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The 15 Best Places in the USA for Solo Travelers

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The 15 Best Places in the USA for Solo TravelersPin me!

The USA is gorgeous, from sea to shining sea. I love being from such a huge and varied country with all kinds of different landscapes, cultures, and things to see. If I spent my lifetime never leaving the States and only exploring my own backyard, I’d have so much variety it would still feel like I’d traveled far and wide.

It’s incredible that in one country you can get some of the highest mountain tops, tropical beaches in Hawaii and glaciers in Alaska, plus rocky and warm deserts with some of the most breathtaking rock formations on planet Earth.

So for those who want to test out solo traveling at home before they go abroad, or if you’re from elsewhere and want to see what the US has to offer to solo travelers, you’ve made a great choice. But with so many options, you might be wondering where to start. For a visual tour, watch the video below, or keep reading for an explanation of each below:

These are some of my favorites in the USA, plus the advice of several other solo female travelers to get you started:

1. Alabama Hills, California

alabama hills sunrisealabama hills sunriseJust amazing

The Alabama Hills is an area of BLM land, meaning it’s owned by the public, with arches, beautiful views of the Eastern Sierras, and lots of Hollywood history. I did a solo road trip here and enjoyed every minute of it. If you are a photography lover, the Alabama Hills has plenty of photogenic stops, including the popular Movie Road as pictured above, Mobius Arch (go at sunset!), Boot Arch, and Miss Alabama herself.

As a solo traveler, you’ll get lots of solitude in the Alabama Hills and the other deserts on my California deserts road trip, which I personally loved. This is one of the beautiful things about traveling in this part of the world – all the wide open spaces and the spiritual vibe. Plus, you can’t beat the stargazing or the sunsets!

2. Page, Arizona

arizona itineraryarizona itineraryMind-blowing

Page is the jumping-off point for several of Arizona’s most beautiful places. I was blown away by Horseshoe Bend and of course the famous Antelope Canyon in particular. Since this part of the world attracts so many travelers, I found it easy to have conversations with others who were free camping with me, and even made a friend when I ventured to the paid campsites for a shower (but not in the shower itself, it was in the parking lot later, I swear).

The 15 Best Places in the USA for Solo TravelersThe 15 Best Places in the USA for Solo Travelers

If you’re considering which of the two canyons to visit I did a comparison of Lower and Upper here, though both are worth checking out for different reasons!

3. San Francisco, California

best places in USA for solo travelbest places in USA for solo travelAt Baker Beach

Whenever people who aren’t from the state visit California, almost everyone ends up falling in love with San Francisco. As a native Southern Californian it’s in my DNA to roll my eyes and find this offensive but deep down, I silently agree. The Bay Area in general is beautiful, temperate, and has a unique culture. My European friends often say it has a charm that reminds them of home.

I love it for the ease of getting around on the BART system, how small and contained the city itself is, how picturesque, and how multicultural it is. Try a yoga or meditation class, head there during Pride or Outside Lands music festival, and see some live music. It’s the perfect place to jump off from or end up in when on a road trip along the Pacific Coast Highway too!

Book your stay in San Francisco here, or check this mushroom dome on Airbnb out!

4. Bayfield, Wisconsin

best places in USA for solo travelbest places in USA for solo travelApostle Islands sailing – what a dream

Midwesterners are known for being friendly and they lived up to their reputation when I visited Bayfield, Wisconsin. It’s an artsy town with outgoing people, and it is small enough that it feels intimate yet big enough that there is plenty to do. Join a kayaking trip, a boat trip, or take a drive around to the various orchards.

There are plenty of beaches and quirky hangouts as well. If you love camping, there’s plenty of that and if you visit in the winter, the famous caves ice over, which looks incredible. If you’re into photography and the outdoors, then you will absolutely love this little town on Lake Superior, the jumping-off point for the Apostle Islands.

Book your stay in Bayfield here, or spend a night on a sailboat!

5. Moab, Utah

capitol reefcapitol reefA great spot to meet fellow adventurous female travelers

Moab is a mecca for outdoor enthusiasts. For those all about the camper van life, bouldering, hiking, and kayaking, Moab has it all going on. It’s where you’ll find Canyonlands and Arches National Parks as well as Dead Horse Point State Park. Basically it’s one of the most gorgeous areas on Earth with a high concentration of incredible rock formations and free campsites.

I easily met people just by hanging around the free campsites, the coffee shops, and while watching the sunset over Dead Horse Point during my solo American Southwest road trip. I tend to find that when a place attracts people because of common shared interest, especially something outdoorsy, it tends to be social. Moab is a perfect example of that.

Book your stay in Moab here, or check out this awesome Airbnb with 600+ 5-star ratings!

6. Big Sur, California

mcway fallsmcway fallsBig Sur’s most famous feature, McWay Falls

I’ve looked on every continent and I still haven’t found anywhere as beautiful or majestic as Big Sur on the central coast in California. Though it’s had its fair share of disasters lately, when accessible, McWay Falls in Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park is one of the dreamiest waterfalls I’ve seen.

Big Sur is a fantastic place to unwind. If you want to meet others, the campsites can be pretty social. However when I’m out there, I find the best companions are the dolphins and whales jumping out of the water, the squirrels and deer on the trail, and the gorgeous Pacific Ocean. For more on my favorite state and national parks in California, check out my musings on Alamo’s Scenic Route.

Book your stay in Big Sur here, or stay in a yurt!

7. Squaw Valley, California

best places in USA for solo travelbest places in USA for solo travelBeautiful view from KT-22 at Squaw

“My go-to solo trip destination is Squaw Valley. During the winter, Squaw offers amble skiable terrain that is safe to navigate solo, in addition to a wide array of yoga classes and spa services perfect for wrapping up a long day of solo skiing or boarding.

best places in USA for solo travelbest places in USA for solo travelBailey at Squaw

The variety of restaurants at Squaw also cater to the solo female travel with many offering small intimate booths where you can curl up with a book and hot toddy while waiting for your meal. When the snow has melted, Squaw is still my favorite solo trip destination as it offers dozens of miles of hiking and mountain biking trails. For those who don’t feel comfortable hiking or biking on their own, there are multiple companies who offer guided tours.” – Bailey of Feng Shui Mommy

Book your stay in Squaw Valley here!

8. Las Vegas, Nevada

The 15 Best Places in the USA for Solo TravelersThe 15 Best Places in the USA for Solo TravelersVegas, baby!

Las Vegas wouldn’t have been the first place that I would have expected to be awesome alone, but with so much to do, it’s actually perfect!

According to Noni, “I’ve traveled in North America by myself and I’ve never enjoyed anything more than Las Vegas!! I’m not American and didn’t expect much before, but when I arrived I knew it was so much better than any other location in Northern America!

best places in USA for solo travelbest places in USA for solo travelNoni in Vegas

It’s very easy to meet people, everybody’s in a good mood and very open to meeting new people, there’s a bus that’s very popular and goes every couple of minutes which makes traveling easy and there’s so much to do, from cinemas and clubs to bowling and casino’s – Las Vegas is definitely my favorite place to travel as a female solo traveler!” – Noni of Noni May

Book your stay in Las Vegas here!

9. New Orleans, Louisiana

solo female travel in new orleans - Taken at Royal and Dumaine street in the French Quartersolo female travel in new orleans - Taken at Royal and Dumaine street in the French QuarterGetting cheered on while taking selfie in front of the French Quarter

“I believe New Orleans is a perfect place for solo female travelers to visit. I have traveled there on my own and loved it. The city may be known for Bourbon Street and Mardi Gras, but there is a fascinating and rich cultural history to discover over a long weekend. There’s something for everyone in NOLA. For starters, I suggest staying in a boutique hotel on Royal Street, right near the allegedly haunted LaLaurie Mansion. While you’re there, tour cemeteries in the Garden District and the French Quarter, and sample the town’s famous beignets, po’ boys, and beverages.

The 15 Best Places in the USA for Solo Travelers

The 15 Best Places in the USA for Solo TravelersEntertainment is plentiful and ranges from low key to raging parties. Learn about the dueling reign and lingering influence of France and Spain, or the city’s centuries-long history of voodoo and witchcraft. Or join the revelers in the Fruit Loop for a round of Hand Grenades. You’re sure to find exactly what you’re in the mood for and stay within your budget, too.

New Orleans is a large city, but easy to navigate on foot or by streetcar and bus. I never felt unsafe as a solo traveler because the streets are always bustling with tourists and locals, although it’s smart to practice precautions appropriate for travel in any big city.”  – Brittany of She Goes With Purpose.

Book your stay in New Orleans here. Airbnb has a bunch of great options, too.

10. Maui, Hawaii

The 15 Best Places in the USA for Solo TravelersThe 15 Best Places in the USA for Solo TravelersRoad to Hana – unmissable

I forgive you if you don’t think of Hawaii when you think of great places to travel solo, and I wouldn’t have either until I actually went to Maui alone last year. It was fantastic! There was so much to do, from a women’s surf school, to driving the Road to Hana, and joining snorkeling trips.

I thought I would be surrounded by honeymooners but I actually found that people were very outgoing and friendly, coupled off or not. I highly recommend Maui solo, much to my surprise!

Book your stay in Maui here, or check this adorable cottage out!

11. The Big Island of Hawaii

The 15 Best Places in the USA for Solo TravelersThe 15 Best Places in the USA for Solo TravelersA gorgeous Airbnb – you can find so many of them on the Big Island!

“The Big Island of Hawaii is one of the best places for adventurous solo female travelers to visit. With volcanoes, world-class dive sites, interesting beaches, and miles of hiking trails, any girl with a penchant for the unexplored can never get bored. Solo travelers will love watching lava bubble at the top of Mauna Loa, snorkeling in Honaunau Bay, and visiting Uncle Robert’s night market — an eclectic market that serves fresh food and sells handmade clothing, beauty products, and decor.

best places in USA for solo travelbest places in USA for solo travelChantae doing her thing!

It’s easy to meet friends through activities, at the beach, and by going on day tours. The island is easy to navigate with a rental car as there is one main road that circles around the entire island. Most people consider going to the more tourist-heavy islands like Oahu, but the Big Island is an underrated spot that is well worth the trek over.” – Chantae of The Salt Sirens

Book your stay in The Big Island here, or consider staying in a real treehouse (!).

Read: The perfect Hawaii Big Island itinerary, the best beaches on the Big Island of Hawaii, 25 amazing things to do on the Big Island of Hawaii

12. Seattle, Washington

The 15 Best Places in the USA for Solo TravelersThe 15 Best Places in the USA for Solo TravelersView for days

“Traveling solo in Seattle is great because it offers such a variety of activities that you can enjoy some solitude or plant yourself in an area teeming with activity (or even do both easily on the same day). Seattle offers neighborhoods with distinct character, food from any culture you can imagine, fantastic museums, and gorgeous public parks.

best places in USA for solo travelbest places in USA for solo travelRobin and Ava canoeing!

A highlight of any trip to Seattle was experiencing the exceptionally talented local musicians that perform throughout the city on most nights. Jazz, experimental, rock, punk, metal, baroque, blues, hip-hop ­– all there waiting for you. Public transit can get you most places during the day and taxis/ride-shares are readily available for late night adventures. It is very common for people to dine solo or listen to live music by themselves in Seattle, so no need to hesitate or feel awkward. Also, if you have heard of the “Seattle Freeze” don’t worry locals are actually friendly and helpful once you start the conversation. But no umbrellas please!” – Robin

Book your stay in Seattle here. There are many great options on Airbnb, too!

13. Cape Cod, Massachusetts

The 15 Best Places in the USA for Solo TravelersThe 15 Best Places in the USA for Solo TravelersCape Cod is for sunset lovers

“Cape Cod is known as the tail of Massachusetts and a family-friendly beach destination in New England, but it’s also very well suited to solo female travelers. Why? Because it’s extremely safe, easy to get around, and downright beautiful. The Cape is just over an hour’s drive from Boston or Providence. You’ll definitely want to have a car so that you can freely explore its beautiful beaches. The ocean beaches are all lined with epic sand dunes, while the bay beaches host the most stunning sunsets (if you’re lucky enough to catch one at low tide, wow – the reflections off the puddles in the sand flats are something else!).

best places in USA for solo travelbest places in USA for solo travelLindsay in Cape Cod

Outdoor adventurers should tackle the Cape Cod Rail Trail, which runs for 25 miles from Dennis to Wellfleet. There are outposts all along the trail where you can rent a bike and cycle past cranberry bogs, marshes, and lakes. Or for slightly less-active adventures, hit up Wellfleet for the weekend flea market and drive-in movies, gay-friendly Provincetown for shopping and nightlife, and just about any restaurant for the Cape’s legendary clam chowder.” – Lindsay of Frugal Frolicker

Book your stay in Cape Cod here, or look for an Airbnb!

14. Minneapolis, Minnesota

best places in USA for solo travelbest places in USA for solo travelPretty, pretty Minneapolis

“I call Minneapolis the Stockholm of the Midwest. It’s filled with Swedish-Americans, gets very cold in winter (colder than Stockholm, actually), and has many opportunities to enjoy the fine arts.

best places in USA for solo travelbest places in USA for solo travelHayley in Minneapolis

“For a solo female traveler, it’s a perfect big city to visit. It’s safe to wander around, has beautiful architecture and natural vistas, provides great bike paths, and features plenty of fun shops like cafes and stationary boutiques.

When it comes to the outdoors, in the summertime it’s wonderful to explore all the green space and the hundreds of lakes nearby. And in the winter you have plenty of opportunities to go ice skating, skiing/snowboarding, and snowshoeing. No matter the time of year, Minneapolis has plenty on the calendar for you to enjoy.” – Hayley of International Hotdish

Book your stay in Minneapolis here, or look for an Airbnb!

15. Sun Valley, Idaho

best places in USA for solo travelbest places in USA for solo travel

Idaho really must be one of the most beautiful states in the wintertime. I celebrated New Year’s there last year and I just loved the welcoming and friendly vibe.

Sun Valley is a quaint town with fantastic skiing, snowshoeing, naturally occurring hot springs, and locals who are more than happy to have a conversation with visitors and newcomers. Idaho is so underrated! If you want to venture outside of Sun Valley, there are tons of amazing hot springs to check out. You can find my itinerary here.

Book your stay in Idaho here, or stay in a cozy, heated treehouse!

best places in USA for solo travelbest places in USA for solo travel

Though the USA is huge, and no list could ever do the wealth of places to see and experience justice, these are a few of our favorites. I hope this list helped you to get a sense of where to start, or continue, your solo journey.

If you have some favorite solo spots to share, please tell me in the comments below!

The 15 Best Places in the USA for Solo TravelersThe 15 Best Places in the USA for Solo Travelers

*This post was brought to you in partnership with Alamo Rent A Car. All thoughts on the best places to travel solo in the USA belong to their respective authors. 

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10 places in the US you need to visit in 2020

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  • We looked across the US to find destinations for 2020 that are either up-and-coming, or classics experiencing a renaissance.
  • Milwaukee, Wisconsin, saw a 729% year-over-year increase in rentals and was dubbed the world’s hottest new travel destination in 2020 by Airbnb.
  • Boise, Idaho, has been called the best place for millennials to live in the US, and is becoming a destination to be reckoned with.
  • Post-Hurricane Maria recovery efforts in San Juan, Puerto Rico, have brought with them new hotels, splashy renovations, and more flights.
  • Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

It’s an age-old question: Where should I go?

The answer is probably somewhere hip, with cool hotels, good food, and plenty to do, and not anywhere overpriced or overrun with other tourists.

We looked across the US to find destinations that fit this bill, based on chatter we’ve been hearing, people moving en masse, rankings from other publications, and exploding food scenes. We found up-and-coming hot spots, old classics experiencing a renaissance, places in the midst of reinvention, and cities that are still flying under the radar.

From Milwaukee, Wisconsin, to San Juan, Puerto Rico, here’s our pick of 10 places in the US to visit in 2020.

I’ll be visiting these cities in 2020 to report back on what’s worth your time in each one. Do you live in any of these places? Email me your recommendations on what to see, eat, and do at [email protected]

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This Map Shows the Ultimate U.S. Road Trip

Bryce Canyon

The concept of a road trip is as American as apple pie, and yet, devising the “best” U.S. driving route is a bit of a head scratcher. Much depends on time parameters, personal preference, and frankly, how long you want to spend behind the wheel.

Tracy Staedter at Discovery News decided to take on that challenge, enlisting Randy Olson—Michigan State University doctoral student and the man behind the famed (and super helpful) Where’s Waldo algorithm—to devise what you might call the platonic ideal of the United States road trip. The parameters were: It had to hit all of the 48 continental states, every stop had to be a National Natural Landmark, a National Historic Site, a National Park, or a National Monument, and of course, had to be confined to car travel and within U.S. borders.

With a stop in Washington D.C. and two in California, the result is 50 points of all American awesomenesss.

Here are the destinations:

1. Grand Canyon, AZ
2. Bryce Canyon National Park, UT
3. Craters of the Moon, ID
4. Yellowstone National Park, WY
5. Pikes Peak, CO
6. Carlsbad Caverns National Park, NM
7. The Alamo, TX
8. The Platt Historic District, OK
9. Toltec Mounds, AR
10. Elvis Presley’s Graceland, TN
11. Vicksburg National Military Park, MS
12. French Quarter, LA
13. USS Alabama, AL
14. Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, FL
15. Okefenokee Swamp Park, GA
16. Fort Sumter National Monument, SC
17. Lost World Caverns, WV
18. Wright Brothers National Memorial Visitor Center, NC
19. Mount Vernon, VA
20. White House, Washington, D.C.
21. Colonial Annapolis Historic District, MD
22. New Castle Historic District, DE
23. Cape May Historic District, NJ
24. Liberty Bell, PA
25. Statue of Liberty, NY
26. The Mark Twain House & Museum, CT
27. The Breakers, RI
28. USS Constitution, MA
29. Acadia National Park, ME
30. Mount Washington Hotel, NH
31. Shelburne Farms, VT
32. Fox Theater, MI
33. Spring Grove Cemetery, OH
34. Mammoth Cave National Park, KY
35. West Baden Springs Hotel, IN
36. Abraham Lincoln’s Home, IL
37. Gateway Arch, MO
38. C. W. Parker Carousel Museum, KS
39. Terrace Hill Governor’s Mansion, IA
40. Taliesin, WI
41. Fort Snelling, MN
42. Ashfall Fossil Bed, NE
43. Mount Rushmore, SD
44. Fort Union Trading Post, ND
45. Glacier National Park, MT
46. Hanford Site, WA
47. Columbia River Highway, OR
48. San Francisco Cable Cars, CA
49. San Andreas Fault, CA
50. Hoover Dam, NV

That list starts with the Grand Canyon, but you could theoretically begin anywhere as long as you drive in sequence after that. Staedter guesses it would take a little over nine days of driving straight through, but more realistically is a two- or three-month trip.

For the nitty gritty on how he came up with the route, check out Olson’s blog. After determining the stops, the main goal of the algorithm was to find the shortest distance between points.

Olson wrote to Staedter: “Instead of exhaustively looking at every possible solution, genetic algorithms start with a handful of random solutions and continually tinker with these solutions — always trying something slightly different from the current solution and keeping the best one — until they can’t find a better solution any more.”

And whether or not you understand the specifics of how it was created, the map is truly a marvel and the kind of itinerary you’ll probably spend all winter dreaming about. See the full, interactive map here, and for additional #travelgoals, check out Olson’s road trip maps for U.S. cities and Europe.

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15 Best U.S. Resorts for Fall Getaways

Aspen

blantyre

Courtesy of Primland

As we head into the heart of the fall season, there’s no better way to celebrate the changing of the seasons than to escape into nature. Fortunately, many of the country’s best resorts cater to leaf peepers with special tours and programs that allow guests to enjoy awe-inspiring views and the crisp autumn air. Whether you’re looking for guided fall foliage hikes, off-road Jeep excursions, or nightly bonfires, you’ll find perfect fall activities at one of these top resorts in the U.S.

By Zachary Laks

crystal mountain

Courtesy of Resort at Squaw Creek

Resort at Squaw Creek

WHERE: Olympic Valley, California

The valleys of Squaw Creek explode with autumnal colors every fall. In September and October, the plush rooms at the Resort at Squaw Creek provide scenic vistas of the surrounding mountain peaks, blanketed in nearly every shade of yellow and orange. Hiking mountain trails, fly fishing, and biking along the scenic Truckee River are just a few of the resort’s activities. For the best in fall fun, check out the resort’s annual Harvest Festival (October 16–18); there will be hard cider tastings, s’mores, wine tastings, and a pumpkin judging contest.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor’s Lake Tahoe Travel Guide

Door County

Courtesy of Salish Lodge & Spa

Salish Lodge & Spa

WHERE: Snoqualmie, Washington

Perched at the top of Snoqualmie Falls, Salish Lodge & Spa, a luxury retreat thirty minutes outside of Seattle, offers a whirlwind of outdoor activity in the fall. Whether it’s a hike through the Cascade Mountains to discover the alpine lakes and waterfalls, or a round of golf on one of the six local courses—including TPC Snoqualmie Ridge, the Northwest’s only Jack Nicklaus–designed course—there’s no shortage of ways to enjoy the changing of the seasons here.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor’s Seattle Travel Guide

laser

Courtesy of Blantyre

Blantyre

WHERE: Lenox, Massachusetts

Retire to the lush countryside of the Berkshires, where Blantyre, a stately resort steeped in classic Tudor style welcomes guests to its 117 acres of lush fall foliage. During fall, the Blantyre becomes a destination for leaf peepers seeking solace and luxury in a country manor. Take a stroll through the grounds and nearby October Mountain State Forest to best admire the breathtaking autumn views.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor’s Berkshires Travel Guide

Madeline Hotel

Courtesy of The White Gull Inn

The White Gull Inn

WHERE: Fish Creek, Wisconsin

As the cool breezes of fall permeate the air, Wisconsin’s Door County shakes off its summertime crowds and returns to being an easygoing Midwestern destination. For the most traditional accommodation in the area, book a stay at The White Gull Inn, a local favorite that’s been open since 1896. The orange and yellow trees that surround the bayside inn set the scene, and days are spent exploring the quaint town’s boutiques and art shops before heading to nearby orchards for apple picking and freshly made pie. When you arrive at the inn, be sure to make a reservation for the fish boil, a long-standing traditional meal of freshly caught Lake Michigan fish, prepared during a live demonstration.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor’s Door County Travel Guide

Neno Zhekov/Madeline Hotel

Courtesy of The Lodge at Woodloch

The Lodge at Woodloch

WHERE: Hawley, Pennsylvania

A Poconos resort removed from the more commercial mega-resorts that have recently entered the region, The Lodge at Woodloch was built with the fall season in mind. Complete with 57 luxury accommodations and a 40,000-square-foot spa, The Lodge at Woodloch specializes in wellness and relaxation. Start the morning with an outdoor yoga class and then join one of the resort’s guided nature walks, including the unique Edible Plant Walk through its 150 wooded acres. Next up is an afternoon in the company of renowned chefs for demonstrations and cooking classes. With endless places to enjoy the sumptuous surroundings and the serenity of the Poconos, The Lodge at Woodloch is the perfect fall getaway.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor’s Poconos Travel Guide

Seattle

Courtesy of Sagamore Resort

Sagamore Resort

WHERE: Bolton Landing, New York

Situated on an island all its own in Lake George, The Sagamore Resort has been welcoming guests to the Adirondacks since 1883. Most picturesque in the fall, the forested banks of Lake George are the main attraction in autumn, with their hues of orange, red, and yellow filling the horizon for miles on end. Weekends at the resort in the fall are filled with scenic cruises on the lake, horse and carriage rides through the picture-perfect woods, and Friday and Saturday night bonfires with s’mores and a rotating roster of entertainment.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor’s Lake George Travel Guide

Spa WHERE

Neno Zhekov/Madeline Hotel and Residences

Madeline Hotel and Residences

WHERE: Telluride, Colorado

You might think of Telluride as a ski destination, but fall is one of the prettiest times of year to visit. For a fine getaway, Madeline Hotel sets the standard for mountainside luxury. Guestrooms have oversize soaking tubs, slope-side views, and suites with fireplaces; it’s the ideal place to retire after a day of exploring the colorful mountains. A free gondola connects four stations, offers the best views, and is a fun way to get acquainted with the area; it’s operational through October 18 this year before reopening for the winter season on November 20.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor’s Telluride Travel Guide

Squaw Creek

Courtesy of Crystal Mountain

Crystal Mountain

WHERE: Thompsonville, Michigan

In the rustic northern woods of Michigan, Crystal Mountain accommodations range from standard hotel rooms to plush cottages and bungalows, appealing to a wide range of price points. Fall activities include a ride on Michigan’s only alpine slide, mountainous bike paths through the multi-colored mountain forest, and the winning Michigan Legacy Art Park ($5), a two-mile sculpture trail that features 47 sculptures. A typical October Saturday at the resort is filled with fun for the whole family as outdoor laser tag, crafts hour, and guided mountain hikes are perfect in the crisp fall air.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor’s Michigan Travel Guide

State Forest

Courtesy of St. Regis Aspen

St. Regis Aspen

WHERE: Aspen, Colorado

Refined and luxurious, the St. Regis Aspen lends itself to an indulgent fall retreat with its Gilded Age sensibility. Leading into the season with their “Fall in Love with Aspen” program, the resort goes the extra mile in accommodate fall visitors by providing complimentary access to a Lexus vehicle for transportation to special hiking routes, the chance to rent out a GoPro camera for the day to capture your excursion, and private tours of the Ashcroft mining area, one of Aspen’s favorite leaf-peeping spots. With the option to add on a gourmet picnic basket, your hike in the woods becomes a gastronomic experience.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor’s Aspen Travel Guide

Telluride Travel Guide

Courtesy of Montage Deer Valley

Montage Deer Valley

WHERE: Park City, Utah

Autumn in Park City offers a kaleidoscope of color. For the best views and access to nature’s spectacle, the grand Montage Deer Valley resort is the place to be. With a sprawling main lodge on grounds that include five restaurants and plenty of lounges and vistas, there are countless places to relax and enjoy the views with a drink in hand. For the most thrilling view of the fall foliage, head to nearby Utah Olympic Park where the Xtreme Ziprider (the world’s steepest zipline) can reach speeds of up to 60 miles per hour.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor’s Park City and the Wasatch Back Travel Guide

transportation

Courtesy of The Greenbrier

The Greenbrier

WHERE: White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia

Steeped in history, The Greenbrier is a national landmark known for its Federal-style white façade and for having hosted twenty-six presidents on overnight stays since 1858. Spanning 10,000 acres in the Allegheny Mountains, The Greenbrier’s property includes four golf courses, a 43-acre farm that grows food for the resort’s restaurants, and a 103,000-square-foot casino. Dozens of activities are on offer at the resort, including guided hikes, off-road Jeep excursions, and carriage rides. For something a little different, join the resort’s Bunker Tour to see the fallout shelter built for the U.S. Congress during the Cold War.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor’s West Virginia Travel Guide

Utah

Courtesy of Primland

Primland

WHERE: Meadows of Dan, Virginia

Choose your own fall adventure at Primland, a sprawling 12,000-acre resort where treehouses, mountain homes, and country cottages capture the best views of Virginia’s backwoods. The main attraction, The Lodge at Primland, stands at the apex of the property, treating guests to unobstructed views of the sweeping landscapes from twenty-six guestrooms and suites. An architectural achievement in country luxury, the lodge is most recognized for its cedar-and-stone façade and its picture-perfect steel silo. Regardless of where you stay at Primland, daily activities include tree climbing, wing shooting, stargazing, and geocaching.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor’s Virginia Travel Guide

Wisconsin

Quicksilver Studios, Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

The Coeur D’Alene Resort

WHERE: Coeur D’Alene, Idaho

Featuring the floating green—a world-renowned lake-bound putting green at the fourteenth hole—the Coeur D’Alene golf course makes for a most unique skill test. The property’s luxurious, seventeen-story tower gives leaf peepers incredible vantage points as the lake and surrounding hills glow in the autumnal months. Start the weekend with a sunset cruise on the lake and continue the night at the Lakeview Lounge where drink selections run wild with over 30,000 wine bottles on hand. 

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor’s Idaho Travel Guide

Aspen

Courtesy of Triple Creek Ranch, Darby, Montana

Triple Creek Ranch

WHERE: Darby, Montana

All-inclusive and only for adult guests, Triple Creek Ranch takes relaxation seriously. An escape to the ranch means you’ll be staying in one of the private luxury cabins or homes on the grounds, offering peace, serenity, and the stillness of the deep woods of Montana. With the all-inclusive rate comes a typical day filled with perfect fall activities, including horseback riding, on-ranch fly fishing, or simply lounging in a heated pool. Join the nature safari for wildlife watching: A seasoned guide takes an SUV through backwoods trails to seek out black bears, moose, big horn sheep, and the rare but occasional mountain lion.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor’s Montana Travel Guide

blantyre

Courtesy of Omni Mount Washington Resort

Omni Mount Washington Resort

WHERE: Bretton Woods, New Hampshire

In the White Mountains of New Hampshire, Omni Mount Washington Hotel provides stately charm and a retreat for the whole family. From your first glance at the striking white resort set against Mount Washington, you’ll sense grandeur, a feeling that continues as the resorts’ amenities and activities unfurl throughout your stay. Capture a thumbs-up from the kids with fun touches like the special Omni Kids backpack on arrival and milk and cookies the first night of your stay. Leaf peepers will love the guided hikes throughout the mountainous region as well as incredible photo opportunities available from the Bethlehem Express Quad chairlift as you ascend Mount Washington to the highest point in the Northeast.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor’s New Hampshire Travel Guide

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33 Safe Summer Vacations You Can Still Take During the Coronavirus Pandemic

Airbnb

Summer vacations look much different in the coronavirus crisis. Many countries are closed off to Americans due to the high rates of COVID-19 in the United States, and many states require quarantines. If you still want to take a trip—we get it. You’ve been in the house for months, the weather’s good and you want a break before getting back into gear for work and school.

While many are opting for staycations or destinations within driving distance, if you still plan on flying, know the risks. Cabin air isn’t as much of a concern as just being in close proximity to other people, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) notes, especially in security lines and terminals. “Most viruses and other germs do not spread easily on flights because of how air circulates and is filtered on airplanes,” the CDC advises. “However, social distancing is difficult on crowded flights, and sitting within 6 feet of others, sometimes for hours, may increase your risk of getting COVID-19. Also consider how you get to and from the airport, as public transportation and ridesharing can increase your chances of being exposed to the virus.”

That said, it’s super important to not only be safe, but to follow local, state and national protocols and mandates wherever you travel. The following are relatively safe vacations during coronavirus that you can take, but remember: If you’re cavalier about masks, hand washing or social distancing, lockdowns will last a lot longer, and no vacation is worth anyone’s health or life.

Safe Vacations During Coronavirus

1. Staycations!

Staycations will always be an option! Explore your own town like a tourist, or camp out in your backyard.

Related: Airline Face Mask Rules

2. Camping

Going camping is generally safe if you’re socially distanced from anyone not in your household. To be safe, wear masks while hiking and traversing trails, as well as in any common areas you may share with other campers at your site.

3. Renting an Airbnb

Staying in an Airbnb while social distancing is a safe choice, but you may want to take extra precautions: Consider bringing your own silverware, bedding and linens, and bring some disinfectant sprays or wipes to sanitize and disinfect surfaces before settling in and getting comfortable.

Related: 90 Best Staycation Ideas

4. Hit the Beach

The beach is generally a safe option for a summer vacation if and only if you maintain social distancing and avoid crowded areas. You may want to exercise extra caution in areas like boardwalks, restrooms and eateries.

5. Renting an RV

Traveling in an RV allows you to have lodging and wheel at the same time, so you don’t have to worry about staying in a hotel or other lodging arrangements you may not be comfortable with amid the pandemic. Like renting an Airbnb though, you’ll want to disinfect surfaces and bring your own linens and utensils.

Related: Why Millennials Are Embracing RV Travel

6. Local Parks

Your neighborhood parks are likely underused and underrated gems: Many have lakes for swimming, playgrounds for kids (if open—bring hand sanitizer!) and plenty of grass for playing and picnicking.

7. State Parks

If you’re within driving distance of a state park, enjoy the scenery!

Related: 125 Ideas to Keep Kids Entertained During the Coronavirus Crisis

8. Stay at a Hotel in a Remote Place

Social distance at a hotel. Check around to examine cleaning procedures and what amenities are available and avoid certain hotspots, like hotel bars. If it’s just a change of scenery you want (without having to do a ton of laundry), this may be just the ticket for you.

9. Find an Uncrowded Outdoor Pool

As long as they aren’t crowded, outdoor pools may be a safe option due to their use of chlorine in the water—something the beach doesn’t have. Be sure to bring your own towels, sunscreen, goggles, pool toys, flotation devices and anything else you may need.

10. Go on a Social Distancing Road Trip

Pack everyone in the car (if you already live with them, that is) and hit the road together. As long as you’re maintaining a safe social distance from others, feel free to take photos in front of any tourist landmarks you find, but keep masks on as long as you’re outside the car—and try to limit rest stop use (and when you do make a pit stop, make sure no one touches anything more than absolutely necessary).

11. See Loved Ones Safely

If you take a trip to visit family and friends, you all need to use proper precautions. Quarantine for two weeks beforehand, and try to stay six feet from one another and wear masks when you can’t. Wash your hands and disinfect surfaces frequently and if anyone in your party or your pals’ is high risk, do not go.

12. Dine Outside in a New Place

Have dinner at an outdoor restaurant. Bonus points if it’s foreign cuisine you’ve never tried before!

13. Rent a Boat

If you’re traveling with just family and your immediate household (which are all the people you should be traveling with!), a small boat (think a fishing charter) is a good option. Be careful to keep a safe distance from other boaters and to disinfect surfaces of the boat just like you would anywhere else on land. Also do not tie boats together to socialize, as this can increase the risk of spreading the coronavirus.

14. Consider a Houseboat

Eliminate the need for separate lodging (and having to traverse through a lobby or communal areas).

15. Go Backpacking

Think of it this way: The less you pack, the less you have to disinfect. Bonus? Outdoor areas are likely to be less crowded than ever this summer.

16. Try Rafting

Combine your camping with some adventures on the water. Don’t forget not just to disinfect everything, but to wear a life jacket!

17. Consider Cabins

Instead of staying at a big hotel with a bustling lobby and breakfast buffet if you go away, try a cabin or smaller lodge where you can be alone (or with significantly fewer people around).

18. If You Must Go Somewhere Far Away, Try All-Inclusive Resorts

If you insist on really going away for a summer vacation amid the COVID-19 crisis, all-inclusive resorts are an option to feel safe: You don’t have to travel elsewhere once you arrive at your destination. Still, be sure to wear a mask and practice proper social distancing, disinfecting and safety precautions, and check ahead of time to find out if your desired amenities will be available.

19. Swap Houses With a Friend

If you have friends or family who live within driving distance and whose space you’ve always coveted, consider a weekend- or week-long house swap. Like traveling to an Airbnb, bring your own linens and utensils (and like traveling anywhere else, toiletries, etc.) and enjoy a fresh set of walls, grass and a new neighborhood to explore. Of course, be sure you’ve all properly social distanced and haven’t been exposed to the virus before any of you packs up for the other’s home.

20. Greece

Greece has been largely less impacted by the coronavirus pandemic than some of its neighbors and its hospitals reportedly haven’t been overloaded. Corfu and Preveza offer spectacular beaches and plenty of private villas, as well as hospital access in case of emergencies during your trip.

Related: 50 Summer Date Ideas

21. Georgia (in Europe)

Batumi, Georgia, offers vineyards, beaches and a ton of other tourist attractions, while Tbilisi offers stunning architecture. The country’s COVID-19 rates are extremely low compared to other Western countries.

22. Croatia

Croatia, especially Cavtat, offers plenty of private lodging for tourists who want to stay safe but still get stamps on their passports. Zagreb, Croatia, offers stunning outdoor views, parks, culture and architecture.

23. Portugal

Portugal, especially the Madeira Islands and the Azores, offer beautiful beaches and have been sheltered from COVID-19 infections.

24. Romania

Romania, especially Transylvania, implemented serious precautions for COVID-19, including cleaning and sanitizing public transportation every four hours and holding special hours for retailers, resulting in a seriously low infection rate. The country offers a lot of historical charm to explore and is considered one of Europe’s safest destinations.

25. Trip to Turks and Caicos

Turks and Caicos requires negative COVID-19 tests within five days of travel, in addition to requiring tourists to have insurance covering medical evacuations.

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26. Serbia

Serbia requires masks indoors as well as outdoors when social distancing isn’t possible, and has a fantastic wine country area.

27. Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines have pretty stringent entry requirements for tourists: Visitors must fill out a pre-arrival form and everyone on their flight must test negative for COVID-19. Visitors are quarantined until all negative tests have come in.

28.  Saint Lucia

Saint Lucia has more than a dozen COVID-19 regulations for hotels, and visitors must get a negative COVID-19 test within a week of their arrival on the island.

29. Jamaica

All visitors to Jamaica must undergo a COVID-19 test upon arrival, and the island nation also has requirements for businesses and hotels, including that all lodgings have a designated coronavirus safety point person.

30. French Polynesia

If you visit the 118 French Polynesian islands, you’ll be required to test negative for coronavirus before even flying out, and you’ll have to have a travel insurance policy. Four days after arrival, you’ll have a self-sample test.

Related: The Happiest Place on Earth Is Reopening! What to Know Before You Return to Disney World During Coronavirus

31. Bermuda

The Bermudan Tourism Authority requires visitors to have a negative COVID-19 test within less than seven days before arriving, and they’ll also be tested at the airport and quarantined at their hotel or lodging until results come in upon their arrival.

32. Aruba

Travelers from the U.S. all have to fill out a self-declaration health form and test negative for COVID-19 before arriving in Aruba. Visitors specifically from Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nevada, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, South Dakota. Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Wisconsin, and Wyoming are required to upload a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours of their arrival.

33. Belize

If you travel to Belize, you must upload a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours before your departure to the country or agree to a test upon arrival; visitors will also have a temperature check at the airport and have luggage sanitized. Guests are also required to wear masks while traveling through Belize.

Looking for romance on vacation? Here are ways to find love during coronavirus, even if you never leave your apartment.

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Spectacular Places to Visit in the USA – Explore the best of America’s Water Fountains

Buckingham-Fountain-Chicago1533773533.jpg

An enticing factor about water fountains is that their charismatic structures and art forms beguile you. You can’t stop marveling the ambiance it creates and some compel you to ponder about the fables behind its creation. While the USA is popular for an amazing collection of tourist attractions and natural sights, it also has a beautiful assortment of water fountains. Though not as magnificent as fountains in Italy, USA has an understated yet attractive group water fountains with historic significance scattered all through the destination. Let’s look at some interesting water fountains in the USA that you can visit on your USA holiday.

Bellagio Fountains – Las Vegas

Bellagio Fountains - Las Vegas
Perhaps the most iconic and well-known water fountain in the USA is the Bellagio Fountains in Las Vegas. Las Vegas being one of the most popular places to visit in the USA, Bellagio fountains is one spectacle not to be missed on your US trip. First of its kind in the world, Bellagio Fountains pioneer the art of synchronizing water jets, laser lighting, and music into a spectacular show. The water fountain set on a manmade lake right in front of the Bellagio hotel is one of the most mesmerizing sights to watch on Las Vegas strip. The grand fountain show became the source of inspiration for the extravagant Dubai Fountain. About 4500 lights and 1200 water nozzles create an awe-inspiring performance tuned perfectly with different genres of music. This remarkable water fountain show takes place daily in the evening, open to spectators to watch without spending a dime.

National World War II Memorial – Washington DC

National World War II Memorial - Washington DC
A symbol of homage for the Americans who laid down their lives in World War II, National World War Memorial in Washington D.C is one of the famous tourist places in the USA. Set amid the Lincoln Memorial and Washington Monument, the fountain consists of 56 engraved granite pillars and small triumphal arches encircling a plaza. This arena consists the central water fountain and tiny arches of water spouting around it. The panoramic view of this water fountain looks amazing where you can find yourself gazing long into the Washington Monument or the Lincoln Memorial through the fountains from different viewpoints. This national monument is open for everyone 365 days of the year.

Scott Memorial Fountain – Detroit

Scott Memorial Fountain - Detroit
This fountain was built as a commemoration of James Scott, who bequeathed his fortune to the city to build this giant water fountain that includes a statue of him. Located in Belle Isle Park in Detroit, this water fountain covers 510 feet of land and has fountain nozzles that shoot water up to 125 feet. In all, there are more than 100 water spouts that emerge out of human, animal and sea creature figurines. It is one of the most significant and popular site to visit in Detroit.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial – Washington DC

Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial - Washington DC

Another gorgeous water presentation in Washington DC is the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial. Spread over 7.5 acres of land, this memorial pays tribute to the 32nd President of the United States. Located at the National Malls Tidal Basin – a beautiful place in the USA to witness cherry blossoms, the memorial is designed as four galleries depicting the four terms of Roosevelt as President and has several water features. Though it isn’t exactly a water fountain, the memorial’s water elements are beautifully showcased in forms of stunning cascades and pools which are spectacular sights to view.

Pulitzer Fountain – New York

Pulitzer Fountain - New York
Located in the Manhattan’s Grand Army Plaza, Pulitzer Fountain is another fountain that was bequeathed by its creator as a tribute to himself. Built to honour Joseph Pulitzer – an editor and publisher in New York, this fountain is a colossal 22 feet high 5-tiered ornate fountain adorned with sculptures and a large granite basin. The statue of the goddess of abundance – Pomona graces the top of the fountain. The fountain was made to look like those in Place de la Concorde in Paris, France. The fountain has borne the wear and tear of time and undergone several restorations and is still functional presently.

Buckingham Fountain – Chicago

Buckingham Fountain - Chicago
An iconic landmark in Chicago, the Buckingham Fountain located in Grant Park is among the world’s largest water fountains. Officially known as the Clarence F. Buckingham Memorial Fountain, this fascinating fountain is styled in the form of a layered wedding cake and the main water spray shoots up to 150 feet in the air. Representing the Lake Michigan, the fountain is inspired by the Bassin de Latone and modeled after Latona Fountain at Versailles. It consists of three tired basins with 134 powerful water jets. These basins are decorated with four seahorses that symbolize the states of Illinois, Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin which border Lake Michigan. The fountain operates in the months of May to October from 8 pm till 11 pm. The fountain showcases an impressive water and light show of 20 minutes every hour in the evening during its operational months.
While these water fountains are just a few handpicked selections, there are many more water fountains dotted all around the USA for you to explore. What is more exciting about these water features is that each has a historic or subjective significance for you to discover. These are no doubt some of the enchanting places to see in the US. In case you are wondering where to go in the USA for more charming experiences, check out these selections of spa resorts in the USA.

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