Once a year we try to go on a family vacation and this year is no different, except that it is because I’m still not completely recovered from whatever vampire curse I’ve contracted and my arthritis might be worse soon if my meds get revoked because of the TB bullshit so we have to go somewhere that doesn’t require a lot of walking and isn’t too cold. Maybe California? Or Mexico? I have no damn idea. So that’s why I’m asking for your feedback. What was the best vacation you ever went on? What did you do?
Even if it required a lot of walking or if it was far away or cold tell me where you were the happiest. Even if I can’t do it now maybe one day I’ll be able to. Tell me where to go.
785 thoughts on “Tell me where to go. Literally.”
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Ouray, CO. Go there. Relax. Come home once relaxed.
I’m in Portugal now and it’s amazing. Also, the rooster is a national symbol, so knock, knock motherfucker.
Jamaica. No walking. Warm. It’s my happy happy place.
House on the Rock in Wisconsin! Ooo, and if you can pick me up some Two Women beer from New Glarus on the way home I’ll pay you back 😄
Not convenient to or for you, but one of my greatest vacations was camping down (and back up) the East Coast.
Oh California! Come see ME!
All inclusive resorts. We did Mexico, but they are everywhere. You can find a room next to the pool/beach and food. Little walking. All requests are fulfilled, so if you realize that you need help back to the room. You’ll have 3 extremely nice employees willing to take you back.
Okay, I’m a nerd.
I love Vancouver, Canada and the BC Museum of Anthropology.
If I could go anywhere tomorrow, that’s where I’d go.
go to Santa Barbara! small town vibes. beautiful beaches, great food. Chaucer’s bookstore is a plus too.
I do this thing called a gypsy jaunt where we get in the car with NO destination and then have north south east and west on paper and 10 or so different numbers in two bowls. We draw one from each pile and go the direction that number of miles and have to do an adventure there. Then continue to draw
The Outer Banks of North Carolina. Peace like I cannot explain.
Drive around Spain like Mario Batali and just hang out in small towns and enjoy the food and architecture and plazas. People sit out on the Plaza at night and eat and drink tapas. My idea of heaven.
Denver and Steamboat Springs in July is awesome. Best vacation ever. No humidity and not blazing hot. Though I still needed SPF 1000 or I would have been crispy. If you go to Maine or NorCal please take me with you.
Come visit us in California, we have a charming little place called Hearst Castle. I work there as a guide and would love to show you a small castle on the Central Coast.
Go to Kauai. Its so beautiful, and tranquil. A short drive to any one of the hundreds of beaches, then a short walk from the car to the beach. Rinse and repeat as necessary.
Grand Junction, Colorado- not at all cold, and many of the scenic overlooks at Colorado National Monument can be enjoyed just a few steps from the car. Wineries, fruit stands, breweries and other fun things. There is a dinosaur museum in nearby Fruita.
What about northern Michigan? Like Traverse City? Or a small town on any of the great lakes, really. It’s beautiful, peaceful, you can walk or not walk. There is a lot to do, and nothing at all to do. It may be just what you need. Somewhere you can leave the chaos behind, maybe drop into a local yoga studio. I’d also recommend Bend, OR.
Disneyland with a scooter would be my first choice. Second choice with less people and less overall activity is the Monterey Bay/Carmel California area. A lot to do for activities and a lot you can do sitting down with alcohol.
I’m in Portugal now and it’s amazing. Also, the rooster is a national symbol, so knock, knock mf.
Zion National Park in Utah is my all-time happy place. Views are breathtaking and there is a nice shuttle if you don’t want to walk. Other than that, I’d say park your rear at an all-inclusive in Mexico. They feed you non-stop and hand out tequila like it’s going out of style.
Hawaii’s always nice. One of those resort complexes right on the beach. Hardly have to walk anywhere, the restaurants are right there in the hotel. Beach is just a few steps away. Or lounge by the pool with a good book. Pretty nice place to just chill out.
You should go to New Orleans.
Can you still drink while on your meds? If so, totally do the napa valley wine train. You just sit and look at the beautiful landscape and drink tons of wine! And there’s food too (if you’re into that).
Western Washington, Seattle and northwest. Lots of islands here with really mild summers. The San Juan Islands and Whidbey Island are my happy places, So much so that we made Whidbey our permanent home.
It’s a bit of a flight, but I highly recommend Grand Cayman Island. It had the most beautiful white sand beaches with crystal clear blue water. Not a lot of walking, incredibly friendly locals, and as close to perfect as it can get. (Bonus: snorkeling to see all the pretty fish)
Your backyard. Veg out, heal, read, write, do what you want to do and sleep the rest of the time. Why do you HAVE to go somewhere? =)
Moonstone Beach in Cambria, California. Stayed in a quaint hotel across the road from beach; took only 5 minutes to walk to shoreline. Sat there staring out at the ocean, collecting moonstones, jade, and jasper while just sitting in one spot. Awesome. It is now where I go mentally when I am stressed.
You would love House on the Rock in Wisconsin. I just delivered two 12-packs of New Glarus beer to a cousin who lives outside Wisconsin. I also second Ouray, Colorado. Hot springs are stinky, but soothing for achy joints.
River rafting in Idaho. Glamping with not a finger to be lifted. No wifi. Actually spoke with teenagers and played games. Relaxed. salmonraft.com
If you like quaint, I recommend St. Andrews, New Brunswick. I admit my bias, since I’m from New Brunswick originally, but other people feel the same way, so… 🙂
Nutamik Lake or Eleanor Lake, Manitoba, Canada. The scenery is amazing and if the weather is good you can take a canoe to the other side, where there’s no people. There’s a lot of walking and biking trails, and number of other attractions in the general area. And you come through Winnipeg there’s the parks and The Forks and the zoo. Also, some amazing ice cream places!
Seaside/Cannon Beach, Oregon. Pelicans, whales, and seals, oh my. Perfect!
Yellowstone national park. Mostly car trip once you are there, with short walks to see the specific sites.
The drive up is pretty too. Unless you want to fly near by and rent a car.
Back in September, we went to Destin Florida and rented a condo right on the beach. I spent every day on the beach fully under a giant umbrella and covered in SPF 100 just watching the water. I also went parasailing despite my fear of heights. It was so peaceful.
Stopped at St. Lucia on a cruise a few years ago. It was gorgeous. I would definitely recommend a beach vacation for you. You could snorkel if you feel up to it (swimming is very easy on the joints!), or just lay on the beach and relax – which sounds like something you need these days. Whatever you do, take care of yourself while you’re doing it!
If somebody else is paying, Manhattan. Shows, crazies, stores, 50-screen movie theaters — all good.
Maine is amazing in the summer. Pine trees and loons…birds, not people.
We stayed for a week in a house in Cuyutlan, Mexico and it was the best thing ever. We had the most amazing cook and a driver who lived there and they hung out with us and fed us fresh coconuts filled with coconut rum. We went on boat trips through the forest and visited the sea turtle refuge and basically just hung out at the pool and ate fresh guac all week. Also I didn’t know the sand was black on the west coast of Mexico so I about scalded my feet off!
My favorite vacation I can remember was from when I was a kid and we went to Niagara falls and stayed in Canada. The Canadian side of the falls was clean and beautiful. Bonus: there was a ton of weird wax museums there. This was back in the 80s so I’m not sure what it’s like now, however.
Last summer I flew to Salt Lake and drove Utah, Idaho, and Montana. EIght national parks, which I did with minimal walking, like just ride the shuttle in and out of Zion, don’t get off to hike like everyone else. Idaho had both the B&B shaped like a beagle AND the Idaho Potato Museum. Might be my favorite trip ever and I did it alone.
Jerome, Arizona – the whole town is a historic landmark. There’s lots of cool galleries and restaurants and you can stay in the (allegedly haunted!) Grand Hotel, which was the former hospital servicing the “Billion Dollar Copper Mine” which was the original reason for the town. There’s a train (if you sit in first class, there’s booze) through the countryside and a really cool historical museum AND it’s about 30 minutes from Sedona, which is also really cool.
I took my kids on a 20 hr road trip from Dallas (where we live) to The Grand Canyon then to San Diego. It was amazing.
For a family vacation, do not miss Mt. Rushmore, Custer State Park, and the Badlands area. Drive through the Badlands and you’ll swear you’re on the moon. And there will be a surprise animal that will come right up to your car window and beg to be fed. OK it’s a donkey. Dozens of them, actually. And you get out and take a thousand pictures with them. I suck at keeping secrets.
A week at Disneyland and Disneyland California Adventure. We stayed on site at the Grand Californian and it was the most amazing, magic filled week for everyone. My five year old (who was 3 at the time) remembers the whole goddamn trip. That’s how magical it is. And if you do go, you NEED to see the World of Color show. I was there in October for a mom’s only few days and it was so beautifully done. And just hanging out in the town square in CA was so much fun.
Bar harbor, Maine
Kauai in Hawaii is my favorite. Rent a house or condo with a pool. Fabulous. I’m also a fan of central and northern California. Lots of stunning drives and picturesque towns.
We did a trip to South Dakota, I don’t know if you’ve been, but we went to Mt Rushmore. It was pretty awesome. Also on the way we stopped in Cawker City, KS, home of one of the largest balls of twine in the US. There’s a hotel nearby where you can stop and get twine and add it on to the ball, and they’ll record how much you add. Also near there is the geographical center of the contiguous states, which is not as physically imposing, but was a nice place to stop. Then there’s Wall Drug and the Corn Palace, if you’re into touristy stuff like that 🙂 One of my favorite vacations. If you want something smaller, the Cincinnati Zoo is one of my favorite zoos, it’s one of only two zoos outside of Florida where you can see manatees 🙂 Hope you have a great trip, wherever you go!
I had a blast at the Stratford Festival — a theater festival in Stratford, Ontario, that runs from May through November. Imagine an entire town whose main industry is theater. It’s awesome. And, because they didn’t want to lost the charm of the town, they instituted a no-hotels-within-city-limits ordinance which as resulted in a thriving B&B business in a very pretty town. You could go in the summer to avoid the cold, but there is a lot of walking around. It’s mostly Shakespeare, but there are always other things playing too — I’ve seen Medea, Three-Penny Opera, original works by local playwrights, as well as a ton of Shakespearean plays. I haven’t gone since I bought my house, because now all my money goes into mortgage and gardening, but when your health allows you to, I definitely recommend a visit to the place.
what about an all in inclusive resort in the dominican or in costa rica or mexico? nice and warm. stuff to do if you want, pools and bars if you don’t want.
Oh, I love a cruise. All the work is done for you.
Ludington, MI. It was a quiet town with a great beach on Lake Michigan. You can rent little cabins within walking distance of the beach.
Sedona, AZ–beautiful, mystical place. Gorgeous, too and usually pretty mild weather. New Agers call it the “navel of the world.” It’s fun to explore the woods, creek, Oak Creek Canyon, Slide Rock, fishing, and if you want you can go to one of the several stores that sell crystals and work on your chakras!
Laguna Niguel, CA. Just chill out. Cliffs, surf, gorgeous.
Sound of Music sing-a-long tour in Salzburg. Probably too far for you to travel right now (can’t imagine an 8 hour flight w/ potential vampire RA) but once you’re there it’s a bus trip thru the Alps with SINGING!!! I could not have embarrassed myself more, nor been happier to do so.
Lake Tahoe in California is the perfect destination. Maybe a side trip to San Francisco or Napa Valley. Love them all and miss them terribly.
A few years ago we went to Colorado and New Mexico for a week, and it was so much fun! Colorado was beautiful – we did the Highway of Legends – it’s a gorgeous drive, and we found some great food along the way, such as The Dog Bar and Grill in Cuchara.
New Mexico also had great scenery and food, including the St. James Hotel (Cimarron, NM), which is also haunted – bonus! Also, Santa Fe had so much history, including Spanish missions and, of course, great food!
Lastly, Roswell’s UFO Museum was really cool!
California!! There are so many different places to go, and things to see!! True, I live here, but it’s still awesome. If you ask where I had he best vacation, I’ll tell you it was England.
Airbnb it in Sayulita, Mexico. Or Zihuatanejo. Get out of the states and space out on a beach for a week, if that’s your jam. Favorite place ever is in New Zealand, but it’s like, hell, trying to get there, and you should stay for at least a month maybe. 🙂
A cruise to the Bahamas. You can do or as much as you feel up to. It’s the best way to feel pampered.
A cruise of the Greek Islands. Very little walking involved 🙂
All my best vacations were camping trips, so not much help to you. Being outside of cell phone signals, fishing, napping and swimming all day … yeah, that’s my vacationd dream
I was also going to suggest a cruise. Do as little or as much as you want, and get waited on hand and foot.
I chime in on Jamaica too. Warm, nice, and you can sit under a ceiling fan, or on the beach, or by a pool, and the other family members can scamper around if they so desire. Nice and laid back.
Best vacation was the Mediterranean cruise. It was 12 nights and the perfect combination of days at sea (resting) and days touring. We started in Barcelona, Spain and went to Italy, Greece, Turkey, Egypt and Malta. I actually came back rested. Usually I take trips where you come back needing a vacation to recover.
Come to Buenos Aires and I’ll drive you around 😛
the wicklow mountains in ireland. greenest place i have ever seen in my life. even the little birds were happy. plus there’s a cool old monastery with 13th century celtic graves with bullet holes in them. also you can buy very warm, hand knit woolen items from sheep herders by the side of the road on your drive there.
Viking River Cruises …you unpack once, your “hotel’ moves with you, food/service are great, tours in every port are included, and they have special tour options for less mobile folks. I’ve done the Rhine and the Danube….it’s so relaxing just watching the world go by from your stateroom.
Also Maui – it’s warm and you can be as active (surfing, hiking, ziplining, snorkeling) or as non-active (pool, beach, luau, lei-making) as you wish. i love the Westin Maui – just walking into the open-air lobby makes you feel like you’re in paradise.
I live in Santa Barbara, CA and it’s a pretty popular tourist spot. Lovely weather (usually foggy mornings give way to mid-70s), photogenic but relaxed surroundings, theater scene for your daughter, a new cat therapy cafe, scenic drives up the mountains and/or the mesa cliffs nearer the ocean.
Sunset Beach, NC or Costa Rica. Both very peaceful and relaxing vacations.
Benson, AZ. Kartchner Caverns are the most accessible for the mobility-impaired that I have ever seen. The funky little mining town of Bisby is nearby, and so are a major telescope and a decommissioned missile silo, if you arrange tours ahead of time. Lots of rock and gem shops with lovely carvings and jewelry. Quiet, peaceful, small town to be your base for day trips to see the sights.
Cambria, California. Beautiful central California coast, very quiet, quaint shops, lots of places to stay including houses for rent. Moonstone beach! Pet friendly too – spent a lovely week at a cute house 1/2 block from the beach with my dog. Linn’s in town for pie! A short drive to Hearst Castle. Mainly for the beautiful, peaceful ocean front – oh, and sea lions (lots of them) sunning at their special spot a few miles away.
Hawaii! Rent a condo on the beach and swim, or just sit and watch the ocean. I need to do that again.
The Grand Cayman Islands or Puerto Escondido in Mexico. Unbelievable beaches and warm water.
Rent an ocean front beach house in the Outerbanks, NC. Walk out on your deck, sit down in a comfy chair with a blanket, and enjoy a cup of jo/tea while watching the waves crash on the shore, smelling the salt air, and hearing the ocean/birds. It will soothe your soul, and you won’t have to do any walking!
I went to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico for the first time this winter. It was calm and relaxing and for someone with arthritis, it’s a good spot to be 🙂
My favorite trip I ever took was to Scotland. We went in the fall when there were no crowds. The weather was a little cold and rainy but a polar fleece under a light rain jacket and some nice water proof shoes pretty much takes care of that, and you get to see a lot of amazing places either completely by yourself or nearly so.
Domestically, I would say that my favorite place I ever went was Lake Tahoe. It’s a little pricey but it is truly one of the most beautiful places in the United States that I have ever been. A close second would be Crystal River Florida in January or February because nothing really beats swimming with hundreds of manatees!
Newfoundland and Labrador -the people, the land, the colors, make it a great place to go. It has icebergs and whales just to name a few interesting things. Lots of scenes from shows and movies are filmed there. It’s a unique place to visit or if you can’t travel, it’s nice to just look at pictures of it.
Cabo San Lucas!!! Warm. Beach. Things to do if you want, booze, and fresh mangos sold on the beach! Heaven.
The Amazon in Ecuador. The people are amazing and the food is fresh and delicious and everything is warm and beautiful.
Saint Martin, Orient Beach. If you like naturist resorts, August is family month at Club Orient. If not, there are plenty of villa rentals and other resorts on the bay. It’s warm, the water is perfect, there are good restaurants nearby. The most beautiful clear water and relaxing place I’ve ever been.
Get your ass to Santa Fe. Get your ailing ass to 10,000 waves for a few days. It’s amazing. My other choice would be a wonderful place called The Inn at Irish Hollow located outside of Galena, Il. https://www.irishhollow.com/
We went there after my husband’s brain surgery. No TV, but wifi. They feed you great food in amazing cottages. I’ve never felt more restored.
Catalina Island! Super quaint, no cars, just golf cart around the island. You have to take a 1hr boat ride to get there though.
In highschool, I got to go on a school sponsored trip to London, Paris, and Barcelona. While the whole trip was good, Barcelona was unexpectedly amazing. When I was in college, I went with a few friends to Colorado Springs and we got to hike in the Garden of the Gods. I don’t hike, but that day, I didn’t want to leave.
Cambria, CA. Beautiful beach town, laid back, good restaurants. Relaxing.
Gwaii hanaas also known as the queen Charlotte islands the years I spent living there while doing Arctic and sub-arctic satcom for Parks Canada first of all it is a temperate rainforest environment so even though it’s like 200 miles out to sea and you know 30 miles south of Alaska and you would think it’s freezing actually quitting mild and temperate you got some great windstorms occasionally have some good thunderstorms but that’s about it it’s submarine archipelago it is absolutely beautiful there’s a couple world heritage sites I’ve seen Orca spawning in the skidigate Inlet saw a picture perfect humpback whale breach just a beautiful arts with the Dorsal fins sticking up like a postcard on just standing on one of the islands walking dog one day and like some of the friendliest people and just a really cool place absolutely beautiful and peaceful the only downside is you wake up you know to the sound of crabs hitting your roof because eagles are dropping them to break them open for breakfast but seriously if you can go not just to the protected park part down south but the towns on graham and moresby island are great also I ended up being one of the organizers of the end of the world music festival that they hold their every year really awesome great weekend event and the haida are just some of the coolest people
Iceland was amazing! You can soak in the geothermal hot springs at the Blue Lagoon!
Cruise. My goal one day is to take a vacation (never been on one) and now that I’m borked up and Veteran Husbeast is also borked up we want to take a cruise to Alaska during the summer or the Carribean during the cooler months. You get to choose how much walking you do, or, how much sitting outside with your book in one hand and a standing order of “If whatever liquid gets to half an inch from the bottom of the glass, don’t ask, just refill it. This book is too good to look away from.”
Paya Bay in Roatan. Incredible snorkelling. Only a handful of rooms so quiet without a lot of people (very important for me)
We love Cancun. People bring you things poolside and there’s Mayan ruins to see on tours plus snorkeling and boat trips out to Isla Mujeres.
Mackinac Island. It’s amazingly beautiful! Also, Boston, also a cruise in the Caribbean, also an all inclusive resort in Jamaica…I need a damn vacation.
The North Shore of Lake Superior in Minnesota – north of Duluth
I’ve always loved the Outer Banks in North Carolina. The ocean feeds my soul, and it doesn’t have to be high energy if you decide to stay under the umbrella with a book, which is my preferred spot 🙂
I think Mexico would be perfect for you, but keep in mind that even the airport will require alot of walking. Get a doctor’s note for one of those golf cart thingy’s so they can drive you around—too long to walk to the gates!!!
I love Mexico, especially Huatulco but it is super hot in the summer time and this is the rainy season.
But enough to do and friendly and safe so you can get out and explore and you can also do the dreaded AI thing and lay around the beach or pool all day long.
New Orleans is one of my favorite places in the world. Plus very cool old cemeteries.
does humidity have an impact on your RA? I don’t want to recommend anywhere that might cause you more problems. Yosemite National Park is nice. So is Yellowstone if you want to head North.
We went to Yosemite last year because our friend lives close by, and as I am disabled and walk with a quad-cane, there wasn’t a lot of hiking involved. It’s a truly magical place, and I kept muttering to myself “How have I lived in California for 55 years and not seen this?”
South Dakota is like heaven to a big city Canadian girl like me. Fields of sunflowers, prairie dogs galore, animals I never thought I’d see in real life like mountain goats and buffalo…
Everything comes with a side of bacon if you like that sort of thing.
I liked Tybee Island, it isn’t as exotic as some locations posted. We got a rental right on the beach, it’s hot. The kids and husband could go to the beach and swim, I could sit on the deck with tea or coffee and enjoy the scenery. The walk to the beach was less than 10 minutes from where we were staying. The kids were entertained and occupied with the ocean and beach. There is also some attractions that are not very far to walk. The beach was super clean, and it was just amazing.
Alaska. Escape the heat. Beautiful scenery. Find sled dog puppies to cuddle.
Pensacola, FL — specifically, Santa Rosa Island, right across the bay. So relaxing. And you don’t have to do a damn thing. A short walk to Peg Leg Pete’s for fresh oysters is amazing!
Ruidoso. We rented a cabin by the river. It was so peaceful. If we wanted we could hike, or just explore the shops. Mostly, I sat outside by the fire pit and listened to the river babbling. Not too hot, not too cold except late at night.
London is my absolute favourite, but that doesn’t really meet your needs. You have to walk in Europe. No matter all the cool trains that zip you everywhere quickly, walking will still be part of it. Plus one of the most fun things we did in London was a Jack the Ripper walking tour where we visited all the murder sites. You’d love it – totally up your alley (no pun intended) but I would suggest a wheelchair or something cause your knees would hate you. Cobblestones. 😳
I also loved Astoria, Oregon and the surrounding little towns. We toured the sites where The Goonies was made and it was magic. But that whole area was great. It’s also where Lewis & Clark reached the West Coast. Utterly charming.
Northern California is lovely, but Dan Francisco might be too cold for you. I don’t much care for Southern California, but there is a lot to do. San Diego is great- especially the older areas. Balboa park has museums and a zoo. There’s also a wild animal park just outside San Diego where they’ve done a good job with natural habitats. And a tour you can ride.
I’m in Las Vegas, and it’s definitely not too cold. It’s crazy hot. But it is a wacky place. Lots of shows to see, oddities to visit, lots of air conditioning to hide in, and grand hotels. You could probably rent a motorized chair? But that may be true of anywhere. Old Town San Diego may be just the ticket. Lovely days and a light sweater at night. Awesome museums. 😊
Santa Cruz CA.There’s the ocean, redwood forests, a pier with an amusement park for your kiddo, cute little towns with great shopping. Truly the most beautiful plsce I’ve ever been.
Naples, FL or Marco Island, FL. Gorgeous and relaxing!
I haven’t taken a vacation since 2010 because my anxiety has been so bad that vacations sounded the opposite of relaxing. I seem to have found the right medication, and I am celebrating my daughter’s high school graduation and move off to college by taking a vacation to Huntington Beach, CA. I’m both excited and terrified!
VT, obviously. I mean, look at what we’ve got! http://www.roadsideamerica.com/location/vt/all. How can you turn down a Big Lady Squirrell?
I love any National Park. Most have easy to hard paths to take in them. My son’s favorite is Mount Rushmore, while mine is Yosemite, with the Grand Canyon close behind. Have fun!!
Ruidoso, NM – you can do some walking there, but it certainly isn’t required. Just rent a cabin and chill in the woods. I recommend StoryBook Cabins in the Upper Canyon – lovely little (or big, if that is your choice) cabins with nice porches for sitting and watching the wildlife – always lots of hummingbirds and deer. Most of the cabins are right by the Rio Ruidoso, so you can hear the water flowing most of the time (barring drought). It is my happiest place on earth and great for re-charging.
Cozumel, Mexico. Walking not required. Just sunshine, tequila, and water so many shades of blue you won’t believe your eyes!
Cambria, Californie! Someone mentioned Hearst Castle and another mentioned Moonstone Beach. What they forgot to mention is that we have WINE here and lots of it. Even if you have to take vodka in a flask, you can taste and spit and take home many, many new friends. Cases of them. I’ll drive.
Train ride! LA to San Francisco, along the coast, then SF to Denver was my favorite trip. You go through parts of the west that look untouched and you feel like you’re in a John Ford western. Sit in the observation car and look at the scenery, read books, watch movies, meet interesting people, eat in the dining car. You can stop in fun places and spend the night, hop back on the train. It’s my favorite way to travel and a great way to see the country.
What about Taos? It’s artsy, laid-back, good air quality, and it’s in the mountains so it will be a good temperature and not too humid. If you want the beach, Tybee Island, GA is super nice. It’s got a more homey, community feel and no big tourist hotels. Rent a house a little house a short walk from the beach and just hang out. It’s also near Savannah which is fun. And I can attest that their library has a big shelf of books tourists can take for free. So when Hailey runs out of books, she can go find one.
San Pedro, Belize or Ocracoke, NC
My favorite vacation was the cruise we took last year. They feed you, clean up after you, and you just get to relax and do nothing, or join in on some of the activities on board. The cruise went to Cozumel, but that wasn’t the part I enjoyed. I loved getting away from computers and cell phones, and just relaxing. You can buy last-minute cruises at a steep discount. I loved it so much we’re doing it again this year.
One of my most memorable and fun vacations was our summer trip to Yellowstone. Watching Old Faithful do its thing was so awesome. Just seeing the beauty that is in Nature was indescribable. Then we went to Puget Sound and stayed with Family that lived right on the Sound – literally their back yard dropped off into Puget Sound. Those were the best 2 weeks we spent with our family – my sisters, my parents, and BONUS my Grandparents. I feel nothing but Love and Happiness when I think about that vacation. 🙂 <3
I’ve never been on a vacation. But I lived in Hawaii so I didn’t have to then. I spent two summers on the beach at different times recovering from a depression and it was the most healing time. The water was warm and salty so I could swim or float, the sun was warm and I already had a tan so I didn’t get burned, sometimes I’d bring a book, sometimes not, and I’d just rest and let the breeze blow.It’s been over thirty years since I’ve been there and since I’ve just realized I haven’t had any sort of vacation I’m thinking that taking that rest might be important again.
I loved Spain, when I was a kid we lived there. I also liked visiting Boone, NC and Asheville, NC.
Every year we rent a cottage on the coast of Maine just south of Portland. This is my happy place. You can sit on the beach and never move. You can read piles of books. You can take your coffee out on the beach in the morning and walk as much or as little as you want, then find a place to sit on the rocks and watch the waves roll in. You can drive into Portland and eat lobster til you barf. There are at least 3 lighthouses to visit that are close by. You can eat whoopie pies and Needhams and fiddlehead fern salads and drink Shipyard beer. You can stroll the beach and collect sea glass and sand dollars. You can take whale watching cruises. You can see an evening light on clear days that is like nothing anywhere else in the world. I CAN’T WAIT TO GET BACK.
Any place where there is a beach (lake, ocean, artificial, whatever) and staff to wait on you. Lay on a lounger and be spoiled. Westin La Paloma (Tucson but up in the foothills) and Casa Marina in Key West are tied for the best service I’ve ever had. I’m not rich and I went in the off-season when both were affordable.
Corolla beach, NC! Beach right outside the back door, wild horses, very peaceful
I agree with Puerto Rico. My husband and I went there for our honeymoon and it was the best trip we’ve taken thus far. The weather is warm and beautiful most days and there’s so much to do, from the beach to exploring the old forts to hiking in the mountains/rain forest. Also, the food is delicious. We took a food tour of the city; relaxed on the beach and ate from roadside stands; hiked up a waterfall; explored the old forts, the nature reserve, and bioluminescent bays; got lost in little bookshops; and fell in love with everything! It truly is the isla del encanto (island of enchantment).
25th anniversary cruise to the southern Caribbean. We got a room with a balcony & could have just spent the whole cruise sitting there. Except for the need for food. Unfortunately there’s a lot of walking even if you don’t leave the ship…
Montana. Always Montana in the summertime. Go to Whitefish or Kalispell or even Bigfork. You can just sit on a deck or patio and enjoy the cool air and sunshine and relax in the Last Best Place. The go eat amazing food and see some shows. Hailey and Victor can hike or zipline or relax with you.
Prince Edward Island Canada. Canada’s smallest province,white sand beaches red cliffs blue ocean and as much or as little walking as the whole province in the summer months caters to tourists. It is the most beautiful place I have ever seen
Grand Turk island in the Turks and Caicos islands! It is a small island with crystal clear blue waters, white sand beaches and great snorkeling. There is one cruise ship port that is commercialized, but the rest of the island is not. There is one family run resort (Bohio Resort) that has everything you could need and a bunch of AirBnb’s and bed and breakfasts on the rest of the island. The people are fantastic, the men like women with curves and the rum is AMAZING! I cannot wait to go back!
Houseboating on Lake Powell (Utah and Arizona). No hiking, just lots of beautiful scenery and water, and whatever drinks you choose to bring. Truly the most relaxing, fantastic vacation. The houseboat is your home for a week (or however long you choose). All the amentities of home, just lots of relaxing and reading and game playing and drawing and Jet skiing (if you rent a couple). Oh, and the stars at night..and the cliffs, and the water, and…and….. Get thee to Page, AZ and then get on a boat and leave the world behind.
It’s a haul for those of us in the US, but the Harry Potter Studio Tour London is so friggin’ cool, I nearly needed to slap somebody’s mama. And I’m child-free and grown! If you do go at some point, I highly recommend the personal guide. We did this tour 3 years ago and I’m still gushing.
A cruise is good for just relaxing with not a lot of movement. I went to Tahoe last year and loved it. My two favorite places ever are Finland and Norway. If you get the chance, go.
You need to get an all inclusive to somewhere like the Tamarijn in Aruba. Lots of different restaurants, everything is right there, nothing you need to worry about because everything is paid for. Lots of activities for the kiddo so if you don’t feel up to it, she won’t be bored. When you don’t feel good, you can either sit in your nice room and have food brought to you, or if you feel like going out, but not going far, you can sit outside because the beach is right there. And they even do the cute thing where they make your towels look like animals!
My happiest vacation was in Egypt. I went there with four friends and it’s the laughs that I remember more. But since it might not be the best place to be currently, how about Spain?
Jamaica. Soooooo relaxing.
I recommend going to the British Virgin islands if you all have your passports. Otherwise the U.S. Virgin Islands. No need for lots of walking, beautiful tropical scenery, can do shopping if you want or you can stay at a resort and never leave. It’s the best vacation I’ve ever had.
Ojo Caliente in New Mexico. It’s a hot springs spa off the beaten path, near Georgia O’Keeffe’s Ghost Ranch in Abiquiu. The last real vacation my husband and I took before he passed away was in this beautiful place. He had even more health issues than you, and he always felt so much better for having “taken the waters” there. My favorite part was that everywhere there were designated “quiet zones,” so you didn’t have to socialize WITH ANYONE, and just enjoy the peace.
Vote for Hawaii. Then maybe a dip at Lourdes!
WC Handy Festival in Florence, Alabama. Hot as hell, but loads of great music constantly for 10 days. Doesn’t have to be a lot of walking. Also there’s a lake. And it’s friendly, but not in your face. And not so crowded it would freak you out. You can kind of disappear if you want to. Also petty cheap, since most of the events are free or very minimal cost.
Take a cruise! Eat whatever you wish. Wonderful (aka frequent) alcoholic drinks. Things for everyone to do or not do. But whatever you pick, please heal yourself. I need you in my tribe.
p.s. You are the sane one in this tribe. 😉
For now: Caribbean cruise. Great food, great views, easy to book excursions that let you see lots of awesome places with minimal walking, and plenty of sun and warmth to chase the vampire curses away.
For someday: Japan. Seriously AMAZING. Japan was never on my list of priorities until a friend of mine moved there and we went to visit. And then I fell in love with the place in about two seconds flat and all I think about now is going back. I swear I could just wander around Kamakura for the rest of my life and be happy.
I have two!! I absolutely adored the Amalfi Coast in Italy. It’s beautiful everywhere you look!! Take the highspeed ferry to Capri and sing your way throught the Blue Grotto! My second fave is Lake Louise in Canada! Relaxing and gorgeous and you can take a drive to Banff!
Saint Augustine, Florida. Went there on my honeymoon and twice after. Took my boys for the first time last year. SO many wonderful memories!
I do hope you are better soon!
As an astronomer, I’m legally obligated to suggest that you and your family go see the total solar eclipse on August 21. Google “total solar eclipse 2017” and you’ll get the track for it. The good thing about it is that the path of the eclipse goes across the US, so there’s probably some place along the track that’s not too far from you and/or the weather is helpful for how you’re feeling. The bad thing is that by now most accommodations are completely sold out, so you may end up sleeping in your car – not the best for feeling good. The eclipse will be amazing, though!
If the eclipse is a no-go for you, my favorite places have been in Rocky Mountain National Park (such amazing views, and you can get the views without hiking if need be, since the scenic road crosses the Continental Divide). Summer means the daytime temp is pleasant but not hot, nights are chilly, and no humidity. The park isn’t horribly crowded – it’s big – and the main town nearby (Estes Park) has a lot of kitschy shops for tourists. The only place I’ve been where we drove by an elk just outside town with a string of decorative lights twisted up around his antlers like he was a giant Christmas ornament. (He wasn’t in any pain or trouble – just rutting season!)
The Marriott Resort in Myrtle Beach, SC. It’s far enough outside of the city to not have the crowds and ridiculousness, but close enough that you can get into the ridiculousness if you want. Their beach is private, and there are hammocks for resting! It’s perfect for lazing by the pool, hearing the ocean, and tearing through some good reading.
We also loved Sedona, AZ. I think it may be balls hot there now, but it was so beautiful and restful there. There are plenty of places to hike and be outdoors, or you can just stay at the Enchantment Resort and let people wait on you.
Finally, Kauai. We stayed in the Po’ipu area on the south side of the island, and it’s beautiful and calm. There aren’t as many tourists on the island, and the resorts are lovely and welcoming. Plus it’s warm and the weather is fantastic!
Asheville, NC is a fun trip. I lived there for a number of years, and there are fantastic restaurants, a great art scene, and a wonderful bookstore in the downtown area called Malaprops. Plus, it’s right on the Blue Ridge Parkway, so there are beautiful drives to be had, and minimal people to interact with!
The Oregon coast. I love a good reason to sit, wrapped in a blanket, read, and have no guilt about not hiking 47 miles. Plus, haunted lighthouses. It’s awesome.
The best vacation I’ve been on was a family trip to Poipu in Kauai. Everything was so beautiful and we had a great time. I live in San Diego and there are a bunch of things to do and see around here, but I’m pretty biased. If you end up here I would be happy to give suggestions for places to see and things to do.
Key West, FL. We went for our honeymoon- there’s tons of off beat stuff to do if you want tobut it’s also totally set up to do nothing but relax as well. There are lots of B&Bs that are old houses. We went in August and it was hot but manageable!
Come to Cedar Rapids and I will personally drive y’all to the House on the Rock. Plus it’s so peaceful here.
I recommend here http://myrtlesplantation.com/
Glen Arbor or Leland, MI. Near Traverse City but much less crowded and more peaceful, and close to Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. Beaches are beautiful, clear water but no sharks or jellyfish. Lots of great restaurants. And you can tour the wineries on the peninsula, take a boat trip over to Manitou Island, and eat Michigan cherries.
I’ve been going to Door County, Wisconsin every summer since I was little. It’s perfect in the summer. Calm, relaxing days by the lake. Visiting art shops, drinking good beer, going to see plays performed in the Peninsula State Park…it is where I’m happiest.
San Francisco. Make sure to go north to Muir Woods. Spend all day there.
I heartily second the Rushmore, Custer State Park and Badlands trip. If you can get lodging in Custer, do it. Best family vacation ever and if you aren’t up to walking most of the sites can be seen from a car. Do not miss – Needles Highway, Sylvan Lake, the train from Hill City to Keystone, horseback riding for Haley at Blue Bell Stables. The Badlands is about 90 minutes from the Black Hills and has amazing scenery and the famous Wall Drug. At the risk of angering the locals, I would try and NOT lodge in Rapid City. It’s fairly far from everything and driving in the mountains takes a very long time. Last hint – regardless of where you stay you should eat supper early. Most everything closes by 9 p.m.
Cabo San Lucas, Mexico was great! But do an all-inclusive resort that has golf carts to bring you around (like pueblo bonito) so you don’t have to walk as much. Aruba was also amazing! and the resorts tend to be smaller than Cabo so less walking and no golf cart needed. Or Napa California which (if you have a DD) can be no walking and is super duper relaxing. Plus there is wine.
We just returned from Hawaii. Floating on the water with your face in the water (with a mask/snorkel) is so relaxing and wonderful. Watching the fish eating from the reefs – I loved it. You can walk as much or as little as you want. Bonus: volcanoes, both live and dormant. Extra bonus: best rum in the world is being made in Maui at Ocean distillery (and currently only available on site).
Santorini is hands down the most beautiful place on the planet.
Come to Prince Edward Island because we consider it normal for people of any gender to put red braided wigs on and call themselves Anne of Green Gables.
Mazatlan was a great, relaxing vacation. The resort section (Gold Coast) was lovely, beautiful weather and I did absolutely nothing. For days. Still has swimming and fishing and shopping but very little walking involved. Lots of little covered beach spots where they wait on you all day. It’s a sitcaytion.
Tucson, AZ..yeah, it’s hot, but it’s a dry heat… and the night sky is awesome because all the street lights are designed to not cause light pollution. It’s not tourist season during the summer, so everything- hotels, restaurants, etc.- cost less and you can drive all over and see amazing things.. Drive up Mt. Lemmon and the zones change from desert to pines at the top (and there used to be an amazing pie cafe, but that may have burned in a wildfire a few years ago, but it may be back). The Desert Museum opens up at night so you can walk around and see animals that don’t/won’t come out in the heat of the day. The Tohono O’odham reservation is just out of the city and has a beautiful mission… and the mountains… I love to drive up to Rincon Pass and just sit and watch the sunset in the bowl of the mountains. Then drive down the scary road and into the Sonoran Desert. Truly a beautiful place!!
Come to Boston some time this summer–if you do it during a time I’m not working, I’ll be more than happy to play tour guide for all of you. We have lots of historical stuff to check out both in and outside the city, some of which I haven’t seen yet (although I’d suggest not doing the Freedom Trail if you’re trying to avoid a lot of walking, because that will wear you right out; on the plus side, you can have lunch at Durgin Park, a legendary old restaurant, and stop for Italian pastries & cappuccino in the North End…or do that w/out the Freedom Trail, what the hell). We have an amazing aquarium w/cute little penguins and a big exhibit on sharks right now, harbor cruises, Duck Boats where you can sit on your ass and be driven all around town to see the sights before heading out onto the Charles River, and lots of museums, including the Museum of Science, where you can see an actual Apollo capsule and be amazed that 3 guys went to the moon in something THAT small. (There are passes you can buy to get you into a bunch of attractions for one price that are totally worth it, so if you want to do a lot of sightseeing, it’s something to think about.) We’ve got Chinatown, Fenway Park, Newbury Street and overpriced stores, and the Fenway area (if you think Whitey and Klaus are bad, check out the Canada Geese that hang out there and occasionally stop traffic!). Harvard Square, alas, is really just a big outdoor mall these days, but my neighborhood, Davis Square in Somerville (still on the subway) is so hip it hurts, with both first-run and classic movies at the Somerville Theatre (they also serve beer, wine, and really good ice cream!), lots of good restaurants, and some amusing people-watching, including, on the weekend, marching bands that plays songs like “Video Killed the Radio Star”. Oh, and if you want to take a 3.5-hour road trip to Vermont and New Hampshire, you can have the best pie EVER at the P&H Truck Stop off I-91 in Wells River, VT, skip across the Connecticut River to Woodsville, NH and say hi to my mom and dad, and (if it’s late enough in the season) get some berries or tomatoes or flowers or something that my dad has grown in his garden–I don’t think he’ll let you leave without something if he knows you’ll eat it! Seriously, think about it, and holler back if you’re interested, OK?
Dragoncon in Atlanta every Labor day weekend. It’s like 1000s of your new best friends for a weekend.
Ojo Caliente – hot mineral springs resort in New Mexico outside of Santa Fe. Yoga, spa services, soaking pools, swimming pool, mud pool, hiking, awesome restaurant/bar, historic hotel. The sky is such an amazing blue, and you can soak in the pools at night while you stare up at the stars. ojocaliente.ojospa.com it’s amazing and relaxing and rejuvenating, and some of the waters are supposed to be healing for arthritis.
Beaches resort, Barbados
A bucket list vacation of mine is to tour supernatural/lore hotspots. Marfa, Taos, Roswell, Area 51/ET Highway. I’ve only done the ET Highway to Rachel, NV. There is NOTHING out there but a motel/cafe/souvenir store called Little A’le’inn with one of the cheapest bars I’ve ever been in. The locals can give you directions to the back gates of Area 51, for the love of Cheesus, don’t touch anything out there. There are a gillion cameras and a hefty trespassing fine if you touch their shit.
You said California too, one of my favorite places in CA is Morro Bay/Cayucos. There is something addictive about that place.
Caribbean cruise is easy. I spent my last cruise sick and unable to properly absorb oxygen and it was still awesome because I could literally just sit in a chair all day and see beautiful things and be warm. In the event I felt like hauling off the ship there were always taxis waiting to drive me places.
And you seriously can’t beat the Turks and Caicos.
The happiest moments of my recent life were spent in Point Loma, California. Going up to the light house and just looking off into the end of the world, it was the most relaxed and happiest I have felt in longer than I can remember.
South Port, North Carolina. It’s the picture of small town America. The locals are friendly, almost no chains (0 are allowed in the town of South Port) AMAZING FOOD, cute shops, great beaches. My parents lived there for 2 years while I was working remotely and I basically moved in with them for 3 months one summer because I couldn’t get enough. It’s one of the only beach towns I’ve ever been too that isn’t touristy. only 1 or two big obnoxious souvenir shops and they are all off the island. Did I mention the food??? Go to The Provision Company, and Yacht Basin Eatery (Get the fish sandwich!) and then go to Moore’s Street Market for lunch! You really can’t go wrong anywhere! The movie Safe Haven was filmed there. I recommend staying on Oak Island (rent a house), the beaches are just as nice but a little less crowded and you will be able to walk to them, then South Port is just 2 or 3 miles down the road and over a bridge.
Portland, Seattle, Vancouver, the BC Islands
It’s relaxing, scenic, and the food in each city is amazing. Rent a car and drive up from Portland – see the Goonies Island.
Come to Canada. It’s our 150th birthday (July 1st) and we only turn 150 once!!!! 🙂 We’d love to have you and your family visit!
http://capitolreefresort.com/ – more driving tours than walking – warm – close to Texas…low humidity, cool resort, the area is mostly orange and purple, but there are random black rock everywhere.
California, driving the whole up the coast from San Diego and had no hotels booked except the first night…Stopping wherever we wanted…what a great way to see everything…and not a lot of walking except San Francisco…loved it!
Cape Cod MA is my favorite place in the universe! Not a lot of walking either, mostly driving. Totally worth it. Travel the East Coast!
Solvang/Santa Barbara. Start at Solvang – spend a night or 2 or 3 -then travel down to Santa Barbara. Solvang – 100year old Danish village with good food (DANISH), unique shopping, tons of wineries and wine tasting, a “tiny” horse farm, a California Mission and a GREAT BOOKSTORE. Santa Barbara – home of the “Queen” of the California Missions, a wildlife friendly zoo with the most amazing colony of meerkats! – also great shopping – Chaucers bookstore (FANTABULOUS) and the OCEAN!!!!. Take the back way from Solvang to Santa Barbara and you can stop at one of the last original Pony Express stops (seriously the building is over a 100 years old) and have a trendy meal there if you time it right. It is beautiful enough for you to just hang and enough to do for your hubby and daughter to trek on by themselves.
My favorite vacations, in this order:
2. Mediterranean cruise (walk alot, or not)
3. Vancouver, Canada. There’s a Claude Monet exhibit at the Vancouver Art Gallery this summer!
4. Big Island of Hawaii – wow.
My all time favorite place is Gatlinburg Tennessee. Rent a log cabin up in the mountains for relaxing time and/or go into town for tourist craziness. If you go, check out the Lost Sea http://thelostsea.com/ it’s awesome! Here is the site for some awesome cabin rentals https://www.smokymtndreams.com/?gclid=Cj0KEQjw4cLKBRCZmNTvyovvj-4BEiQAl_sgQjUlrqi2_f4RYcuMvsobvMOJM0qMnkL5iTKXCSPAChIaAhpc8P8HAQ
Bhutan. Where instead of worrying about the GDP, they worry about Gross National Happiness.
My favorite places: Virgin Gorda in the British Virgin Islands and almost anywhere in Vermont, but especially on Lake Champlain.
San Juan Puerto Rico
is awesome, you don’t need a passport is warm, and there are a lot of things to do.
Come visit us in Vancouver! The weather in summer is warm, and there is tons to do (Stanley Park, world-class research aquarium, food tasting at Granville Island, Museum of Anthropology as mentioned by another commenter above, great food, beautiful beaches…). You could take a side trip up to Whistler and ride the gondola up the mountain, and/or take an incredibly scenic ferry trip to Victoria. You get great value for your US$ too. As a bonus – the possibility of a Justin Trudeau sighting! 😍
Okay, not North Korea. Visit NYC!!
I’ve never been, but I’ve always wanted to visit the Palm Springs Saguro Hotel (it’s rainbow colored!!) there are lots of good restaurants in Palm Springs and the hotel has free bikes, I think so you could try going on a fairly relaxed bike ride, or while you sit by the pool, you could send your daughter and husband.
I’ve also really wanted to visit the Madonna Inn. I feel like you could appreciate all the crazy room themes. Not sure if there’s one for taxidermied animals, but there is a pony room: https://www.madonnainn.com/rooms/208.php a safari room: https://www.madonnainn.com/rooms/193.php# a jungle rock room: https://www.madonnainn.com/rooms/139.php and old mill room: https://www.madonnainn.com/rooms/206.php and sooo many more! They have restaurants and a bakery on site. I think they might have horse back riding and other activities you can do or there are lots of fun/laid back things to see/do in the town like the drive in, going to see the mission, seeing the sea lions, going to a farm stand: http://www.avilavalleybarn.com/ nothing too strenuous, or hard to miss, but still interesting. You know if you can tear yourself away from one of those rooms!!
Helen, Georgia. It’s quaint as can be. It’s near the AT, so you can hike, if you want. If not you don’t have to because it’s a beautiful little town with a ton to do, especially for H.
Also, Ireland was amazing.
St. Augustine, however, may be right up YOU alley. There are two wineries (San Sabastian has a free wine tasting and tour which Haley would be welcome at -minus the tasting) and they give you incredible sales. Like guy a case get a case free! They have gorgeous shops with local artists. It’s on the ocean if you like the beach. There is a fort, the fountain or youth is there. The oldest Oak tree is there (oddly, in the parking lot of a really run down and creepy Howard Johnson. I know, I know, I don’t get it either.) they call it the Senator because he is old and crooked. There is a Ripley’s believe it or not AND there is a trolley that offers unlimited rides, so you can travel to any of the spots I mentioned and more, get a tour, have the driver describe the area and the landmarks and get on and off wherever you please as often as you like. The rates are affordable, the town is beautiful. Do NOT stay at the Howard Johnson, it is gross. There are a bazillion bed and breakfasts if you want something quaint and plenty of hotels. OH! and Flaggler College is also there and it has one of the largest collections of Tiffany Stained Glass in the country. It used to be a hoity toity hotel back in the day and now it is a college. The former ball room is now the dining hall, but it still looks like a ball room. They offer tours of the building, and it is well worth the $10.00.
Also, and this is what you will love, it’s the most haunted city in the country. Yup, you heard me.
Ghost tours galore, a graveyard, the entire city is basically full of bones under the streets. The lighthouse, is, of course, haunted because they all are. It has been featured on “My Ghost Story” more than once. Since it is also the oldest city in the US it has all sorts of curiosities displayed like the old drug store set up and wooden coffins standing up for viewing.
It’s gorgeous, it’s full of history, it’s spooky, it’s creepy, there are GREAT stories about exploding corpses, the trolley will be perfect for you, they have all the touristy treats and sweets, it’s educational, there are ghosts (Did I mention the ghosts?) and it’s completely affordable as a family vacation. It’s one of my favorite spots. We plan on going there this summer as well! I really think you will all love it because it truly has something that you will each like and there are countless opportunities for you to scare the hell out of your husband.
The mountains…deep in the woods in a cozy cabin, surrounded by wildlife and nature. It refreshes your soul.
If you don’t want to come to Canada, go to Eze France. That gorgeous, quaint little place in the French Riviera is THE best place in the world. It’s like going back in time – tiny cobblestone streets, no cars, fantastic little shops AND AMAZING scenery. And there’s a gorgeous garden at the top that is so serene and peaceful and magnificent. You will not be disappointed.
I love Sandpoint, Idaho. I lived there 4 years, in fact. It’s a lovely, arty town surrounded by mountains (smallish ones) and right on a lake. It’s gorgeous as far as landscape and weather go. You can walk if you’re up to it–the town itself is pretty flat–but can get around by driving. Good places to eat, art galleries, live music. If you go during August 3-13, there’s an outdoor music festival (festivalatsandpoint.com) that’s pretty awesome. You can take a cruise on the lake to see eagles. Often there’s literary stuff going on, from legends of the northwest to the open mic, Five Minutes of Fame. And you’re an hour from Washington, Montana and British Columbia if you want a field trip. I haven’t been back in a few years, but it has a huge place in my heart.
I have not had an actual family vacation in maybe 15 years (other than an occasionaly staycation or a weekend away from my kids)…but I DREAM OF A HOUSEBOAT. I feel like it would be soothing and relaxing and wonderful. On a lake or an ocean, I don’t care. Anchored somewhere near a beach or cove where we could explore and build bonfires. <3 <3
Check out Sanibel/Captiva Island in Florida. It’s near Ft Myers on the gulf side of FLA, south of Tampa. There are no high rises, no amusement parks. Just gorgeous warm water and beautiful beaches. You can walk as much or as little as you want. It is the seashell capital of the world -the beaches are littered with shells so no need to walk far to get any. You can do “excursions” which basically means a boat ride to do dolphin watching, see manatees, go shell on other islands, and explore sea life. Hailey and Victor would probably enjoy the sea life exploration tour. We also go with Adventures in Paradise and they take you out to an island in the sound. You then can (or not) walk out into the water with nets and scoop up whatever – sea horses, shrimp, little tiny fish, puffers, etc. You then take them back and the crew will tell you what you got. They also take you out on boat and do larger nets. They pull in, put in a tank and if safe, let you touch. If not safe, they toss right back. Yes, all gets tossed back into the water when all done. My kids LOVE this excursion! Lots of yummy restaurants to try if you choose too. It’s truly our family’s favorite place to vacation. See if you can find a beachside condo so you can literally walk out of condo onto beach. Most complexes have pools too if you get tired of sticky salt water. Oh there’s also a wonderful nature preserve you can walk, drive or do tours through. Just use lots of bug spray because the mosquitoes no-see-ums will eat you up. Can’t have you getting covered with itchy bites!
I am happiest in Orange Beach, AL. Our family goes there for vacation every other summer. Its a warm beach and very family friendly and low key. It’s not touristy but you can drive 30 min in either direction to get to touristy things if you want. You can canoe or parasail or you can just enjoy the sun and sand.
But I think that you would LOVE New Orleans. The are amazing ghost and vampire tours! https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attractions-g60864-Activities-c42-t226-New_Orleans_Louisiana.html ; a Voodoo Museum http://www.voodoomuseum.com/ ; and the Touchstone Wildlife and Art Museum that has more than 1,000 taxidermied animals http://www.touchstonemuseum.com/ . Or you could just sit and drink hurricanes while stuffing yourself with beignets. Win-win!
Seconding (or thirding?) Leland, MI. It’s a beautiful area which I think is underrated. Other places I love: St. John, USVI, San Diego, Santa Barbara (great fun whale watching!).
Honestly, my favorite vacation spot is the Black Hills, South Dakota! And Wall Drug of course!
Key West – although I did walk a lot while there, one could do it without. You can fly directly to the island (if you’re not freaked out by the little planes) or you can drive there from Florida. I admit that timing is everything for a Key West vacation – and my timing happened to be perfect when I went.
But for not wanting to walk a lot I’d also say a cruise – I did a Western Caribbean cruise a few years ago and absolutely enjoyed it. You’ll have to pick your day trips wisely – as some include walking – but it can be done.
And last year I had the good fortune to be invited to Kiawah Island outside of Charleston, SC – absolutely gorgeous. I’m not a beachy person but it was the perfect beach vacation.
Ireland. I really loved Galway and the whole west coast of Ireland.
Sun Valley, Idaho.
No, really. Super clean air, no sinus pressure, never breathed better in my life! People are wonderful and the coffee is superb. I was totally flagged as ‘from the east coast’ because i wore jeans and my pea coat on the ski slope, but the local folk are so, so nice. Maybe their are cabins to rent?
TBH I was happiest in my home area (Do not move to Southern California if you’re used to paradise) – Sonoma and Napa counties in Calfiornia; where else can you wine taste, cheese taste, and beach lounge in the same day? Okay, so maybe other places in California, but we are wine country ffs.
Tahoe was also nice.
The Cape. It was cold when I was there but wow. There is so much history and so much beauty. I felt like I belonged there. I have pictures if you ever wanna look. Hope you feel better.
I know you mentioned CA. If you go to SoCal, maybe you could visit with the Wheatons! Or at least meet up for dinner. San Jose has the Winchester mansion. (Not Sam and Dean, though). It’s suppose to be cool! And haunted.
Someone mentioned the Hearst Castle. That’s suppose to be fun. But really big.
Los Angeles has a cool Harry Potter store called Whimsic Alley. (Google shows it on Wilshire Blvd, open Wed – Sun)
Atlas Obscure lists really cool stuff to do around LA and Pasadena. (giant fork, Y’all!)
Discovery Cove in Orlando Florida. It is pricey, but you can swim with dolphins (or not), feed birds and animals, they have a lazy river float and white sand where you can be as active or non-active as you want to be. It is really relaxing.
Out of the country? Turks and Caicos Islands!!
In the country? Any beach or mountain town in North Carolina! Examples are the Outer Banks of NC, or Asheville( although this may be more walking than you can do for right now!!)
I’ve also heard that Maine is beautiful this time of year but never ventured there myself.
Wherever you go, I hope you can gain he 3 R’s, rest, relaxation and rejuvenation!!
My family goes to Lost Valley Ranch in Sedalia, CO every year and we always have a blast! If you are interested in horseback riding, this is a great place to go!
Costa Rica!! The ocean is warm, the people are amazing, and the food is wonderful. Pura Vida!
My two favorite vacations were 1) Washington, D.C. 2) Yellowstone, Grand Teton, and Glacier National Parks.
Turks & Caicos. The most beautiful place I’ve ever been for a beach trip. http://www.beachenclave.com/ I cannot say a single thing wasn’t perfect. And it’s summer so the rates are lower. Worth every penny.
Iceland. There in an immense peacefulness and beauty there that is unlike anywhere I’ve ever traveled – and I’ve traveled a lot. It’s lots of driving, but doesn’t have to be lots of walking – most things are immediately at the roadsides. And it isn’t cold in the summer.
Go to Key West Florida there are free roaming roosters you can find a bar on any corner and sit and drink
Like Hemingway while Hailey and your husband can snorkel and go gishing
The Paw House Inn in Vermont. I guess the major activity in summer is hiking, but you can also go for long drives or just sit on the porch and play board games (that’s what I do, mostly.) And you can bring Dorothy Barker!
New York City and Boston were amazing but required a lot of walking. Old Orchard Beach, Maine. Myrtle Beach , SC. Asheville, NC. beautiful places that don’t require too much walking. Hope you find an amazing place to go that you can really enjoy!
best vacation ever – my parents treated us to a Disney Cruise aboard the Fantasy. It was its 2nd voyage at the time. they take really good care of everyone – tons of fun things to do aboard for kids, adults & adults who are kids. you could skip the excursions & stay on board. there are ‘adult only’ areas which are nice & private if you don’t want to hear all the screaming monkeys all the time. Food was amazing – i purposefully chose to eat almost exclusively vegetarian/pescatarian (fish ok), & wow. food like i have never had before. didn’t miss meat 1 bit. there are on-board phones to stay in communication w/ whomever you traveling while at sea. my folks went too & they said it was the best cruise they had ever been on – & they have been on a lot. totally recommend it.
Roatan, Honduras. The Barefoot Cay resort. No moving required. Hammocks and margaritas everywhere.
Take a tour of the 1000 Islands region of the Saint Lawrence River. You can take a cruise out of Kingston, Ontario (which is lovely), which is near where the St. Lawrence empties into Lake Ontario and take a boat ride up and that part of the river.
Nantucket…scooter rentals, quiet, ferries, beaches, great white sharks, whaling stuff, ocean air…
Huelett’s Landing on Lake George. My friend has a cabin next to her home. I’ve had summers I hike and bike. Richer summers to antique or shop the tourist traps. And last summer, after a tornado took out most of my property, I was too tired to deal with life, so I went to Huelett’s and sat on the dock for 10 days. The marina is nearby to rent a boat. If you have a bank account, there are houses to rent – more $$ per week if they are on the water with a dock. A little less $$ if they are not on the water. I feel at peace there. And if you get real lucky, you might get to see the Whitehall Monster, a local legend in Whitehall, NY – the closest town on the other side of the mountain for Hueletts.
When I was a teenager, my Dad used to take us to Burt Lake in Michigan. We would rent a house nearby (either across the road from the lakeshore or around the corner) along with a boat of some form. The entire family (including grandparents, aunt, uncles and cousins) would cram into one big house (or one big house and one smaller house depending on how many of us there were) and spend two weeks on the lake. It was blissful. The boys would go fishing in the early mornings (my sister and I tried it but she caught nothing but crawfish and I would end up reading instead) and we’d spend the days either on the boat or swimming in the lake. (Beware leeches if night-swimming though.)
If you’re up for a day trip, then Mackinac Island isn’t too far by car and is an interesting place to visit. If you’re into weird roadside attractions then Mackinac Island has a variety, including The Haunted Theatre and what is apparently the World’s Longest Porch. The Man Killing Clam can be seen in Cheboygan (underwhelming according to my Mum, but kind of has to be seen). Indian River (which you can also journey to from the lake by boat) has the World’s Largest Nun Doll Museum of dubious renown, while Petoskey has the Skin Diver’s Church of dubious name. The whole area is honestly full of some weird shit. Once or twice we used to drive over to Petoskey where my Dad had a friend who owned a bar, and we’d browse the stores to see who could find the best Petoskey stone as a souvenir.
Sorry for the essay! You said to tell you which vacation place made us happiest so I guess you can tell that Burt Lake was mine. They were golden days.
Come to the East Coast and take it easy. Brigantine Beach, NJ. Yes, NJ. Brigantine is a small barrier island, 3 miles end to end. The beach is on side and the bay is on the other. I live here and love it here. Rent a private home on the beach, with a pool. We have 2 hotels, several restaurants, a grocery store, a liquor store and 2 pharmacies (just in case you need it). It’s beautiful, with beaches that aren’t crowded, are easy to get to and almost always with cool breezes. Beautiful sunrises, that I never see except in pictures, and gorgeous sunsets. Parking is easy everywhere and there’s not a lot of walking to do. It’s across the bridge from Atlantic City which can be a good or bad thing, you decide. Once in Brigantine, you will want for nothing and love everything about it. Try to avoid the North End, it can get very buggy. http://bb-nj.org
Hawaii, the big island. There’s so many different kinds of stuff on one island! There’s black sand beaches with huge turtles, and lava plains, and rain forests, and coffee plantations and a huge macadamia nut plantation. There’s luaus and snorkeling, and shopping and soaking in a volcanic hot pond. When I was there Hilo looked like a town frozen in the 60’s, just adorable. The weather report every day was “82º chance of showers” And there’s a freaking Volcano! A real live active volcano that you can go look at. Best vacation ever.
St. Croix, USVI. There’s not much to do there except sit in the sun or take a dip in the ocean.
My best family vacation ever was to Key West. It was amazing. It took hours to drive there from the airport but it was fun to stop at all the weird Florida stops on the way. We spent a few days in a cabin at a state park called Bahia Honda where we had a manatee that lived in the bay outside our front door and we would watch the fish and baracudas every morning as we drank our coffee. We snorkled every day and it was amazing to see all the tropical fish everywhere and all the conchs walking about.
After that we went to Key West Proper which is such a weird and wonderful place. Every year there’s an Ernest Hemingway look alike contest and some of the Ernests live there year round. There are chickens that roam the street and cats with 5 toes. They have a party for every sunset and the town is very laid back but also so full of life. There are brightly colored houses everywhere and music. It’s the kind of town where ever year for New Year’s they drop a giant high heel with a drag queen named Sushi sitting inside. They once tried to secede by firing off stale bread out of a cannon toward the mainland.
We took a side trip to a national park called Dry Tortugas where there’s an old Civil War era fort. You can walk around the island, hang out in the fort, and/or snorkle in the coral reefs and the giant moat. It’s the most remote national park and completely worth the trip.
The best part was going to dinner with my dad. My brother and mother hate seafood of all kinds so Dad and I went to a place right on the water. It was called the Half Shell and the motto was “eat it raw.” We ate fresh fish and conch chowder and watched the boats go by and really talked. It was perfect.
Munich is great. The people are friendly, the food is good, and beer gardens are glorious. The city is flat so easily walkable and the English Gardens are a wonderful place to relax. We did a great bike tour that was easily paced with several stops, I’m WAY out of shape and had no trouble. The trains really are great and it’s easy to jump aboard to travel to other towns.
In America I’d say Savannah, GA is a good place for an adventure. You’re almost required to sit on a porch and sip mint juleps and there are ghosts everywhere with every manner of ghost tour. I actually got felt up by a ghost there, but I can’t guarantee that result.
Thornhill Broom beach formerly Point Magu beach just north of Malibu. Camping on the sand beach falling asleep to the sound of the waves after spending the evening around a bonfire. Waking up to silence and the cool fog that comes in off the ocean. Not crowded at all as the beach is open only to campers. Lovely locations for an old fashioned snipe hunt.
Ooh, I saw someone mentioned Cape Cod, we have gone to Provincetown via the fast ferry from Boston, several years in a row and it’s very relaxing. We stay at the Harbor Hotel, which is super kid friendly and has a cabana bar next to the pool. It is not in the heart of Provincetown, but we like sitting out on the deck looking out at the water and how the land curves around, and when we want to be in town, it’s an easy shuttle ride (for $2.00 per adult I think) or cab ride back there. Provincetown has TONS of great food, and there’s a beach in town. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can climb pilgrim’s tower, a monument as far as I can see that was made to say, this pilgrims who had been on a boat for weeks and weeks found this place so unlikeable they were willing to take their chances getting back on the boat and going somewhere else (plymouth rock). Also, the library has a GREAT children’s section (Hailey is probably a little too old for it), but there’s a huge boat up there which is neat to see and they have good (free) ac if you need a break from the heat :).
I have always been happiest in any hellhole anywhere if I have the right people with me. In fact, one of the best nights ever was in the woods, in Indiana, in the rain, in the cold, in the dark, in leaky tents, with my besties. We managed to make coffee and it was the best coffee that ever existed. We ate stew out of cans and declared that we could not ask for anything else in the world. I can’t explain.
So, my best happy place is a people. But I would kill to go to the House On The Rock. So try that.
My favorite vacation place is the Olympic National Park in Washington. Kalaloch Lodge is old and slightly damp and right on the water and the beach is a great place to walk and watch the sunset.
I also love Palm Springs, CA (love so much bought a place there!) Sunshine, mountains, hiking, shopping, swimming, eating, and giraffes (at the zoo). Heaven!
Bok Tower Gardens. It’s in Central Florida, so not cold. Yes, there’s walking, but the paths are padded and there are shady benches and chairs everywhere, some in impromptu bamboo forrests or cabin hideaways where you can’t see the paths. The designer didn’t expect people to hike for fum, he expected them to walk until they spotted something enjoyable and then sit down and enjoy it. There are also golf carts to pick you up if needed. The last time I went, there was geocaching. There is a kids area with play stages and costumes. Also, a singing tower.
My family used to rent a cabin in Gatlinburg,TN. Loved sitting on the balcony and reading while looking down at the forest. But, it was also close to a lot of tourist attractions. But mostly, I enjoyed relaxing in the cabin.
Venice made me happier than any place I’ve ever been. Even more than Paris, which I love. If you haven’t been, go before it’s submerged. It does have the walking problem. It’s the shoe leather express or boats. And the boats only get you so far. May or September.
Brazil was the most amazing vacation ever! We went to Foz de Iguacu, where the big water falls are. We got to go into Argentina and Paraguay as well. Best.trip.ever. Second best, Barcelona.
Windjammer (ship) cruise to the West Indies and surrounding area. But you have to like being on the water and being ferried in a small boat. LOVED it!
Take a train trip! I took my family on one for spring break, and we just picked a route that looked interesting and went for it (we did Chicago to Albuquerque, kind of an old Route 66 thing). The journey becomes part of the vacation that way, and it was heaven just sitting and watching the world pass. Much more comfortable than a plane. I could read, write, stare out the window, or play board games with my kids. And the train people (those on the train more than those in the stations) were very friendly. Pro tip: you can literally bring almost anything on with you. I recommend your favorite pillow and lots of snacks/drinks.
In August of 2014, I spent the four best days of my life walking the streets of New York City. Might seem lame to most, but NYC is the love of my life, and at a time when I desperately needed clarity and inspiration, NYC not only gave me that but also saved/changed my life. So my advice is this…go somewhere that will ignite your soul, and make you feel like you are more alive than you have felt in forever. If that’s a sunrise and sunset, a pool and poolside bar, or a cabin in the woods, then that is where you must go. Wishing you healing and sending you so much love, Jenny! xo
Stockholm, Sweden…some of the most beautiful nature scenery, awesome public transportation to take you anywhere. 23,000(yep, that’s 23k!!) islands in the archipelago and you can get there by gorgeous old wood and steel ferries that serve sandwiches piled high with tiny briny North Sea shrimp. The islands are granite worn smooth by glaciers tens of thousands of years ago and now covered with mosses, ferns and pines and wild blueberry & lingonberry bushes…the smell is like inhaling the ur-forest, the water that sparkles and glitters, the people all speak English and are lovely…go, just go.
Lots of walking, but the ultimate place for me is Venice. It’s breathtaking, out of this world, and full of history.
Best trip I ever went on was Rome. I’d go back in a minute.
Stanford Inn in Mendocino, CA – nice rooms, private balconies, view of sea, fireplace in room, wonderful healthy decadent food, massages, full bar, and a warm pool inside a greenhouse. It really is a great place to rest and recover and be pampered. Been there 4 times, I am planning my next trip soon.
Best Vacation as a child: 1969 – Daddy rented an RV and we drove through the South for two weeks. Stopped at amazing places, did not have to bother about checking in and out of hotels, relaxed in the RV when not exploring a new place. We still talk about that trip! Second is Inn of the Mountain Gods in Ruidoso, NM. Great place.
Our favorite family vacation, hands down, was to Yellowstone. It beats out Mexico, Jamaica and even Alaska. It’s a magical place where your cares and troubles melt away into the vast beauty and awe of this wholy remarkable and original state park. You can walk a lot, or drive a lot and walk a little. You can camp or hotel it. You can use a guide or explore on your own. You’ll never forget the things you see and do there. Have a WONDERFUL trip, wherever you go.
Or come visit Canada! Ottawa is just beautiful this time of year, and no walking required!!!
My happy place is at a little resort called Trout House Village Resort on Lake George in the Adirondacks. It’s a short drive north of the tourist-y town of Lake George in Hague, NY. The place has fully equipped “cabins” (they’re really more like apartments) complete with dishwasher, refrigerator, gas grill, porch overlooking the lake, etc. They have their own private beach on the lake fully equipped with beach chairs, kayaks, canoes, peddleboats, rowboats, and a dock for fishing. They have bikes (don’t bother, you’re on a mountain!), a basketball net, shuffleboard (surprisingly fun), and a putting green. And ALL of this is included with your reservation! Bonus: there is always a dog at the front office. In Lake George (and surrounding areas) there are two Revolutionary War forts (I’m a history buff but even my less inclined husband enjoyed them), a wax museum, an arcade, tons of weird little shops, horseback trail riding, and a ton that I’m sure I’m forgetting. You are also within a short drive to Lake Placid (home of the “Miracle” winter Olympics and the Great Adirondack Steak & Seafood Company (they dare you to eat their 40 oz prime rib and put those who can on a wall of fame), Vermont (where you can visit the Ben & Jerry’s factory!), and even Boston, MA can be a (long) day trip! I went with my family as a kid in one of their more basic cabins and then took my husband to one of the newer luxury cabins for our honeymoon. They are family-owned and operated, and they are just wonderful people who run the resort. It’s just so easy to fall in love with this quiet lake and beautiful scenery, it’s hard to go home. I often dream of going back instead of going to work.
The Fringe Festival in Edinburgh, Scotland was one of the best times I’ve ever had. There are thousands of performances, some on a ticket basis, some where the performer accepts tips, and others on the streets for free. The population of the city doubles for the month of August, and there are people every corner of the world, I highly recommend it.
We just got back from Norfolk, Virginia and the beaches. Baking ourselves on the beach for a couple days was wonderful. There are alot of beaches that are hidden amd quiet. You just need to do a little online sleuthing and you’ll find them. The sun made my muscles relax and my arthritis felt better too. Take sunscreen and an umbrella for shade for when the sun gets too much.
I have fibromyalgia- this limits me. So for our honeymoon, we stayed at an all-inclusive resort in Cancun, Mexico. Never had to pick up our wallets. We were just off the beach and the pool was right outside our door. There were six restaurants (and a cigar shop) to choose from, lots of in-resort entertainment, and fruity, alcoholic beverages for days. I could even order strawberry daiquiris from the hammock on our back patio. One day we got our asses out to see Chichen Itza and it was totally worth it. The next day it was easy to sit around on my ass recovering from our excursion. Oh- and it was so wonderfully warm, but the breezes from the ocean kept it from being unbearable. As far as vacations for the falling apart go, I give it two sore thumbs up! 👍🏻 👍🏻
Loved Santa Fe, NM. Been there a couple of times and there are so many beautiful things to see there. The kiddo could probably get in some good horseback riding too. And nearby, there is El Santuario de Chimayo Historic Site. It’s known as the Lourdes of America and their dirt is said to have healing powers. Now, I can’t offer a miracle testimonial, but I love the charm and the stories.
Victoria British Columbia. Stay at the Empress. Go to Bouchard Gardens and whale watching. Of all the places I’ve been, it’s always been the best.
I went to LA for a business thing. I ended up at hotel right by the Santa Monica pier. I walked up and down that beach for hours in the morning and evening. It was in April, so not a huge lot of people. If I’ve ever had a Zen moment, it was then. I also really like Austin, TX. Just all the fun and funky stuff to see, and the donuts. Oh, the donuts.
Costa Rica’s not a bad idea at all. It’s absolutely beautiful, and SLOTH SANCTUARY. That has BABY SLOTHS. I’ve been to Costa Rica, but not the sloth sanctuary and I desperately want to go.
Happiest vacations were Hawaii and London/Paris.
But come to LA. We have a real life Tardis, zoo, amusement parks, museums, Huntington Library & Gardens, Mdm Tussaud’s, Ripley’s, comedy clubs, train museum, studio tours and The Habit-best burger around.
We are in Kauai right now. Super green, waterfalls and beaches everywhere. Consistent temp of about 87. Roosters, chickens, and chicks all over. We spent three days snorkeling, took a boat trip to the Na Pali Coast, went out on ATVs, and did some major downtime. It’s not crazy busy, either. Some small shops and restaurants. Highly recommend.
Best holiday ever… New Zealand! Or Cornwall! Or Wales!
I have to second post 18. Grand Junction, CO is amazing. I was born there and lived there until I was 16. I love it so much and try to get back as often as I can. There are wineries, breweries, and the most wonderful vodka distillery. It is right next to the Colorado River; there is water everywhere! They have revitalized the downtown area. I miss it so much.
Oregon coast. Cheese. Ice cream. Shells. Not very many people cuz the water’s cold. Walking or not, as you wish.
Mulege in Baja is one of my favorite vacations I have ever done. Beautiful place where the desert meats the ocean. https://www.tripadvisor.com/Tourism-g153974-Mulege_Baja_California-Vacations.html
North Shore of Oahu – specifically Turtle Bay Resort. Everyone thinks of Waikiki for Oahu, but the north shore is super laid back. There’s restaurants, a calm bay, sea turtles, dolphins, monk seals, etc. It’s a short drive to food trucks, shops, even more beaches, and the BEST chocolate haupia pie in the world. We went through North Shore Shark Adventures to go cage snorkeling with sharks. Great fun!
Portland Maine just got back and it was not too hot or too cold. Fun little shops and yummy places to eat.
Cruise. Best. Doesn’t really matter where.
I would like to invite you to visit us in Sarasota, home of the World’s #1 Beach; Siesta Key Beach. Relax in idyllic quartz powder sand, enjoy a day at Mote Marine Research Aquarium or Ringling Museum of fine arts. Sample our foodie scene, hundreds of independently owned restaurants both cultural and world class. Water sport instruction and rental like sea kayaking, skiing, parasailing, snorkeling, paddle-boarding, aqua cycling. Go on a Rum tour. Take an afternoon sea cruse.
Use a shit ton of sun screen.
Stalk Stephen King, Jerry Springer, or Jane Lynch. (Okay, maybe not, but if you -do-, don’t blame me.)
Cannon Beach, Oregon. Gorgeous beaches, cute town, beautiful tide pools, not too crowded or touristy and not hot! My 7 year old said it was a better vacation that Disney World!
Ooh, Michigan really is fantastic. I lived on the west coast until I was 26. Grand haven and holland are on Lake Michigan south, traverse city and northern cities are incredible and peaceful. Lots of swimmable beaches.
Maine. So restful. Get away from the coast and into the mountains. Less people = less stress. If I didn’t have a tenant in my cabin, I’d offer it to you and your lovely family.
Sunset Beach, North Carolina
I absolutely loved Yellowstone National Park! You drive around the park to get to the various viewing stations and then get out for as much walking as you feel like to see the sulphur pools, geysers, bison, elk, bears, waterfalls. . .
Flint Hills of Kansas. Tall Grass Prairie National Monument, Cottonwood Falls, Matfield Green, You can stay in an historic hotel or Air B&B. Lots of open spaces, history, old cemeteries! Peace & quiet and a giant chicken at the Cassoday Kansas gas station!!!!
Smoky Mountains in Gatlinburg / Pigeon Forge, TN were INCREDIBLE! We rented a cabin that the back porch was a view in the Smokies and there was a hot tub right there on the back porch. Then there’s a bunch of stores / restaurants / dinner shows etc in the towns
If you come to Brazil, you can stay with me.
Deka Lake, BC, Canada. There are several b&b’s that are actually just people’s houses (I think ours was called Cedar Tree Inn? Cedar Bear Inn? Cedar something, for sure). The scenery is amazing to walk or drive through; this time of year it’s fairly warm (70s to low 80s); there’s practically no humidity (which helps my arthritis); and you can rent boats/jetskis or get water-skiing lessons on the lake itself. I just went tubing (the fast version, behind a boat) with my cousin, because we’re wimps, but I will never forget the sight of my 50-year-old father trying to show off the moves he hadn’t tried in decades… only for my uncle to angle the boat perfectly to make Dad lose his balance and take a header right in front of my mom.
Somewhere you can sit on a beach with an umbrella (no sunburn) without a huge crowd of people around you. Someone mentioned the Outer Banks in North Carolina. I’ll join you if you go. I could use a week without children, husband, and dishes:)
I just scrolled all the way down to agree with the first comment. Costa rica, especially the Caribbean side,is the most relaxing place I have ever been. Not sweltering hot, nice breeze at night, great food, incredibly nice people.
And,as much as I would love for you to come to California, it is brutally hot right now and probably will be all summer. Even the northern and central coastal towns,that are,usually lovely in the spring and summer, are horrible. And it’s shaping up to be a bad fire season as well.
I would be scared shitless to leave the country if your immune system is vulnerable. How about a trip to Chicago? There are wonderful things to see there and it’s easy to get around AND best of all Woolley Mammoth Antiques is there. Check them out on the Facebooks!
Ojo Caliente, New Mexico (hot springs – relaxation– a chance to chill and explore nearby sites like Taos Pueblo, if inspired!)
Well, we live in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, so you likely don’t want to come here.
Our best vacation we drove down the east side of Washington, across the top of Oregon, along the Columbia River. We then drove to the coast and followed it all the way down to San Francisco. We detoured to visit family but then went to LA: Hollywood and Disneyland mostly.
We went to Oahu with a side trip to the Big Island to see the volcano one time. Otherwise, summers were spent at my grandmother’s house in Western Massachusetts near Amherst, with day trips to just about anywhere in New England.
My favourite holiday destination was Stockholm. We went for a long weekend there at the end of August a few years ago and totally fell in love with it. It was beautiful and clean and the people were so friendly. It was also quite warm. There’s a fair amount of walking to do so not best for you right now but I highly recommend it
Colorado is so beautiful, and you can see a lot of it just driving around.
I have difficulty walking with a condition called Dystonia I need propping up and look a little strange. My husband took me to Rome and the kindness I came across was amazing. Even when I thought I’d die in the Vatican and lay on the floor the staff were wonderful. Everyone sent me to the front of the queues. The police are the most handsome in the world and the wine is good too. Transport is excellent and I can recommend a great hotel. I also made a friend for life at a. Bar when he said “Look – it’s the English Woman”. Go to Rome!!
I realize this might be too far for you, but Australia stands out as one of the best vacations of my life. Interesting and unique wildlife, amazing landscapes and people warm and hospitable as they come.
Realizing your limitations, maybe a cruise to Alaska? It would definitely be cooler than Mexico or California, but still warm and the landscape is inspiring. With a cruise, you’d get the view without having to hike, and of course, there’s a 4 star restaurant on board. You could do as much or as little as you like.
Coeur ď’Alene, ID. We gave tons of lakes and rivers. So many antique stores down town and a theme park (Silverwood) just 30 minute’s up the highway.
I think the US Virgin Islands would be perfect for you. The weather is always warm and if you stay at an all inclusive resort you won’t even have to leave the site, if you don’t want to. The hotel we stayed at had a pool and a private beach. All food and drinks (even alcoholic drinks) were included. We stayed on St. Thomas but also took a ferry to St. John and went to Trunk Bay which is gorgeous! They have an underwater snorkeling trail that was amazing.
I’m writing this while at Hilton Head Island. It’s beautiful, but there is a noisy, rude girl in the resort pool. Thank goodness for earphones. The ocean is amazing, of course, but I got stung by a jellyfish yesterday.
I like an all-inclusive much better. My favorite one was in Jamaica. Good luck!
Bermuda. Without a doubt. Absolutely Bermuda.
New Zealand. North island is spectacular, requires at least 14 days. But go during their summer in January. Do it for reals!
If you want to stay close to home (i.e. in Texas), I had a great time on a family vacation in Wimberley, Texas. I was a teen at the time (which means it was many years ago) so I might be mis-remembering/romanticizing a bit. We rented a house right on the river and could just walk down and plop ourselves and our tube in the river and chill. Lots of relaxing and reading and hammocking by the river. The town also has a swimming hole, art galleries, an outdoor movie theater, a bonsai exhibit, and all kinds of cool little shops.
My father-in-law found this cool place: http://www.hillcountrysinya.com/. No clue how much it is or if it’s as awesome as its pictures look.
San Juan Island in Washington state. You can sit at a national park on the west side of the island and watch wild orcas swim. It’s the most magical, amazing, relaxing place I have ever been.
Santa Fe, NM – beautiful with a lot to see in the area that all of you will enjoy. In particular – Ten Thousand Waves Spa. Amazing!
Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in Kanab, Utah. A huge rescue organization in the middle of a canyon.
Also, right up the road is Moqui Cave, which is a weird/neat little museum in a cave with a bunch of Native American artifacts and a lot of Mormon history, too.
Fly to Hamburg. In Hamburg, visit the harbour. It’s pretty cool. Drive up to Cuxhaven. Take the ferry across the Elbe to Brunsbuttel. It’s about $50 for a car crossing, but is an amazing journey.
Drive from Brunsbuttel into Denmark. Driving on the E20 bridge (Strebaeltsbroen) towards Copenhagen was breathtaking. Your can tour the bridge. It was cool.
San Diego, and the weather is perfect.
Yosemite is beautiful even if you can’t do a ton of hiking. Staying on the Valley floor and either driving out to picturesque views or doing a short walk to them is easy/beautiful/serene, and it would be nice and warm in the summer! (plus, sometimes you get waterfalls)!
Wow, that’s a lot of input from everyone. A cruise would be good for you. The ship takes you to all the places and you can just sun yourself on the deck in between. You don’t have to leave the ship or take a tour or do anything that’s strenuous. You can eat when you like, drink ALL THE TIME, sleep when you like and someone cleans the room for you. You can gamble, read a book, see a show, get a spa treatment or two. Your husband and daughter can do their own thing and they’ll still be on the ship somewhere.
Oregon Coast. It is beautiful like nothing you have ever seen. Summertime means that it isn’t too cold nor too hot. You can walk a lot or sit and enjoy the view. If you rent a house for a week or weekend, they usually have large windows that allow you to see to the edge of the world.
Camden, Maine. Beautiful town, beautiful weather. You can get on schooners and sail Penobscot Bay. Best six-day vacation ever for the money, and sleeping to the sound of waves against the hull is just stellar. The Maine Windjammer Association is the place to start.
My favorite family trips are when we rent a house to stay in, especially when I’m feeling highly introverty! AirBNB and VRBO are wonderful. Since you’re in Texas there are some fantastic places in Fredericksburg that would be pretty easy for you to get, or something on the Coast if you like the beach. I just love that we can buy our groceries and keep to ourselves if we’re not feeling up to going out, and a lot of places also have restaurants you can walk to so if you’re feeling up to that you’ve got options. OR… if you’re feeling up to nothing you can always call in or order online for delivery to minimize human contact 🙂 We just bring games and have fun relaxing with only the family around.
Monkey tour Costs Rica Fly out of Houston to Iberia airport cheap and fun, you stay off esthe zip line but inner tubing down a nice river, soak in a natural warm spring, walking horseback ride, boat trip up a river with lots of animals , see monkeys, scarlet macaws, go to cloud forest but you stay off sky tram and suspended bridge – breakfast, hotel ending at a beach resort with a kayak paddle to a little island included for around $1000 a person. At the resort we bought chocolate smelling exfoliating massages 2 for 1 price and wandered the nice beach days and night. And a swim up snack/ drink bar. You just by plane fare, some lunches and dinners. Food great but a tad pricey. And don’t miss the big sign that says “condoms for rent.” No Spanish needed
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Just came home from Chicago, and it was AMAZING!! So many parks, outdoor art installations, free zoos, concerts, all the colors and flowers and public gardens, then there’s the museums! The Field Museum has this epic exhibits on the history of tattoos and a deep look into all their specimens – you guys would LOVE it! Oh, and the beer and food ain’t bad;)
My happiest of happy places is the John C. Campbell Folk School in Brasstown, NC (www.folkschool.org). Up in the mountains of western NC, JCCFS is hippie camp for people who want to make stuff, eat good food, and have hot showers. Although there are 150 or so people there every week, it’s not too people-y for those of us who do not enjoy that sort of thing because a) the people are 99% awesome; b) you’re busy making something and don’t have to look at them; and c) you can go to your room whenever you want. I’ll be there next week, weaving.
Cape Cod. Beautiful, peaceful, beaches, ocean, great food,
Come here! Calgary, Alberta, Canada! You won’t have to walk far because I can’t walk far. AND we’ll take you to Radium Hot Springs so you can soak your weary bones. There are so many beautiful places in North America, I’m sure you can find the perfect place to vacation. I hope you feel better soon.
ICELAND. In the summer it’s not terribly cold and it’s a delightfully weird country. There’s less than 400,000 people there and most of them live in the capital. Icelanders are fiercely protective of their culture, to the point that they have an official government committee that approves all the names for new babies each year. Also, it’s naturally beautiful and you can see so many things in one trip- glaciers, waterfalls, geysers, and more. I could go on, but it’s a seriously cool place. And as a poster above said, there are hidden geothermal hot springs everywhere, which feel great on swollen joints!
My two favorite vacations have been San Antonio, Texas and Fort Collins, CO. You’ve probably been to San Antonio eleventy billion times, but we used it as a jumping off point to go to Enchanted Rock, Fredericksburg, etc. And Colorado as a whole is just a wondrous place. The humidity is insanely low, too, which should help arthritis flare-ups, I think!
WTH? It didn’t take my comment! You can come here! To Calgary, Alberta, Canada! You won’t have to walk far because I can’t walk far AND I’ll take you to Radium Hot Springs so you can soak your weary bones. I’m sure you’ll find the perfect place to vacation. Hope you feel better soon. :o)
Anywhere in Washington state is amazing. Downtown Seattle you can sightsee on the double-decker buses, or you can rent a car and take some of the most amazing drives of your life. Leavenworth is fun, the Coulee Dam is amazing, and they provide transportation for folks who do not wish to walk. There are lovely wild beaches and lakes, and you can drive a car on most of the trails at Mount Baker. My home state, South Carolina, has lovely beaches. Charleston, Mount Pleasant, Beaufort, Kiawah Island and more. And you don’t have to walk there – just get yourself a beach chair and ENJOY!
Banff and Jasper, Alberta, Canada. It’s crowded in the summer, though. Don’t know if you can swing a family trip in September but that was our favorite time to go. Tourists gone, weather still warm. You’ll see glaciers, mountains and lakes that are colors you’ve never seen in the Hill country. It’s a pretty sure bet you’ll see elk right from your car, but you may get lucky and see a bear, too. We’ve seen mama bears and her cubs, we’ve seen brown bears and grizzlies and we even saw a bear at the top of a tree, eating leaves. You never know what you’ll see. I love it there. You can even rent a cabin instead of getting a hotel room. You don’t have to walk a lot. Go to Lake Louise and enjoy an adult beverage in Chateau Lake Louise, while you look at the lake. Oh! I just remembered the Chateau (it’s just a hotel) has a canine ambassador. This big, beautiful lab roams the halls. Gotta love Canada. Some pix on my blog:
Go on a cruise. You can people as much as you want, or hide in your room. It’s warm and you can visit multiple places without having to unpack more than once.
Come to the Big Island of Hawaii and bask in the sun (or shade) at one of our beautiful resorts on the Kohala Coast. Great food, great beverages, great people. Hubby and daughter can do all the tours while you go to the spa and get pampered.
Norway. Riding alongside a fjord listening to Grieg. With my mom. Just the best.
Ive heard nothing but nice things about Iceland
I concur with Costa Rica. The Pacific side in Manuel Antonio. It’s beautiful, relaxing and you can walk if you want to or you just can lay around and watch the monkeys from your hammock (best if you don’t have food in your hand. Just sayin’). Or, Michigan. I also vote the UP of Michigan in the summer, Munising, Marquette, etc.
Salem, Mass. warm in the summer. Coolest vibe, cool bookshops and little shops. History galore. Love it.
Go to “The Pasea” hotel in Huntington Beach if you’re coming to California. It’s so very Zen. If you want to get away, I recommend Puerto Rico. Lastly, the Carillion in Miami should rejuvenate you. Get well soon.
I tell people where to go all day. None of them seem to appreciate it.
There are a lot of great suggestions here already! My 3 favorite happy places – when I’m not hanging out with my kitties – are the Grand Canyon, Kauai or any of the Hawaiian Islands, and Negril, Jamaica. Somehow, I don’t think a long airplane ride would be the best for you right now, so taking a drive to AZ would be amazing. The heat and dryness of AZ might feel good to you – just pack some oven mitts to open your car doors while visiting the surface of the sun. The peace that I feel while looking into the canyon is surreal and it feels like home. I can find a rock ledge to hang out on for hours and just watch the birds fly over. Plus, there are tons of squirrels you can make friends with – just don’t feed them… or stuff them. 😉
Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada for amazing taxidermy…then drive the Golden Circle through Haines and Skagway Alaska. Amazing views, and weather is perfect, no aches and pains and fresh sea food, and colorful people!
We just got back from Bear Lake. It is located on the border between Utah and Idaho. Perfect temps, beautiful water, and raspberry shakes. I highly suggest going!
My favorite place on Earth is the Oregon Coast. Further south is less touristy. Going to retire in the village of Yachats (yah-hots) but anywhere is nice. Temperate climate, not too hot or too cold and the ocean scenery can’t be beat.
I’m probably boring but my favorite vacation place is home. We stay home, binge watch TV shows we haven’t gotten to see, order take out and now and then visit the Greater Wynnewood Animal Sanctuary which is a couple hours north of us.
I second House on the Rock if you are a fan of American Gods and like weird things, plus there is Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin, American Players Theater, and the Wisconsin River (swimming, paddling, or tubing) right there. The SW corner of Wisconsin is called the driftless area because the glaciers didn’t flatten it out the rest of the state. There are camping, airbnb, hotel/motel options. And it’s close to Madison, which is the best place to live on the planet…come visit!
Given your criteria, I’m going to suggest (as others have) San Diego. Besides California fighting the good fight on climate change and LGBT rights, San Diego weather is amazing and you could stay at the Hotel Del Coronado (https://hoteldel.com/). Ask to stay in the haunted room–I think it is 3327. Beautiful old hotel, watch or rewatch Some Like it Hot (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0053291/) before you go–lots of scenes from there. Have dinner at Roy’s. Go to the zoo. Sit on the beach and read. Enjoy!
Wrightsville Beach, NC. My happy place. Calm, serene – the perfect beach town.
Every summer for 8 years my granddaughter and I went on a road trip to Pismo Beach CA. We always stayed at “The Cove at Pismo” on Price Street. It is a two story motel built on the cliff of the ocean. We always got a second floor as the building was on the cliff, barking lot on second floir. Every room on second floor has a balcony overlooking the ocean, including binoculars! Dolphins and sea otters play in the ocean practically right beneath you. Waves crash on rocks just outside your balcony. Have massages and facials available. Is set away from other motels, very peaceful. Last year my Grandaughter was married there!
Destin FL for Fall Break in October with our 13 yo daughter and a friend of hers. Our plans included laying on the beach, relaxing, napping, reading, watching movies, and eating. I have never in my life been more relaxed or had a better time. It was marvelous, heaven on earth, and I want to live there. But I also understand it’s far busier in the summer months, so I probably wouldn’t like it so much then.
St. Croix is amazing, and it’s not too far to fly there via Miami. Also, no passports required!
Montana, it has views that can’t be beat! Glacier National Park is totally awesome! Flathead Lake is outstanding!!
Ojo Caliente, NM hot springs. The resort ( https://www.ojospa.com) offers rooms with a private tub tied to the springs. Very relaxing.
I’ve never been in America at all. I am in Austria now and it has breathtaking mountains and a lot of walk. When i was still taking med for TB though i didn’t remember i went anywhere, but after that i took a rehabilitation program in beautiful mountains surrounding which in other words is a wellness holiday with integrated therapies and delicious foods.
Florida Gulf coast is great, especially if you can find a spot that’s not too developed. I’ve always wanted to go dig for diamonds in Arkansas and there are some awesome lakes there too, like Greer’s Ferry. Go to the North Carolina beaches, maybe one of the islands. San Antonio TX. Santa Fe NM.
I’m laughing at how many people suggested the House on the Rock, because it’s such an odd venue. But it’s so you! https://www.thehouseontherock.com/HOTR_Attraction_PhotoGallery.htm
And in the same area there’s also an awesome outdoor Shakespeare Theater (https://americanplayers.org/), Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin, and this really bizarre grotto thing (https://www.dickeyvillegrotto.com/). I never thought I’d recommend Madison, WI as a vacation destination, but you could have an amazing adventure
St. John USVI, St. Lucia, Bermuda (warm May – October), Coronado, CA-island just off San Diego. All are incredible! You can’t go wrong with any of them!
I was gong to say Northern Michigan, and it looks like some other people have suggested it too. In the summer, it is warm to hot during the day, and it can cool down to jacket-wearing weather at night. Try Mackinaw Island and Mackinaw City. Old forts, little shops, FUDGE, Clydesdales everywhere, and surround by the beautiful blue water. You also cannot go wrong with any part of the UP if you’re looking for beauty and serenity.
The national parks in the Canadian Rockies are amazing (if very expensive to get to and stay in). Although there are plenty of rugged 8+ hour hikes, there are also amazing things to see from the roadside or a short walk from the parking lot. 25 years ago my wife and I honeymooned there, and she blew out her knee on a long hike the second day. We still saw amazing sites limping along for the next 6 days, and loved it so much we are going back for our 25th anniversary this summer.
Pawley’s Island, SC. Although it’s plenty hot and humid this time of year!!
Sitting around a quiet lake with pitchers of margaritas. Any lake will do. Keep the margaritas flowing. The most exercise you’ll have is lifting the glass to drink.
Northern California, Sonoma County. Ocean, rocky beaches, redwood forests, vineyards, never too hot or too cold, beautiful! One of my favorite places in the world.
Emerald Isle, North Carolina. Beautiful, peaceful, and not nearly as crowded as most beaches. Because of the island’s geographical orientation, you can sit on a covered deck all day and never get direct sun unless you choose to be out in it. Get an oceanfront house and the beach is right there. Plus, it’s a sea turtle refuge. Plus, plus there’s a terrific state aquarium just up the road.
Paris. I went for the 1st time in February with next to no money and my own rheumatoid arthritis. Most places I go I get intimidated at first and then get comfortable and learn to love them. Paris was simply “wow” from looking out the window on the bus in from the airport. Beautiful city, great culture and everyone was helpful and kind (just apologize for not speaking French if you don’t). Walked 10 – 12 hours each day with my cane and almost didn’t care how much my feet hurt. You have to look out for anti-inflammatory food but you can find it. I recommend the gluten-free raisin bread sold at Monoprix.
Ireland. Always Ireland
The BodyHoliday in Saint Lucia – https://www.thebodyholiday.com/
Sonoma. Because wine.
Monterey Bay is one of the most relaxing places I’ve been to, every time. I always want to move there whenever I go. The aquarium has the best otters and lots of sea lions orking it up all over the city. The neighboring town, Carmel, is so darling.
Santa Fe is pretty great, too, with an amazing art community and lots of cool nearby parks if you’re feeling up to walking, or nice drives if you aren’t. Plus, some areas have wild horses that are fun to see.
A cruise. Best time I ever had and there was food everywhere plus lots to do. I went to Alaska but you can go anywhere.
Given your love of things haunted, Arizona, New Mexico, or Utah? A Caribbean cruise?
Key West! We went there last year as part of a cruise and it was just lovely. The cruise also went to Turks and Caicos, which was fantastic!
We spent my daughters 21st birthday at an all inclusive resort in Puerto Plata in the Dominican Republic. I have a bad hip (getting it replaced Wednesday) and it was perfect. Right on the beach, pools, activities, food and drinks. LOVE IT and she still talks to the resort staff on Whats app. (her bday was October)
I love Vancouver B.C.- there is the Capilano Suspension Bridge to walk around. (can’t remember if you have a fear of heights). They also have a fun tree house adventure- basically a bunch of bridges in the trees. Oh and the cliff walk is fun… but again- heights. I also LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE Victoria B.C. but darn it- it’s a walk-able city. We do the guided Ghostly Walks- they are fabulous. Craigdarrich Castle is beautiful and interesting history. There’s also Butchart Gardens. China Town (they filmed “Bird on a Wire” scene) lol um… Tons of haunted history there. I think I have a thing for ghost walks. We love the Hop on/ Hop off bus tours- minimizes a lot of walking. If you fly into Seattle- then take the ferry up. Lovely trip. Not sure it fits the little walking and what I think is hot for the PNW, might be to cold for a Texan. lol Other than that- my favorite place is San Diego (for the ghost walks in Old Town AND the Rubicon Deli) lol If you want a fun place to chill- Astoria Oregon was also fun. (also where Goonies was filmed) 😀 Depends on if you like boring history like the Flavel House. So apparently I like enjoy boring historic homes. lol
We are a family compiled of autoimmune disease, anxiety disorders and dietary restrictions. Oh, and occasionally needing of the emergency care. Disney fit all of our safety requirements, provided excellent mobility and dietary needs, and was all around perfect!
My absolute favorite place to be was with my grandparents in ‘Amish Land’. It’s Holmes County Ohio. Berlin, Sugercreek, (Worlds largest cookoo clock), Charm. That whole area. We went every year till I was 14. It’s will always hold dear in my heart.
Come see Baltimore. It’s quirky, oddball and has a unique charm all by itself. Visionary Arts Museum, Dragon Paddle Boats, Weird performance art at the harbor, lots of free playgrounds, splashpads, etc. National Acquarium (touristy but still cool), Ghost walks, great bars with weird locals who will gladly talk with you and so much more. Just don’t leave a scooter out by itself – it will get stolen.
From a displaced Texas gal who has traveled all over, my most recent U.S. favorite place is the Monterey Bay, CA area. The whale watching is outstanding out of Moss Landing (use Sanctuary Cruises). Visit the aquarium. The Steinbeck Center. Carmel By the Sea. Wine tasting. Big Sur. (Check on road conditions because of gigantic land slide near Big Sur.)
Stay cheap(er) or expensive. Travel up the coast to SF or not. Watch the insane surfers on many cool (truly) beaches. Visit the boardwalk in Santa Cruz. Come back rejoicing that Texas is so uncrowded compared to CA. Even Houston traffic seems tame by comparison.
I loved London. We walked a lot but you could probably do it with less. Also I hear Scotland and Ireland are beautiful and can be enjoyed by just sitting around and enjoying the scenery.
Vietnam and Iceland. Both are magical.
Southern France. Paddle down a lazy river in the sunshine, sit on a beach, see roman ruins or ancient cave art, check out cool museums, drink wine, eat duck (both things I think you are allowed) all things that can be done with a minimum of walking…. Can’t beat it.
The Snæfellsness peninsula in Iceland. I’ve never seen a more surreal, gorgeous, or mysterious landscape in my entire life. Cliffs, mountains, the coast, rocky black beaches, glaciers, moss-covered lava fields, seals, seabirds, mists……I have never felt more at peace or more connected to this earth than I did when I was there. But it is pretty cold and does require a decent amount of walking, so maybe for your next vacation.
Port Aransas. It’s close, not touristy, they have a turtle rescue.
We’re doing a kitschy tour of Wisconsin next week: A little Switzerland, a cave, a troll town, a cheese factory, a winery and distillery, a water park and a whole lot of trees.
In reading all of the suggestions, I noticed a theme. Many of the best ideas (IMHO) are versions of “stay-cations”. One unpacking of the suitcase. Somehow, America seems to think that we have to pack as much activity and excitement and acomplisments into our vacations as we can. We arrive back home and need a vacation from our vacation. We should be trying to relax. No pressure to “do”. Instead, SIT. You can sit in a LOT of different places. On the beach, by a pool, on a hotel balcony, in a fabulous hotel lobby, in a bar, in your own backyard. A good book, a sketchbook, something to drink, and you’ll be set for hours! The best place for you will be somewhere where you can sit and you can “shoo” Victor and your daughter off on little day excursions. Be sure to have something for your daughter to do. She is still too young for the just sitting, at the very least a body of water for her to bob around in will keep her busy. Throw in a few little strolls for yourself, a few wonderful meals, time to spend together with those you love and no matter where you go, it will be the best vacation ever.
The mountains just above Santa Cruz, CA. Alas the haunted Brookdale Lodge where we stayed is (deservedly, it was kind of a dump :}) closed now, but it’s utterly beautiful and peaceful up there, and Santa Cruz is a wonderfully quirky town with a gorgeous beach if you’re into that. Easy to get to Monterey (love the Aquarium!) and SF, and hopefully they’ll be able to reopen the PCH to Big Sur soon because that’s the single-most beautiful drive I have ever done, and I travel for a living.
My husband and I just returned from Tulum Mexico where we stayed 6 blissful nights at Grand Bahia Principe. The staff, food, restaurants, pools, beverages were all divine. When our 4-year old is tearing $hit up, that’s where I go for a mental vacation. IN FACT, I’m there right now nostalgic sigh
Creede Colorado. Currently 67 degrees, no phone service, world class theater great food and nearly 3 million acres of your public lands.
I second the Prince Edward Island recommendation. Peaceful and gorgeous. If you want to take walks, there are lots of nice short ones, both by the ocean and in the woods. Visiting Lucy Maud Montgomery’s house(s) is fun (though I would stay away from the manufactured Avonlea). And the Prince Edward Island Preserves Company makes some of the best jam my wife and I have ever had (we especially recommend the raspberry-champagne ). In the neighborhood, driving the Cape Breton coast is lovely, the Dancing Goat bakery (also Cape Breton) is outstanding (notice a theme?), and Halifax is fun to explore–good restaurants too.
Anywhere along the Florida Gulf Coast but especially along Highway 30A. Seaside, FL or Rosemary Beach, FL
Ko Lanta, Thailand.
Lovely people, delicious food and wonderful weather.
Three best vacations:
1. Disney cruise. So much better than a regular cruise and not as cheesy as you might fear. Good quality food, excellent entertainment. And the ability to hide in your room at a moment’s notice without slowing your companions down. And room service is free.
2. Moab, Utah. This might be too much walking for you, but you asked… We stuck to 1- and 2-mile hikes in Arches and Canyonlands. Stunning. We had an air-conditioned car with a cooler full of ice and snacks in the back. So wonderful.
3. An all-inclusive resort in Mexico, near Playa del Carmen. I don’t think it matters which resort, as long as it’s all inclusive. It takes all the stress away. No planning. Just go with what you want to do at the moment.
I hope you’ll tell us what you choose!
You touched on one of my favorite subjects, travel! You’ve already gotten some great advice, so I’ll go further off the beaten path:
Galapagos Islands, Ecuador: Abundant wildlife, cool lizards, animals that are not afraid of humans! Terrific snorkeling as well. A nature-lover’s paradise. Peru to the south is also wonderful; Machu Picchu is definitely worthwhile and the Andes Mountains are spectacular.
African wildlife viewing safari! Best experience of my life, hence I’ve returned again and again. If you love wildlife, there’s nothing else like it. You’ll never want to go to a zoo again after safari, and as long as you can get in and out of the safari vehicle, major walking / hiking isn’t required (unless you want to hike to see chimpanzees, gorillas, and similar – which is also amazing)!
Anywhere in Europe: There’s so much history, culture and scenery wherever you go. Pick a country and a couple of places and you really can’t go wrong.
Takes a while to get there, but there are cool places to see in Asia: I loved Bangkok, Thailand and India is also fascinating.
Costa Rica – definitely! You’d love the Sloth Sanctuary! I went a few years ago and it was so much fun! Love Costa Rica so much that my family has a condo there. We would be happy to host you and your family / friends if CR is in your future, Jenny!
If you want just gorgeous scenery, Utah is probably the prettiest state I’ve ever been to and it has gorgeous drives as well as hikes if you are ever having a good day and want to walk. Also it’s home to one of the biggest cults in America so it’s super chock full of weird people.
Hilton Head Island , South Carolina
Nice wide beachs for sitting and relaxing. Great restaurants, tennis, golf, miles of bike paths.
The Jersey Shore, if it doesn’t catch fire or blow away this year. Seaside Heights: sausage and peppers (pronounced “zauseej”), smell of creosote, sound of pinball machines, classic honky tonk with sea spray in the air. Long Beach Island: Peaceful, idyllic, fun (recommend Harvey Cedars). Cape May: classic Victorian beach houses, excellent dining, tours galore. There’s something for everyone. Badabing.
Come to Canada!!!!!! Your dollar is worth an amazing amount of money right now. No it is not snowing! Over the next couple of months the weather should be in the 70’s to 80’s…….I am biased about western Canada because I live there and can drive to the Rockies. But to be honest Canada is fucking beautiful wherever you go……east coast, west coast and everything in-between. All you have to do is choose, sea, mountains, wild prairie, foothills (as in rolling hills)….and if you choose west, let me know. You are a beacon in a sometimes (often) grim world.
HAWAII!!!! Or Jamaica. Or cruise to Bermuda.
The underwater museum in Cancun. It is beautiful and oddly eerie at the same time. ( you can snorkel, free dive or scuba dive there) The sand is white as snow and cool even in the sun. The water is the most beautiful turquoise. Definitely one of my happy places. We stayed at the Fiesta Americana grand coral beach Hotel. Wonderful in every way.
It’s so hard to pick, but here are my top 3 favorites: 1) Kauai because it’s stunningly beautiful and the weather is always perfect (choose where to stay on the island based on the surf because at different times of the year, different areas are calm, which is what you want), 2) The Dordogne region of France because it has all sorts of cool castles and the food is amazing, and 3) Italy, specifically Santa Margherita Ligure and Lago Maggiore, because they are beautiful, close to interesting sites (Cinque Terre and Portofino) and Italian food is amazing.
West Michigan (Saugatuck, Holland, South Haven, etc.) or the upper peninsula are fabulous in the summer. If you like beaches they have beautiful sand, and it’s like being at the ocean but no salt and no stinky dead fish. In the upper peninsula you can go to Pictured Rocks and go on a boat ride (like a big double decker ferry) to see it, or go to Grand Marais to see a stunning beach. On the beaches you can pretty much park and just go right out to the beach – not much walking. Plus you can swim too if you want.
Colorado! Come here – it’s lovely.
Santa Barbara CA at El Capitan Resort. You’ll be sitting in a rocking chair on a porch next to a babbling stream, feet from the ocean. And they’ll bring all the fixings for smores and BBQ to you!
If you aren’t afraid of sailing, my best vacations have been Cruises.The Caribbean sea doesn’t have much rough water, and it’s the best way to travel. No rental car, no extra flights, you get on and comfortably go from country to country. I’ve always found it’s so worth it to get a balcony room. There’s enough space for three.(though 2 rooms is a bit better for that) The food options are excellent, and the entertainment. Plus there’s at least one 24hr bar on every ship!
For me nothing is more soothing than looking out at the water, especially if there’s nothing between me and the endless horizon.
The Gulf Coast is good.
Wherever you decide to go, look into renting a mobility scooter or power wheelchair. They have been a Godsend for me since my stroke. I can attend big dog shows (The Houston World Series of Dog Shows next month takes up the entire NRG Center – over 700,000 sq feet!) and Comic Cons again thanks to my power chair. My flyball club bought me a used scooter after my stroke. When I began to crave handling my own dog again instead of letting friends do it, a friend gave me her Dad’s chair. It had been sitting in her garage since he passed away. Get your mobility back by renting a chair or scooter and you’ll be looking to buy one. Lots of used ones are around if finances won’t allow a new one.
I went to an all inclusive resort in Cancun. You should go too! And the flight was short!
There are excursions and things but I didn’t go on any. The only walking I did was to the restaurants, disco, buffets (with Tequila tasting bar), beach, and pool.
It was amazing! And the best vacation I have ever been on.
The best vacation I’ve ever experienced is Costa Rica. Seriously, this is bucket list stuff. We stayed in a villa in the freaking rainforest, (mountain above Uvita) with a howler monkey wake up call each morning and a capuchin encore. Sat in a hot tub with a sloth just hanging out in the tree above me. You can be as active as you want, or sit in a comfy chair and watch a million hummingbirds flit around you, while a toucan flies overhead and a whale spout in the ocean below. Every person we met was kind. You kind of can’t go wrong.
St. Augustine Fl. It is one of the most haunted places and has several haunted tours. It is also the oldest city in the U.S. It offers a wide variety of activities….or not.
With already over 300 comments i feel like this may get missed. The expression “Like throwing a hotdog down a hallway” comes to mind, but in all ways non sexual.
I’m from Southern California and i can’t recommend “Home Away” enough. Your family could rent a beautiful beach side home on the coast line of Santa Barbara or Santa Monica to enjoy the amusement filled piers, beautiful weather and chill vibe. If you’re more into crazy weird things. Northern California has the “Madonna Inn” (amazing crazy multi room themed hotel), The “Winchester House” off the Pacific Coast Highway – which is epic-ally beautiful (Have you ever been? A giant crazy estate built from an troubled woman with the profits of her husbands invention of the Winchester Gun cause she believed ghosts were trying to get her, so she made her crew build day and night. There are rooms that doors that go no where, or off 3 story edges.) Also “Hurst Castle” is an adventure alone to get to in a bus to the top of a mountain. There is even a old zoo on the property from the 1920s where the residents had tigers and bears!
Fairmont Orchid on the big island of Hawaii. Gorgeous, peaceful and exceptional service. Lots of active things to do on the island if you feel up to it (mountains, jungles/waterfalls, lava etc) or just drive around and see gorgeous things, or lounge on the beach. There is something in the air in Hawaii that is peaceful. I’ve been all over the world (every continent except Antarctica!) and never found that feeling that I found in Hawaii. Best of luck.