Providence

The summertime beach vacation is a much-awaited annual tradition for many. As soon as the weather turns warm, families, couples, and singles alike, flock to shorelines near and far.  Don’t get us wrong — the beach will always hold a special place in our hearts. But when sandy toes and sunburn get to be too much, here are ten great alternatives to the typical beach getaway.

1. Bluffton, South Carolina 

Situated along the May River and bursting with Southern charm, Bluffton might make you feel as though you’ve been transported into a Nicholas Sparks novel. It’s part of a peaceful, beautiful region along the South Carolina coast known as Carolina Lowcountry, where salty marshes meet mossy forests. The Palmetto Bluff real estate development features a small, picturesque village, private homes, an 18-hole golf course, numerous recreation facilities, and a beautiful hotel.

Where to Stay: The Inn at Palmetto Bluff

Stay at the beautiful hotel, of course! The Inn at Palmetto Bluff provides the ultimate Coastal Carolina retreat with all the trimmings…think wrap around porches, rocking chairs, and tons of Spanish moss.  After your first leisurely stroll along historic River Road, you’ll think a quiet winding river really may be better than a packed sandy beach.

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Memorial Day weekend is just around the corner, and with it comes the official kick-off of the summer season. When next Friday hits, thousands of beach-bound celebrators will clog the highways on their way to sun and surf. But while we love a good beach day just as much as the next patriot, this Memorial Day we’re excited to try something inland. Join us in avoiding the crowds, uncovering new corners of America, and – of course – honoring our soldiers, with parades, festivals, and much more at these ten locales not on the beach.

1. Washington, D.C.

If you want to go hardcore patriotic, there really isn’t any place better to be this Memorial Day than Washington, D.C. In addition to a variety of military ceremonies taking place around town, visitors can also attend the National Parade or the Rolling Thunder Motorcycle Rally (nothing like the wind in your hair, right?!). Or visitors can also opt to simply stroll through Washington’s many amazing monuments — during the day or at night — and sample some of D.C.’s delicious culinary offerings.

STAY: The gorgeous, 317-room W Washington D.C. blends the new — fusion cuisine from Jean-Georges Vongerichten; a great spa and gym; Whatever/Whenever service — with the old — the property’s historic Beaux Arts building dates back to 1917. Plus, you can see the Washington Monument from the hotel’s hip rooftop lounge, POV, making celebrating in style easy.
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Manhattan's Columbus Day Parade dances its way down 5th Avenue. Photo credit: Asterix611/Flickr

We all know the rhyme (or you really should): In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue — and people have been celebrating his discovery of the “New World” ever since. But no one showers the famed Genovese explorer with more praise than his Italian compatriots. From coast to coast, Italians celebrate their rich heritage, vibrant culture, and noteworthy achievements (chief among those being the conviction that the world is not, in fact, flat) on Columbus Day with parades, music, and feasts. And the bastions of Italian culture — America’s Little Italys — are the sites of some of our favorite festivities and traditions. We’ve picked out the best places to march and mangia in these old-world enclaves, as well as our favorite spots to bed up for the night after indulging in plenty of pasta, pastries, and vino. Cent’anni! Read More »

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Gone are the barbeques and beaches of summer, and in are the crisp air, pumpkin spices, and crunching leaves of fall. (Not that we’re complaining — our hair looks way better now.) Now that autumn is on the verge of its commencement, we’re ready to drive up to New England to wander around and soak in the vibrant folliage. But to take the trouble out of where to go, we’ve found the best locales  in the region for “leaf peepers,” as they are known, to explore the lush outdoors and curl up with some apple cider after with a loved one.

Visit: Providence, Rhode Island

The Christopher Dodge House has plenty of seasonal treats for Providence’s fall guests

Stay: Christopher Dodge House

As one of New England’s most populated cities, Providence still has small town charm with its big city draws. Though the Rhode Island capital boasts its share of fine dining and high-end boutiques, Providence is the quintessential getaway for leaf peepers, filled with rolling, tree-lined walkways and lush park gardens. For the best view of the changing leaves, the Christopher Doge House sits in a residential neighborhood on the outskirts of town, and is still just a short walk from neighboring green spaces like Roger Williams Park. After exploring the golden outdoors, guests can head back to the B&B and relax with a cup of hot tea and cookies around their in-room fireplaces, all before the early sun starts to set. Read More »

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