Travel Tuesday with Danielle ~ TOP 10 SUMMER VACATION IDEAS IN THE USA!

by Danielle Garrett of PlanIt Itineraries for The Aha! Connection

There is no doubt everyone is tired of feeling like a prisoner in their own home.  A vacation sounds like just what the doctor ordered!   The number of travelers in the air is still far below pre-Covid levels, but airline ticket transactions by U.S. travel agencies climbed above 40% of 2019 levels last week for the first time since the beginning of the pandemic.  Overall sales volume numbers are still down due to the lack of more expensive business and international travel, but lower domestic fares and positive Covid news are increasing people’s interest in travel.

Below are some ideas for a memorable summer getaway!

  1. Jackson Hole/Grand Teton National Park/Yellowstone National Park
    Wyoming is nicknamed the cowboy state, and some consider Jackson Hole “the last of the old west”.  Two National Parks (The Grand Teton and Yellowstone are within reach), the cool western town of Jackson, more activities than you have time for, and stunning scenery are just the beginning!
    Grand Teton

  2. Whitefish, MT and Glacier National Park
    Another great option if you are looking to go out west, but not as well-known as JH.  Glacier National Park is 30 minutes from Whitefish and the town of Whitefish has a very charming, western vibe.  There are no non-stop flights to Whitefish from Atlanta, but worth the longer flight time.

  3. Maui
    With the current Hawaii travel restrictions, a one-island vacation is the way to go if visiting Hawaii.  Maui is your best option, as it offers plenty to do for 7-10 days.  Click here for a prior article on Hawaii restrictions, but make sure to check the current protocols!

  4. Cape Cod
    Head NE to charming Cape Cod!  This will be the quaintest beach trip you have ever taken!!  Cape Cod oozes New England charm everywhere you go and the lobster rolls…YUM!  Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket are easy day trips (make sure to check travel restrictions between the Cape and Martha’s Vineyard/Nantucket).
    Martha’s Vineyard
  5. Keys, FL
    I know what you are thinking…too HOT!  Yes, it will likely be one of the warmest places during the summer but do not forget the ocean breeze.  I went further south to Turks and Caicos in July expecting intense heat, but it was not much hotter than going to Florida.  No doubt, FL is hot in the summer, but the Keys offer a Caribbean vibe, and the summer is off-season so you can expect lower pricing.  A fun, family trip!

  6. Grand Canyon/Sedona, AZ
    Again, I know what you are thinking…is she crazy to go to AZ in the summer heat?  If you are a family with kids in school and the summertime is one of your only opportunities for a family trip, then you bite the bullet and go to AZ in the summer.  I have done it and it was a great family trip!  If you have time you can drive up to Page, AZ to see Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend (make sure to check Antelope Canyon’s current Covid restrictions).

  7. Other National Parks throughout the U.S.
    The National Parks throughout the country will be busy this year and there are many other options like Zion, Bryce, Moab, Yosemite and Rocky Mountain National Park, just to name a few!

  8. Mackinac Island, MI
    This is a unique choice, as there are no cars on the island itself.  The island has an 8.2-mile loop around the perimeter and walking/biking are your only modes of transportation.  There are 70 miles of trails to explore, lots of activities to choose from, and summer temperatures that hover in the 70’s.  A beautiful place!   

The last 2 options do not require boarding a plane!          

  1. Outerbanks, NC
    Are you looking for a beach trip this summer, but wanting something different?  Consider heading north to the Outerbanks.  These beaches do not offer the pure white sand and clear water of the panhandle, but it is still a beautiful area with less crowded beaches and an untamed feel.  History lovers will enjoy the historic sites available throughout the Outerbanks!
  1. Smoky Mountain National Park
    This National Park is the most visited park in the U.S., which many people don’t realize.  The park is in NC and Tennessee and known for its wildlife, scenic views, fly fishing, waterfalls, and hiking.  Consider doing something different like glamping with Under The Canvas in the Great Smoky Mountains.  This unique accommodation is located 10 miles from Gatlinburg, TN, just minutes from the entrance of the park.
Under the Canvas

Please remember to travel responsibly, wear your mask and do not travel unnecessarily if you are elderly or immune-compromised! And remember to check your destination’s travel restrictions/requirements before and during planning, as well as double-checking before departure!

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