Many of us can’t manage to fit a full-fledged two week vacation into our busy schedules, but just about everyone can find time for an occasional excursion over a three day weekend. You may think that to really enjoy travel it needs to be long and leisurely, but you could be really missing out, sometimes the best trips are short and action-packed.
With Memorial Day approaching, we’re coming up on a great season for ducking away for a long weekend during the summer months. You may not have time to jet off to Europe, but there are plenty of places closer to home that let you spend more time exploring and less time flying. Here are a few of our favorites:
Not only is Toronto one of our 2017 Travel Hotspots, but it’s just a wonderful city to spend a few days in. Toronto has slowly and quietly turned into a fascinating metropolis. Canadians have known this for a long time, but we’re just starting to catch on. It’s become one of the most ethnically diverse cities on earth, and it embraces that fact to create charming enclaves, distinct neighborhoods, and a truly spectacular food scene.
Get indulgent French fare at Scaramouche Restaurant, fresh seafood at Rodney’s Oyster House, Mofuko for asian fusion, and Bang Bang Ice Cream and Bakery for dessert.
Spend a day in the local-favorite St. Lawrence Market and find everything from artisan jewelry and antiques to cured meats and a sprawling farmers market. Journey to the top of the famed CN Tower for breathtaking views of the city, shop the luxury goods on Yorkville’s Mink Mile. If you still have time, day trip to Niagara Falls (the Canadian side is prettier) or Toronto Islands.
In recent years Nashville has really come into its own by embracing its quirkier side and attracting some of the best chefs and musicians in the country, creating a unique cultural scene that’s way more than just honky tonk (don’t worry, there’s still plenty of honky tonk!).
Spend a day doing a walking tour of the city along the Cumberland River and over the pedestrian bridge to really soak in the skyline. Cafes are tucked away everywhere with authentic Southern cooking, though you’ve got to try hot chicken, the local favorite. It’s a classic Nashville preparation of making fried chicken, but with a kick. The acclaimed Hattie B.’s is probably the hottest spot in town to get your hot chicken fix.
And you can’t go to ‘Music City’ with hearing live music at least once. Though you’ll be able to find live music just about everywhere here, and Nashville is home to the Grand Ole Opry, a true must-visit is local favorite Station Inn for enthusiastic musicians belting out their best bluegrass tunes.
Where better to take it easy than the Big Easy? New Orleans might be best known for the short season of Mardi Gras, but that energy and spirit lives on year-round and makes the city a real destination, even if you’ve only got a few days.
Naturally the French Quarter is a must visit and so is a jaunt down the famed Bourbon Street. You don’t need to get wild, but be sure to sip on something classically New Orleans like a hurricane, gin fizz, French 75, or Sazerac.
Speaking of tasty experiences, you simply cannot visit New Orleans without indulging in the local specialty cuisines- Cajun and Creole. You’ll probably get some serious debate about where to find the best, but you can’t go wrong with favorites like K Paul’s Louisiana Kitchen, Brennan’s, Dooky Chase, and the NOLA institution that is Commander’s Palace.
And lastly you can’t really do New Orleans without catching some great live jazz. The Spotted Cat is hip and modern, The Blue Nile is a staple, and The Davenport is perfect for dressing up and kicking back.
The city is more known for its general vibe than its attractions, but that’s still plenty to make a long weekend here supremely enjoyable. Cool off on the hotter afternoons by tubing, the Barton Creek Greenbelt is in the city, but the ever-popular Comal River just outside of Austin is a favorite spot for a relaxing (and boozy) day trip.
Austin is also known for its quirky and wildly varied food scene. Get your classic brisket at Franklin Barbeque, a single slice at Home Slice Pizza, street-style tacos at Torchy’s Tacos, expertly crafted Japanese at Uchi or Uchiko, and just plain good food at Barley Swine.
And of course the city now famous for SXSW is home to tons of live music. Go for a classic dive at Hole in the Wall or really amp up the quirky with a visit to The Carousel Lounge, because who doesn’t want to watch acrobats performing alongside the band?
This city is perfect for anyone who wants to mix the big city benefits of great food and drink with easy access to nature at its best. Rent a bike and hit the Cherry Creek Trail or strap on your hiking boots because there are so many options just begging to be explored on a day trip.
Nearby Roxborough State Park has trails for every experience level and stunning red rock views abound. Speaking of Red Rocks, you would be truly remised if you didn’t explore the famous Red Rocks Park. Ideally you’ll catch a world-changing concert in the naturally occurring amphitheater, but otherwise the park itself provides the basis for a gorgeous day of hiking.
If you’re interested in a day trip, hop down to Colorado Springs to wander through Garden of the Gods or over to Boulder to traverse the Flatirons.
Unwind after a long day exploring the great outdoors with dinner at the eclectic and carnivore-friendly Euclid Hall then coffee and cocktails at Mercantile Dining & Provision after exploring the downtown shops.
And don’t leave Denver without indulging in the abundant brewing scene. A full bus tour hitting many of the breweries in and just outside the city is perfect for the beer-enthusiast who wants to get a taste of all the local favorites.
Intrigued yet? Let us know where you want to spend your next three day getaway!
For trips long and leisurely or short and sweet, a travel expert at UNIGLOBE Travel Designers can take all the worry out of planning. Contact us at 614-237-4488 or email@example.com today!