

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PHOTO-OP One of the mostphotographable spots in the city, mosaic artist Isaiah Zagar’s Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens uses glass, ceramic and found objects in a walkable public art display. Tickets are $10 for adults, but book in advance. phillymagic gardens.org

DINE A perfect place to take a break across the street from free sightseeing at Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell, Independence

Beer Garden is full of alfresco picnic tables, greenery and $7 local brews. Fill up on $3 popcorn and sandwiches ranging from $7 to $9. phlbeergarden.com

PLAY Hands-on learning and play means hours of entertainment for kids ages 1-7 at the Please Touch Museum in Fairmount Park. Enjoy six interactive exhibit zones and a restored 1908 carousel. Admission is $19. pleasetouch museum.org SEE Get a view of Philly from 57 floors up at One Liberty Observation Deck. With 360-degree views and touch screens for zooming in, get a sense of the city’s grand scale. Save 5 percent off the $14.50 admission by purchasing online. phillyfromthetop. com TOTAL = $260.50

MICHAEL PERSICO; VISIT PHILADELPHIA/ M. EDLOW; VISIT PHILADELPHIA/ M. FISHETTI; ILLUSTRATION: MIRANDA PELLICANO

largest collections of impressionist and post-impressionist art, The Barnes Foundation contains works by Renoir, Cézanne, Matisse, Picasso, Van Gogh, Degas and others. Admission, normally $25 for adults, is free on the first Sunday of every month (with priority given to families with children under 18). barnesfoundation. org


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NORTHEAST | R HODE ISL A N D

Move Over, Lobster Roll Clam cakes are Rhode Island’s tasty crustaceous alternative BY ALISON KONECKI

textures — the crispy, deep-fried exterior, fluffy interior and the briny chew of clam. Outside of Rhode Island, clam cakes are virtually unknown. If lobster rolls have been able to make their way down the coast of Maine and into the hearts and stomachs of seafood lovers the country over, and clam chowder is a popular seafood staple, why hasn’t the humble clam cake managed to make its way across state lines?

Clam cakes at Flo’s Clam Shack

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SETINMOTION.COM

D

id somebody say clam cakes? “When you mention clam cakes to someone who’s familiar with them, you’ll get a big smile,” says Komes Rozes, owner of Flo’s Clam Shack in Middletown, R.I. A sort of savory fritter, Rhode Island clam cakes are deceptively simple. Little more than clams, flour, eggs and milk or water, the true magic of clam cakes is in the alchemy of


KATHERINE GENDREAU; PETER HASSEL PHOTOGRAPHY

LOC AT ION | REGION

Rozes isn’t sure why the clam cake is exclusive to Rhode Island, but he has a theory. Although soft-shell clams are plentiful throughout New England waters, they have a taste and texture too delicate for clam cakes. Rather, it’s the rich, salty, ocean taste and meatier bite of the quahogs (hard-shell clams) found in abundance off Rhode Island’s shores that truly characterize a clam cake. “Only Rhode Island has the ‘original’ clam cake because the quahogs from Narragansett Bay are the finest in the world,” Rozes says. When the steely winter ocean begins warming to a rich blue and blooms of colorful umbrellas dot the shoreline, clam cake season unofficially begins. Although they are enjoyed year-round, clam cakes, also called fritters, soar in popularity during the summer. “Clam cakes remind everyone of some of (their) best times growing up in Rhode Island,” says

Rozes. “Days at the beach, clambakes ... memories of summertime fun.” After tumbling through seaweedstreaked waves and baking on towels under the hot sun, nothing satisfies hungry bellies quite like clam cakes fresh from the fryer and dipped into cups of creamy chowder (or rather, “chowda” — this is New England after all). “If you’re having a beach day, it’s a foregone conclusion that you’ll be getting clam cakes,” says Rhode Islander Pete Raleigh. “It’s part of the experience.” Indeed, even though clam cake mixes are available (Kenyon’s Grist Mill and Iggy’s Doughboys & Chowder House both make popular versions), and clamming in shallow tidewaters across the state is not uncommon, clam >

Narragansett Bay, above, is said to have the best clams in the world, and local eateries such as Iggy’s Doughboys and Chowder House serve them in the form of clam cakes.

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CLAM CAKE DESTINATIONS Great clam cakes are available throughout Rhode Island, but for the best overall experience, head to these coastal eateries:

Clam cakes and clam chowder at Iggy’s

cakes are largely enjoyed at local clam shacks. Anthony’s Seafood in Middletown uses Narragansett Beer in its clam cake batter “for a grown-up taste,” according to owner Stephen Bucolo. Aunt Carrie’s in Narragansett fries the patties in beef shortening. In addition to the requisite quahogs, Flo’s version includes a few chopped soft-shell clams for added sweetness. Every clam shack has a slightly different recipe — subtleties that often cause Rhode Islanders to swear allegiance to one place or another — but what remains consistent no matter where you go is the emphasis on fresh, local clams. Often, the quahogs are collected the very day they are served, right off the shore from the restaurants where they are cooked. This landscape, with its tides rushing in and out, warm summer sun and ocean brine is what nourishes Rhode Island’s quahogs day after day. It’s why a taste of clam cakes becomes something far more elemental — the experience of Rhode Island itself.

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AUNT CARRIE’S Aunt Carrie’s, familyowned for four generations, is one of Rhode Island’s oldest and most beloved clam shacks. For the full Aunt Carrie’s experience, the menu says, you have to have the “award-winning” clam cakes. You can order them by the half or full dozen or get a chowder combo that comes with three of the tasty treats. u 1240 Ocean Rd., Narragansett; 401-7837930; auntcarriesri.com FLO’S CLAM SHACK After a day in the waves at Sachuest Beach (known locally as Second Beach), head to Flo’s for perhaps the best clam cake deal in the state. Their combo #1 pairs three clam cakes with a cup of chowder and a draft beer or soda for $7.50.

u 4 Wave Ave., Middletown; 401-8478141; flosclamshacks.com IGGY’S DOUGHBOYS & CHOWDER HOUSE Iggy’s fries up delicious clam cakes and has the market cornered on merchandise, including T-shirts, hats, mugs and aprons. Homesick Rhode Islanders or the culinary curious can order the “Taste of Iggy’s,” which includes a half gallon of chowder and a half dozen each of clam cakes, stuffies (stuffed clams) and doughboys (fried dough). u 1151 Point Judith Rd., Narragansett; 401-7835608; iggysdoughboys. com MONAHAN’S CLAM SHACK BY THE SEA Located off the Narragansett seawall overlooking Narragansett Beach, Monahan’s is the most scenically situated of Rhode Island’s clam shacks. Clam cakes and other seafood favorites can be savored on the adjacent picnic tables, or taken to-go and enjoyed as you stroll along the seawall. u 190 Ocean Rd., Narragansett; 401-7822524; monahansri.com — Alison Konecki

PETER HASSELL PHOTOGRAPHY; GETTY IMAGES

ANTHONY’S SEAFOOD MARKET AND RESTAURANT A great option for wintertime cravings, Anthony’s serves up clam cakes and incredible chowder year-round, even when most of Rhode Island’s clam shacks are shuttered for the winter. u 963 Aquidneck Ave., Middletown; 401-8469620; anthonysseafood. net


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Apple Hill String Quartet

Photo by William Gnade

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NORTHEAST | MID -AT L A N T IC

Delightful Diversions Summertime adventures await at Mid-Atlantic amusement parks BY KRISTINA WRIGHT

S

Busch Gardens Williamsburg Busch Gardens Williamsburg (buschgardens.com/williams burg) is just down the road

from Colonial Williamsburg, which makes it a good summer destination for families looking to get in a little history before or after the park. The theme of this beautifully landscaped venue is classic Europe, and along with rides and entertainment, guests can learn about Busch Gardens Williamsburg’s commitment to animal conservation, see Clydesdale horses at the Highland Stables, feed the birds in Lorikeet Glen or learn about gray wolves at Wolf Haven. Families with young children will find more than 40 kidfriendly rides. Little ones can head over to Sesame Street Forest of Fun, while older kids will enjoy a variety of coasters like Verbolten and Loch Ness Monster. New this year is an exciting virtual reality experience, Battle for Eire.

BUSCH GARDENS WILLIAMSBURG

ummer means beach days, road trips and laughing — or screaming — until you’re hoarse at amusement parks. Many in the region are within a short drive to the coast, so it’s easy enough to split your vacation between thrill rides and sandy beaches. From the lush landscape of Busch Gardens Williamsburg in Virginia to the kitschy boardwalk excitement of Funland Rehoboth Beach in Delaware, the Mid-Atlantic has fun to spare.

VIRGINIA

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Don’t Let This Moment

PASS YOU BY

Spoil all 5 senses in Baltimore County. Kayaking on the Gunpowder, golfing at Rocky Point, visiting the Glenn L. Martin Aviation Museum, and dining at one of the many waterfront restaurants — enjoy what the 200-mile shoreline in eastern Baltimore County has to offer! ENJOYBALTIMORECOUNTY.COM 410-887-4289

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NORTHEAST | MID -AT L A N T IC

DELAWARE Funland Rehoboth Beach What it doesn’t have in size, Funland Rehoboth Beach makes up in nostalgia. This familyowned amusement park (funlandrehoboth.com) is situated on a picturesque boardwalk that invites guests to enjoy a relaxing holiday by the sea. Entry to Funland is free, but tickets (the old-fashioned paper kind) are needed to enjoy the rides. Typically, smaller rides require one to three tickets, while the thrill rides run four to six. Check online for prices. There aren’t any roller coasters, but thrill-seekers will enjoy the iconic Haunted Mansion and the popular new SuperFlip 360. In addition to other thrill rides like the Paratrooper, Gravitron and SimRider, Funland offers options for younger kids. “For our smaller guests, Funland is excited to be debuting a new Jungle of Fun this summer,” says spokeswoman Lynne Henschke. Other tot-size rides include a mini Ferris wheel, carousel and indoor boats.

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NEW JERSEY Clementon Park and Splash World First opened in 1907, New Jersey’s Clementon Park and Splash World (clementonpark. com) in Clementon, N.J., is one of the oldest operating parks in the U.S. The park boasts several impressive thrill rides, including Hellcat, a wooden roller coaster that plunges 110 feet; King Neptune’s Revenge, a coaster built over Clementon Lake; and Ring of Fire, a 60-foot loop of stomach-churning fun. The younger set can enjoy Playport, an interactive, multilevel maze, the kid-size Safari Train and Kidzland Castle, a medievalstyle bounce house. In addition to the traditional rides and attractions, cool off at Splash World. The water park includes Big Wave Bay, a 23,000-square-foot wave pool where you can catch a Dive-In movie at dusk. There’s also Laguna Kahuna, a 1-acre, five-story Polynesian-themed water play area. The whole family will enjoy seeing the park from the C.P. Huntington Railway, a miniature replica of a classic steam engine, or 90 feet atop the Giant Ferris wheel. A variety of dining options include the Terrace Food Court and Big Wave Pizza.

FUNLAND REHOBOTH BEACH; CLEMENTON PARK AND SPLASH WORLD

Rounding out the Funland experience are several traditional carnival games and an arcade. Souvenirs can be found at the Funland store, and there’s a food cart that sells popcorn, cotton candy and snacks. But if you’re looking for something more substantial, try the concession stands along the beach. There are numerous lodging options along Rehoboth Beach, so you can stay and play for days.


NORTHEAST | MID -AT L A N T IC

NEW YORK

Playland Park Playland Park (playlandpark.org) is a 280-acre amusement park in Rye, N.Y. Declared a National Historic Landmark in 1987, this famous art deco attraction is celebrating its 90th season this year.

PENNSYLVANIA Hersheypark Dedicated to all things chocolate, Hersheypark (hersheypark.com) in Hershey, Pa., is a sweet summer spot for families. The price of admission includes the walkthrough zoo, ZooAmerica, as well as the 11-acre water park at the Boardwalk at Hersheypark. Guests are invited to find their candy category at the measurement station to determine which rides they can enjoy.

Offering more than 50 rides and attractions, Playland features five coasters, including its celebrated Dragon Coaster, built in 1929. The little ones will have fun at Kiddyland, and the entire family will enjoy the House of Mirrors, the Grand Carousel and the Gondola Wheel. Stroll along the vintage boardwalk or, for a separate admission, enjoy the Olympic-size pool or the 1,200-foot scenic beach on Long Island Sound. Tasty treats include funnel cakes and cotton candy, and heartier fare from eateries like the fun Pier Restaurant and Tiki Bar. In July and August, visitors can enjoy Friday night fireworks.

Debuting this year in the water park is the Breakers Edge Water Coaster, making it the 14th coaster at Hersheypark. The Monorail offers a round-trip audio tour of Hersheypark, ZooAmerica and downtown Hershey.

Chocolate lovers won’t want to miss the Hershey’s Chocolate World experience, which offers free chocolate-making tours. Lodging options available on-site: the Hershey Lodge, Hotel Hershey and Hersheypark Camping Resort.

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MARYLAND

Six Flags America With 20 parks in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, Six Flags knows a thing or two about creating a memorable vacation. Six Flags America (sixflags.com/america) in Upper Marlboro, Md., is near Baltimore and Washington, D.C. The park has 10 roller coasters, including classic wooden ones like Roar, and the 360-degree Bourbon Street Fireball, the park’s newest. The Looney Tunes-themed kids’ rides will entertain the younger set, with Pepe Le Pew’s Tea Party and Elmer’s Around the World in 80 Seconds, among others. Hurricane Harbor is Six Flags America’s water park, with an abundance of water slides and attractions, including the action-packed adventure Wahoo River debuting later this summer. Dining choices are abundant, with a number of restaurants offering snacks and meals to satisfy any preference — including vegetarian and gluten-free. Guests can also shop at one of the many stores throughout the park or take in a live show.

HERSHEYPARK; PLAYLAND PARK; SIX FLAGS AMERICA

Hersheypark also has live shows and concerts throughout the season. There are dining options throughout the park, from snack carts to full-service dining at popular chains like Moe’s Southwest Grill and Chick-fil-A.


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SOUTHEAST | M Y TOW N

DON LEMON’S

Baton Rouge, La. Don Lemon’s lifelong curiousity serves him well as host of CNN Tonight with Don Lemon. He enjoys visits to his hometown to spend time with family. “Louisiana is a living historical museum and Baton Rouge is a great place to explore both the culture and earlier parts of America.” — LINDA CHILDERS

BEST PLACE TO

EAT LOCAL

BEST PLACE FOR A

CELEBRATION Although Lemon loves nothing more than his mom Katherine’s home cooking, he enjoys taking the entire family out for dinner when he’s home. “We often head to Sammy’s (Grill), a great family restaurant, and have a table with 15 of us, celebrating a birthday or special occasion,” Lemon says. With a focus on South Louisiana comfort food, Sammy’s is the place for fried green tomatoes, po’boy sandwiches, fresh boiled crawfish and seafood au gratin. 8635 Highland Rd.; 225-766-9600; sammysgrill.com

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— DON LEMON

623 Frenchman St.; spottedcatmusicclub.com

5215 Plank Rd.; 225-355-2127; tonyseafood.com

BEST PLACE FOR A

SCENIC DRIVE Along “Plantation Alley“ are restored Antebellum mansions like the Whitney Plantation. “You can glimpse a painful reminder of slavery that isn’t found anywhere else.“ 5009 Highway 18, Wallace; 225-265-3300; whitneyplantation.com

BEST PLACE TO

EXPLORE THE OUTDOORS A 5.3-mile stretch on the Mississippi River levee path offers incredible views, as well as the chance to bike, walk or run. “On the levee path you can avoid vehicular traffic while running and taking in the sights.” traillink.com/trail/mississippi-river-trail

CNN; GETTY IMAGES; LOUISIANA OFFICE OF TOURISM; SAMMY'S GRILL

The Spotted Cat Music Club in the heart of Marigny is where we film the CNN New Year’s Eve show. It’s a great spot to hear local musicians perform jazz, blues and more.”

“My first stop after getting off the airplane is Tony’s (Seafood Market and Deli). I might buy catfish to boil later with my family ... (or) cajun boudin balls (pork and rice sausage that is formed into balls and breaded or deep-fried).”


SOUTHEAST | SAV V Y T R AV EL

BALLIN’ ON A BUDGET

Nashville

Explore Music City with insider tours BY HOLLIE DEESE

In a city known for outstanding live music and world-famous chicken and barbecue that stands up in any regional debate, you already have the base of a spectacular time. And while you definitely have to cross all three of those experiences off your list when you visit, elevate your Nashville experience from basic to ballin’ with these insider recommendations for getting the most out of Music City, all for less than $300.

YOUR ITINERARY LEARN In operation since 1879, the historic Hatch Show Print letterpress shop designs and prints nearly 600 different venue, entertainer and company posters a year. If you take the tour you can actually pull your own keepsake print. The tour, including the print, costs $18 for adults. hatchshowprint. com TOUR The Walk Eat

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DRINK A former DNA laboratory director is putting his science background to work at Nashville Craft Distillery, one of the city’s newest. Located in the hip WedgewoodHouston neighborhood, producing whiskey and other craft spirits. Tours offered Tuesday through Sunday are $12 per person (plus tax) and include three samples. Add a bottle of your favorite, and this outing will cost $46. nashvillecraft. com

LISTEN Jack White’s Third Man Records, which opened its current Nashville location in 2009, houses a record store, lounge with recording booth and the world’s only live venue with direct-toacetate recording capabilities. Tickets for a half-hour tour with a staffer are available only on the day of the tour (2 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays), and just 10 tickets will be made available at $20 per person. thirdmanrecords. com

EAT The best way to experience chef Josh Habinger’s fare at the small 24-seat Bastion restaurant also in the WedgewoodHouston neighborhood is to rally a group of four to six friends and go for the prix fixe dinner party “feast” for $100 per person. Online reservations are recommended. bas53onnashville. com TOTAL = $243.95

HATCH SHOW PRINT; ANDREW THOMAS LEE; NOSSI COLLEGE OF ART PHOTOGRAPHY/KELSEA ROBINSON; ILLUSTRATION: MIRANDA PELLICANO

Nashville food tour is a great way to get lots of good food and a tour of a neighborhood (East Nashville, SoBro, Midtown) on a budget. The $59.95 (plus tax) ticket price includes all tastings, personal interactions with chefs and a knowledgeable local guide. walkeatnashville. com


SOUTHEAST | V IRGIN I A

Back of the Dragon

Riding a Dragon Adventurous bikers fill their need for speed along scenic southern Virginia road

A

ny motorcyclist can make a smooth, tight turn. A true test of skill is how many you can make in a row. And one tantalizingly challenging place to take that test is a 32mile stretch of winding road along Virginia’s Route 16, in the Appalachian Mountains that has officially been dubbed Back of the Dragon. Although it’s open to all traffic, motorcycle riders and sports-car enthusiasts alike are drawn to the road’s curves of all varieties: sweepers, esses, doglegs, slaloms, gentle bends, hairpins, decreasing radius turns and chicanes; somewhere between 260 and 438 of them. The tally has varied wildly over the years — any creature of legend invites exaggeration. The road, which runs between the small, quaint towns of Marion in the south and Tazewell in the north, owes a debt to Tail of the Dragon, at Deals Gap, a thriving motorcyclist

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destination on the Tennessee-North Carolina border that claims to pack 318 turns into 11 miles. Larry Davidson, the driving force behind Back of the Dragon — he spearheaded the campaign to give the stretch of road its current moniker in 2012 — hopes to replicate that success. “This road is a hidden resource for tourism and development,” he says, which “spurs growth within our area.” If you’re beginning your

Dragon journey at the Marion end of Route 16, the historic General Francis Marion Hotel, a 1927 building still fresh from a 2006 renovation, is where you can get a good night’s sleep before tackling the road. Right across the street are Wolfe’s BBQ, which is temptingly redolent of smoked meats including ribs, chicken and Black Angus brisket and Wooden Pickle, where you can indulge in inexplicably good mahi-mahi mini tacos

CAMERON DAVIDSON

BY ROY FURCHGOTT


with a sweet pineapple pico set off by a spicy rub and salty cotija cheese. The next morning, before embarking on an adventure-filled ride, start your day with breakfast at Sisters Cafe & Gifts, where the attentive staff directs you to the biscuit bar. Dress your bready biscuit squares with a hedonistic choice of more than a dozen jellies, butters and nut spreads. Make sure your meal has settled before you pick up Route 16 and ascend and descend three mountains — with beautiful vistas and adrenaline-inducing turns. Stay sharp. Although the road is swept weekly, treacherous gravel and debris often collect on the pavement. Oversized farm trucks spring from blind corners, hogging both lanes, and it’s possible to miss a turn and end up miles away, negotiating unpaved roads. Trust me on this. “This mountain is not for the faint of heart,” says Jamie Cartwright, who manages the Back of the Dragon Welcome Center, temporarily a trailer on the Tazewell end (a planned 5,000-squarefoot facility was announced in November). “It’s not something I, as a beginner, could ride.” Perhaps because Back of the Dragon promoters stress that the road isn’t a race course (the speed

limit along the stretch is mostly 55 mph, with many turns marked at 15 mph), injuries have been at a minimum, with 12 crashes, 13 injuries and no fatalities since 2013, according to the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles. Count on an hour to complete the trip, although one rider with an apparent death wish claimed to have conquered it in 30 minutes. When you make it to Tazewell, stop by Big Burritos, a converted gas station where the guacamole is made-to-order and oversized burritos are stuffed with fresh ingredients prepared on premises. If you have room left for dessert, hit the Donut Diva trailer. Lavishly sweet sinkers are a moist hybrid between a cake and yeast doughnut. When owner Sue Carr’s birds are laying, you can get buttermilk “Dino Donuts” made with ostrich eggs. While Route 16’s turns are not as densely packed as those on Tail of the Dragon, motorcycle skills instructor Jim Ford, who has ridden both highways, gives the scenic edge to Back of the Dragon. “It has those vistas,” he says. “It is an iconic piece of road.”

Roy Furchgott, a journalist and avid motorcyclist, tackled Back of the Dragon in April.

BLAZING TRAILS All motorcyclists know the feeling of flying, and of freedom, that a great ride brings. Imagine those sensations intensified by the sheer beauty or fascinating landscape of nature’s best wonders. To help you imagine (and maybe even inspire you to go), the Discovery Channel lists these North American destinations to take your motorcycle for a spin: Arkansas Pig Trail, Arkansas. The rugged and forested Boston Mountains region of the Ozark Mountains is the setting for this route, also known as the Arkansas Dragon. San Juan Mountain Skyway, Colorado. Ride through the Rocky Mountains and pass through historic mining towns, national parks and forests and world-class ski resort areas. Tunnel of Trees Road, Michigan. The southern entrance to this route is about 35 miles from the very popular tourist stop, Mackinac Island, at the juncture of Michigan and its Upper Peninsula.

ROY FURCHGOTT (2)

Beartooth Pass, Montana and Wyoming. Experience incredible mountains, dense forest, rivers, snow and tundra. Needles Highway, Black Hills, South Dakota. One of many roads to get to the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally each August, it passes through two tunnels blasted through sheer granite walls.

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SOUTHEAST | NORT H C A ROL INA

Spend three days at this historic mansion BY NANCY MONSON

W

ith its panoramic views of the Blue Ridge Mountains, the Biltmore Estate looms large, both figuratively and literally. This Asheville, N.C., attraction is a must-see for any traveler. You can visit the estate, located just minutes from the downtown area, for the day ($50 and up for adults, $25 and up for children ages

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6-10) or, better yet, stay at one of the on-site hotels: the luxurious The Inn on Biltmore Estate or the more casual and affordable Village Hotel. Meals are convenient, too, given that there are six sit-down restaurants on the grounds, as well as a grab-and-go smokehouse, café, bakery, creameries and more to please your palate. Of all the attractions on the estate, the big draw is Biltmore House. Built in 1895, it’s a grand French Renaissance mountain chateau and America’s largest privately owned >

The Biltmore Estate 1 Lodge St.; 800-4113812; biltmore.com

PROVIDED BY THE BILTMORE COMPANY

Experience Biltmore


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SOUTHEAST | NORT H C A ROL INA

BILTMORE

RALEIGH

home (with 250 rooms) that was once the residence of George and Edith Vanderbilt and their daughter, Cornelia. The home still belongs to the family. During a self-guided visit (included in the price of admission), you’ll see peerless art by Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Napoleon’s chess set, ornate tapestries from the 16th century and jaw-dropping architecture. Special add-on historical tours of the house are also available, according to Marissa Jamison, Biltmore’s public relations manager. “There are upstairs/downstairs guided tours that take you behind the scenes of daily life at Biltmore when the Vanderbilts lived here — a sort of American Downton Abbey,” she says. There’s also a rooftop tour that offers incredible views of the estate and nearby mountains, and you can sign kids up for a special audio tour. Alternatively, you can take the Legacy of the Land motor coach excursion to explore the estate’s expansive 8,000 acres. If you decide to stay longer than just the day, Biltmore won’t disappoint. There are so many things to do on the estate that some people buy an annual pass ($174) to return as often as they wish. For those interested in a weekend getaway, here’s how to spend three days at Biltmore:

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DAY 1

STROLL THE GROUNDS A day at the Biltmore offers wonderful lessons and delights for people who love to garden and those who merely enjoy the blooms. The formal gardens, spanning 80-plus acres, were designed by renowned landscape designer Frederick Law Olmsted, the man behind New York City’s Central Park, and were meant for leisurely walks. “Every spring and summer, guests on the estate get to experience Olmsted’s vision,

which was also his last professional project, as preserved and maintained by Biltmore’s current team of expert gardeners,” Jamison says. There are separate rose, azalea, shrub and Italian gardens, a pond and boathouse, statuary, a conservatory featuring palms, ferns and orchids and several easy-to-difficult walking trails. Come with questions for Biltmore’s horticultural experts located at stations on the grounds.

MAP ILLUSTRATION BY MIRANDA PELLICANO; PROVIDED BY THE BILTMORE COMPANY

N.C.


FOR YOU

outdoor adventure

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| lasting memories

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SOUTHEAST | NORT H C A ROL INA

Niijima Floats

GARDEN OF GLASS

Inn at Biltmore

DAY 2

Visiting Biltmore Estate this year comes with an extra-special treat: an exhibit of the colored glass sculptures of Dale Chihuly, who creates ambitious, site-specific installations of his large-scale works that live among flowers, trees, lawns and fountains. The exhibit will be at Biltmore until Oct. 7, and you can visit it with an estate day pass. If you would like to see “Chihuly Nights at Biltmore,” on Thursday to Sunday evenings, you’ll need a separate evening pass (running about $65 if purchased in advance) biltmore.com/chihuly.

TAKE A SPA DAY

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− Nancy Monson The Spa at Asheville’s Omni Grove Park Inn

ute indulgence consisting of a balancing botanical facial and a signature manicure and pedicure.

SAVOR THE SERENITY Biltmore Estate’s spa is only open to guests staying at the Inn, but the nearby The Spa at Asheville’s Omni Grove Park Inn is available for day passes (call ahead for availability), and it’s a water lover’s paradise that will stun you with its beauty. The 43,000-square-foot subterranean spa features two therapeutic waterfall pools, a lap pool, underwater music, separate men’s and women’s areas and three fireside lounges. 290 Macon Ave.; 800-4385800; omnihotels.com/hotels/ ashevillegrove-park/spa

DAY 3 VISIT THE WINERY Biltmore produces more than 20 different varieties of red, white and rosé wines, and is the most visited winery in the U.S. “Our philosophy is not to specialize in just one type of wine, but many, and to appeal to the novice as well as the experienced wine aficionado,” says Jamison.

A complimentary wine tasting is included with admission to the estate, and you can purchase tours of the winery, including one that focuses on sparkling wines (champagne), or a Vine to Wine tour that takes you into the estate’s vineyard. The winery is located in Antler Hill Village, a lively area full of shops and restaurants as well as opportunities for outdoor activities such as biking or boating. A village green features live music on weekend evenings, and the farmyard is a favorite spot for families, says Jamison, throwing them back to the Vanderbilts’ time, with animals, a blacksmith and crafters.

PROVIDED BY INN AT BILTMORE ; TERESA NOURI RISHEL; JOHN WARNER; PROVIDED BY THE SPA AT ASHEVILLE’S OMNI GROVE PARK INN

The estate is home to a small boutique spa available to guests of the Inn at Biltmore. “Asheville is a holistic, healing mecca, and we try to give our guests a five-star experience,” says Christina Stratton, founding partner of the spa. She recommends the Signature Estate Experience ($295), a 110-minute treatment that includes a gentle full-body exfoliation and warm botanical body wrap, an aromatherapy scalp treatment and a custom massage that feels like a “symphony is playing on your back,” she says. Another decadent service is the 110-minute Rose Petal Facial ($295), which uses extracts from hand-harvested rose petals to revitalize and pamper your skin, and includes exfoliation, a botanical masque and a microcurrent lifting treatment. Patrons can also opt for the Biltmore Beauty Package ($265), a 150-min-


Come experience the New Portsmouth~ for the History, or just for the Fun of it. Come stroll the walkway along our waterfront. Wend your way to our lightship museum, continue wandering and you’ll discover our huge Children’s Museum and our famous tree-lined streets shading homes more than 250 years old. Close by, too, are the most intriguing of shops and a truly sumptuous selection of chefowned restaurants. All within one very walkable square mile.

Where is Grant County, Ky.?

Where your Kentucky adventure begins! Home to the Ark Encounter, a life-size replica of Noah’s Ark, as well as lakes, trails, gentle rolling hills, specialty shops, a winery, dinner theatre, festivals and friendly folks. On July 20 & July 21, Grant Co. will host the St. Elizabeth Triathlon featuring swimming in Lake Williamstown and biking and running along our beautiful countryside.

Don’t miss the boat this summer! 1-800-382-7117 www.visitgrantky.com For more details and information call 757.393.5111 | VisitPortsVa.com

EVERY DAY EXTRAORDINARY

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We are 35 miles south of Cincinnati and 45 miles north of Lexington on I-75.

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ADVENTUROUS?


SOUTHEAST | GEORGI A

Amélie’s tarts and macarons

From Paris (to Atlanta) With Love Find joie de vivre at these off-the-beaten-path locales BY CHERYL RODEWIG

T 94

he Deep South might not be the first place you’d expect to find authentic French flair, but depending on where you look, you’ll find Atlanta’s not so far from Paris. It will require more than visiting just one street or a single neighborhood steeped in culture, but if you’re willing to explore, Georgia’s capital city hides a wealth of ways to experience French chic — art, food, fashion and that something people call je ne sais quoi.

GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2018

Popular with locals as a place to linger over a café crème, Amélie’s (ameliesfrench bakery.com/atlanta) has a bohemian vibe that would be right at home on the Seine’s Left Bank. Caricatured on the brick exterior, Napoleon and Mona Lisa enjoy a few flaky croissants. Indoors, tricolor flags and Eiffel Towers proliferate alongside silhouettes of Marie Antoinette. For a hearty meal, choose from cheese-laden tartines, soups and quiche. But perhaps the greater pleasure is the simpler one: a fresh baguette paired with a foam-topped café noisette (the French version of the Italian macchiato — a shot of espresso with a drop or two of milk or cream). No matter which you choose, don’t leave without a pastry, preferably one of those sweet meringue-based macarons. They make more than 500 of these crisp, flavorful confections each week in colors that span the rainbow. Try the bites of sugared air in raspberry, lemon, caramel, pistachio and more.

CHERYL RODEWIG; PROVIDED BY AMÉLIE’S FRENCH BAKERY & CAFÉ

AMÉLIE’S FRENCH BAKERY & CAFÉ


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SOUTHEAST | GEORGI A

Le Petit Prince

Celles d’en Haut

THÉÂTRE DU RÊVE Parlez-vous théâtre? This is a question Théâtre du Rêve (theatre dureve.com) has been asking audiences in Atlanta for the past two decades, and the answer is always oui. Drama is the primary language you need to enjoy an evening with this “theater of the dream,” the only professional French theater troupe in the U.S. Their shows strike a bilingual balance. A few blend French and English. Others have a version for each language, while some are purely en français with English supertitles. Let yourself be carried along by the cadence. Even if you don’t speak French, emotions and intonation tell the story. That’s true whether it’s a classic by Molière or an adaptation of Le Petit Prince. Mauricette au Jambon

CAFÉ ALSACE

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140-foot mural by Jo Di Bona

FRANCE-ATLANTA Held each fall, France-Atlanta (france-atlanta.org) is a Francophile’s dream — a monthlong celebration with art and industry events across the metro area. “We bring the most innovative and creative French work in all artistic disciplines — such as contemporary dance, cinema, music, architecture and visual arts — to Atlanta,” says Alexandre Durand, cultural attaché to the city’s French consulate, which helps organize the event. “Culture isn’t contained inside a

museum, theater or library. It’s everywhere.” As part of the 2017 event, French artist Jo Di Bona created a 140-foot mural in his pop graffiti style. The 2018 welcome reception is scheduled for Oct. 16. If you’re not in Atlanta during the festival, Durand suggests checking with the consulate about other events going on throughout the year (atlanta.consulfrance.org). One recommendation: Haute couture by designer Pierre Cardin at the SCAD FASH Museum of Fashion + Film (scadfash.org) through Sept. 30.

CHERYL RODEWIG; JEFF SHIPMAN; CHRIS BURK; ALEXANDRE DURAND

A swirl of crème fraiche and Emmental cheese offsets bacon and caramelized onions on faintly charred flatbread. That’s flammkuchen (or German pizza), one of the popular Alsatian specialties at Café Alsace in Decatur (cafealsace.net), just outside the Atlanta city limits. “When I moved here 20 years ago, all the French restaurants were upscale with white tablecloths and a pianist — that’s dramatic,” says chef Benedicte Cooper. “So I decided to do something more casual and friendly and comfortable. It’s about the love.” The café expertly captures the distinctive cuisine of this northeastern region of France that’s traded hands, French to German and back again, more than a few times. Along with staples such as pâté and boeuf bourguignon, Cooper makes food that reminds her of home: spaetzle, sauerkraut with sausage and potatoes, or a salty, satisfying pretzel sandwich called a mauricette. The menu shares a small disclaimer: They won’t rush you through your meal, so let them know if you’re in a hurry.


So much to see, so much to do!

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SOUTHEAST | GEORGI A

BON APPÉTIT

PARIS ON PONCE Atlanta’s own corner of Montmartre, Paris on Ponce (parisonponce.com) sells bric-a-brac in multiple styles: vintage handbags, antique furniture and ephemera. You’ll find a paisley skirt as easily as a porcelain teapot, a chalkboard sign scrawled with “Dirty South” hanging beside wisps of French poetry. And it’s difficult to miss the 18-foot Marie Antoinette, her well-coiffed head suspended above the rest of her, a nod to the queen’s final encounter with Madame Guillotine. Near the back of the warehouse, Le Maison Rouge, reminiscent of a very red, very 1920s Moulin

If you’re looking for good food and wine, Atlanta has cafés, bistros and brasseries to satisfy the most discerning gourmand — even a Parisian. “There is the food and the atmosphere ... this controlled mess that is typically French,” explains Alexandre Durand, cultural attaché to the French consulate, who hails from Paris. These restaurants pair your meal with a memorable experience:

Rouge, hosts special events year-round. The best is in July, when Paris on Ponce succumbs to revelry for one wild Bastille Day fête, loaded with opera, burlesque, costumes and libations.

Anis Café & Bistro: Clustered with flower pots and curios, this quaint eatery in Buckhead specializes in Provençal food, especially pleasant when served alfresco. ▶ anisbistro.com Atmosphère: Take advantage of their affordable prix fixe lunch or splurge on a wine tasting in this charming cottage walking distance from the BeltLine trail. ▶ atmospherebistro.com Bistro Niko: This Buckhead eatery boasts an impressive wine list and a patio where you can engage in another authentic Parisian activity: people-watching. ▶ buckheadrestaurants.com/restaurant/ bistro-niko Café Vendôme: A traditional boulangerie (bakery) with handmade eclairs, brioche, croque monsieurs and more, this café is known for its baguettes, which locals and expats alike clamor for. ▶ cafevendome.com

BESHARAT GALLERY You won’t find chalkboard signs at Besharat Gallery (besharat gallery.com). This place exudes a confident, casual sophistication — what could be more French? Set in an 1885 former industrial building, the gallery is styled after a European salon, with stacked art on textured walls and has a second location just south of Paris. Contemporary artists from around the world exhibit here, including several from France, such as painter Jean Arcelin and sculptor Mauro Corda. The best time to visit is the second Friday of the month during the free Castleberry Hill art stroll, when Besharat Gallery opens its doors to passers-by. Don’t miss the outdoor sculpture garden on the lower level.

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Le Bilboquet: Dine in at this posh bistro, but save some cash for shopping; it’s just steps away from French brands like Dior, Diptyque, Hermès and L’Occitane. ▶ lebilboquetatlanta.com Petite Violette: Opened in 1974, Atlanta’s original fine French restaurant delivers flawless cuisine, from coq au vin to crème brûlée, in an elegant setting. ▶ petitevioletterestaurant.com — Cheryl Rodewig

CHERYL RODEWIG

VIP salon at Besharat Gallery

Douceur de France: With a French chef at the helm, this restaurant sells soups, sandwiches and more at both of its locations north of Atlanta, though you may have trouble looking beyond the pastry case. ▶ douceurdefrance.com


SOUTHEAST

Oak Island, N.C.

Seashores Close to Home You won’t need a passport for these island vacations BY LISA DAVIS

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hile island hopping may be more synonymous with the Caribbean, the southeastern seashores of the U.S. are gateways to scenic islands that also offer plenty of things to do — and plenty of time to do nothing at all. Check out these interesting enclaves that might just be right in your backyard:

Oak Island in the Outer Banks attracts adventureseekers who like to kayak and snorkel, but is also a relaxing destination to simply kick back in a hammock. After spending some time sunbathing, visit the Oak Island Lighthouse in the town of Caswell Beach (oakislandlighthouse.org) and dine at the Fishy Fishy Cafe (fishyfishy cafe.com) in nearby Southport, popular for its clam chowder. Oak Island Accommodations (rentalsatthebeach.com) has hundreds of beach home and condo rentals, including pet-friendly options. The Outer Banks’ secluded Carova beach, accessible only by boat or four-wheel drive, is another option if you don’t mind sharing the beach with wild horses. Want an island almost all to yourself? Known for its remoteness, Hatteras Island (outerbanks.com/ hatteras-island.html) is where you’ll find some of the country’s largest stretches of beaches, including the 70-mile long Cape Hatteras National Seashore — the first national seashore in America. TIP: For maritime enthusiasts, visit North Carolina’s Crystal Coast, where pirate Blackbeard ran his infamous ship, the Queen Anne’s Revenge, aground. The vessel’s artifacts can be viewed at the North Carolina Maritime Museum (ncmaritimemuseum beaufort.com) in Beaufort.

NORTH CAROLINA’S BRUNSWICK ISLANDS

NORTH CAROLINA


Surprising & Delightful SAVOR THE SEASONS

inUpcountry South Carolina |

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CHEROKEE PICKENS

|

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GREENVILLE

S PA R TA N B U R G

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njoy the blooming Dogwoods and Azaleas in Spring. In Summer, explore waterfalls, rivers and lakes.Take a drive along scenic byways for the fabulous Fall foliage. Spend a weekend in a cozy cabin during Winter. Whenever you choose to visit, the Upcountry will be Perfectly Seasoned for you! Perfectly Seasoned

UpcountrySC.com | 800.849.4766 | FREE Visitors Guide

Where Southern hospitality blends with historic sites, fascinating wildlife preserves and affordable accommodations. Discover more. Visit website: CITYOFHARDEEVILLE.COM

Interstate 95 Exits 5 & 8 Near the South Carolina/ Georgia Border


SOUTHEAST

SOUTH CAROLINA

The Pelican Inn

Roughly 70 miles north of Charleston is Pawleys Island, considered one of the oldest summer resorts on the East Coast, attractive for its laid-back vibe and less commercialism than nearby Myrtle Beach. Soak up the sun at the 8-mile-long Litchfield Beach and then grab dinner at one of the seafood places along The MarshWalk (marshwalk.com), a half-mile boardwalk in the heart of the fishing village of Murrells Inlet. Stay overnight in an antebellum home in the island’s historic district, which dates back to the late 1700s; or at The Pelican Inn (pawleyspelican.com), a beachfront bed-and-breakfast built in the 1840s; or the Sea View Inn (seaviewinn.com) where Palmetto Cheese spread first gained its following.

The Pelican Inn

Cumberland Island is known for its history. John F. Kennedy Jr. married Carolyn Bessette at the First African Baptist Church there and Thomas Carnegie, brother of Andrew Carnegie, and his wife, Lucy, bought land on Cumberland to build the Dungeness mansion in 1884 for a family retreat. After Thomas’ death, Lucy continued to live on the island with her nine children, remodeling and expanding the mansion, eventually leaving after the Great Depression. In 1959, a fire destroyed the home, leaving ruins that can be visited today. The island is also bursting with natural beauty, including a saltwater marsh, loggerhead turtles, wild horses and forests filled with 300-year-old Spanish moss-draped oaks. Roughly 90 percent of Cumberland’s landscape is protected. Take a 7-mile ferry ride from St. Mary’s (cumberlandislandferry.com) and overnight at the Greyfield Inn (greyfieldinn.com), owned and operated by Middy Ferguson, a Carnegie descendant. TIP: For more history, head to Tybee Island, a 30-minute drive from Savannah, where you’ll find 19th-century concrete gun batteries at Fort Screven and the Tybee Island Light Station and Museum (tybeelighthouse.org), the state’s oldest and tallest lighthouse.

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First African Baptist Church

ONLY PAWLEY'S; NATIONAL PARK SERVICE

GEORGIA


Summ

PICTURE

DECATUR. VISITORS CENTER 113 Clairemont Ave. Decatur GA 30030 visitdecaturga.com |

er in th

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SOUTHEAST

CALL OF THE WILD Want to roam an island enclave with the animals? u Visit Virginia’s Chincoteague Island, the portal to the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge (fws.gov/refuge/ chincoteague), where feral ponies gallop along sandy shores. The island is famous for its oyster beds and clam shoals.

Hutchinson Island

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Indian Riverside Park

uFlorida’s Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge (fws.gov/ refuge/merritt_island), an overlay of the John F. Kennedy Space Center, houses more than 500 species of animals within its estuaries, marshes, coastal dunes and pine forests. Let A Day Away Kayak Tours (adayawaykayaktours. com) give you a view of the refuge at night, when the waters glow from the bioluminescence.

MARTIN COUNTY OFFICE OF TOURISM AND MARKETING (2)

uMore than 2,200 marine and wildlife species, including manatees, dolphins, sea turtles, birds and alligators, call Hutchinson Island (floridashutchinsonisland. com), on the east coast of Florida, home, thanks to the Atlantic Ocean and the Indian River estuary, which create an ideal animal habitat of sandy beaches, coral reefs and mangroves.

FLORIDA Panama City Beach might be known for its spring parties, but its nearby Shell Island has a different reputation, popular for its white sands, hiking trails and sightings of dolphins, ghost crabs and sea turtles. A 15-minute boat ride from St. Andrews State Park (shellislandshuttle.com), the island doesn’t have restaurants, hotels, restrooms, picnic tables or trash cans, but does have plenty of sandy shores for alfresco dining, so bring a picnic and remember to take out everything you brought in. TIP: South of Panama City Beach is St. George Island, a 28-mile barrier island perfect for shelling, swimming and wildlife viewing, including oysters in Apalachicola Bay.

uMigrating birds can be seen among the forests, dunes and marches and along a 1,000-foot boardwalk that takes you to Gaillard Lake, at the 164-acre Audubon Bird Sanctuary (dauphin island.org/audubon-birdsanctuary) on Alabama’s Dauphin Island off the Gulf Coast.


SOUTHEAST | FLOR IDA

Daytona Beach coastline

Slow Down for Daytona BY FRANCES J. FOLSOM

D

aytona Beach is not only about the Daytona International Speedway, even though through the years it’s become known as the “World Center of Racing.” Instead, it is about 23 miles of sugar-sand beach, a vibrant

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downtown full of chic shops, art galleries, great restaurants and beautiful museums. “Daytona Beach is the perfect beach base camp,” says Kate Holcomb, director of communications for the Daytona Beach Area Convention & Visitors Bureau. “Located on Florida’s east central coast, we are only about an hour’s >

Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse

DAYTONA BEACH AREA CONVENTION & VISITORS BUREAU (2)

There’s more to this beach town than just auto racing


Sink your toes in the sands of the Gulf Coast Panama City Beach Resort 17001 Front Beach Road, Panama City Beach, FL 32413

Ride into a fun Space Coast escape Cape Canaveral Beach Resort 1000 Shorewood Drive, Cape Canaveral, FL 32920

Make waves in a vacation rental near Orlando attractions

Opt for exclusive accommodations near Orlando theme parks

Orlando Breeze Resort 100 Orlando Breeze Circle, Davenport, FL 33897

Orange Lake Resort 8505 W Irlo Bronson Memorial Highway, Kissimmee, FL 34747

More than a place to stay.

A place to play!

Switch to island time and relax in luxury Sunset Cove Resort 571 W Elkcam Circle, Marco Island, FL 34145

Get away for less today!

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SOUTHEAST | FLOR IDA

IF YOU GO Many of the rooms at the Hard Rock Hotel Daytona Beach, which opened in the spring, have direct oceanfront views. The on-site restaurant, Sessions, offers fine dining and craft cocktails alfresco, and the more casual Wave Terrace serves local beers, craft cocktails and sandwiches. 918 N. Atlantic Ave.; 844-745-1502; hrhdaytonabeach.com

Kayak rentals

drive from St. Augustine and the Kennedy Space Center, great day trips to make during your beach vacation.” Lay on the beach with a book, rent a kayak from Cracker Creek rentals (crackercreek.com) and paddle the Spruce Creek River alongside beautiful flora and fauna. Visit the Marine Science Center (marinesciencecenter.com), where you can touch stingrays and peek into the sea turtle rehabilitation unit, or take a walk through the seabird sanctuary. In Daytona Beach and the surrounding towns of New Smyrna Beach and Ormand-by-the-Sea, there are numerous state parks for hiking, biking, fishing and swimming. The best for dolphin watching is Lighthouse Point

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Park. At Smyrna Dunes Park (volusia.org), you can see marine life from the wooden walkways that stretch over the dunes. When the sun and sand get too hot, head to the area’s cool museums. The CiCi and Hyatt Brown Museum of Art (moas. org) houses distinctive artwork depicting old Florida. Last but not least, spend time at the Daytona International Speedway (daytonainternational speedway.com) — all spiffied up from a recent $400 million renovation that includes two new hotels and One Daytona, a center full of upscale shops, restaurants and entertainment. Get the history and feel of the legendary Speedway on a guided tour ($18 per adult), during which you’re driven by tram on the tracks’ steepest turns. The AllAccess ($25 per adult) includes a lap around the 2.5-mile track and a ride into the pit stalls, or spring for the VIP ($52 per person), where you not only get laps on the track, but also a visit to the Archives and Research Center. All of this and more make Daytona Beach a destination where you can do as little or as much as you want. l

Vegetarians and carnivores will love the fresh juices, breakfast items, wraps, sandwiches and salads served at the Dancing Avocado Kitchen. 110 S. Beach St.; 386-9472022; dancingavocadokitchen.com Housed in the basement of a historic house, the Cellar Restaurant is fine dining at its best. Chef-owner Sam Moggio makes everything in-house using fresh, local ingredients to create his Italian fare. 220 Magnolia Ave.; 386-258-0011; thecellarrestaurant.com See manatees and mangroves while cruising through intercoastal waterways aboard The Manatee tour boat. 4884 Front St., Ponce Inlet; 386-267-8205; manateecruise.com Your reward for climbing the 203 steps of the Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse is sweeping vistas of the coastline. See the original lighthouse keepers’ home and a museum with an impressive collection of 19th-century Fresnel lenses. 4931 S. Peninsula Dr., Ponce Inlet; 386-761-1821; ponceinlet.org

DAYTONA BEACH AREA CONVENTION & VISITORS BUREAU

Stingray pool at Marine Science Center

After undergoing a multimillion dollar renovation and restoration, the Streamline Hotel, a circa 1940 art deco building, has reopened in grand style. Rooms and suites in the boutique hotel are light-filled and decorated in muted tones of blues, tans and grays. 140 S. Atlantic Ave.; 386-947-7470; streamlinehotel.com


This year, take time to create memories. You remember it, don't you? The family beach vacation: miles of blue water, sand castles at your feet, a sea breeze blowing your hair back, and not a cell phone or a skyscraper in sight. This summer, plan a family trip to a place where memories come naturally, and time isn't the only thing that's preserved.

Plan your trip at discovermartin.com

Summer 2018 Garden Events June : “Speaker Series” July: “Key West Art Garden” September: “Fall Lower Keys Birding & Wildlife Mania” Sponsored in part by

eBird.com Hotspot 2018 193 Species Documented!

See www.keywest.garden for details 5210 College Road, Key West, FL 33040 305.296.1504 • info@keywest.garden The Key West Botanical Garden Society, Inc. is a registered 501 (c) 3 nonprofit corporation. Donations are deductible under the Internal Revenue Service Code. A COPY OF THE OFFICIAL REGISTRATION AND FINANCIAL INFORMATION MAY BE OBTAINED FROM THE DIVISION OF CONSUMER SERVICES BY CALLING TOLL�FREE 1�800�HELPFLA (435��352) WITHIN THE STATE. REGISTRATION DOES NOT IMPLY ENDORSEMENT, APPROVAL, OR RECOMMENDATION BY THE STATE. The Garden is publicly owned and operated as a passive, natural resource�based public outdoor recreational site.


MIDWEST | M Y TOW N

KRISTEN BELL’S

Royal Oak, Mich. Growing up in this Detroit suburb gave Kristen Bell an early taste of acting. She got her first role in a theater play at age 12 and went on to star in high school productions before landing on Broadway and in films. These days, the star of the hit NBC comedy The Good Place, and her family live in Hollywood, but she credits the cultural diversity around her hometown for her love of myriad cuisines. — GINA ROBERTS-GREY

BEST PLACE TO

GET INSPIRED

HANG WITH FRIENDS “Every prom, homecoming, cast party or any type of reunion has to include a stop at National Coney Island. When I think of spending time with people I love, I think of National’s coneys with chili and mustard. There’s something about the community spirit there that makes it feel like you’re eating at home with great pals.” 1812 N. Main St., Royal Oak; 248398-6111; nationalconeyisland.com

If it’s 9 p.m. or later, my place of choice is handsdown Tubby’s (submarines). They make an exceptional vegetarian sub ... that’s perfect for eating after dark.” — KRISTEN BELL

1612 E. 11 Mile Rd.; 248-548-9400; tubbys.com

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415 S. Lafayette Ave., Royal Oak; 248-541-6430; stagecrafters.org

BEST PLACE FOR

BEST

NIGHTLIFE

MUSEUM

“Greektown is a pretty exceptional place to visit. There are so many cultural traditions and delicious foods. I’m a foodie and like to treat myself with the delicious pastry foods like spanakopita, cheeses and sauces you can only get in Greektown.”

“I love the hands-on exhibits and of course, the theater and live stage shows at the Michigan Science Center. As a kid, there was always something to do and now that I’m a parent, I really appreciate the learning opportunities that are packaged in so many fun ways that appeal to kids of all ages.”

Downtown Detroit, near the intersection of Gratiot Avenue and Woodward Avenue; greektowndetroit.org

5020 John R St., Detroit; 313-577-8400; mi-sci.org

NBC; STAGECRAFTERS BALDWIN THEATRE ; NATIONAL CONEY ISLAND (2)

BEST PLACE TO

“My local theater company, Stagecrafters Baldwin Theatre, was the absolute best place for both kids and adults. I loved that I could build sets, hang in the break room or run around and imagine all the possible stories you could tell or watch be told.”


Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum

BALLIN’ ON A BUDGET

YOUR ITINERARY

Indianapolis Get your fill of food and fun in Indiana’s capital BY AMY BARTNER AND DOMENICA BONGIOVANNI

Indianapolis laughs at the challenge of providing travelers with an amazing visit to the “Crossroads of America” on just $300 because you’re only going to need about half that to have a solidly spectacular day in this underrated city of food and fun. You could even bring someone you love or just like a little, and then you can double these recommendations and still have money to spare.

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SEE The Indianapolis Museum of Art recently named its beautiful campus Newfields to reflect its lush gardens, mini-golf holes designed by artists and well-known holdings, including “an encyclopedic collection of Chinese art.” Admission is $18 for adults ($10 for children ages 6-17). discovernewfields. org

BRUNCH Love Handle's Red Hot Kale Biscuits and Gravy for $9 and Fried Lake Trout and a Waffle for $12 won’t be on your plate long. Enjoy a French Kronenbourg beer and shot of Underberg for $5. facebook.com/ lovehandle indy

COFFEE BREAK Get a pick-me-up at Hubbard & Cravens. At nearly 30 years old, this local coffee and tea chain could easily take on any shop nationally in terms of its quality, taste and dedication to its roasts. Treat yourself to a Healthy Elephant — a cold coffee concoction made with espresso, honey, peanut butter and chocolate for $5.29. hubbardandcravens. com

PLAY Then it’s time for the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum. Get the most bang from your Indianapolis 500 buck by heading straight into the center of the speedway’s oval to learn about the history of the sport of IndyCar racing. Then you can take a narrated trip around the 2.5-mile track and catch a much slower version of what drivers see each May. Museum admission is $10 for adults ($5 for children ages 6-15); cost for The Qualifying Lap tour is $8 for adults ($5 for children ages 6-15). indyracingmuseum. org RELAX To end your perfect day, catch a show at the Hi-Fi. Small and intimate, the Hi-Fi pulls in nationally touring acts as well as talented locals of all genres for a distinct musical experience. Throw in a local craft beer at the bar, and you’re about to have a good evening for $10 to $35. hifiindy.com TOTAL = $102.29

INDIANAPOLIS MOTOR SPEEDWAY; INDIANAPOLIS MUSEUM OF ART; LOVE HANDLE; ILLUSTRATION: MIRANDA PELLICANO

MIDWEST | SAV V Y T R AV EL


MIDWEST | MISSOU R I

Overarching Transformation Area surrounding St. Louis’ iconic landmark is reinvented BY STACEY ZABLE

A

fter a five-year, $380 million renovation, St. Louis’ Gateway Arch National Park officially reopens to the public July 3, marking a new experience for those visiting America’s tallest man-made monument. The project boasts plenty of green areas, including 11 acres of new park space, featuring 5.4 miles of pathways for cycling and running. There is also a renovated Kiener Plaza and new and updated cultural attractions that focus on a “westward expansion” theme. Here is more of what visitors can expect to see starting this summer:

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ST. LOUIS CONVENTION & VISITORS COMMISSION; GATEWAY ARCH PARK FOUNDATION

St. Louis Cardinals’ Busch Stadium Ballpark Village


The newly renovated St. Louis Gateway Arch National Park has more green space. nps.gov/jeff

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IF YOU GO

Visitors center and museum lobby

EXPANDED VISITOR CENTER AND MUSEUM

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1820 Market St.; 314-231-1234; stlouisunionstation.com

Fair Saint Louis July Fourth fireworks

PERFORMANCES AND EVENT MECCA The grand opening kicks off with the annual Fair Saint Louis (fairsaintlouis.org) returning to its original home at Gateway Arch from July 4-7. Called “America’s Biggest Birthday Party,” the event includes music, food, an air show, fireworks and family fun. A natural amphitheater for performances and events is among the features of the new 7.5-acre North Gateway area of the park. Friday nights in August will feature “Blues at the Arch,” (bluesatthearch.com) where artists do what they do best during free weekly concerts.

Pappy’s Smokehouse offers Memphis-style barbecue in midtown St. Louis. The restaurant slow smokes meats up to 14 hours over sweet apple or cherry wood. Choose from four barbecue sauces for finger-licking goodness. 3106 Olive St.; 314-535-4340; pappyssmokehouse.com

In addition to the new Gateway Arch, visitors can take in a St. Louis Cardinals baseball game at Busch Stadium, or head to Ballpark Village, a dining and entertainment area next to the stadium. True baseball lovers will also want to include a trip to the Cardinals Hall of Fame Museum. 700 Clark St.; 314-345-9880; www.mlb.com/cardinals/ ballpark

GATEWAY ARCH PARK FOUNDATION; PROVIDED BY ROGER POPWELL AND FAIR SAINT LOUIS

A new entrance introduces the changes to the expanded Gateway Arch visitors center. The interior mezzanine now includes one of the largest terrazzo floor maps ever designed and built in the U.S. and is where you can follow the pioneers’ historic trails West. The 45- to 60-minute tour continues at the visitors center where guests can board an interior tram that travels 630 feet to the top of the arch. The visitors center now connects the arch directly to downtown St. Louis for the first time via the renovated Luther Ely Smith Square, which is now the site of the new Park Over the Highway (built over Interstate 70), which leads to the new free Museum at the Gateway Arch. Located at the base of the arch, the museum offers a look at St. Louis’ role in the westward expansion of the U.S. Visitors can expect to see six themed exhibit areas on the history of the city, including a full-size replica of the Old Rock House, one of the oldest standing buildings along St. Louis’ riverfront.

The historic St. Louis Union Station Hotel provides more than a place to sleep. Originally opened in 1894 as the largest terminal in the U.S., its lobby features the recently renovated Grand Hall with an impressive 65-foot, barrel-vaulted ceiling with fresco and gold-leaf detailing, mosaics and stained-glass windows. Daily light shows on the Grand Hall’s ceiling feature sound, music and 3-D animation. Lights, water and fire set to music take place during the hotel’s daily Fire and Light show.


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www.visitdodgecity.org 1-800-OLD-WEST

Public art, museums, art center and cinema, theatre, music and festivals; family fun at the zoo, golf course and parks; local and regional dining experiences and warm hospitality...

Call Toll Free 1.877.725.4625

Event Calendar at SalinaAE.com Download the Salina Area Chamber of Commerce App!

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Looking for someplace wild? We’re kind of a big deal.

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Poplar Bluff, Missouri


MIDWEST | IL L INOIS

Wrigleyville Remixed The neighborhood around Chicago’s Wrigley Field is getting a serious — and sophisticated — makeover BY MATT ALDERTON

C

hicagoans aren’t generally the sort of people who believe in fairy tales. And yet, Chicago is a living, breathing Cinderella story — just look at the city’s beloved Cubbies. According to local lore, the Chicago Cubs lost the World Series in 1945 when an aggrieved fan cursed the team. For more than 70 years thereafter, the Cubs failed and floundered. Then, on Nov. 2, 2016, they finally changed their fortunes with a jubilant World Series win against the Cleveland Indians, whom they bested in a stunning Game-7 defeat. It was the kind of fairy-tale ending Chicago never trusted but always deserved. If the Cubs were visited by a fairy godmother, her magic wand appears to have enchanted not only the team, but also its stomping grounds. Part of Chicago’s Lakeview neighborhood, the community known as Wrigleyville, is in the midst of a significant transformation engineered by Cubs ownership, the Ricketts family, whose vision will reimagine the area around Wrigley Field to the benefit of residents and visitors.

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ELEVATED EATS If Chicago neighborhoods were people, Wrigleyville would be a freshly minted fraternity pledge: He’s eager to please, loves sports, lives in flip-flops and ball caps, never met a hot dog or nacho he didn’t like, and is always the life of the party — until one too many keg stands gets him. But that’s about to change, because Wrigleyville is finally growing up. “In the past, the focus in Wrigleyville was on how many drinks you could get down before going to a game, but a shift is coming,” says Josh Rutherford, co-owner of 4 Star Restaurant Group, which began operating a Wrigleyville outpost of Smoke Daddy (thesmokedaddy.com), its popular barbecue concept, this spring. Located across the street from Wrigley Field inside

Smoke Daddy


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JERRY LAI; GALDONES PHOTOGRAPHY


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Hotel Zachary (hotelzachary.com), the two-story restaurant offers live music, modern décor and mouthwatering ribs. Other restaurants around Hotel Zachary include: Big Star (bigstarchicago.com), a two-story emporium dedicated to tacos, whiskey and honky-tonk; West Town Bakery and Tap (westtownbakery.com), which sells scrumptious baked goods alongside cocktails and milkshakes; Mordecai (mordecaichicago.com), a twostory cocktail lounge from Chicago chef/restaurateur Matthias Merges; and Dutch & Doc’s (dutchanddocs. com), a casual American brasserie. Across the street, there’s Brickhouse Tavern (brickhousetavernchi.com), which boasts four bars and two outdoor terraces; and Merges’s Lucky Dorr Patio & Tap (luckydorr.com), a beer garden specializing in craft brews and gourmet ballpark snacks; not to mention Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams (jenis.com/wrigleyville) premium ice cream shop and a Starbucks Reserve (starbucksreserve.com) upscale coffee bar. A block south, The Wheelhouse Hotel (thewheelhousehotel.com), has opened Union Full Board (unionpizza.com), serving Detroit-style, square-cut pizzas, and Tinker to Evers, a speakeasy. “Wrigleyville is going to feel a lot more diversified,” Rutherford says. “There will still be bars where you can go and get rowdy, but you’ll also be able to have a nice meal with your family.”

HOMERUN HOTELS What Wrigleyville needed even more than places to eat were places to sleep. Thanks to the aforementioned Hotel Zachary and Wheelhouse Hotel, it finally has them. Conceived by Hickory Street Capital (HSC), the Ricketts’ real estate company, Hotel Zachary is named for Zachary Taylor Davis, Wrigley Field’s architect. It has 173 residential-style rooms that whisper “baseball” instead of scream it.

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BEYOND BASEBALL One of the biggest misconceptions about Wrigleyville is that it’s all baseball, all the time. The neighborhood’s

new additions promise to finally put that assumption to rest, according to lifelong Lakeview resident Richard Levy, a retired lawyer who’s now a volunteer for Chicago Greeter, a free service through which the Chicago Office of Tourism matches visitors with local tour guides. ““The baseball season is only five to six months a year,” Levy says. "The new additions coming into the community are making Clark Street much more vibrant and much more approachable for people other than baseball fans.” In fact, scheduled for completion this summer, the L-shaped Addison & Clark development (addisonandclark. com) will include baseball alternatives such as a HarleyDavidson showroom, a Lucky Strike Social bowling alley and a CMX movie theater. “Chicago’s such a dynamic city that’s constantly reinventing itself,” says Michelle Gonzalez, vice president of media relations at Choose Chicago, the city’s convention and visitors bureau. “The changes in Wrigleyville give visitors more ways and reasons to see, experience and be a part of Chicago’s local vibe and culture.”

The Wheelhouse Hotel ANDREW MERZ; THE WHEELHOUSE HOTEL

Sports Corner Bar & Grill in Lakeview

“From ivy-green headboards to leather chairs the color of a baseball glove, the design evokes the history of Wrigley Field without relying on the weight of memorabilia,” explains Eric Nordness, HSC's senior vice president and chief financial officer. Named for the sweet spot in a batter’s strike zone, the much smaller Wheelhouse Hotel has 21 rooms with locally curated minibars, a retro candy shop, a private rooftop and a more literal, yet still sophisticated, interpretation of the baseball theme. Note, for instance, its vintage scoreboard and art installation made of 500 Louisville sluggers. What both properties strive to offer is something Chicago visitors haven’t really had before: an authentic alternative to downtown lodging. “Travel, as a macro trend, is people looking for unique experiences where they can live like a local,” Nordness says. “Neighborhoods like Wrigleyville … are where people can do just that.”


Fenton Regional Chamber of Commerce

USS SILVERSIDES SUBMARINE MUSEUM

WWW.SILVERSIDESMUSEUM.ORG

Buy One Admission — Get One FREE Building Business, Building Community

In 2018! January - Fenton Forecast Breakfast! March - Fenton Community EXPO! March - An Eggciting Event in Linden! May - More Than Just Golf Scramble! June - Gus Macker Basketball Tournament July - Fenton Freedom Festival! August - Taste in Fenton! October - Meet The Candidates! October - An Event So Good It’s Scary! November - Annual Awards Dinner! December - Jinglefest & Jinglejog! Networking @ Noon every month! Career Connections programs! Craig Tournquest - 8th Grade Motovational Speaker, Girls & Business, Boys & Business, Annual scholarships awarded to Fenton, Lake Fenton, and Linden High School seniors.

www.fentonchamber.com

VALID THROUGH DECEMBER 2018 • CODE 302

USS Silversides – the most famous surviving submarine of WW II USCGC McLane – the only Cutter credited with sinking a Japanese Submarine in WW II WW II European and Pacific Theaters, USS Flier Exhibits and more in the Museum Museum Store on site with plenty of parking for motor homes and campers 20 minutes North of Grand Haven on the Channel near Pere Marquette. Follow Laketon west to the beach. 1346 BLUFF STREET, MUSKEGON, MI 49441

Contact us for a FREE Waupaca Area Visitor Guide!

Welcome to Waupaca, WIwhere natural beauty surrounds you. Great dining and comfy accommodations await you. There’s plenty to do in every seasonsilent sports, boating, camping and family friendly events.

www.WaupacaMemories.com


MIDWEST | NORT H DA KOTA

Road Trippin’ North Dakota sights and stops not to miss along I-94

A

s I crossed the finish line of the Go Far Woman Half Marathon in Fargo, N.D., last August, I was sweaty but smiling. I had earned my sparkly race bling, and I was eager to find my way back to my rental car and set off across North Dakota to take in some of the state’s best sights. But first, a shower. I cleaned up at Fargo’s trendy Hotel Donaldson, where I spent the night in one of their 17 art-inspired rooms. My room featured works by local artist Jay Pfeifer. I’d already explored the historic Fargo Theatre and Vinyl Taco, a fun and vibrant restaurant that serves Mexican dishes and drinks to the tune of vinyl records, in this revitalized downtown area, so now, sporting my new, “Fargo,

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North of Normal” T-shirt, I was officially ready to go. The day before at the visitors center, I’d picked up a brochure touting “9 Places to Visit in North Dakota Along

NORTH DAKOTA EXIT 127 EXIT 32 EXIT 72

EXIT 258

EXIT 155

I-94,” the interstate that runs 353 miles east to west through the central portion of the state, so I had my marching orders. I was ready to make every single stop. Over the next couple of hours, I

sampled rhu-berry flavored soda (rhubarb grows abundantly in most parts of the state) at Maple River Winery in Casselton and walked across footbridges in Valley City, allowing me to cross off two stops. I would soon realize that North Dakota has more than its share of roadside eye candy, too. “Our roadside attractions provide a quirky experience for North Dakota travelers, from the ‘udderly’ cool 38-foot-tall cow, Salem Sue, to a gigantic 60-ton buffalo, Dakota Thunder,” says Kim Schmidt, public relations and digital communications manager at North Dakota Tourism. “There’s even an entire highway speckled with largerthan-life statues.” Here are a few standout stops to check out on an I-94 road trip across North Dakota:

ERIN GIFFORD; MAP ILLUSTRATION: MIRANDA PELLICANO

BY ERIN GIFFORD


MIDWEST | NORT H DA KOTA

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Frontier Village High atop a hill in Jamestown is Frontier Village (discoverjames townnd.com/play/ frontier-village), an 1880s-style prairie town complete with original buildings from across North Dakota, including the Northern Pacific Railroad Depot, the first train depot in Jamestown. Dakota Thunder, a massive 26-foot tall buffalo, has been watching over Jamestown from this perch since 1959.

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Rich in military and Native American history, Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park (parkrec.nd.gov/parks/falsp/falsp.html) is worth slowing down for. Occupied by Mandan Indians until 1781, the grasscovered earth lodges at On-A-Slant Indian Village tell the story of this tribe, which once numbered upwards of 15,000. Later, Fort Abraham Lincoln served as a critical cavalry post, headed up by Lt. Col. George Custer, during the expansion of the Northern Pacific Railway in the 1870s.

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GETTY IMAGES; ERIN GIFFORD

Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park


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Adventure awaits in Minnesota’s Playground. Enjoy all the Brainerd Lakes Area has to offer from a central location in Brainerd / Baxter. Find travel and lodging information at www.visitbrainerd.com.


MIDWEST | NORT H DA KOTA

EXIT

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Salem Sue

GETTY IMAGES; ERIN GIFFORD

As you keep riding along I-94, the World’s Largest Holstein Cow will soon come into view. At 38 feet tall, Salem Sue has been standing head held high, looking over the small dairy community of New Salem (newsalem-nd. com/salem-sue. html), since 1974 when she was erected at a cost of $40,000 for the local Lions Club to honor local dairy farmers.

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Just 45 minutes from Minneapolis.

Your conveniently close getaway.

ENJOY

Eagan Minnesota! H World-class attractions including Minnesota Zoo and Nickelodeon Universe®

H Spectacular shopping Lakes • Restaurants • Golf • Winery • Shopping

EVERYTHING IS BETTER IN BUFFALO, MINNESOTA! BuffaloChamber.org

including Twin Cities Premium Outlets® and Mall of America®

H Complimentary breakfast and shuttle service from most of Eagan’s 17 hotels (verify upon making reservations) Nickelodeon Universe®

Visit

Granite Falls a historic weekend getaway on the Minnesota River 2 hours from the Twin Cities

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Eagan Convention and Visitors Bureau

866-324-2620 • eaganmn.com @EaganMinnesota

/EnjoyEagan

Family Fun! In the Gateway to Minneapolis-Saint Paul.

tcgateway.com www.sleepyeyechamber.com

ANOKA • BLAINE • COON RAPIDS • FRIDLEY • HAM LAKE LINO LAKES • MOUNDS VIEW • NEW BRIGHTON • SHOREVIEW


MIDWEST | NORT H DA KOTA

EXIT

72 Enchanted Highway

EXIT

32

Theodore Roosevelt National Park Neatly divided into two sections, the South Unit of Theodore Roosevelt National Park (nps.gov/ thro) sits adjacent to I-94. In Medora, a few miles down the road, enter the park at the ranger station for an eye-popping 36-mile loop drive chock-full of scenic pull-out points. In the evening, settle in for the nightly Medora Musical, a toe-tapping Broadway-style show.

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In late 2017, Bismarck native, Cara Mund, was crowned Miss America, the first-ever from North Dakota. Here are some of her can’tmiss recommendations for things to see and do in her state: At the Fargo-Moorhead Visitors Center, snap a selfie with the wood chipper from the 1996 Coen brothers dark comedy, Fargo. If North Dakota is your last stop before heading up to Canada, you’re entitled to a free “Best for Last Club” T-shirt. In Jamestown, gas up at the Clark station. They have the most amazing Butterfinger Cappuccino. “Even after traveling 20,000 miles a month as Miss America, Clark in Jamestown still has the very best cappuccino,” Mund says. Inside what was once the Patterson Hotel in Bismarck, and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, is the Peacock Alley American Bar & Grill. Order a toasted beer bun with your entrée. Mund says it’s a must. At Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park, go inside the reconstructed military buildings, including Custer House, which is said to be haunted. In the Theodore Roosevelt National Park, be sure to visit the Painted Canyon Visitor Center for dramatic views of colorful badlands and an easy 1-mile hike. “I love staring out into the Painted Canyon at Theodore Roosevelt National Park in Medora,” Mund says. “It’s breathtaking and so unique to the North Dakota landscape.” — Erin Gifford

GETTY IMAGES; MAO/MATT BOYD PHOTOGRAPHY; ERIN GIFFORD (3)

CARA MUND’S NORTH DAKOTA

It may be a 32-mile detour off I-94 (one-way, that is), but massive scrap metal art sculptures, like Tin Family and Pheasants on the Prairie, make the side trip along the Enchanted Highway (enchanted castlend.com/enchantedhighway) worthwhile, as do wide-open fields of sunflowers on either side of the two-lane road. Dreamed up in 1989 by local artist, Gary Greff, the Enchanted Highway was created as a way to entice visitors to the area.


Share Curiosity. Read Together. w w w. r e a d . g o v


WEST | M Y TOW N

TY BURRELL’S

Salt Lake City In his convincing and hilarious role as Phil Dunphy on ABC’s Modern Family, actor Ty Burrell delivers the dad jokes, puns and one-liners. Off the set, Burrell loves eating out, being in nature and hanging with his family in Salt Lake City, where he co-owns a cocktail bar, Bar X, and the adjacent beer restaurant, Beer Bar. “I’m also trying to become a respectable fly fisherman,” in the local streams, he says. “But most of the time the fish just mock me. Sometimes they knock me over and take my hat. It doesn’t feel good.” — LISA MARIE HART

SEE NATURE “We usually head up to Red Butte Garden at least once a week. It’s a seemingly endless labyrinth of paths and plant life with a view of the city.” 300 Wakara Way; 801-585-0556; redbuttegarden.org

BEST

MUSEUM WITH KIDS “One of our favorites is the Natural History Museum of Utah. It has an incredible display of the dinosaur population that used to live in Utah.” 301 Wakara Way; 801-581-6927; nhmu.utah.edu

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In the summer, we take Sunday morning hikes up in the Wasatch Range. It’s about a 20-minute drive to most of them. It’s incredible how quickly you can get out of the city and into solitude there.” — TY BURRELL

visitutah.com

BEST PLACE TO

GET A BEER “I’m obviously biased, but I think what my brother, Duncan, and Richard Noel have done with Beer Bar is pretty great. (It) has introduced dozens of new beers to Salt Lake.” 161 E. 200 S; 801-355-2287; beerbarslc.com

BEST

RESTAURANT “There are so many good established restaurants, and so many I’m excited to try, like (chef) Viet Pham’s Pretty Bird. Of the newer ones, we’re big fans of HSL. They’re doing the now-common style of shared plates but with uncommon execution. Also, it tastes good.” 418 E. 200 S; 801-539-9999; hslrestaurant.com

STEVE GRANITZ; BEER BAR; NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM OF UTAH/ BRIAN TWEDE

BEST PLACE TO


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WEST | SAV V Y T R AV EL

The Cliff Spa at Snowbird Resort

BALLIN’ ON A BUDGET

Salt Lake City Experience a stylish getaway in this mountain town BY DARYL LINDSEY

Utah’s capital — often glanced over on a map — sits nestled against snow-capped mountains and is sure to quicken the pulse of any nature lover. Here you’ll find a thriving restaurant and bar culture, despite the state’s history of quirky liquor laws. While The City of Saints may have earned its reputation (and nickname) from its religious roots, Salt Lake’s affordability and rapid growth have transformed it into the West’s best-kept secret. Take a quick trip to this effortlessly cool destination, and for less than $300 you can enjoy much of what it has to offer, including local gems, modern food and stunning vistas in all directions.

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YOUR ITINERARY STAY Although not as regal as its palatial counterpart The Grand America Hotel, The Little America Hotel offers amenities such as an indooroutdoor pool, a business center and affordable room rates — as low as $109 a night — in a closeto-everything, walkable downtown location. saltlake. littleamerica.com EAT Snag some breakfast at The

TASTE Salt Lake City does local really well, and Beltex Meats is no exception. This sustainable butcher sells a delicious range of locally sourced, ethically raised meats. For $10, pick up some charcuterie to go and have a picnic in nearby Liberty Park. beltexmeats. com

DRINK A craft beer for $3? It exists, and it’s delicious. A.

Fisher’s Brewing Co.’s excellent, affordable brews make it a special stop. fisherbeer. com RELAX Journey up breathtaking Little Cottonwood Canyon to reach The Cliff Spa at Snowbird Resort, where you’ll find big luxury with a small price tag. For $35, you get access to the locker room, sauna and eucalyptus steam room. Take a complimentary yoga class and lay out by the rooftop pool with unbeatable views of the Wasatch Mountains. (Other spa services can be purchased at an additional cost.) nowbird.com/spa DINE Make a reservation in advance to score a table at The Copper Onion, where you’ll find locally sourced New American cuisine to rival anything you’d find in a coastal city. Dinner with wine will run about $40 per person. thecopperonion. com TOTAL = $207

MATT CRAWLEY; BELTEX; DAVID NEWKIRK; ILLUSTRATION: MIRANDA PELLICANO

Park Café, a Utah institution that serves elevated diner fare for less than $10 a plate. You can help yourself to a complimentary mug of hot coffee while you wait for a table and stroll nearby Liberty Park afterward to walk off your meal. theparkcafeslc.com


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SEGUIN.

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WEST | COLOR A DO

Incredible Cañon City Whitewater, stunning views and history await in this Colorado town you might not have heard of

A

s we bumped along in the big white school bus, dragging a utility trailer piled high with blue inflatable rafts, my kids and I were eager to reach the launch site along the banks of the Arkansas River in Colorado. It was warm inside the bus on this June day, and we were ready to get out on the water, paddles in hand. Sporting bright orange helmets, life vests, rubber boots and wetsuits (even in summer), we slathered on the sunblock and patiently waited for our last name to be called. “Gifford? Party of five.” We nervously ambled over to Alex, our scruffy raft guide with Echo Canyon River Expeditions, who would navigate us through the frothy Class II and III river rapids of Bighorn Sheep Canyon. This was not my first time

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rafting, but it was the first time for my kids, and Cañon City, as I learned, is the place to go for whitewater rafting. Also known as the Royal Gorge Region, Cañon City is home to exhilarating rapids and waves for rafters of all levels on one of the most popular rivers in the U.S. Just one hour southwest of Colorado Springs, many people have never heard of Cañon City. I hadn’t before I booked a cabin there last summer. For those who have, it’s often only a there-andback day trip, but this quaint mountain town deserves more of your attention. “We have the best of Colorado here in Cañon City,” says Andy Neinas, owner of Echo Canyon River Expeditions. “The Arkansas River, the crown jewel of the state’s waterways, created the Royal Gorge, enabling incredible activities like whitewater rafting, fishing and rock climbing.” For those eager to take

GETTY IMAGES; ECHO CANYON RIVER EXPEDITIONS

BY ERIN GIFFORD


Erin Gifford and her family raft along the Arkansas River in CaĂąon City, Colo.

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IF YOU GO rafting trips for all levels, from calm family floats to adrenaline-pumping rides through challenging Class IV and V rapids.

in the history of the region, get your ticket punched at the Royal Gorge Route Railroad. Colorado’s first scenic railroad, the Royal Gorge Route operated four daily passenger trains in the 1890s, traversing from Denver to Salt Lake City until 1967 when service was discontinued. In 1998, service was reestablished and reimagined as nostalgia-inducing 1950sera trains began to depart the Santa Fe Depot bound for nearby Parkdale. This 22-mile round-trip takes two hours and boasts stunning views as you meander along the bottom of the Royal Gorge. At one point, we collectively held our breath as the train meticulously inched over a hanging bridge built in 1879 in a section of the gorge, also known as the Grand Canyon of the Arkansas River, that narrows to just 30 feet wide. We then looked up as the train passed under the Royal Gorge Bridge, the highest suspension bridge in the U.S., dangling 1,200 feet over the canyon. Rebecca Darling, a family travel blogger (travelingmom.

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com) and mother of three, recently took a day trip to Cañon City to walk the bridge. Her kids even zip lined 1,987 feet across the gorge at 25 mph. She wishes she knew to make more time for this town. “While at Royal Gorge Bridge, we learned that we needed to hit Skyline Drive for views of the entire city,” says Darling of one of Colorado’s hidden gems. “The narrow, two-mile Skyline Drive curls around the top of the hill to a precarious ridge with spectacular views on either side. We had never taken such a drive before, and I wished we had more time to hike the trails at the top.” A stroll in downtown Cañon City is also a must. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this district impresses with its abundance of structures in turn-of-the-century architectural styles. “Our historic main street, minimal stoplights and just enough conveniences and amenities make for an authentic mountain town experience,” adds Neinas.

45054 W. US Highway 50; 800-748-2953; royalgorgecabins. com

▲ In historic downtown, stay at the charming Jewel of the Canyons bed-and-breakfast, an authentic Victorian-style inn. Relax in the upstairs parlor or unwind on the large covered front porch. 429 Greenwood Ave.; 719-275-0378; jewelofthecanyons. com

▲ Echo Canyon River Expeditions offers whitewater

▲ Book a train ticket for one of four service classes on the Royal Gorge Route, including the Vista Dome class, for the best views along this historic train route. 330 Royal Gorge Blvd.; 719-276-4000; royalgorgeroute.com

▲ After spending time on the rapids, settle in for a craft beer and a buffalo burger on the patio at 8 Mile Bar & Grill. It’s a great spot for you and your crew to recount your adventures. 45000 W. US Highway 50; 719-275-1558; raftecho.com /8-mile-bar-grill

ROYAL GORGE BRIDGE & PARK; ROYAL GORGE CABINS; JEWEL OF THE CANYONS; ECHO CANYON RIVER EXPEDITIONS (2); ROYAL GORGE ROUTE

Royal Gorge Bridge

▲ Set up base camp at Royal Gorge Cabins, which offers several luxury cabins. This summer, look for four new glamping tents with decks.

45000 W. US Highway 50; 800755-3246; raftecho. com


DISCOVERTRINIDAD.ORG


WEST | A R IZONA

Soulful Sedona Experience the natural beauty of Arizona’s scenic oasis BY ROBIN L. FLANIGAN

W

hether you visit Sedona for its majestic sandstone buttes, vibrant arts community or international reputation as a spiritual mecca, this familyfriendly town in north-central Arizona — often ranked one of the most beautiful in the country — will touch your soul. From sunrise, when the first faint glow turns distant hills into charcoal sketches, to sunset, when strips of coral morph into shades of primrose and amethyst, the dramatic landscape is a perfect backdrop for whatever the day brings. Make the most of your trip to Red Rock Country by trying these attractions:

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NORTHERN LIGHT BALLOON EXPEDITIONS Soar high above sandstone cliffs — up to 3,000 feet above Sedona — at dawn for an unrivaled panoramic perspective. Each ride lasts between 60 and 120 minutes, depending on wind conditions, and ends with a light champagne picnic breakfast. “As we gain altitude and the grand formations drop away,” says chief pilot Blair Preston, “the enormity of the entire view of the Mogollon Rim with the San Francisco Peaks rising up behind them is nothing short of breathtaking.” In business since 1974, Sedona’s original balloon company uses seasoned FAA-licensed pilots, can accommodate intimate pairings and larger groups, and offers complimentary transportation to and from your hotel. u $225/person. 800-230-6222;

GETTY IMAGES; NORTHERN LIGHT BALLOON EXPEDITIONS; DOUG BERRY

northernlightballoons.com

THE HIKE HOUSE An indispensable resource center for those who like off-the-beaten-path views, this onestop shop offers hiking apparel, gear, a café, expert advice and guided hikes. The center’s web-based Sedona Trail Finder matches abilities with the demands of 101 hiking trails and includes descriptions, ratings, photos, video and commentary. Serious hikers should consider the Hangover Trail, with exposed edges, slick rock and more than 8 miles of stunning vistas. “That’s my favorite hike of all time,” says assistant manager Nate Hansen. “This trail is only accessible through determination but in the end, it pays in dividends, (around) every corner something more diverse and amazing.” u 928-282-5820; thehikehouse.com

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PINK JEEP TOURS Adventurous explorers can go four-wheeling atop Sedona’s iconic red rocks in the company’s pink Jeep Wranglers led by a guide. The original Broken Arrow tour that launched the business in 1960 is still its most popular, with miles of scenery and some inclines measuring an exhilarating 45 degrees. “There’s lots of gasping, and then amazement,” says content manager Rob MacMullan. “People say, ‘We had no idea Jeeps could do this.’” Not sure about white-knuckling it? Sign up for a less-rugged trek through archaeological ruins or vortex areas. There’s even an all-pavement excursion called Scenic Sedona. u $59 to $65 per person. (The

SLIDE ROCK STATE PARK Named for the natural, 80-foot-long, algae-lined slide in Oak Creek Canyon, this park features red-rock beaches, desert views and short trails that pass a portion of the historic Pendley Homestead, an old apple farm that has graced the property since 1912 and still produces bountiful harvests. (Picking can start as early as late August.) The Travel Channel has included the park, located on Coconino National Forest land, in its list of the country’s top 10 swimming holes, naming the slippery chute “the ultimate water slide.” u $20 to $30 per vehicle. 928-282-3034; azstateparks.com/ slide-rock

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TLAQUEPAQUE ARTS & CRAFTS VILLAGE Cobblestone walkways, giant sycamore trees and vinecovered courtyards provide a tranquil setting for more than 50 specialty shops and art galleries. Modeled after a traditional Mexican village, Tlaquepaque, meaning the “best of everything,” offers sculptures, fine art paintings, contemporary jewelry and more. Two of the village’s restaurants have stood for more than three decades — El Rincon Restaurante Mexicano (chimichangas are made with hand-rolled masa) and René Restaurant (serving continental cuisine with Southwestern touches). u928-282-4838; tlaq.com

PINK JEEP TOURS; WEB MIDDLETON; ARIZONA STATE PARKS & TRAILS

Broken Arrow tour costs $99 to $110.) 800-873-3662; pinkadventuretours.com


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WEST | IDA HO

Kit Bernardi’s family watches her son, Will, kayak solo for the first time on a Class IV rapid on the Middle Fork of Idaho’s Salmon River.

Go with the Flow in Wild Idaho Whitewater raft the Middle Fork of the Salmon River STORY AND PHOTOGRAPHY BY KIT BERNARDI

“A

ttack it. Commit. Stay strong paddling through it. We’ll meet you below,” river guide John Hillman instructs our teenage son, Will, over the roar of whitewater pounding through protruding jagged boulders. Wedged in an inflatable single-person kayak, Will is about to navigate his first Class IV rapid. Our rubber boat jolts forward, leaving Will behind. I’m paddling air as we drop into crashing waves. A cold, green wall slams and soaks us before we reach the eddy’s slackened water at the bottom of Idaho’s Tappan Falls. I’m panting more from parental fear than paddling. Will’s dad and I crane our necks to watch our son’s lone descent. His red helmeted-head pops above pummeling white water and disappears. Then, he bursts from the misty, roiling maul howling with joy.

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Because of its free-flowing, 104 miles of more than 100 Class III through IV rapids, professional river runners consider central Idaho’s Middle Fork of the Salmon River a premier destination among the nation’s Wild and Scenic Rivers System, established 50 years ago to preserve and enhance free-flowing areas. No dams block the Middle Fork’s unfettered run through the 2.3 million-acre Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness, some of the most rugged and remote territory in the Lower 48. Cellphone signals and Wi-Fi don’t connect here, so families engage in face time charged only by


WEST | IDA HO

MAKE A WEEKEND OF IT OARS Middle Fork rafting trips end with an overnight stay in the town of Salmon. Here are some activities to try on dry land:

Sacajawea Interpretive, Cultural & Educational Center. Exhibits explain from the Agaidika (Salmon Eaters) Shoshone-Bannock perspective Sacajawea’s role in the Lewis & Clark Expedition that passed through the valley in 1805. 2700 Main St.; 208-756-1188; sacajaweacenter.org

The Middle Fork of the Salmon River flows unfettered through pristine wilderness. Opportunities for guideled hikes of varying difficulties are plentiful.

our shared adventure. “When you’re in pure wilderness, you must take care of each other because this is the real world,” says Nick Grimes, who, like Hillman, is a guide with the California-based whitewater rafting outfitter OARS (oars.com). “This is the best trip my son Daniel and I have ever done being truly away from civilization, enjoying our group’s comraderie and his kayaking,” says Scott Israel from Portland, Ore. During our six-day, OARS Middle Fork trip, melodious birdsong wakes us to eat a hot breakfast, break camp and pick our boat — paddle, passenger or kayak — for the day. Lunch stops of burrito wraps and fresh fruit include optional, guide-led hikes. We journey to a windswept ridge to view the dense Salmon-Challis National Forest, and also see a 100-year-old Tappan homestead cabin and swaths of barren mountainside blackened by fires ignited by lightning. Atop tumbling Veil Falls, panoramic, twisting river vistas unfold. Below Redside Rapids, pictographs drawn by Sheepeater Indians centuries ago adorn canyon walls. “River trips are great equalizers that break down barriers to forge a group of strangers into a cooperative, nomadic village traveling downstream,” says OARS trip leader and guide Ashley Brown.

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Lemhi County Historical Society & Museum. Artifacts and photographs document life of the Shoshone people, Chinese immigrants and American ranchers and lumbermen in the Lemhi Valley. 210 Main St.; 208-756-3342 ; lemhicountymuseum.org

Bertram’s Brewery. Locally brewed beers on tap, barbecue, steaks, salad bar and pub grub served. 101 S. Andrews St.; 208-756-3391; bertramsbrewery.com Odd Fellows’ Bakery. Wake up to coffee and naturally leavened, longfermented breads, flaky croissants and buttery pastries baked in a brick, wood-fired oven. 510 Main St.; 208-756-1122; oddfellowsbakery. com

The Stagecoach Inn. This downtown motel’s rates include hot breakfast, free internet, parking, a pool and transportation to Lemhi County Airport. 201 River Front Dr.; 208-756-2919; stagecoachinnmotel. com


TEXAS

Annual Events January www.VisitMadisonville.org Annual Coon Hunt

March www MCFA net Madison County Rodeo Madison County Fair

April www.VisitMadisonville.org Tour de' Madison Bicycle Ride Festival May www.SidewalkCattlemens.com MSCA Steak Dinner and Dance July www.VisitMadisonville.org MSCA BBQ Cook Off Hometown July 4th Celebration August www.VisitMadisonville.org October www.VisitMadisonville.org Madisonville Noon Lions Club Gun and First Responders National Night Out Hunting Show Gala Dinner Texas Mushroom Festival December www.VisitMadisonville.org Trail of Terror Night Time Christmas Parade Pathway of Light

TEXAS

dine SHOP

stay

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To book a tour or for more information, please call (866) 504-5294 or see our web site: schulenburgchamber.org


WEST | IDA HO

In the evenings, during her family’s six-day camping trip, Kit Bernardi, right, and other guests gather to discuss the day's outdoor adventures.

Good eats! Guides prepare hot breakfast, lunch and dinner every day.

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Our floating tribe pitches camps along the riverbank shaded by towering Ponderosa Pines Scenic Byway. We share tales around blazing campfires until embers die. Near Big Loon Camp, we soak tired muscles in hot springs before enjoying the guide-prepared dinner of barbecue chicken, peppery cabbage salad and baked Idaho potatoes, accompanied by Columbia Valley wines. The setting sun silhouettes our group’s fly-fishers casting for native cutthroat and rainbow trout. As guides strum guitars, a distant thunderstorm performs some natural pyrotechnics. At Survey Camp, we watch bighorn sheep graze close by, leaving half-moon tracks like quotation marks punctuating the sand. Will says, “It doesn’t get more real than this.” On the river, talk flows as easily as our raft glides over rocks

submerged in gin-clear water. We learn about local hermit Earl Parrott and wonder whether Bigfoot roams this austere wilderness. But chat of sasquatch stops upon entering Impassable Canyon. Blue sky slivers between sheer, narrowing granite walls. Temperatures drop. The river grumbles, then rages through Hancock Rapids’ vertical rock garden. Wet reality slaps me hard in the face. The rapid’s spit disguises my tears of awe, gratitude and sadness that our adventure will end around the bend where the Middle Fork meets the Main Salmon River. We’ll lay our paddles down, but I won’t pick up my phone. I want to remain in thought about the river trip that connected us.


having fun in a square State! go

fishing, biking hiking and eating!

This year Laramie celebrates our 150th anniversary! Come celebrate with us! Find adventure in the southeast corner of our square state... WYOMING!

H i s t o ry & A dv e n t u r e

Hiking in the snowy range of rocky mountains

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1-800-445-5303

• Legend of Rawhide • Golfing • Stagecoach Museum • Excellent Dining • Shopping • Amazing Lodging For more information, call 1-800-223-LUSK Visit LuskWyoming.com | Facebook@luskchamberofcommerce


PACIFIC | M Y TOW N

CHELSEA YAMASE’S

Kauai, Hawaii For Chelsea Yamase — better known as @ChelseaKauai on her wildly popular Instagram account — her hometown of Kauai, Hawaii, is more than a ruggedly beautiful paradise. It’s like a parent or best friend who has molded her and kept her grounded. In return, she respectfully protects it. When she’s not on the island, she’s traveling the world rock climbing, shooting underwater videos or planning epic backpacking trips. — SARAH SEKULA

BEST

BEST PLACE TO

HUG A TREE “At Allerton Garden, there is a gorgeous fig tree with roots nearly as tall as me, but my personal favorite are the pines near the visitor’s center of Koke’e State Park. I used to climb them and their smell still makes me think of summer days and hiking.” kokee.org

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— CHELSEA YAMASE

Near the Lawai Beach Resort

“Growing up, the Grand Hyatt Resort and Spa was THE hotel — the one you hoped your parents would get a room at for special occasions — all because the landscaping and pools are unlike almost any other property. Acres of bridges, saltwater lagoons, slides and a lazy river with caves and waterfall nooks.” 1571 Poipu Rd., Koloa; 808-742-1234; kauai.grand.hyatt.com/en/hotel/home

BEST PLACE TO

GET INSPIRED “Watch the sun set and the stars come out at Polihale State Park. Thanks to very little light pollution, in the summer you can see the Milky Way.” Lower Saki Mana Rd., Waimea; 808-587-0400; hawaiistateparks.org/parks/ kauai/polihale-state-park

BEST PLACE FOR

NIGHTLIFE “Every Friday night from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., there’s Art Night in Hanapepe Town, with live music, local food and artists from all over the island.” hanapepe.org

SAM KOLDER; GRAND HYATT RESORT AND SPA; GETTY IMAGES; HAWAII TOURISM AUTHORITY

Prince Kuhio Beach Park is perfect for snorkeling, but please keep feet and fins off the corals and wear reef-safe sunscreen. We’ve seen a dramatic decrease in our live corals, so I encourage every person to do what they can.”

HOTEL POOL


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COME TO

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LAKE COUNTY Lake County Chamber of Commerce 800-525-3743, LakeCoChamber.com


PACIFIC | SAV V Y T R AV EL

SEE Visit the Cable Car Museum and learn about San Francisco’s most iconic mode of transportation. Free. cablecar museum.org

BALLIN’ ON A BUDGET

San Francisco Experience the City by the Bay BY KATIE MORELL

San Francisco evokes true love from almost every one of its visitors. The hilly streets, worldclass museums and natural beauty make the destination highly sought after, and among its widely known attributes are its prices. In 2016, visitors reportedly spent $356 per day, according to the San Francisco Travel Association. But don’t let those numbers scare you away. Here are some activities that could easily fill a weekend and give you a healthy dose of this popular city. Do them all, and you’ll leave having spent just about $300.

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YOUR ITINERARY GET AROUND Navigate the city easily with the purchase of a three-day Muni Visitor Passport for $33 through the MuniMobile app for access to city buses, streetcars and cable cars (but not the Bay Area Rapid Transit system). sfmta. com/fares/3-dayvisitor-passport STAY The newly renovated Nob Hill Motor Inn offers free parking and free breakfast, making this centrally located spot a no-brainer. Prices start at

LEARN View fine art at the de Young Museum. Pro tip: Take the museum’s elevator — for free — to the ninthfloor observation deck for incredible views. Admission is $15 for adults; $12 for seniors and children age 17 and younger are free. deyoung. famsf.org

DISCOVER Hang out at the Ferry Building Marketplace to find local treasures

and sample culinary delights from food vendors. For $30, you can buy lunch or a few souvenirs. ferrybuilding marketplace.com TOUR Get a guided glimpse of the city in Emperor Norton’s Fantastic San Francisco Time Machine. The approximately three-hour walking tour of downtown on Thursdays and Saturdays is unforgettable. Cost: $30.emperornortontour.com INDULGE Eat some of the best moussaka in the U.S. at Kokkari Estiatorio. The baked casserole with spiced lamb, eggplant, potato and Greek yogurt béchamel is $27.50. kokkari.com ENJOY Take in a show at PianoFight, a popular indie venue that offers theater, spoken word and musical performances. Tickets for many shows cost $14 to $20; some are free. pianofight. com TOTAL = $282.95

SAN FRANCISCO TRAVEL/SCOTT CHERNIS (2); DE YOUNG MUSEUM; ILLUSTRATION: MIRANDA PELLICANO

$127.45 a night (call for up-to-date rates). staysf.com/nh.html


PACIFIC | A L A SK A

Magic of the Mistys Awe-inspiring natural wonders are a playground for adventure seekers

I

used to think fjords were only found in faraway countries like Norway or New Zealand. They seemed so exotic, so otherworldly, that I couldn’t imagine them existing in my own backyard. But soon after moving to Alaska, I discovered that some of the planet’s most stunning fjords lie here in our 49th state. Located outside Ketchikan, Alaska, the Misty Fjords National Monument spreads across more than 2.1 million acres and is pure wilderness, with no road access and only a few remote cabins within its

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borders. Its features, like its size, are striking: 3,000-foot granite cliffs sculpted by glaciers 18,000 years ago, shooting straight into the Pacific Ocean. Expect tumbling waterfalls, snowy peaks and glacial lakes. The landscape boasts towering red and yellow cedars, Sitka spruce and western hemlock that have been alive for 500 to 900 plus years — and will likely outlast us all. Each element is part of the Misty Fjords’ temperate rainforest ecosystem, which is fed by 150 inches of rain each year. That precipitation is vital to the

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flora, as well as the fauna, which includes eagles, mountain goats, humpback whales, orcas, Dall’s porpoises, harbor and elephant seals, wolves and bears. “It has everything and more of what you would expect of wilderness in Alaska,” says Martin Stanford, an archaeologist for the Ketchikan Misty Fjords Ranger District. “The almost constant precipitation and lowhanging clouds create contemplative moods, great photographic opportunities and a thick rainforest that grows everywhere.” Also part of the adventure? Getting there. There are few ways to access the >

ALLEN MARINE TOURS; MARK MEYER

BY SUSAN SHAIN


Nooya Lake in Tongass National Forest, part of Misty Fjords National Monument

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ADVENTURES TO TRY IN KETCHIKAN When it comes to Ketchikan, the Mistys are just the tip of the iceberg. Here are three other activities for intrepid souls to consider:

uCharter fishing: They don’t call Ketchikan “The Salmon Capital of the World” for nothing. Anglers of all ages can book a boat to fish for halibut, salmon and rockfish. One of the best-known skippers in town is Clay Slanaker at The Bites On! Charters. ketchikanfishingcharter.com

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(familyairtours.com). Another fun option is through Southeast Sea Kayaks’ kayaking and flightseeing combo tour (kayakketchikan.com). After paddling through remote ocean coves, you’ll experience an on-water floatplane pickup and a tour of the Mistys. Although the Mistys are beautiful from the air, it’s pretty special to see them by boat, too. From below, you can get a feel for the grandeur of the cliffs and the force of the waterfalls — and maybe even go under

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Companies, including Taquan Air, fly visitors to the Mistys by floatplane. The national monument is only accessible by boat or plane.

one. On Allen Marine’s 4.5-hour trip (allen marinetours.com), guides reveal details about the area’s rich history and ecology, and alert you to wildlife sightings. When you get to the Mistys, stop and take a breath. Few places are this big, this beautiful — and this magical.

uHiking: For some free exercise, hike one of the area’s many trails. In-town options include Deer Mountain and the Rainbird Trail, while further afield you’ll find Settlers Cove and Dude Mountain. alaska.org/destination/ ketchikan/parks-and-trails — Susan Shain

TAQUAN AIR; GETTY IMAGES

pristine expanse of the Mistys. The first is via floatplane: You’ll take off from Ketchikan’s harbor — allegedly one of the busiest “runways” in the country — and fly for 20 minutes over islands and ocean until reaching the monument, looping over its most spectacular natural landmarks and making a 30-minute landing. Two longrunning floatplane companies include Taquan Air (taquanair. com) and Carlin Air (carlinair.com). To add trout fishing to your trip, try Family Air

uZip lining: For a true thrill, you can fly through the rainforest canopy on a zip lining tour. If you’re lucky, you might even spot a bear in the woods below. Tours depart from the dock and last 3.5 hours, including transfers. alaskacanopy.com


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PACIFIC | C A L IFOR N I A

Sacramento’s Comeback Following a harsh downturn, California’s capital emerges as a go-to destination BY SAM BOYKIN

F

or years, it was often said that the best thing about Sacramento was its proximity to really cool places like San Francisco. That’s no longer the case. Sacramento has come into its own and emerged as one of the Golden State’s not-to-miss destinations.

DRAMATIC TRANSFORMATION It wasn’t that long ago that Sacramento’s future looked

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bleak. Struggling to rebound from the Great Recession, the city’s downtown was blighted with empty and run-down retail centers and office buildings. Moreover, up until 2013, the owner of the Sacramento Kings was threatening to move the NBA team to another city. But Vivek Ranadivé, a tech entrepreneur, put together a new ownership group, and purchased the team in 2013, enabling it to stay in its hometown. Moreover, Ranadivé developed a new downtown arena, the $558

SACRAMENTO KINGS

Golden 1 Center in Downtown Commons


KIMPTON SAWYER HOTEL

The Kimpton Sawyer Hotel’s décor is inspired by the region’s scenic beauty and includes milled California oak and shades of gray and brown.

million Golden 1 Center, which opened in September 2016. Since then, Sacramento has undergone a dramatic transformation, with a thriving new entertainment and cultural center, the 16-story, 250-room Kimpton Sawyer Hotel, a burgeoning art and culinary scene, and a reinvestment in its charming historical corridor. “Sacramento has really evolved into an innovative and special city, and I’m so glad I’ve been here to see it,” says Lyndsay Burch, who moved to Sacramen-

to from North Carolina in 2013. Burch is the artistic producer at B Street Theatre, which produces a variety of contemporary plays and musicals. She lives in the vibrant midtown area, surrounded by bars, restaurants, art galleries and music venues. “I love the growth that’s happening here in the arts and cultural community,” says Burch. That includes Wide Open Walls, a new mural festival running Aug. 10-20, that transforms Sacramento’s downtown and midtown neighborhoods into

open-air galleries with nearly 50 artists from around the world creating colorful, large-scale works of art. More established cultural attractions include the renowned Crocker Art Museum, which has an esteemed collection of California art, European master drawings and international ceramics. For live music, Burch frequents Torch Club, a gritty venue founded in 1934 that hosts great local and national blues acts. “There’s always such an interesting, eclectic crowd there,” she says. Burch says that she often takes visiting friends or family to Old Sacramento, the city’s historic district. This popular destination is a 3-mile stretch along the confluence of the American and Sacramento rivers, with cobblestone streets and more than 50 stores, boutiques, restaurants and gift shops. “Some people find it kind of campy and kitschy, but it’s fun, and there’s some really cool history there,” Burch says. Highlights in Old Sac include the California State Railroad Museum, with beautifully restored railroad cars and locomotives; as well as the Delta King Hotel, a five-story, 285-foot riverboat christened in 1927 and restored as a charming hotel with two restaurants.

THE RISE OF DOWNTOWN While Kimberly Garza grew up in Sacramento, she moved away for about 10 years to attend college and pursue a career on the East Coast. But after spending one too many cold winters in Boston, she returned to Sacramento, where she now owns and operates Atlas Lab Inc., an urban design studio. “I thought about moving to San Francisco, >

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MAKE A TRIP OF IT

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1518 Broadway; 916-4410222; towercafe.com

Head to Sam’s Hof Brau, a longtime favorite just northeast of downtown. Sam Gordon opened the restaurant in 1959 and about a decade later he sold it to Denny’s Corporation. Last year, Gordon’s grandson and other family members took back ownership of the restaurant, where you can get house-roasted meats, cold beer and great bargains, like a prime rib dinner with sides and a salad for less than $20. 2500 Watt Ave.; 916-4822175; originalsams hofbrau.com

Just a few blocks from the glistening new Golden 1 Center, Frank Fat’s remains an iconic, old-school mainstay. Opened in 1939, the restaurant is popular among the power lunch crowd, and provides visitors a delectable, fine-dining menu, along with unparalleled people-watching

806 L St.; 916-442-7092; frankfats.com

For accommodations with a historic bent, try the Citizen Hotel, which opened as an office building in 1925 and was one of the city’s first skyscrapers. The building was renovated into a 196-room hotel in 2008, yet it still retains the classic 1920s architectural style. The Citizen is home to Grange, one of the city’s most celebrated fine-dining restaurants, and is located across the street from Cesar Chavez Park. 926 J St.; 916-447-2700; thecitizenhotel.com

Old Sacramento is one of the city’s most popular destinations, but the area’s fascinating history is sometimes lost among all the gift and novelty shops. For a more authentic, behind-the-scenes experience, embark on an adventure with Sacramento History Museum’s Underground Tour, which winds beneath several blocks of Old Sacramento where engineers had to raise a 2.5-mile stretch of buildings following the floods in the 1800s. 101 I St.; 916-808-7059; sachistory museum.org

PROVIDED BY C&R COMMUNICATIONS

Guests at the but there are a lot of challenges Kimpton Sawyer to living in the Bay Area in terms Hotel can enjoy of traffic congestion and cost of a cocktail and living,” she says. “It’s so much easier beautiful views to have a good work/life balance in at the Echo & Sacramento.” Rig bar. Garza lives just south of downtown and says that one of her favorite activities is simply walking the city streets and visiting popular spots like Sutter Park in nearby East Sacramento, which has picnic areas, walking trails and a garden with public art displays. “The city is very walkable. We’re on a grid; we have big sidewalks; our blocks are really short, and the streets are lined with trees,” she says. “From an urban design standpoint, it’s laid out very well. I just love the feel and character of the downtown area.” Golden 1 Center remains downtown’s biggest attraction. In addition to NBA games, the venue hosts a variety of events and top musical acts. The arena is part of the expansive Downtown Commons (DoCo) development, and sits about 50 yards from the Kimpton Sawyer Hotel. The luxury hotel boasts Echo & Rig, an upscale steakhouse, as well as a rooftop bar and pool and an expanisve fitness center. The hotel is also connected to Punch Bowl Social, a popular “adult playground” with bowling, video games, multiple bars and a top-notch restaurant. Elsewhere in DoCo, visitors can shop at upscale retailers and funky boutiques, catch a movie or dine at a growing number of restaurants, such as Sauced BBQ & Spirits, a modern, Southern-inspired concept with live music and a spacious outdoor patio. While the city's new downtown area has gotten all the buzz lately, a favorite thing to do in Sacramento is riding two wheels along the wonderful American River Bike Trail. This scenic 32-mile trail system runs from Discovery Park to Folsom Lake. Among the trail’s top destinations is the Nimbus Fish Hatchery, home to millions of chinook salmon and rainbow trout before they are released into the river. l

Start your day with a visit to Tower Cafe, situated next to the historic Tower Theatre in downtown Sacramento. Founded in 1990, Tower Cafe offers a variety of international dishes, but is best known for its mouth-watering breakfast items. Be sure to grab a seat at the outdoor garden where bubbling fountains and canopies of Japanese maples create a peaceful, serene setting.

opportunities. For the best vantage point, ask for one of the spacious booths in the back.


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DESTINATIONS MEXICO 164 | CANADA 172 | EUROPE 180 | CARIBBEAN 184 | CRUISES 190

GARY LUHM

WILD WORLD Mexico‘s Baja Peninsula is home to a thriving marine and land ecosystem, and the pristine views will have you planning your next visit before you leave. (See story on next page.)


MEXICO

MEXICO

LA PAZ CABO SAN LUCAS

Wildlife Wonders Get up close with aquatic animals of Mexico’s Baja Peninsula BY TINA LASSEN

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would’ve discovered an environment every bit as diverse as the Galápagos — complete with blue-footed boobies. Plan ahead (and book early), arranging to visit in early winter through spring, when you’ll find the most wildlife, the best weather and the most frequent air service to Los Cabos, La Paz and Loreto — all good bases for a Baja wildlife adventure. Here’s a guide to what there is to see and do on your next trip to Baja:

SNORKELING THE EAST CAPE Cousteau famously called the Sea of Cortez “the world’s aquarium,” and all it takes is a mask and snorkel to see for yourself. At the southeastern tip of the peninsula near

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dventurers from John Steinbeck to Jacques Cousteau marveled at the teeming marine life along Mexico’s Baja Peninsula, the ragged landmass that stretches nearly 800 miles from California’s southern border. Along its western coastline, gray whales by the thousands gather in shallow bays. Along its east coast, the Sea of Cortez harbors one of the richest marine ecosystems in the world, teeming with marine mammals, seabirds and hundreds of fish species — many of them found nowhere else in the world. Had Charles Darwin sailed the HMS Beagle to Baja, he


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Kayakers explore the turquoise waters of Loreto.

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Visit in early winter through spring, when you’ll find the most wildlife, the best weather and the most frequent air service to Los Cabos, La Paz and Loreto. Cabo San Lucas, underwater canyons and Baja’s only coral reef attract a wide array of marine life. Once threatened by overfishing, today the coral reef at Cabo Pulmo National Park pulses with life, a riot of waving sea fans, swirling clouds of tropical fish and the occasional sea turtle bobbing past. Cabo Pulmo EcoAdventures (cabopulmoecoadventures.com/ en) offers guided excursions and bungalows just steps from the sea, run by local families who have been diving in the area for decades.

Truly the gentle giants of the ocean, whale sharks rank as the largest fish in the world — a toothless, filter-feeding animal the size of a city bus. From October through March, they frequent the Bay of La Paz, cruising the plankton-rich waters around the sandy spit of El Mogote. You can join them, too, with Baja Expeditions (bajaex. com) and a handful of other outfitters that have permits to visit protected whale shark areas. It’s surreal to slip into the water with these massive spotted beasts — nicknamed

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“dominos” by locals — as they glide gracefully past.

LORETO PADDLING PARADISE North of La Paz, the tranquil fishing port of Loreto was once slated for Cancun-like tourism development. Instead, local citizens led a drive in 1996 to establish Bahía de Loreto National Park, protecting more than a half million acres

Snorkelers can of its wildlife-rich get up-close views waters, and five of marine wildlife largely uninhabited and coral reefs in islands that scatter the Sea of Cortez’s offshore. ROW Sea crystal-clear water. Kayak Adventures (seakayakadventures. com) leads six- to eight-day paddling and camping trips among the islands, the best way to explore this magical mix of desert and sea where you are likely to be surrounded by animals: Dolphins cruise by in rowdy pods. Nesting seabirds and basking

GARY LUHM

WHALE SHARKS IN LA PAZ


MAKE A TRIP OF IT CostaBaja Resort & Spa Enjoy views across La Paz bay and the surrounding mountains at this resort north of downtown, with indoor and outdoor pools, alfresco dining, a fitness center and a spa. The location offers easy access to the walkable shoreline and water activities at the marina next door. Carretera a Pichilingue KM 7.5, La Paz; 877-392-5525; costabajaresort.com Hotel Posada de las Floras On the corner of Loreto’s traditional town plaza, the Hotel Posada de las Floras welcomes guests into its charming interior courtyard with a splashing fountain. Spiral stairs lead to guest rooms with handcrafted furniture and a glass-bottomed rooftop pool. Avenida Salvatierra y Fco I. Madero, Loreto; 011-52-613-135-1162; posadadelasflores.com sea lions crowd onto rocky outcrops. Manta rays leap from the water and sail through the air. You’ll spend evenings at your own secluded beachfront camp, with an equally abundant desert to explore.

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WHALE NURSERIES OF THE PACIFIC While you may spot whales anywhere in Baja waters, you can vastly improve your odds — and your experience — by traveling across the peninsula to the Pacific coast. Each winter, thousands of gray whales travel south from Alaska to breed and give birth in Baja’s warm and protected saltwater lagoons like Bahia Magdalena. From Puerto San Carlos (about 120 miles southwest of Loreto),

Dolphins in the Bay of La Paz and assorted crustacean creatures are among the plentiful wildlife on Mexico’s Baja Peninsula.

Magdalena Bay Whales (magdalenabaywhales.com) runs open-air skiffs out into the bay. In this whale nursery, mothers poke their heads out of the water (“spy hopping”) to give you a closer look, and approach boats as though to introduce their young calves. Locking eyes with one of them is sure to be a highlight of your wild Baja adventure. l

Puerto Amor At this friendly eatery fronting La Paz bay, count on the classics like fresh-squeezed margaritas, handmade tortillas, made-to-order guacamole, and fish, octopus and shrimp fresh from the sea. Paseo Alvaro Obregon 1775, La Paz; 011-52-612-129-6363 Mediterraneo Along Loreto’s waterfront malecón (stone-built embankment or esplanade), Mediterraneo celebrates the region’s rich fishery with local flavors like grilled dorado, chocolata clams, ceviche and simple-yetsublime fish tacos. Malecon y Hildalgo, Loreto; 011-52-613-135-2577

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MEXICO TOURISM BOARD

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Magical Mexico Experience authentic locales off the beaten path BY MARK ROGERS

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he great majority of to venture out to the surrounding first-time visitors area to visit a point of interest, such to Mexico gravitate as taking a boat out to Isla de Janitzio toward the country’s (the main island of Lake Pátzcuaro) well-known resort in Michoacán to watch the fishermen destinations, such as cast their butterfly-shaped nets. Cancun and Los Cabos, or perhaps Renting a car and setting off on to cosmopolitan Mexico City. A a self-drive adventure is another country as huge as Mexico has lots option, although it’s best if at least of treasures tucked away in off-theone of the passengers knows Spanish. beaten-path locations. In 2001, in a It’s also advisable to research points bid to encourage travel to some of of interest along the way that would the country’s smaller towns, Mexico provide meaningful breaks in the inaugurated the Pueblos Mágicos journey. To be on the safe side, restrict (Magical Towns) program, which driving to daylight hours. today includes Travelers 111 towns in all should consider 31 states. a trip to a Pueblo Travelers who Mágico a leisurely feel comfortable all-day affair and striking out on give themselves their own will time to soak up TODOS SANTOS LOS CABOS find small towns the ambiance SAYULITA TEQUILA that provide an of these smaller PUERTO GUADALAJARA VALLARTA authentic experitowns. A good ence of bygone place to start is MEXICO CITY Mexico. Some are the town’s zócalo, comparatively or town square. obscure, such as Significant sights Coatepec in Veracruz and Álamos in will typically be nearby — look for Sonora; while others, such as San the town’s cathedral, a range of Miguel de Allende in Guanajuato, restaurants, boutiques and shops, have a higher profile. Each Pueblo and maybe even a historic hotel. Mágico has its own reason for making For maximum local color, visit on a the list, whether it be colonial-era market day. architecture, regional cuisine or a Experienced travelers may also distinct natural setting. want to create an itinerary that To officially make the list, these includes overnights in two or more towns need to have at least 20,000 Pueblos Mágicos, with options to residents and be within 124 miles book a room in a historic hotel of a resort area or major city. This or converted hacienda. Boutiques proximity to a more visited destinaHoteles de Mexico (hotelesboutique. tion positions the Pueblos Mágicos as com) is a valuable source for finding ideal for a day trip. small hotels in Pueblos Mágicos. The easiest way to visit one of Here are other Pueblos Mágicos these towns is to hire an Englishthat could be combined with a visit speaking driver for the day. Having to a major destination within the your own driver is a convenient way country:

MAP ILLUSTRATION: MIRANDA PELLICANO

MEXICO

San Miguel de Allende in Guanajuato

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Jose Cuervo Express

The town of Tequila is an easy day trip because it’s only 37 miles from Guadalajara, Mexico’s second-largest city. One way to make the trip is via the Jose Cuervo Express, a train that departs from Guadalajara and delivers passengers well-versed in tequila lore and well-oiled in the drink. Travelers can opt to take a bus back to Guadalajara, or spend the night, which I recommend. The town itself is charming, with a lively zócalo, a historic cathedral and lots of dining options — from street food carts to upscale venues. Right off the zócalo is La Rojeña, Mundo Cuervo’s tequila distillery, which is open for tours. Travelers with time in their schedules should arrange a horseback tour of the nearby agave fields, the plant from which tequila is derived. The town of Tequila also has one of Mexico’s most highly acclaimed hotels, Hotel Solar de las Ánimas, which has a prime location right on the zócalo.

Hacienda el Centenario

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TODOS SANTOS (LOS CABOS) Setting off from Los Cabos to the town of Todos Santos via a self-drive excursion is a good option because it’s difficult to get completely lost on the Baja Sur peninsula. Another plus is that the roads are relatively well-maintained. Todos Santos, while compact, has a lot to offer. There’s a definite counterculture vibe, with ethnic restaurants, offbeat boutiques and art galleries in this very walkable coastal town. The claim to fame is the Hotel California, which is often linked to the Eagles song of the same name, although that has since been debunked. Even so, the Hotel California is an atmospheric venue for a meal or an overnight stay.

MUNDO CUERVO

TEQUILA (GUADALAJARA)


OTHER PUEBLOS MÁGICOS WORTH EXPLORING: Cosalá is a former mining town in the state of Sinaloa, about 100 miles from the state’s capital, Culiacán. Come to Cosalá for the caught-in-time ambiance. The town of Álamos in Sonora is notable for its colonial architecture and its standout historic hotel, Hacienda de los Santos. Tulum on the Yucatan Peninsula is a Pueblo Mágico noteworthy for its breath-taking coastal Mayan ruins. Tulum is an easy excursion from resorts in Cancun and Riviera Maya. Visitors to the resort destination of Cancun can arrange a change of pace by visiting Bacalar, a town with its roots in Mayan culture, and with a 18thcentury fort that defended the town against raids by pirates.

Sayulita

The Pacific coast resort city of Mazatlan makes a good jumping off point to visit El Rosario, another historic mining town. The town’s high point is a cathedral with one of the most stunning church altars in Mexico.

MEXICO TOURISM BOARD; MARK ROGERS

SAYULITA (PUERTO VALLARTA) Sayulita is one of the Pueblos Mágicos that is noteworthy for its ambiance and energy, rather than its historical sites. This surfcentric town north of Puerto Vallarta has a beautiful beach setting in the Riviera Nayarit region. Most people seek out Sayulita for its laid-back nature, great seafood (including fish tacos that run about a $1) and its hip shops, especially the celebrated Revolución del Sueño. Another highlight of a Sayulita visit is the opportunity to view and buy the brightly colored artwork of the region’s indigenous Huichol Indians.

Valle de Bravo is notable for its natural beauty and Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve, which annually receives millions of migrating butterflies.

Huichol Indian

The colonial town of Dolores Hidalgo is in the state of Guanajuato. Visitors come to Dolores Hidalgo for its serene setting, historic architecture and prized Talavera pottery.

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Coastal Quebec Gaspé Peninsula offers spectacular views, cliff-ringed beaches and colorful French towns BY BRIAN BARTH

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QUEBEC SAINTE-LUCE QUÉBEC CITY

SEBASTIEN BERGERON/GETTY IMAGES; MAP ILLUSTRATION BY MIRANDA PELLICANO

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Bonaventure Island off the coast of Quebec’s Gaspé Peninsula

sk Americans about their favorite road trips, and you will inevitably hear about such classics as Highway 1 along the California coast and Route 66 through the deserts of the Southwest. Ask a group of Canadians, and you’re bound to hear a few epic stories about Quebec’s Gaspé Peninsula, a rugged finger of land that pokes out from the northern tip of Maine into the wild Atlantic. It’s a short flight from any eastern metropolis, but between its Francophone culture and rugged environment, La Gaspésie, as the locals refer to the region, feels like a world away. The 16-hour loop around the peninsula starts and ends in Quebec City, one of the oldest European settlements in North America. Known for its walled Old Quebec district, established in 1608, it exudes the charm of a historic French hill town with its cobbled streets and stone buildings. With more than a half million people, a thriving arts scene and international airport, Quebec City is a cosmopolitan exclamation point at the gateway to the sparsely inhabited, laid-back peninsula. (If you love things like foie gras and escargot, I highly recommend Restaurant Légende on Rue Saint-Paul — if you don’t, steer clear, as almost every menu item contains some form of liver, snail or other ingredient that not all North Americans enjoy.) Some 400 miles to the east lies the quaint seaside village of Gaspé and Forillon National Park, where moose roam the land and whales often surface offshore. Here, the Appalachian Mountains finally tumble into the sea (yes, those Appalachians, the ones Americans think end in Maine), leaving a landscape of towering cliffs and cove beaches. It’s a dramatic >

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end-of-the-world kind of place. If you’re short on time, there’s no need to drive the full eight hours out to the tip of the peninsula to Gaspé. The road hugs the coast every bit of the way, and every curve seems to hold another jaw-dropping view and another charming village, where you’ll inevitably find a homely little restaurant serving local smoked salmon, lobster and a special variety of shrimp native to the North Atlantic. My wife and I recently stayed in the beach hamlet of SainteLuce, roughly at the halfway point between Quebec City and Gaspé. The window of our room at the elegantly simple Gîte le Moulin Banal, a converted stone millhouse dating from 1848, opened directly onto the water. The ocean air felt luxurious while soaking in the en suite clawfoot tub; the price, around $80 (U.S.) per night, did not. The gîte (French for furnished home available for rent), which contained three guest rooms plus a family-style dining room, is emblematic of the region: affordable, unpretentious and all about joie de vivre. “We don’t like to work too hard,” says our host, Gervais Sirois, a lifelong Gaspe-

Blue poppy

sian, who became our de facto tour guide. Near Sainte-Luce is the Jardins de Métis (or, as anglophones refer to it, Reford Gardens), perhaps the top attraction on the peninsula, other than the landscape itself. Nearly a century ago, the eccentric niece of a Canadian railroad magnate, Elsie Reford, began converting a swath of northern forest on the family estate into what is now a world-renowned botanical garden. Since 2000, Elsie’s great-grandson, Alexander Reford, has curated the International Garden Festival, which runs from late June through early October, at the site. The festival is not an event per se, so much as a series of outdoor art installations by globally renowned artists, architects and garden designers that spring up across the property. Some are kid-friendly and interactive; many are surreal, such as the triangular glass room in a grove of birch trees with walls that are both semi-transparent and semi-reflective. Located on a hillside just above the water, the gardens are an Alice-inWonderland sort of place. Did I mention the blue poppies? These rare plants from the Tibetan Himalayas are one of the garden’s star attractions, drawing horticulturists from all over the world. “They are very temperamental to grow if you live in New York or Boston, but we happen to have the ideal climate,” explains Reford. “Like Tibet, they are mysterious and magical.” Maybe that’s another reason they grow so well along the tumbling slopes of the Gaspé. l

Quebec City is a cosmopolitan exclamation point at the gateway to the sparsely inhabited, laidback Gaspé Peninsula.

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IF YOU GO Seasonal Canadian cuisine awaits at Restaurant Légende on Rue Saint-Paul. The menu consists of shareable dishes; diners can choose two to three per person for $15 to $24. 255 Saint-Paul St.; 418-614-2555; restaurantlegende. com

Stay in quaint and nostalgic surroundings at Gîte le Moulin Banal, which has three rooms, each with a queen bed, bathroom and ocean views. 156 West River Road; 418-7393076; gitemoulin banal.com

Get a complete outdoors experience at Forillon National Park. Take a stroll along the beach, go snorkeling or hiking or hop on a whale-watching cruise offered by Croisieres Baie de Gaspe Inc. (baleines-forillon. com) 1238 Boul de Forillon; 418-368-5505; pc.gc.ca/en/pn-np/ qc/forillon

JARDINS DE MÉTIS/REFORD GARDENS (2)

Making Circles in the Water by Gisèle Teyssier, in Reford Gardens


CANADA

Bellwoods Brewery

Toasting Toronto City’s growth boosts craft beer scene oronto’s downtown is booming — Today, Ontario is home to roughly 300 skyscrapers are multiplying and breweries, “with Toronto capturing a fair share of a steady influx of residents has that number,” says Les Murray, a 21-year veteran helped the of the Canadian beer industry. population BeerAdvocate, an online beer outgrow rating site, counts at least 30 ONTARIO that of Chicago. The city’s breweries in the city, many cultural diversity includes popping up in recent years. 200 ethnic groups who speak Despite the rapid growth, TORONTO a collective 140 languages; Murray characterizes the it has earned a distinction overall craft beer scene as still as one of the top 10 safest in its infancy. “There’s a lot major cities in the world; of room to grow, and a lot of and you can indulge in tasty great products that are finding culinary treats any time of an audience.” day or night from any one While Labatt, Molson and of hundreds of food trucks. It seems only fitting O’Keefe, three mass-produced Canadian brands, that Ontario’s capital also boasts a top-notch dominate shelves at Toronto’s beer stores and craft beer scene. Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO) outlets

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CELINE KIM PHOTOGRAPHY; MAP: MIRANDA PELLICANO

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BY JERRY SOVERINSKY


GETTY IMAGES

Whether you favor a pilsner, pale ale, wheat beer or something more experimental, there’s a neighborhood brewery producing flavorful craft offerings to try.

(along with grocery stores, which recently gained the right to sell beer), it’s the city’s craft breweries that are making the most headway among local and visiting beer aficionados. LCBO sales reveal that craft beer is its fastestgrowing segment, “growing anywhere from 20 to 30 percent per year,” according to Ontario Craft Brewers, an association of more than 80 makers. “Toronto has always been a mecca for beer,” says Murray. “The three big brewers were all based here, but in the last 15 years, it’s amazing to see the growth of the small (craft breweries).” Former owner and partner of Beerlicious, a company that organizes some of Canada’s largest beer sampling events, Murray also serves as president of Toronto’s Festival of Beer, an annual summer gathering that stretches back to 1996. Held at the city’s massive Exhibition Place, the fourday communal celebration serves more than 30,000 attendees samples from dozens of Canadian breweries, both established as well as newcomers. “We’re on an amazing ride,” says Murray. “You’ll find more than 100 producers who are putting

out more than 400 beers today.” All of which is great news for residents and travelers. Whether you favor a pilsner, pale ale, wheat beer or something more experimental, there’s a neighborhood brewery producing flavorful craft offerings to try. On your next visit to Toronto, check out these popular breweries: Steam Whistle (steamwhistle.ca), located in an old rail yard near the Rogers Centre, CN Tower, Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada and the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, makes just one beer — Steam Whistle Premium Pilsner — with a dedicated focus on continually refining what many locals feel is the best Euro-style pilsner. Public tours are given Monday through Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and 11:30 am. to 4 p.m. on Sundays; reservations are recommended. A complimentary taste of Steam Whistle is provided to all guests age 19 and older. With roots stretching back to 1986, Amsterdam Brewery (amsterdambeer. com) settled into an old shipyard building along

the city’s waterfront with a change of ownership in 2012. Amsterdam produces classic beers and seasonals, including Blonde Lager, its flagship brand; 3-Speed Lager, which is aged for 26 days; and Boneshaker IPA, a super-hoppy brew with hints of grapefruit and pine. A massive taproom and restaurant, Amsterdam BrewHouse, can accommodate 1,000 guests with a cavernous, 14,000-squarefoot interior and four outdoor patios. Tours are offered daily and require reservations. A second location, Amsterdam Barrel House, offers hourly tours daily from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Samples are included. In Toronto’s Trinity-Bellwoods neighborhood, a hipster pocket of bars, restaurants and boutiques, Bellwoods Brewery (bellwoodsbrewery. com) is a popular meeting spot for locals. Founded in 2012 in a converted garage, Bellwoods is equal parts brewpub and bottle shop, the latter a to-go kiosk where visitors can purchase beers and beer-branded merchandise. Bellwoods’ beer list is extensive and includes hoppy pale ales, IPAs, double IPAs, dry-hopped sours, barrel-aged imperial

Picky about beer? You’ll be able to find something for everyone — from a hoppy IPA to a robust stout — in one of Ontario’s 300 breweries.

stouts and farmhouse ales. Bellwoods offers a diverse menu of seasonal foods, prepared by a chef who favors local suppliers. Guided tastings are available at its Ossington brewpub on select weeknights from January to April with reservations. Left Field Brewery (leftfieldbrewery.ca) is a popular destination in Toronto’s Leslieville neighborhood, a gathering spot for the area’s young families and their dogs. (Yes, the brewery is dog-friendly.) Founded in 2013 by Mark and Mandie Murphy, the brewery produces more than 20 different beers each year. The Murphys brew American-style ales,

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including IPAs, pale ales, brown ales and kettle sours. Left Field pours eight beers on tap at the brewery, with tasting flights available. The brewery offers light snacks, and visitors are encouraged to bring or order in their favorite food to pair with the beer. Left Field Brewery offers $10 tours on Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m. In Toronto’s artsy Junction neighborhood, Indie Ale House Brewing Co. (indiealehouse.com) is making a name for itself among millennials and young families. Founded in 2012, Indie pursues an aggressive production

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Amsterdam BrewHouse

Steam Whistle Brewery

Left Field Brewery

Indie Ale House Brewery

schedule, brewing more than 100 beers to date. With a focus on brewing strong, flavorful beers — a good mix of IPAs, sours, farmhouse ales and Belgian-style beers — owner Jason Fisher says, “No lagers!” Tap offerings rotate frequently and are posted in its brewpub. Don’t overlook Indie’s traditional pub-style offerings, an assortment of high-quality fried chicken, burgers, pizza and more that pairs exceptionally well with its beers. Indie does not offer public tours, though visitors are encouraged to stop in its retail shop for IAHbranded merchandise and beers.

Located 15 minutes west of downtown Toronto in Etobicoke, Great Lakes Brewery (greatlakesbeer.com) was one of the metro area’s first craft breweries, founded in 1987. A taproom staff guides visitors through popular beer flights, pointing out flavor notes and brewing styles. Great Lakes produces a staggering number of beers each year — anywhere from 40 to 60. Its flagship offering, Canuck Pale Ale, is ubiquitous in LCBO outlets and many local taprooms. A new bottling line makes it impractical for Great Lakes to offer public tours, though a new outdoor patio more than compensates.

Great Lakes Brewery visitors can take a taste home with the popular growler refill program.

AMSTERDAM BREWHOUSE; STEAM WHISTLE BREWERY; LUCAS SCARFORNE/INDIE ALE HOUSE BREWERY; LEFT FIELD BREWERY; GREAT LAKES BREWERY; GETTY IMAGES

CANADA


BE YOUR OWN DARN TRAVEL GUIDE. Know how to make the most of your trip and be the best vacation-taker you can be! Plan the vacation that’s right for you.

Excite your travel bug. Download our free app.


VIKING RIVER CRUISES

EUROPE | CRU ISES

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Rolling on a River Explore Europe on a convenient, scenic cruise BY NANCY MONSON

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Viking cruise along the Douro River near Porto, Portugal

any people dream of visiting Europe, but feel overwhelmed deciding all of the travel arrangements — from booking planes, trains and cars to finding accommodations, restaurants and tours. Instead, consider a river cruise, which can allow you to experience Europe with a minimum of hassle. “River cruises are basically floating boutique hotels, so your hotel moves along with you as you explore the heart of Europe,” says Ralph Grizzle, founder of River Cruise Advisor. The advantage of a cruise as opposed to ground transportation is that you don’t have to lug your bags around from city to city: You unpack once, and all of your lodging, meals and transportation are taken care of by the cruise line. >

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Katz Castle in Germany and Viking’s Longship on the Rhine RIver

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VIKING RIVER CRUISES

EUROPE | CRU ISES


River cruises are basically floating boutique hotels, so your hotel moves along with you as you explore the heart of Europe." — RALPH GRIZZLE, FOUNDER OF RIVER CRUISE ADVISOR

DIRK VERWOERD/LIGHTHOUSE PRODUCTIONS; AMAWATERWAYS

Avalon Waterways Panorama suite

Rolling on a river also has advantages over ocean cruising. “River cruising exposes you to the heart of Europe, whereas ocean cruising exposes you to the fringes,” says Grizzle. “There are about half a dozen major rivers that cover a broad swath of Europe, so you can see and experience quite a lot.” You also won’t likely get seasick on a river cruise as you might while sailing on ocean waves. You can see the shore at all times, the ride is smooth and you often don’t even feel like you’re moving, although you might occasionally feel the boat bump into a lock. River cruises are all

BON VOYAGE These river cruising companies mostly host Americans. Visit their websites for answers to common questions: AmaWaterways 800-626-0126 amawaterways.com Avalon Waterways 877-797-8791 avalonwaterways.com Tauck 800-788-7885 tauck.com/rivercruises.aspx Uniworld 800-257-2407 uniworld.com Viking River Cruises vikingrivercruises.com 800-304-9616

AmaWaterways AmaPrima ship in Budapest, Hungary

about art, history and culture, and typically make one or two port stops a day. Many cruise lines include free sightseeing tours at all stops, as well as other special-interest excursions for additional fees. House wine, beers and sodas and free Wi-Fi are typically included in the base price. One major plus: Several lines cater to English-speaking clients, making travel to a foreign country less stressful. “Viking targets North Americans, so if you want to cruise with other Americans (and Canadians), Viking is a safe bet,” says Grizzle. He notes that AmaWaterways, Avalon Waterways, Tauck and Uniworld cast their nets wider, attracting international travelers, although the majority are American. The downsides of river cruising compared with ocean cruising are that your stateroom might be smaller, and you won’t have as many dining, entertainment, gym and spa options as are usually available on larger ships. (Many river ships do have bikes and kayaks you can use to explore at stops, however.) And you’ll likely be traveling with mature passengers: “Ages skew upward of 60 on nearly all river cruises,” says Grizzle. “If you’re younger, that doesn’t mean you won’t enjoy the experience. My son is 21, and he loves river cruising.” So if you’ve been thinking the time is right to take a big trip, consider exploring the Rhine, the Rhone, the Danube, the Douro or the Seine. The rivers of Europe await you. l

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BARBADOS June 2-Aug. 6

Barbadians have been commemorating its Crop Over Festival, which celebrates the final harvest of the sugar cane season since 1687. Bajan cultural heritage and carnival carpe diem fuse at Crop Over galas, boozy catamaran cruises and soca band battles. Folk concerts, art markets and culinary events are crowd pleasers. A Foreday Morning street party precedes the Grand Kadooment Day Parade of feathered, sequined and bejeweled masqueraders. visitbarbados.org/ crop-over-festival

CUBA

Carnival! Island cultures are front and center in Caribbean celebrations BY KIT BERNARDI

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issed out on February’s Fat Tuesday Mardis Gras fun? This summer, head to the Caribbean for vibrant carnivals celebrating the islands’ histories and cultures with rum-in-the-sun fetes, pageants, culinary events and rousing masquerade parades.

Santiago’s exotic blend of French-Haitian, Spanish, Moorish and African cultures is showcased in Carnival of Santiago de Cuba’s traditional dancers, colorful floats, bands and folkloric characters parading through twisting hillside streets flanked by Spanish Colonial-era buildings. The festival's origins date back to the 17th-century Fiestas de los Mamarrachos. Lively spectators nosh on tapas, peanut brittle bars and sip rum daiquiris. cubatravel.cu

BARBADOS TOURISM MARKETING INC.; MARGUERITE HORBERG; GETTY IMAGES

July 18-27


ANGUILLA Aug. 2-12

Commemorating the abolition of slavery in the British West Indies on Aug. 1, 1834, the Anguilla Summer Festival begin with fireworks. Crowds gather for calypso and soca band competitions and sailboat races, and starting before dawn, the J’ouvert street party bands play on floats. Celebrants wear elaborate, colorful and revealing costumes during The Grand Parade of Troupes. Fest foods

ANGUILLA TOURIST BOARD; BELIZE TOURISM BOARD; JEWEL SAMAD; BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS TOURISM BOARD; WAYNE MARIETTE

include sweet crayfish, curry goat and barbecue. whatwe doinanguilla.com/calendar/ anguilla-summer-festival

ANTIGUA July 27-Aug. 7

Started in 1957, Antigua Carnival celebrates emancipation from slavery with the Glow Parade of illuminated, cultural-themed floats and calypso and soca competitions. Partiers coated in mud, powder and paint dance dawn to dusk in Monday’s J’ouvert, followed by the Carnival Tuesday Parade of the Bands and flamboyant costumed dancers. Fest foods include sweet Antigua black pineapple, pepper pot stew and locally made rums. antiguacarnival.com

BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS

GRENADA

BELIZE

Aug. 13-14

Sept. 8

July 27-Aug. 10

For 60 years, the British Virgin Islands has commemorated its freedom from colonialism during the Emancipation Festival Celebrations held on Tortola. Horse races, car shows, food fairs, gospel events and folkloric presentations surround an all-star concert lineup. Join the Rise & Shine Tramp J’ouvert and fest finale Road March Champions parade of vibrantly costumed revelers.

Known as Spice Island in the Caribbean, Grenada calls its carnival Spicemas. Riotous fetes, party cruises, concerts and calypso and soca competitions lead up to the Dimanche Gras celebration, J’ouvert and Monday Night Masquerade. At Tuesday’s Parade of the Bands, swiveling dancers balance dazzling feathered headdresses, and marchers in traditional Short Knees costumes playfully sprinkle spectators with baby powder.

The Creole-themed Belize City Carnival is held on the island’s Independence Day. Body-painted partiers jive to calypso, soca and reggae during dawn’s J’ouvert. Costumed children lead the Carnival Road March of festooned floats pulled by dance troupes, donning beaded, fringed and plumaged ensembles and headdresses resembling giant birds and butterflies. Foods include tamales, meat pies, ceviche and conch fritters.

bvitourism.com

spicemasgrenada.com

belizecarnival.bz

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Hip Sips of San Juan Rum rules in Puerto Rico, but cocktail buffs will find more to love BY ALEXIS KORMAN

F

rom the hipster haven of Santurce to the bohemian beachfront neighborhood of Ocean Park, a surge of craft cocktail bars are reshaping the libation landscape in San Juan. Sure, it may be the home of the piña colada — the tropical tipple was purportedly invented either at the Caribe Hilton or at Barrachina bar in the 1950s — but Puerto Rico’s bar scene has been dramatically transformed. “We have a great history on (the) island for making Tiki drinks and classic and creative cocktails with rum,” says Timmy Ortega, the award-winning head bartender at San Juan’s La Concha Resort. “I think the bartending community is learning about all aspects of the industry today through seminars, competitions and mixing drinks. Using fresh fruits and preparing ingredients like homemade syrups, foams and air makes all the difference.” Love to imbibe? This Boricua-approved bar crawl hits all of San Juan’s hot spots, quenching your thirst for exotic, intoxicating drinks.

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GETTY IMAGES (2); LA CONCHA RESORT; VICTOR PAGÁN; LA FACTORIA

LOBBY AT LA CONCHA Hitting the oceanfront Condado neighborhood to shop and dine? Grab a drink in La Concha Resort’s open-air Lobby bar, delivering a glamorous setting to enjoy high-end sips

after the sun goes down. In addition to tropical cocktails such as the Passionate Summer, made with Ketel One vodka, ginger syrup and passion fruit juice, the resort’s Rum Revival experience encourages guests to learn about the island’s most popular spirit through Puerto Rican and international rum-tasting flights and Timmy Ortega’s signature rum drinks. Ortega often sets a concoction of rum, coffee and fresh juice on fire — fitting for a town with such a red-hot drink scene. u1077 Ashford Ave.; 787-721-7500; laconcharesort.com

JUNGLEBIRD This modern take on Tiki has a fun and sophisticated feel. Behind the bar’s front gate, guests find chic tropical décor, an in-house DJ and plenty of board games to play. Complex drinks get all dolled up with

Pinterest-worthy garnishes and are served in vintage glassware. The Pika Pika Mango is a tantalizing taste of smoky mezcal, spicy chipotle mango soda, lime and Angostura bitters. u254 Calle Canals; face book.com/junglebirdpr

LA FACTORÍA No drink pilgrimage to Puerto Rico is complete without a stop at this acclaimed Old San Juan watering hole. There’s no sign out front, but you won’t need one — just listen for music and the contented hum of cocktail lovers clinking glasses. Formerly known as Hijos de Borinquen, it once served as a gathering place for intellectuals and artistic types. Today, it’s a go-to for its excellent ambiance, charming bartenders and thoughtfully crafted drinks. Must-orders include a spiced Old-Fashioned with Don Q Gran Añejo rum and bitters and Murphy’s Surfer Calavera, with gold and white rums, pineapple shrub and tamarind. Wine lovers shouldn’t miss Vino, a wine speakeasy in back boasting wine-based cocktails and a rotating selection of by-the-glass picks. u148 Calle San Sebastián; facebook.com/lafactoriapr

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CARIBBEAN | PU ERTO R ICO

LA COCTELERA Amble through the Calle Loíza community in laid-back Ocean Park to discover under-the-radar bars and restaurants like La Coctelera, just a short drive from Old San Juan.

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While away a few hours tasting through toothsome snacks and signature sips — you’ll find gastropubinspired bites like chicken and waffles and beef tartar alongside creative, fruit-infused drinks. Try the Que Mamey, with cacao sourced from Ponce and mamey sapote (a fruit found exclusively in Latin America and the Caribbean) mixed with bourbon, mint and lime. Don’t leave without ordering a Tesla — the vodka, limoncello and Genever drink arrives at your table in a lightbulb. u1857 Calle Loíza; 787-946-4599; facebook. com/lacoctelerapr

CANECA AT LOTE 23 At Lote 23, the muralfilled outdoor food hall

in buzzy Santurce, local vendors sell an array of options, including doughnuts, pizza and vegan tacos. La Factoría owners Leslie Cofresí and Roberto Berdecía also opened a high-end cocktail bar, Caneca, out of a retro Airstream trailer with winning results — the mobile cocktail concept serves adult slushies, cocktails on tap and sophisticated drinks like the Speyside Apple Cooler, made with Scotch whisky, apple juice, chai soda and nutmeg. u1552 Avenida Ponce de León; facebook.com/ canecacocteleriamovil

RAFAEL N. RUIZ MEDEROS; CANECA COCTELERIA MOVIL; LA COCTELERA

COCINA ABIERTA Snag a seat at this modern bar or claim a table on the outdoor terrace to take in an island sunset with a drink in hand — all syrups, bitters and infusions for the inventive cocktail program are house-made, giving the drink list a truly local edge. Check the blackboard for special sips: It highlights new and seasonal libations like the Sandía en Londres, a potent mix of Tanqueray gin, cucumber soda, fresh lemon and refreshing watermelon juice. u58 Calle Caribe; 787-946-1333; cocinaabierta.net


Symphony of the Seas Royal Caribbean boasts world’s largest cruise ship BY GENE SLOAN

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t’s official: There’s a new world’s largest cruise ship. Weighing in at 228,081 tons, 18 decks high (238 feet) and 1,188 feet long, Royal Caribbean International’s Symphony of the Seas set sail on its maiden voyage in April. Designed for vacationers who love big, bustling megaresorts, Symphony was built on the same platform as Royal

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Caribbean’s 2-year-old Harmony of the Seas, the previous size leader in cruising. But it eclipses its sibling by more than 1,000 tons and offers several new features. Symphony boasts 2,759 cabins — the most ever put on a cruise ship. Broken up into more than 30 categories, they include lower priced windowless “interior” rooms that measure 149 square feet to the more expensive two-deckhigh family suite with a slide between floors. The ship has room for 6,680 passengers at full capacity. Add in a crew of 2,200, and on busy weeks, nearly 9,000 people are on board. What is it about giant cruise ships that makes them so appealing to so many vacationers? Royal Caribbean International president and CEO Michael Bayley, a longtime cruise industry executive, says there’s something about the energy created on a giant vessel with thousands of people looking for fun that makes it irresistible. Like the megaresorts of Las Vegas or Orlando, today’s megaships have become destinations unto themselves with more attractions, shows, restaurants and nightspots than you could possibly experience in a typical weeklong getaway. Symphony’s outdoor decks feature three separate pool zones, a trio of water slides, two surf simulators, a miniature golf course, rock climbing walls and more. Inside

ROYAL CARIBBEAN INTERNATIONAL

CRUISES


ROYAL CARIBBEAN INTERNATIONAL; GENE SLOANE (2)

there are nearly two dozen restaurants and snack outlets (including the line’s first dedicated seafood restaurant, Hooked Seafood), multiple bars, a comedy club, jazz club, an expansive theater that houses a full-size production of Broadway’s Hairspray and even an ice rink. “Symphony will take family vacationing to an all new level with energy and options never before found in one place,” Bayley said before the vessel’s maiden voyage. “This ship is the perfect blend of our greatest hits we know guests love and a lineup of vibrant, new restaurants, activities and unparalleled entertainment — all purposefully designed around vacationers’ preferences.” The enormous choice of activities on the new crop of mega-ships is key to their allure. Just ask frequent cruiser and big ship fan Jessalynn Strauss of Elon, N.C. “We had eight sea days, and we never ran short of things to do,” says the college professor and part-time travel blogger (thenerdytraveler.com) of her first sailing on one of Royal Caribbean’s biggest ships. “It was almost like we’d moved to a new city.” Royal Caribbean isn’t alone in going big in recent years. Rivals MSC Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line and Carnival Cruise Line have also been rolling out their biggest ships ever. However, Symphony isn’t just bigger; it’s faster, too. Royal Caribbean captain Rob Hempstead says small design changes to Symphony’s hull, including an improved air bubble lubrication system, will make the ship cut through the water better than Harmony of the Seas. “She’s cleaner in the water.

She makes less wave action, which allows her to be more efficient through the water,” he says. “So she’s a little faster with the same power.” Hempstead adds that Symphony also features several other small technological improvements that will make it handle better in the water. The bow thrusters, for instance, have a slightly different shape that will improve handling, and new electronic programs will aid navigation. Symphony, the 25th ship in Royal Caribbean’s fleet, has spent its first few months sailing in the Mediterranean out of Barcelona before it moves to Miami to operate cruises to the Caribbean, beginning in the fall.

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Bold and Beautiful Annual bridge leap in picturesque West Virginia excites the intrepid BY ADAM SYLVAIN

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C

ascading through deep canyons in the heart of West Virginia’s old coal region, the New River Gorge National River (nps.gov/neri) offers outdoor enthusiasts whitewater rapids, as well as numerous mountain biking and hiking trails. But there’s one activity in particular the area offers that beckons adrenaline-seeking adventurers. For one day each fall, known as Bridge Day, the New River Gorge Bridge — the third-highest

overpass in the U.S. — provides a rare spectacle as parachutepacking thrill-seekers leap from the span 876 feet above the river. “On the third Saturday in October, we close down the bridge for BASE jumping,” says Eve West, district interpreter for the park service. This year, the event takes place Oct. 20. Despite its name, the New River is believed to be among the oldest rivers on the continent, and its 320-mile course offers pristine views of the mountain region and plenty of thrills at every turn. Fifty-three of those miles are the New River Gorge National River, a unit of the National Park Service. Sam Deal has spent summers working as a mountain bike guide in the area and says it’s difficult to find a national park that offers as much recreational diversity. “I’d say the mountain biking and whitewater rafting are some of the best in the world,” he says, adding that the adjacent Gauley River and nearby Summersville Lake build on the variety of outdoor activities available in the region. If bridge jumping and tackling whitewater rapids are a bit ambitious for you, there is no shortage of opportunities to engage with the area’s natural beauty and rich history. “It offers the high-challenge sports, but it also offers a lot for those interested in bird-watching and hiking as well,” West says. Beckley, W.Va., just a short drive south of the river, features an exhibition coal mine where visitors can get a close-up view of what life was like for miners in the late 19th century. And nearby Fayetteville, often called America’s Coolest Small Town, is lined with quaint shops and restaurants. As West notes, “if you like lots of stuff, you came to the right spot.”

MATT SANCHEZ

ONE FOR THE ROAD


VISIT Mt. St. Helens

A Mountain of It’s never too late to make memories that last a lifetime...

www.visitmtsthelens.com

Hiking - Biking - Golfing - Climbing - Rafting - Snow Shoeing - Fishing - Kayaking - Hunting - Ziplining - Boating Helicopter Tours - Eco Adventure - Camping - Brew & Wine Tours


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GO ESCAPE SUMMER 2018  

GO ESCAPE SUMMER 2018