Whether you love it, hate it or don’t celebrate, Valentine’s Day is nearly upon us. It’s really just another day, but this year, it happens to be a Friday, which means all the more reason to celebrate — even if it’s only in honor of TGIF. While everyone is scrambling to make dinner reservations and flower deliveries, there are some tasteful celebrations happening around the world you may be missing.
Plan for a relocation to celebrate solo, with your sweetheart or family with this list of way better plans for your Feb. 14. For budget travelers, don’t forget this time of year is one of the best to capitalize on off-season deals, holiday discounts and unlikely family promotions — if it means stretching your dollar that much further, you may not want to skip the holiday this year.
Keep it stateside with a fun locale you can enjoy with friends, family and as a couple, like Colorado Springs, Colorado. With more winter-based fun, relaxing luxury stays, adventurous activity and truly something for everyone, this destination is a great place to start your V-Day planning — even if the V is just for vacation. Take in the Rocky Mountain views while glamping in a yurt on Airbnb, or enjoy winter sports at the myriad resorts offering all levels of skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing and the all-important après ski. Upgrade to a lodge and take advantage of family-friendly amenities and tours, like horseback riding, or explore town with friends while touring local breweries and distilleries.
The heartbeat of Valentine’s Day (literally), Verona, Italy, sees lovebirds from all over the world flock to the town square for the beloved holiday. Join the crowd for a true burst of Valentine’s energy, including larger-than-life, heart-shaped everything. The city is essentially covered with beautiful flowers and festivities all over the city reminiscent of a certain William Shakespeare play. Bring the story (or at least the setting) to life with kids and introduce them to the world they’ve read about, loaded with charming shops, ancient architecture and history with a daytrip to the fair city of Verona.
This one is so obvious, it hurts, but a list of truly stunning destinations for winter festivities and romantic escapes is always going to include Paris. Explore with sightseeing tours just in time for the season, or venture on your own walking tour of the city, hitting all the must-see stops. You don’t have to plan a whole lot on this trip, as Paris does all the work for you. Bring friends and dine on fine French cuisine and wine, or make it an unforgettable romantic escape. Either way, it’s a great excuse to enjoy the incredible city while diving into French culture, meaning macarons and Champagne.
Similar to its sister property Mall of America in Minnesota, American Dream Mall in Newark, New Jersey, 20 miles from Manhattan, is a destination mall to travel to for shopping and family fun. However, where Mall of America dedicates 45 percent of its square footage to entertainment and 55 percent to retail, American Dream Mall flips those figures.
By Hainan Airlines
Fans of country music can explore Tennessee’s rich musical legacy across all 95 counties with hundreds of landmarks and attractions on the new Tennessee Music Pathways route, inspired by the latest documentary from Ken Burns.
There is something to be said for hitting a city’s most iconic neighborhoods, even if there is a steady stream of tourists milling about. On the other hand, there’s something delicious about discovering neighborhoods not yet on the tourist track.
As a teacher introducing artists and art museums to my French and Spanish students, I learned a key technique for museum visits: Don’t overstay their attention span! One hour is ample time and, for some youngsters, start in the museum shop where they can discover a few things they want to see firsthand. For most, a finale in the garden or museum café for ice cream or a meal is welcome.