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Everyone knows Aspen as a top-notch winter resort town. But outdoor enthusiasts will enjoy it in the summer, too, when the mountains become a perfect setting for hiking, biking and horseback tours. Some may be surprised to find it’s a top romance destination—but after all that outdoor exercise, who wouldn’t want to repair to a luxurious hotel room or a cozy, firelit bar?
<p>A trip to Crested Butte is far from a one-size-fits-all package. In the winter Crested Butte is known as “the last great Colorado ski town,” and in the summer it is the wildflower capital of Colorado. Mount Crested Butte boasts some of the best backcountry skiing, and as host of the US Extreme Ski Championships and the X Games, it also leads the state in teaching first-time skiers. There are runs for every skill level and family friendly. </p>
Step away from the hustle and bustle into the secluded luxury of three alpine villages in one at Beaver Creek. At the foot of Beaver Creek Mountain, the unique village-to-village ski system and ski-in/ski-out accommodation of Beaver Creek Village and neighbouring Bachelor Gulch and Arrowhead Villages make it almost unnecessary to remove your skis! The mountain offers groomed slopes and world class competitions, including the Birds of Prey World Cup, as well as an array of summer activities.
North America's biggest and most popular ski resort, Vail is an alpine village in the heart of the Rocky Mountains. Long a favourite of serious skiers and jet setting celebrities, Vail now also draws a younger, hipper snowboarding crowd. Skiing is king at Vail Mountain and the Blue Sky Basin, but the area's vast splendor is perfect for hiking, biking, snowmobiling or scenery-gazing at any time of the year.
Prospectors discovered gold when they founded Breckenridge in 1859. Today, this historic mining town is fostering a whole new set of riches: world-class skiing, an expansive trail network, festivals and events, a vibrant Main Street and plenty of ways to unwind. In Breckenridge, all four seasons are packed with the best of the outdoors, the indoors, and everything in between.
Frisco in Colorado is a small town close to several ski resorts. With fantastic scope for skiing and other outdoor pursuits as well as being a great base from which to explore Colorado and the Rocky Mountains, Frisco describes itself as the Main Street of the Rockies, and is a great place for a family holiday.
The first stop for many tourists in Frisco will be the Frisco Nordic Centre at the Peninsula Recreation Area, with facilities for skating, cross country skiing and snowshoeing throughout the winter months. The Breckenridge and Copper Mountain ski resorts are also nearby and provide all sorts of skiing and snowboarding opportunities. Any outdoor enthusiast will certainly find a huge range of ski trails and activities for all levels of experience and ability. If you're feeling particularly adventurous, you can even take the whole family white water rafting! In the evenings, Frisco is a small town, but contains an impressive number of restaurants, shops and nightlife. And if you need a break from the slopes, the Frisco Historic Park and Museum is great for children, a collection of preserved and reconstructed historic buildings which chart Frisco's development from trapper camp to mining town to its present day tourist haven.
Located just 10 minutes east of downtown Phoenix, Tempe exudes its own personality and the youthful spirit of a college town. Home to Arizona State University, the largest public university in the United States, Tempe has a vibrant downtown that’s active day and night. You’ll find locally-owned eateries and microbreweries, annual festivals, arts and cultural events. And plenty of opportunities to enjoy over 300 days of sunshine a year on a bike, hiking trail or stand-up paddleboard.
Located in the sunny Coachella Valley area of California, Rancho Mirage offers the perfect place to enjoy nearby Palm Springs, Palm Desert and Cathedral City, but it’s also a fabulous destination in its own right. With four courses in Rancho Mirage, not counting the surrounding areas, we guarantee you’ll find something you like. Like the late Bob Hope in days gone by, you’ll love teeing up among the palms! Rancho Las Palmas Country Club and Spa features three nine-hole courses designed by Ted Robinson. The Rancho Mirage Country Club has a PGA clubhouse, views of the San Jacinto Mountains as well as first-class driving ranges and practice facilities. Or put your clubs at the condo for the day and attend one of the many pro-golf tournaments in the area, including the ANA Inspiration. Rancho Mirage welcomes families in a big way! You and your children can explore the abundance of activities for all ages. Try the Children’s Discovery Museum of the Desert or Joshua Tree National Park. At the Living Desert Zoo and Botanical Gardens, get up close and personal with desert animals from North America and Africa of every shape and size. Book a tour or explore the grounds on your own time table. Ride a camel, see an eagle and pet a turtle.
Known as the home of “the happiest place on Earth,” there’s more to Anaheim than thrilling theme parks. Bring your appetite to the Anaheim Packing District and Centre Street Promenade for some eclectic eateries and award-winning craft breweries. Explore the latest exhibits at the Muzeo Museum and Cultural Centre. Enjoy live music at the all-new House of Blues, now at the Anaheim GardenWalk.
With an age-old reputation for being a place where anything goes, Biloxi, not New Orleans, lays claim to having hosted the first party to end all parties, Mardi Gras. Today, not much has changed. Whether you're looking for fun in the sun, cultural attractions, eclectic cuisine or glittering casinos, "the playground of the South" offers the perfect mix of exciting attractions and affordable accommodation. Its prime location on the shores of the Mississippi Gulf Coast means, no matter where you are, the beach is never far away. Spend the day riding waves, jet skiing, deep-sea fishing or sailing. In addition to water sports, families will find plenty to do at local mini-golf courses, amusement parks and the aquarium. Culture-seeking landlubbers can head into town to sample a number of historical and cultural sites, such as Beauvoir, the Biloxi Lighthouse and the Ohr-OKeefe Museum. Lavish floating casinos have brought gaming, exciting nightlife and prosperity to this sultry seaside retreat.
If you’re into eating locally and supporting sustainable agriculture, go to Ashville—and eat, eat, eat. This town of less than 100,000 people has 17 farmers’ markets, and the local restaurant scene is all about taking advantage of the seasonal produce sold there. And don’t miss the area’s microbreweries.
Kissimmee provides the perfect base camp for a date with Mickey. Only a few minutes' drive from the Walt Disney World theme parks, the Florida town is packed with family-friendly activities like mini golf, dinner theatre and ice skating. Get close to nature on an air boat ride through the swamps or pick oranges at a local grove. For a more educational diversion, stroll through the historic downtown or visit the Osceola County Historical Society and Pioneer Museum for a peek into turn-of-the century life.
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.
An extensive waterfront regeneration and the addition of the V&A Museum to the banks of the River Tay has spruced up Dundee considerably, but it hasn't gone to Dundonians' heads. With plenty of wit and character, the locals are some of the friendliest in the UK.
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