“I can’t believe Summer’s almost over” has been buzzing around for some time now, and I couldn’t agree more! With commercials of back to school specials flooding the tube, and my inbox flooding with emails for Winter deals, I’m also asking myself, “Where the hell has the summer gone?”
As a result, some of us are scurrying around trying to make the most of the next few weeks until the “unofficial” end of the summer season. As much as we’d love to squeeze in that week/long weekend away at that Caribbean all-inclusive before the kids go back to school, last minute trips can cost a pretty penny, especially with airfare reaching some of its highest prices during the summer months.
Aside from that, why does it seem that when we think about getting away, we often rush to get on a plane and get out of the states? We often forget the beauty that we have in our own backyard. We have beaches, mountains, theme parks, culture, history, etc. all over our great nation. Places that we can get to by plane, train, bus or automobile without breaking the bank and that will still satisfy our need to say “we went on vacation.” On that note, and in conjunction with last month’s column “GIANT Road Trip,” let’s take a look at some of the amazing places to visit in the good ol’ U.S. of A!
Let’s start out on the West Coast (ish) with one of the greatest natural treasures we have right in our backyard; the impressive Grand Canyon - talk about being in AWE!! When I roadtripped to The Canyon after my Vegas trip, I wasn’t ready for what was in store. I honestly thought it was something mostly for family trips. I’d get there, look at this big hole in the ground, take a few pictures, check it off my list and be on my way. Boy was I wrong! I was completely blown away by its splendor and magnificence.
If you are traveling east towards the Canyon the closest point sits on the Hualapai American Indian Reservation. There, not only will you have access to the amazing history and culture of the Hualapai Indians, but also be able to experience the Skywalk.
The Grand Canyon Skywalk at Eagle Point is a glass bridge is suspended 4,000 feet above the Colorado River on the very edge of the Grand Canyon. And GIANTS, if there is anything can put our size to shame and make us feel not-so-GIANT, it’s standing at the edge of the canyon and looking out and staring in to the horizon til you can see no more. ( http://www.grandcanyonwest.com/)
One of the things many of us look forward to during the summer is achieving that perfect summer glow. For some, a few times out in the sun is good enough, for others we take every chance we get to tan in hopes it will last us well in to the cooler months. With over 12,000 miles of coastline in the U.S., there is no shortage of choices as to where to plant our keisters and soak in those rays.
Sixty of those sandy miles can be found in one of the most popular U.S. beach destinations, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. This place is multi-faceted and has something for everyone. With nightly live entertainment being provided by hot spots like Dead Dog Saloon, House of Blues and Margaritaville, Myrtle Beach is definitely suitable for those single guys having a bros weekend.
Couples can also enjoy the bustling nightlife and entertainment options after spending some quality time on the beach together or in one of the many ocean front suites along the coast. Or enjoy a night out on a casino cruise in nearby Little River, SC. Are you a family man planning a little fun in the sun with the kids? No problem, you can enjoy places like Family Kingdom Amusement Park, Ripley’s Attractions, and Pirate Adventures of Myrtle Beach. And with dozens of reputable hotel chains, both along the coast and slightly inland, offering king-sized beds with their standard rooms, Myrtle Beach is definitely a GIANT-friendly location. ( http://www.visitmyrtlebeach.com/)
To list all of the fantastic attractions one can visit throughout our great 50 states can take up a book, a GIANT one! So I’ve taken the liberty of including a link to 2 very informative sites:
1) This is a great site pinpointing the top 10 attractions in each of the 50 states.
2) And this site, with an interactive map of all 50 states where you can link to the travel and tourism site of that particular state to see all that worth visiting. http://www.theus50.com/
Looking for more economic options and don’t think you can even squeeze in an “American” vacation?
It’s ok! Although the word “stay-cation” has become automatically be synonymous with cleaning out your garage or catching up on yard work, you don’t have to spare a good time if you look even closer in your own backyards. Take a minute to go online or to your local community center, church, supermarket, etc., to see listings of all the fun, and even free, events happening in your and nearby areas: food festivals, music festivals, street fairs, carnivals, sporting events, etc. and ENJOY these warm long days before we have to put those flip-fops away!
For complete photo and video albums from my Grand Canyon adventure, go to Ace World Travel’s Facebook and YouTube page. For additional information and tips on planning your GIANT American vacation, and for information on current promotions and rates for hotels, car rentals, tours, etc., contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org