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If one of your New Year’s resolutions is to spend more quality time with the person you love, then I suggest you enjoy that togetherness someplace amazing! And what’s better or more romantic than a stunning, sun-kissed island? There’s something innately sexy and bond-inspiring about the sea – floating together in gentle turquoise surf, walking hand-in-hand at sunset, enjoying the day’s fresh catch paired with a rum cocktail or a fine wine. So as the new year begins, here are my top 10 picks for the most amazing islands to escape to together in 2012. Read more
We travel bloggers adore making lists of where our readers should go in the new year. But let’s face it, every list, whether it has destinations or groceries on it, is subjective. Which is why, to lend a veneer of objectivity to this list of top family vacation picks for 2012, I consulted the three best-traveled people I know. Read more
Florida brings to mind many things – theme parks, retirement condos, alligators, golf courses, and orange groves among them – but one of the state’s sometimes overlooked qualities is its easily accessible setting for romance. It’s sunny, warm, and ringed with 663 miles of beaches. It’s home to leading hotels and top chefs. And its assorted resort regions, from the Atlantic to the Gulf to the Keys, have vibes that range from exceedingly mellow to, well, not so much. Plus, you won’t have to spend much on airfare, so you can splurge on your accommodations. Here’s a look at five very different ways to embrace the romance on offer in Florida. Read more
Hawaii is a sublimely romantic destination any time of year, but when the holidays are over and the chill of January and February sets in here in the lower 48, our 50th state starts looking extra appealing. This winter, those warm temperatures and balmy breezes can be yours at a savings, thanks to several free-night resort promotions. Here’s a selection of what’s being offered – but be sure to book early for the best savings and availability. Read more
Saratoga Springs may be best known for its horse racing and hot springs, but this picturesque upstate New York town of 27,000 residents (although that number swells to about 100,000 during the summer race season) has qualities that make it a terrific spot for a romantic weekend getaway all year long.
To start, it’s less than three hours by car from both New York City and Boston (with a setting just north of Albany). But Saratoga Springs’ major appeal is its indisputable charm – 19th-century buildings line its main shopping street (Broadway – shown above), 18 natural mineral springs dot its leafy landscape, and pretty parks, historic buildings, and monuments abound (the pivotal Battle of Saratoga during the Revolutionary War happened here). There’s also a world-class performing arts center, museums devoted to automobiles and dance, a casino, and more than 100 restaurants.
I’m just back from a visit, so here are some highlights for couples looking for a small-town escape that also offers style and sophistication. Read more
Unless you’re a yachtie, rock star, or fan of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies, St. Vincent and the Grenadines may fall slightly off your travel radar. Here’s a primer: This Caribbean nation is located in the Windward Islands near Barbados, St. Lucia, and Grenada. It’s comprised of 32 islands and cays (just eight of them are inhabited), including ultra-chic Mustique – where a who’s who of royalty and rock stars, from Prince William to Mick Jagger, enjoy their rum and sun – and minuscule Mopion (shown at left), a mere sandbar made for two. And its pristine waters and white-sand cays make an ideal backdrop for a breezy sailing adventure or a movie shoot (yes, Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow frolicked in SVG’s Tobago Cays).
For couples, these relatively undiscovered islands make a fabulous romantic getaway, as I found out during a recent island-hopping adventure at some of SVG’s top luxury resorts. Still, all of this barefoot bliss comes in different styles (and at prices that can require a splurge), so read on to find the resort that best suits yours: Read more
Specifically, why haven’t more parents – who easily identify the San Diego Zoo as their main reason to visit San Diego – made a pilgrimage to Ohio’s largest city to see what’s widely considered one of the best zoos and aquariums in the country? Well, if you don’t have good answers to these questions, winter is a swell time to discover that the Columbus Zoo and its neighboring sights could be just the ticket for your family’s winter break. Read more
Black Friday bargains may lure intrepid shoppers, but it’s Cyber Monday that travel-savvy couples should be on the lookout for. A range of hotels around the country– as well as in the Caribbean, Mexico, and Central America – are offering 20 to 65 percent discounts on rooms for travel this winter and coming spring. The hitch: You have just 24 hours (from midnight to 11:59pm this coming Monday, November 28, 2011) to book them. Here are 10 great Cyber Monday deals that are primed for romantics: Read more
Some cruise ships are designed with couples in mind – and Celebrity’s newest addition, the Celebrity Silhouette, is one of the great ones. The fourth installment in Celebrity’s two-year-old Solstice class of ships, Silhouette combines size (at 122,000 tons and 2,886 passengers, there’s room to roam) with the style-savvy design and extra amenities of a sleek boutique hotel (that’s the popular Martini Bar, shown at left). While some ships’ decor is garish and others’ mundane, Silhouette’s is chic, sophisticated, and, at times, even cozy. Sailing from Cape Liberty in Bayonne, New Jersey, on 12-night alternating itineraries to the Southern and Eastern Caribbean through early April, Silhouette then heads to Europe for the summer of 2012 for 12- and 13-night cruises through the Mediterranean and Adriatic. I recently had a chance to sail aboard Silhouette for a few nights, and am happy to report back on some of my favorite aspects for couples seeking a decidedly grown-up cruise vacation: Read more
If for the rest of its days the Clearwater Marine Aquarium is known foremost as the home of Winter – a dolphin fitted with a life-saving prosthetic tail after losing her real one to a crab trap – the aquarium would likely be okay with that.
I’m guessing that, not only because the aquarium’s website is a testament to Winter (it’s seewinter.com), but also because Dolphin Tale, the hit movie released in September and based on Winter’s story, is inspiring droves of family vacationers to visit the aquarium to meet the miracle dolphin, learn about the technology behind her new tail, and see sets from the film firsthand. Read more
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