It’s not even Memorial Day, but summer travel is already on your brain. That’s because you’re a planner. (Also, you know the best spots book up super fast.) Here, five destinations worth considering this year.
A Canadian Road Trip
Block out two weeks and drive from Montreal to Banff. OK, so it’s a grand total of approximately 40 hours on the road, but break it into chunks over the course of 14 days and it’s worth it, given all the sights you can detour to see (like Ottawa—Canada’s capital city—or Prince Albert National Park in Saskatchewan). Book a night at Hotel Le Crystal in Montreal so you get a good night’s sleep as you kick off the trip, then use an app like Hotel Tonight (or Airbnb’s instant book feature) to book accommodations last minute on the road. Got kids in the backseat? Here are five road trip activities that will keep the whole family sane.
A Western Dude Ranch
Vacation is for fresh air and wide-open spaces, which is why you can’t go wrong with a getaway to Colorado, specifically Grand County (located about an hour west of Denver). The Latigo Ranch will whisk you far away from pesky annoyances like email—although Wi-Fi hot spots are available if you need it—and fix your attention instead on the land around you. Forty thousand acres of prime national forest, to be exact.
A Charming Southern City
If you haven’t been to Charleston, summer is the perfect time (although preferably in June and July, before the August humidity hits). It’s the perfect blend of city culture and country charm. Spend your days touring nearby plantations (FYI, Boone Hall, the spot where Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds got hitched, is open to the public) and your nights at reputable high-end restaurants like Husk or FIG. You could even detour to Kiawah Island, no more than a 45-minute drive away. Plan to stay at the Planters Inn, a chic destination right in the heart of the downtown.
A Lakeside Adventure
The ocean isn’t the only option if you’re looking for a family getaway where your kids can splash in the waves. There are plenty of beautiful lake towns around the country, and Michigan’s west coast offers gorgeous water views without having to worry about the tides. (FYI, we love South Haven, often referred to as the “Catskills of the Midwest.”) Or, if the east side of the state is more your style, take a ferry to Mackinac Island in the middle of Lake Huron. (The Grand Hotel is a majestic historic resort you won’t want to miss.)
A Coastal Escape
Big Little Lies on the brain? Book a five-day weekend in and around Big Sur. The cliff views of the Pacific Ocean (visible from the Highway 1) alone are worth the trip, but the chance to experience the breathtaking vistas seen on your new favorite HBO show? You can’t go wrong. We recommend booking a stay at the swank Monterey Plaza Hotel and Spa (delicious cocktails and epic ocean-side sunsets all included).