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There’s no excuse like being on vacation to indulge in decadent dishes that you’d feel guilty about tucking into at home, right? Plus, eating local is part of the cultural experience of any destination. Here, five bizarre and over-the-top regional eats — and where to try them if you so dare:
The storied Gleneagles Hotel in Scotland is celebrating its 90th birthday with the launch of an exclusive partnership with Virgin Balloon Flights to become the only Scottish hotel to offer guests hot-air balloon rides. For £2,100 ($3,595) groups of between ten and 16 can book a sunrise or sunset ride and get a bird’s eye view of the 850-acre estate and the surrounding countryside.
In the U.S., you can book hot air ballooning packages over Napa Valley at The Meritage Resort; over the Temecula Valley Wine Country at Pechanga Resort and Casino; over the desert floor at the Palm Springs Hyatt; over the canyons of New Mexico with El Rancho Hotel; or the Finger Lakes with Chalet B&B.
Take a look at our slideshow to get a bird’s eye view of some of these packages.
It’s always a struggle for culture-enthusiasts in the summer: Go to the park and soak up the sun, or go to the museum for some arts. If that’s an argument you always enter with your travel companion, we have the answer for you. Visiting any of these six sculpture parks in the United States is guaranteed to solve your dilemma. The pictured Storm King Art Center in the lower Hudson Valley of New York state, for example, is a 500-acre landscape of fields, hills, and woodlands that provides the setting for more than 100 large-scale abstract sculptures. More here.
Crowded and exclusive, the Hamptons — the beach destination of choice for many in the New York City area in summer — aren’t exactly a cheap getaway. If you’re planning to head out to this ever-glamorous hotspot, whether you live in the NYC area or just want to get a taste of the Hamptons while you’re passing through, getting there can be a challenge. Here, six ways to get to the Hamptons — and what it’ll cost you.
No summer is complete without a trip to the beach. But instead of the typical best-of roundup, we decided to do something a little different: We had the ShermansTravel staff share their favorite off-beat alternatives to the hotspots that everyone flocks to in drove. We won’t go as far as to call these spots “secret,” but we will promise that you’ll find a relatively intimate excursion with lots of character at any one of them. Ready to feel like a beach insider and stretch out?
If you’re headed to New York City on your next getaway, why not get out on the water? Manhattan is an island, after all, and the city offers a wealth of boat tours and packages that will give you breathtaking views of the skyline and the harbor. Here are three of our favorites.
New York City has an extensive public transit system, and budget-conscious, savvy travelers often avoid spendy taxis when they’re traveling to or from the airport. Taking the subway, after all, is much cheaper and often more reliable. Still, there are days when you might not want to jump on the train, whether you have an extremely early flight, are hauling a lot of luggage, or don’t want to deal with pesky transfers. Enter what are known as Chinatown car services — essentially Chinese-owned private car companies that save you a considerable amount on cab fares, and transport you in cars that are often much nicer than a basic taxi. Here’s what you need to know about booking one:
New York City may be at its most appealing in the summertime (picnic in Central Park, anyone?) – but that doesn’t mean you can’t justify a long weekend in the country. Even if you’re not quite cut out for life in the stables, that fresh air is bound to do you good. Here, three upstate farm B&Bs for an affordable escape from the hustle and bustle:
If you’re heading to New York City this summer, you’ll probably hear about the city’s popular rooftop bars, which fill to capacity as the weather warms up. We get it – the views, the fancy drinks, the pools. But for the more down-to-earth traveler, nothing beats a picnic in Central Park. But which part of the park? And how to get there? And where to stock up on smoked turkey pinwheels and apple strudel? Leave it to us – your Central Park picnic awaits.
Most people love a good thrill, and we don’t mean gravity-defying views or insane roller-coaster drops. We’re talking about the hair-raising variety you get from a graveyard tour. Of course, not all cemeteries are all mist and gloom. In fact, it can be easy to confuse some cemeteries with botanical gardens come spring. Come and check out some of America’s most hauntingly beautiful cemeteries – and “meet” their most famous spirits. Read more
If you’ve ever taken a Disney vacation, you’re probably familiar with the company’s focus on customer service, and its commitment to helping you make lasting memories. Clearly, there’s a reason why families head to Walt Disney World and Disneyland over and over again. But everyone could occasionally use a change of pace. (After all, you can only ride Dumbo so many times.)
As much as we love traveling to big cities, sometimes it can get overwhelming. Here are a few places in or near the biggest metropolises in the U.S., where, for a few hours at least, you can leave the noise and bustle behind. Read more
Looking to cool off this summer? We already introduced Europe’s most beautiful public pools last year, but we thought we’d take a look at the aquatic offerings a bit closer to home. Whether you’re looking for a basic soak, a serious workout, or theme park-style entertainment, here are five fantastic (and inexpensive) public pools where you can make a splash.
Whether established as a joke, to make a political point, or purely by accident, these 10 micronations across the world show that, if you don’t like your own country, you can just go ahead and start your own. Of course, like all of the ones we’ve listed, yours might never be recognized as a real nation, but you may not mind.
Visit our slideshow to learn about the Gay and Lesbian Kingdom of the Coral Sea Islands, The Empire of Atlantium, a dictatorial banana-republic in Nevada, and more.
The Great Lakes have long been a prime vacation spot for Detroiters, Chicagoans, and other Midwesterners, but it’s often an overlooked destination for anyone outside of the area. Why isn’t Traverse City as popular as Virginia Beach? Why flock to overcrowded Florida beaches and pay $6 for an ice cream cone when you can spend a summer on the Bayfield coast? For more peace and less moolah, these 10,000 miles of freshwater coastline offer quaint beaches, sprawling forests, and happening area metropolises. Here are our top recommendations. Read more
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