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7 Weekend Getaways for Couples

Keeping the romance alive with a weekend getaway

Romance is wherever you are with your significant other, but it doesn’t hurt to take yourselves out of everyday life to somewhere new and exciting for a weekend getaway. Our favorite getaways include places where you can really take in nature and spend time outdoors with your loved one. Here are 7 weekend getaways for couples.

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1. Desert Hot Springs, California

This city is sometimes referred to as the Desert Empire or California’s Spa City, which makes it easily a top getaway destination for couples. DHS overlooks the Palm Springs area, and is a resort hot spot known for its natural, healing, hot mineral water. If you’re looking for an authentic and natural spa, look no further―DHS caters to all visitors looking for a unique experience. If you’re looking for more than just time to wind down and relax, you can also enjoy a wide range of entertainment options, like Cabot’s Pueblo Museum, Joshua Tree National Monument and local dining and shopping.

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2. Sedona, Arizona

This Arizona desert town is the perfect spot to rekindle the flame, surrounded by steep canyon walls, pine forests and red-rock buttes. Its mild climate makes it the perfect weekend getaway year-round. Uptown Sedona is populated with shops, spas and art galleries. On the outskirts of Sedona, you’ll find many trails that lead to Red Rock State Park, where you can enjoy outdoor activities like bird-watching, picnicking and hiking. Sedona can be considered “equal parts rugged, equal parts resort.” Bonus points: Sedona has recently become a destination for wine enthusiasts with its nearby vineyards and tasting rooms.

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3. Big Bend National Park, Texas

As the largest protected area of Chihuahuan Desert topography and ecology in the United States, Big Bend National Park holds national significance―making it the destination spot for everyone. Its name stems from the vast curve of the Rio Grande in remote Southwest Texas, and has over one million acres of public land. What can you do here? Pretty much anything, like camping, hiking, horseback riding, river running, jeep touring, mountain bicycling, sightseeing and stargazing. From convenient and comfortable to resort luxury, enjoy these accommodations for adventure, discovery and romance.

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4. Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Your mountain getaway starts and ends right here―in Gatlinburg. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the most visited national park in America, and Gatlinburg is nestled at the entrance of it. This town may be small with its 3,944 residents, but they are so welcoming that their population can grow to 40,000+ any given night. You and your significant other can feel secluded while also being a part of a community at the same time. Things to do: walking around downtown, the River Walk, arts and crafts, shopping, restaurants, cabins, B&Bs and more.

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5. Hocking Hills, Ohio

This Midwest getaway is for the couples out there who want to explore and cozy up next to a fire. Hocking Hills is perfect for canoeing, kayaking, horseback riding, hiking, rock climbing, mountain biking, camping, ATV riding and more. There’s so much to do that it can be a little overwhelming―but the more options, the better! This state park is home of Old Man’s Cave and Ash Cave, with cliffs, gorges, rock shelters and waterfalls. Hocking Hills is an ideal weekend getaway for those who want to enjoy some quiet and peaceful time together.

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6. Lake Placid, New York

Home away from home―that’s what Lake Placid feels like to many visitors. With its quaint villages, small community and scenic mountains roads, it’s hard not to fall in love with such a dreamlike destination. The Adirondacks offers variety, from skiing to skating or spa time to wine and beer tastings. You also have an array of options when it comes to lodging, like an upscale green hotel, a cozy B&B, camping cabin or private rental house. Essentially, you can make this weekend getaway as romantic as you want it to be.

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7. Litchfield Hills of Connecticut

For those who live in and around the East Coast, Litchfield Hills is the destination for weekend getaways. Not only is it closeby, but it gives the illusion of being somewhere new and exciting, while also becoming a sanctuary for relaxing for the weekend. Litchfield hills are known for its distinct rural scenery; this is the opposite of Central and Southern Connecticut, which is largely urbanized or suburbanized. With vineyards, farm markets, factory outlets and tours, shopping, waterfalls, spas, health clubs, skiing/snowboarding trails, golf courses, amusement parks, cooking classes, museums, art galleries and so much more, you won’t ever find yourself bored or with nothing to do.

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Pick 5: The Best Places to Watch Spring Training

Baseball season is almost here! Before the official opening on March 31, you can catch your favorite teams in Florida (the Grapefruit League) and Arizona (the Cactus League) throughout March. Spring Training’s biggest appeal is that it gives spectators a chance to enjoy the game in a more intimate environment. Most stadiums seat 5,500-11,000 fans, and many feature grassy areas to relax, picnic, and enjoy low humidity and sunny skies prevalent in both states in the winter. If you’re planning a Spring Training getaway, skip the hassle of luggage shipping – use our Bags VIP luggage delivery service and head to the ballpark the moment you land.

If you're planning a Spring Training getaway, skip the hassle of luggage shipping - use our Bags VIP luggage delivery service and head to the ballpark the moment you land.

Glendale’s Camelback Ranch. Image courtesy Bryce Edwards via Flickr.

1. Camelback Ranch | Glendale, AZ
Glendale’s Camelback Ranch, which opened in 2009 and is one of the newest spring training facilities in the Cactus League, is also one of the most beautiful. The complex is features walking trails, landscaped grounds and an orange grove. Home to both the Chicago White Sox and the Los Angeles Dodgers, the two teams share the stadium, whose colors reflect the Sonoran Desert and mountains that rise in the distance. Seating is elevated 12 feet above grade to provide unobstructed sightlines for great game watching. >> Find out more about Camelback Ranch

If you're planning a Spring Training getaway, skip the hassle of luggage shipping - use our Bags VIP luggage delivery service and head to the ballpark the moment you land.

Bright House Field in Clearwater, Florida. Image courtesy civilengtiger via Flickr.

2. Bright House Field | Clearwater, FL
Bright House Field in Clearater, Florida, is known for its cleanliness and fun, family-friendly atmosphere. The somewhat new stadium was completed in 2004, but the Philadelphia Phillies have had Spring Training in Clearwater since 1947. The outfield stands’ tiki bar is a hands-down fan favorite, but there are plenty of restaurants nearby you can visit after the game. Bring your own chair and enjoy the grassy berm seating. >> Find out more about Bright House Field

If you're planning a Spring Training getaway, skip the hassle of luggage shipping - use our Bags VIP luggage delivery service and head to the ballpark the moment you land.

Cubs Park in Mesa, Arizona. Image courtesy Al Yellon and BleedCubbieBlue.com.

3. Cubs Park | Mesa, AZ
The Chicago Cubs’ new stadium, Cubs Park, in Mesa, Arizona, is aleady receiving rave reviews. Fans can see the game from everywhere, even while in line for hot dogs and burgers. A steep berm provides great sightlines and a grassy perch behind the outfield. You can even watch Cubs pitchers warm up during the game with views down into the bullpen. >> Find out more about Cubs Park

If you're planning a Spring Training getaway, skip the hassle of luggage shipping - use our Bags VIP luggage delivery service and head to the ballpark the moment you land.

Champion Stadium at Walt Disney World® Resort. Image courtesy Debbie Summers via Flickr.

4. Champion Stadium | Lake Buena Vista, FL
Champion Stadium is a 9500-seat baseball stadium located at ESPN Wide World of Sports in the Walt Disney World® Resort. The stadium, built in 1997, is the Spring Training home of the Atlanta Braves. The facility is top-notch and parking is free, but the real draw is the theme parks. Fans can attend a game and then visit a park, all without leaving Disney property. >> Find out more about Champion Stadium

If you're planning a Spring Training getaway, skip the hassle of luggage shipping - use our Bags VIP luggage delivery service and head to the ballpark the moment you land.

Kids run the bases at Peoria Sports Complex in Peoria, Arizona. Image courtesy Dave Nakayama via Flickr.

5. Peoria Sports Complex | Peoria, AZ
Peoria Sports Complex is home to the San Diego Padres and Seattle Mariners. Fans love this Arizona Spring Training stadium because the players are accessible, every seat in the house feels close to the action, and grass seating is ample. Beverage offerings include more than a dozen beers on tap. Too tired to walk back to your car? Hop on the free golf cart shuttle! >> Find out more about Peoria Sports Complex

If you're planning a Spring Training getaway, skip the hassle of luggage shipping - use our Bags VIP luggage delivery service and head to the ballpark the moment you land.

Historic McKechnie Field in Bradenton, Florida. Image courtesy Jamie Wisner via Flickr.

Bonus pick: McKechnie Field | Bradenton, FL
McKechnie Field is the oldest stadium used for Spring Training. Opened in 1923, the park is a fan favorite, especially of baseball traditionalists. Considered Florida’s version of Fenway Park, it is often coined the best overall Spring Training park. White stucco grandstands and covered bleachers over the reserved seating section provide shade on sunny days. The Spanish Mission-style architecture nods to a bygone era. Visitors flock to see the Pittsburgh Pirates play here year after year. >> Find out more about McKechnie Field

Which Spring Training stadium is your favorite?

Pick 5 | Scenic Convertible Drives

Scenic Convertible DrivesIt’s cold out there! Since more than half the country is stuck under a blanket of snow and ice, it’s the perfect time to snuggle up to your computer and start planning a warm-weather vacation. Nothing says sunny weather like renting a convertible and exploring local towns on a mini-road trip. Here are our five picks that will thaw out your toes and get you dreaming.

1. Miami, FL → Key West, FL
161 miles
There’s a reason the trip from Miami to Key West is on many a bucket list. The trip takes more than three hours because of the small towns you’ll pass along the way, but that’s part of the fun. The highlight is Seven Mile Bridge connecting Marathon to Little Duck Key.

The route from Miami to Key West.

The route from Miami to Key West.

Image courtesy Flickr user Serge Mashtakoff.

Image courtesy Flickr user Serge Mashtakoff.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. Wickenburg, AZ → Sedona, AZ
127 miles
Wickenburg was once considered the Dude Ranch Capital of the World and some remain open to this day. The historic town with its well-preserved downtown is a great start to your mountainous trip to Sedona. The drive passes through Prescott National Forest, 1.25 million acres of camping, hiking, fishing, and gorgeous vistas. End your drive at Sedona’s red sandstone formations that seemingly glow in brilliant orange and red when illuminated by the sun.

The route from Wickenburg to Sedona, Arizona.

The route from Wickenburg to Sedona.

Image courtesy Flickr user Anita Ritenour.

Image courtesy Flickr user Anita Ritenour.

Image courtesy Flickr user psyberartist.

Image courtesy Flickr user psyberartist.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. San Diego, CA → Oceanside, CA
54 miles
Start your tour at Cabrillo National Monument, which provides great views of the ocean to the west and the San Diego skyline to the east. Heading north, you’ll eventually end up on Coast Highway, passing through hilly beachside towns La Jolla, Del Mar, Cardiff and Oceanside. Torrey Pines State Reserve provides a leafy change of scenery, but still offers miles and miles of sandy shoreline and the blue Pacific. Once you get to Camp Pendleton, venture west on San Luis Rey Mission Expressway toward the historic landmark, established in 1798, that inspired its name.

The route from San Diego to Oceanside.

The route from San Diego to Oceanside.

Image courtesy Flickr user Andrew Magill.

Image courtesy Flickr user Andrew Magill.

Image courtesy Flickr user Dayna Sigl.

Image courtesy Flickr user Dayna Sigl.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4. Terra Ceia, FL → Clearwater Beach, FL
39 miles
Terra Ceia is a small, unincorporated island where I-75 meets I-275 South of Tampa. It is also the starting point of the Sunshine Skyway, a 4.1-mile bridge to St. Petersburg. Once across, head west on Pinellas Bayway past the exquisite pink façade of Loews Don CeSar Resort. Drive through sleepy coastal communities St. Pete Beach, Treasure Island, and Indian Beach, and cross over John’s Pass. Stop in peaceful Sand Key Park before heading over the bridge to Clearwater Beach, where you’ll find public beaches, outdoor restaurants and souvenir shops.

Exploring Florida's Gulf Coast.

Exploring Florida’s Gulf Coast.

Image courtesy Flickr user Robert Neff.

Image courtesy Flickr user Robert Neff.

Image courtesy Flickr user Robert Neff.

Image courtesy Flickr user Robert Neff.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5. Kahului, Hawaii → Hāna, Hawaii
62 miles
The Hāna Highway is arguably Hawaii’s most scenic drive, stretching from Kahului through Hāna and on to Kīpahulu on the island of Maui. Along the way, you’ll drive over 59 bridges, more than half of which are one lane, and many of which were built over a century ago. The road twists, turns and bends through the rainforest, providing breathtaking views. The highway, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, ends near Haleakala National Park, home to Oheo Gulch, a series of tiered pools fed by waterfalls and perfect for swimming.

Maui's Hāna Highway.

Maui’s Hāna Highway.

Image courtesy Flickr user Josh Berglund.

Image courtesy Flickr user Josh Berglund.

Image courtesy Flickr user Eric Chan.

Image courtesy Flickr user Eric Chan.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Get out the sunscreen and put the top down. There are spots out there that are warm and sunny…what are you waiting for? Tell us what memorable drives have you taken!

Pick 5 | Hot Dogs Across America

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Chicago’s Superdawg. Photo courtesy Flickr user LongitudeLatitude.

America is big. Its flavors are diverse. Why, even the quintessential American treat, the hot dog, is affected by geography. Regions are defined by their cuisine, as evidenced by their choice of hot dog toppings. Covered in chili? Detroit is for you! Adorned with onions? Head to New York! Here’s a look at what sets these hot dog destinations apart:

Chicago
Chicago-style hot dogs date back to the Great Depression and whether you prefer Vienna Beef or Red Hot Chicago franks, the toppings don’t change. Hot dogs are topped with yellow mustard, chopped white onions, sweet pickle relish, a dill pickle spear, tomato slices or wedges, pickled sport peppers, and a dash of celery salt on a poppy seed bun.

Try it: Superdawg | Chicago, IL
Superdawg’s iconic neon hot dogs, Maurie and Flaurie (named after the original owners, whose family runs it to this day), have stood atop the restaurant since it first opened in 1948. Order a Superdawg or Whoopskidawg (Polish sausage) and have it delivered to your window carhop-style.

Lafayette Coney Island coney dogs. Photo courtesy Flickr user Michael Sheehan.

Lafayette Coney Island coney dogs. Photo courtesy Flickr user Michael Sheehan.

Detroit
Coney Islands are restaurants that specialize in serving Coney Island hot dogs. These beef hot dogs, which originated in Michigan, not New York, are topped with all-meat, no-beans chili, diced onion and yellow mustard. But don’t confuse them with chili dogs – the onion and mustard sets these Detroit dogs apart.

Try it: American Coney Island and Lafayette Coney Island | Detroit, MI
American Coney Island and Lafayette Coney Island are located right next door to each other and have been competing for customers for almost a century! Most are loyal to one or the other; both are delicious.

Brandi's World Famous Hot Dogs. Photo courtesy AJC.

Brandi’s World Famous Hot Dogs. Photo courtesy AJC.

Atlanta
Coleslaw is a popular topping for hot dogs throughout the state of Georgia. Whether you prefer just the slaw or a hot dog combination of chili topped with slaw, it’s a unique flavor not readily found in other parts of the country.

Try it: Brandi’s World Famous Hot Dogs | Marietta, GA
Though it underwent a name change a decade ago, this hot dog spot has been satisfying locals for over 30 years. Brandi’s slaw dog is topped with their signature chili, mustard, onions and, of course, coleslaw.

Katz's Delicatessen. Image courtesy Flickr user Shinya Suzuki.

Katz’s Delicatessen. Image courtesy Flickr user Shinya Suzuki.

New York
New Yorkers love hot dogs and there are countless places to get them. There are also many ways to serve them up; one of the most popular is with mustard, sauerkraut and stewed onions (sweet onions in a tomato-based sauce).

Try it: Katz’s Delicatessen | New York, NY
Katz’s was founded in 1888 in New York’s Lower East Side. They specialize in pastrami, corned beef and natural casing all-beef hot dogs covered in chili or sauerkraut. The deli has been featured in countless movies, including When Harry Met Sally, when a Katz’s patron told her waiter, “I’ll have what she’s having.”

Sonoran hot dog. Image courtesy Flickr user Kate Hopkins.

Sonoran hot dog. Image courtesy Flickr user Kate Hopkins.

Arizona
Sonoran-style hot dogs found in Tucson and Phoenix actually originated in the State of Sonora in northwest Mexico. Hot dogs are wrapped in bacon and cooked on a comal, a cast iron griddle often used to prepare tortillas. They are topped with any combination of beans, onions (both fresh AND grilled), tomatoes, mayonnaise, salsa and mustard, and are usually served in a bolillo, a Mexican-style baguette baked in a stone oven.

Try it: BK Carne Asada | Tucson, AZ
BK Carne Asada has been serving up Sonoran-style hot dogs for twenty years. BK beat out neighboring El Güero Canelo for best Sonoran hot dog on Travel Channel’s Food Wars. While the majority of the menu items are cooked inside the restaurant in an actual kitchen, hot dogs are prepared at an outdoor food cart on their patio, a nod to the restaurant’s former incarnation as a humble taco stand.

Whatever your preference, one thing most of us agree on, is that ketchup does not belong on a hot dog. What are your favorite destinations and restaurants for hot dogs? What did we miss?

ketchup!A former Chicagoan, Jenny secretly, shamefully eats her hot dogs with just one condiment: ketchup.