Family Getaways

International Getaways: Much Closer Than You Know

International recreation You might believe a long weekend is too short to travel internationally.

This couldn’t be further from the truth.

In truth, there many countries close enough to go for a long weekend. Following is a list of destinations ideal for an unforgettable long weekend.

Montreal, Quebec

Picturesque Montreal, Canada boasts captivating French influence and old-world charm with all the advantages of a larger city (it’s second in size only to Toronto). Visitors always enjoy the beautiful Vieux Montreal neighborhood with its intriguing boutiques and inviting cafes and restaurants.

The popular Mount Royal Park is a fantastic place to spend an afternoon if the weather permits, as you can hike, rent a bicycle, or find a lovely spot for a tasty picnic. The park also features snowshoeing, ice skating and more every winter season.

Bermuda

Bermuda is a fantastic destination for travelers from the US, as it is just a two-hour flight from many cities and offers gorgeous beaches where you can enjoy the sand and the sun. In addition to the amazing beaches, Bermuda is a great place to wander around exploring its colorful cobblestone streets, imposing forts, traditional colonial buildings, and interesting maritime history.

Bold adventurers might rent a jet ski and ride into the legendary Bermuda Triangle.

Baja California Sur, Mexico

Baja California Sur, Mexico is an easy weekend escape for passionate sun worshippers and beach-goers. Cabo San Lucas in the southernmost part of the Baja peninsula has a great restaurant scene known for upscale local cuisine, an exciting nightlife, and gorgeous world-class resorts right on the beach.

It’s also the ideal getaway for those who want to enjoy the water, and perhaps a little romance, with Lover’s Beach offering some amazing caves, rock formations, and strikingly clear azure waters.

Costa Rica

Costa Rica is a wonderful exotic Central American destination that can be easily reached from just about any point in the U.S.

With 800 miles of stunning shoreline, it offers fun in the sun, awesome beaches, relaxation or adventure, and so much more.

If you like thrills, head over to the Arenal Volcano to get your heart pumping by zip-lining through the dreamlike rain forest, hiking in the lush jungle, rappelling down a booming waterfall, watching exotic jungle animals such as sloths and monkeys, and finally relaxing in a hot spring fed by the volcano itself.

Cartagena, Columbia

Cartagena is on the Caribbean coast of Colombia, and boasts gorgeous beaches with white powdery sand, enticing crystal clear blue water, and legendary coral reefs for you to explore. The 500-year-old coral stone forts and much of the walled city are admirably intact and present some of the finest examples of civil and military architecture of Spanish colonial times.

Toronto
Toronto, the biggest city in Canada, is a contemporary, cosmopolitan center terrific for city lovers.

Diversity is one of its founding ideals; over half of the folks who call it home today were actually born somewhere else. Be sure to schedule a stop in each ethnic neighborhood -- Chinatown, Koreatown, Greektown, and Little Italy -- to truly understand what Toronto is all about.

Whether you are looking for extreme adventure, lounging on the beach with a nice drink, or something in between, there is an international weekend getaway ideal for you. Anything you desire – love, adventure, culinary delights, history – can be yours.

The Wonders of the Caribbean Islands and the Americas

The Americas and the Caribbean are comprised of many distinct countries, each with its own unique culture, lifestyle, and beautiful vistas. Relish the laid-back lifestyle of all Caribbean islands, while noting the assortment of languages and cultures that speak to the early inhabitants of each island from faraway lands including Spain, France, Britain, The Netherlands, and Africa. Central America, rich in both natural splendor and history, is the land mass that joins North America to South America.

From the remains of famous civilizations including the Aztec, Maya, and Olmec to the colorful jungles of Costa Rica, there is something for everyone. The historic Panama Canal is exciting for its remarkable effect on world commerce. Much description Both North and South America are filled with interesting attractions both ancient and modern, as well as gorgeous vistas. A stop in Canada will give you the option to visit an 11th century Viking colony called L’Anse aux Meadows or wander through the picturesque streets of Quebec City.

In the U.S., stops along the east coast will take you to famous American cities, or sail along the west coast to see the spectacular glaciers in Alaska.

Head On South
Continuing further south, travelers will encounter jaw-dropping ruins, a wide diversity of cultures and peoples, and world music we have danced to on many nights. Go to Brazil and the bustling beach city of Rio de Janeiro or visit the rain forests of the Amazon River.

Visit South America’s west coast with a stop in Chile, with its jagged massifs and gorgeous fjords as well as the vibrant, colorful hillside city of Valparaiso.

Go to Buenos Aires and attend a Tango lesson.

Take an Antarctic cruise to the world’s southernmost continent and its basically uninhabited icy terrain.

Going to the Mediterranean

From viticulture and art to science and democracy, historians credit the beginning of modern civilization to the people along the southern coast of Europe. By traveling its coast, you too can bask in its fascinating history.

It will be difficult to go back home once you've lain on the beaches of Italy and Spain, experienced the historical sights of Jerusalem and Greece, and seen the amazing scenery of the Greek Islands and Santorini. Step back in time with a visit to Rome and its ancient Pantheon and Colosseum as well as Vatican City and St. Peter’s Basilica, one of Christianity’s holiest spots.

Fans of architectural design will enjoy a stop in Barcelona to see Antoni Gaudi’s unforgettable work. Some of the world’s greatest wines can be tasted in Italy’s Chianti region, France’s Provence, or the city of Port in Portugal. A popular destination on the Adriatic coast of Croatia is the tranquil walled city of Dubrovnik, which was designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1979.

The Wide Choice of Things to Do and See in Asia

Known for its sophisticated cosmopolitan lifestyle, Hong Kong is an international trade, style, and culinary hub for Asia. Don’t miss Phuket, the largest of Thailand’s islands and one recognized for its gorgeous landscapes and cultural attractions. With its centuries-old cultural icons, including a vibrant Jewish community with seven synagogues that dates back to the 12th century, and St. Francis Church constructed by the Portuguese in 1503, Cochin (or Kochi) in the Indian state of Kerala has earned the label “Queen of the Arabian Sea”.

In Jordan, be sure to set aside time for UNESCO World Heritage City Petra, which was built from rose-colored rock, earning it the moniker “Rose City”.

When you travel the world by cruise ship, you can see bustling metropolises and tiny tribal villages, rain forests and mountains, polar bears and lions, all while enjoying the luxurious comfort of your ship.

The Diversity of Africa

Follow in the footsteps of early settlers from Germany, Britain, Portugal, and The Netherlands when you go on a cruise to Africa.

The diverse cultures developed by ancient tribal traditions and colonialism are interesting to compare when you stop in places such as Senegal, Mozambique, Madagascar, and Mauritius. Witness the spectacular beauty of the desert in Namibia or visit South Africa’s lush green mountainous land. Off the coast of Tanzania you'll find the tropical archipelago of Zanzibar, also nicknamed “Spice Island”, a place famed for its abundance of precious spices including cloves, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

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