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Stretching from the fishing village of Puerto Morelos to the biosphere reserve of Sian Ka'an, the Mayan Riviera offers an unforgettable Caribbean coastline experience. Divers and snorkelers will be dazzled by the wrecks of Xcaret and the Puerto Morelos reef. Use a zip line to descend into the sacred subterranean caverns of LabnaHa Eco Park, where you can snorkel an underground river under a canopy of stalactites. The nearby Tulum Monkey Sanctuary will put you in a playful mood.
One of the top diving destinations in the world for its bright storybook coral reefs, the island of Cozumel is also home to a variety of natural beaches. Choose a beach with soft white sand for relaxing, or snorkel off a rockier vista. A destination for both adventure and romance, Cozumel has a year-round Caribbean climate, untrammeled jungle and abundant nightlife.
Akumal means "Place of the Turtle" in the Mayan language, and if you snorkel here, you just might see one swimming alongside you. (Don’t touch it, though. That’s prohibited by law.) You’ll definitely see coral and beautiful fish in the clear, sparkling waters. This tourist-friendly little town is about an hour south of Cancun—but it seems light-years away.
Tulum is relaxation and romance with an ancient angle. Guests can enjoy modern takes on traditional Mayan massage and spa treatments, or sunbathe on gorgeous Yucatan beaches within site of well-preserved ancient ruins. A rare mix of beach, archeology and village, Tulum is a romantic getaway like no other.
It’s not just for spring-breakers. Cancun, with its golden beaches and perfect climate, is the premiere coastal destination in Mexico. And while there is certainly a 365-day party available for college students, resorts cater well to families and to those seeking solitude. This Yucatan paradise is also the gateway to the ruins of Tulum and Chichén Itzá.
Isla Mujeres offers a wide variety of tempting options for beach lovers, and is a relative bargain. Snorkel with tropical fish amid coral reefs, skim the blue waters by kayak or boat, or windsurf along the shores of soft, sandy beaches. On land, you can sunbathe, dine on seafood, dance to Latin rhythms, tour on a moped or belly up to the bar for fresh, delicious drinks.
Travelers come to this small island north of mainland Cuba to bask in the sun, swim in sparkling blue water, and be pampered at an all-inclusive resort. To explore Cuban culture, you’ll need to go farther afield (this is a planned resort development; employees are bused in), but if you’re simply looking for a stress-free tropical break, Cayo Santa Maria might be perfect for you.
Atlantic City draws tourists by the car- and bus-load, topping more than 20 million visitors per year! Stroll along the famous Boardwalk with its numerous amusements and eateries or visit the historic Absecon Lighthouse and the new Wheel at Steel Pier. Several championship golf courses are within a 30 minute drive to attract golf enthusiasts. In summer, the local free beaches are popular with families. Beach bars are peppered throughout the resort and you can dig your toes in the sand and enjoy your favourite cocktails. Water-based activities include parasailing, charter fishing and dolphin-watching cruises. Casino hoppers have 9 establishments to choose from and there is something for everyone's taste. Those who remember Atlantic City in its pre-gambling days can wax nostalgic with a taste of saltwater taffy and iconic rolling chairs which have been Atlantic City favourites for over 100 years.
Detroit is an amazing destination for your next weekend getaway. If exploring is your thing, hop on a bike and meet new friends on the Slow Roll bike tour (you’ll find a unique perspective on the city, and the slow pace is perfect for all skill levels). And while you may not think of Detroit as wine country, the newly opened Detroit Vineyards is one of the country’s largest urban wineries, crafting superior wines right in the heart of the city. Grab your glass and make a toast to the weekend!
Although its highly residential quality and proximity to Denver make Aurora seem like simply a suburb of the larger metropolis, this bustling city has a flavor all its own. With seven golf courses, a reservoir beach, hiking trails and a multi-use Sports Park, the city is a major hub of athletics and hometown to numerous pro football, basketball, hockey and soccer players and coaches. Aurora's emerging arts scene brings forth vibrant theater and visual arts to liven up the city.
From ornate mansions to ocean views, this charming city - the largest in Maine - will enchant you. Saunter down the brick sidewalks and cobblestone streets of the revitalized Old Port District, where you can browse through bookstores, explore craft shops and eat to your heart's content. Visit the Portland Head Light, which dates back to 1791, and is the oldest lighthouse still in continuous use in the U.S. The great poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow is the city's native son, and you can visit his childhood home, the Wadsworth-Longfellow House. With kids in hand, enjoy the highly interactive Children's Museum of Maine. And then go next door to the calmer Portland Museum of Art, a small, but eclectic museum with Impressionist works, Maine landscapes by Homer and Wyeth and other collections. Land or sea is an option here, so if you're tired of the street life, take one of the popular scenic cruises or whale watches, or hop on a ferry to the islands in Casco Bay. At the end of the day, and without kids in hand, unwind and rest your tired feet at one of the city's brewpubs.
Isolated from the rest of Maui by a 52-mile winding drive through coastal rainforest, Hana is an unspoiled beauty dangling from the island's northeastern tip. Untamed Kahanu Garden contains the world's biggest collection of breadfruit and a lava-rock structure believed to be the largest ancient place of worship in Polynesia. Soak up the tropical splendor on beaches with red or black sand. Winter and spring bring humpback whales, visible from Hana Beach County Park.
The sun-drenched Canary Islands lie close to North Africa and have an exotic flavour of their own. Hundreds of volcanoes, rolling sand dunes, rich forests and rugged cliffs dapple these seven Atlantic gems. Catch a ferry to Lanzarote. Ride a camel through volcanic Timanfaya National Park. Take on Tenerife, home of Mount Teide, Spain's tallest peak. Romp Grand Canary's beaches or hike La Gomera's Garajonay National Park. More adventures await on tiny El Hierro, verdant La Palma and peaceful Fuerteventura.