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AaronK
11-25-2005, 12:43 PM
Hey everyone.

Thanks to the timing of the holidays this year, I have the chance to take a 4 day weekend either around Christmas or New Years. I decided that I may try to go somewhere for it, but I can't think of any place relaxing to go. Anyone got any suggestions?

I'm single and would be travelling alone. As I just bought a house, my funds are limited, and sitting on a beach vegging is not my idea of a good time.

Thanks for any input. I've considered a quick cruise, but with the single subsidy and the airfare, it just feels like too much money for such a short trip.

Aaron

BYOFT
11-25-2005, 02:58 PM
If the airfare is not too high from where you live, you might want to consider Santo Domingo. My boyfriend and I spent about 4 days there in March of 2004 and had a good time.

Although on the ocean, it is not on the beach, and your activities are focused on walking around the city, particularly in the historic district. Lots of forts, old mansions, the oldest cathedral in the new world, monasteries, etc. The market is very lively and interesting. There is a restaurant/nighclub built in a cave on the edge of the city that you climb down to enter, with stalagtites and stalagmites inside (we didn't get there, but I've read about it and it sounds like a great place to nightclub.). We spent several happy hours sitting in an outdoor cafe on the old town square, drinking beer or coffee, and watching the passersby. The old section of the city has a very European feel, unlike any other Caribbean city I have visited. The "Malecon", which is the road along the ocean, is also good for walking, people watching, and alfresco dining.

Hotel and meal prices are relatively inexpensive. The major hotels also have casinos if you enjoy gambling.

Spanish is the common language, but we did not have any trouble communicating. We do not speak Spanish, but knew just enough to keep out of (or get into!) trouble, such as how to order a beer, find the toilet, and pay the bill.

We felt quite comfortable walking about in the daytime, but were cautioned about walking at night. After dark, it is best to go about by taxi.

All in all, we were pleasantly surprised by our visit, and would enjoy going back again.

------------------------------------------------------

I just looked in my computer for the New Year's weekend, and the RENAISSANCE JARAGUA, where we stayed, has a deluxe oceanview room for $104.00/night. The MELIA, right next door, has a Christmas special, which includes a deluxe oceanview room and buffet breakfast for $67.50/night. The Jaragua was really nice, with large rooms, a large-very clean pool, a decent casino, and really good food (especially in their sports bar, of all places!). I went into the lobby of the Melia to look around, and it seemed fine, but I didn't see any of the rooms. Many of my business clients have stayed there on repeat visits, and like it, so I'm sure it's a decent property. Rates don't include tax, which is 26pct.

REDJIM
11-25-2005, 02:59 PM
Memphis for a blues bar crawl?

Nashville for a C & W bar crawl?

nobody122
11-27-2005, 08:34 AM
Ever consider Iceland? Iceland Air (icelandair.com) offers great winter specials (usually about $400-500 US from Boston for air and 3 nights). Great if you want to do up some European style clubbing. But Iceland also has some of the best spas (in my opinion) in the world--and the Iceland Air packages usually include one visit and the option to add more. Plus its only like 3.5-4 hours from Boston

AaronK
11-27-2005, 10:19 AM
Unfortunately, I don't have a passport, so I'm going to have to stay "domestic". And since I am in the Boston area, if I were to travel, I'd rather go somewhere warmer. I noticed Royal Carribean was having a special for a 3 night Bahamas cruise Christmas weekend that I was looking at. I'll just keep hunting. If something comes up, I'll take it, otherwise I'll skip it.

weblet
11-28-2005, 06:13 AM
Get thee to a passport office!! :)

susanliber
11-28-2005, 07:22 AM
Newport RI is driving distance from you. And absolutely lovely. It won't be any warmer though :D

I am going to Newport next week. My husband and I have spent Christmas there, New Years - for the Millienium, and thanksgiving and several anniversaries! There is always something to do and good food to eat and characters to meet.

silver cloud
11-28-2005, 08:26 AM
Throw five or six close destinations in a hat and choose. You can find wonderful delights in almost any town you visit.

Where are you at by the way?

Ned
11-28-2005, 09:38 AM
Originally posted by AaronK@Nov 27 2005, 12:19 PM
Unfortunately, I don't have a passport, so I'm going to have to stay "domestic". And since I am in the Boston area, if I were to travel, I'd rather go somewhere warmer. I noticed Royal Carribean was having a special for a 3 night Bahamas cruise Christmas weekend that I was looking at. I'll just keep hunting. If something comes up, I'll take it, otherwise I'll skip it.
14387

Hi,

I thought you might be interested to know that unless the US State Department changes their mind, which seems highly unlikely at this point, that by December 31, 2006, all US citizens will be required to have a US Passport for all all air and sea travel to or from Canada, Mexico, Central and South America, the Caribbean, and Bermuda, in addition to the rest of the world where it's already required. By December 21, 2007, all US citizens will be required to have a US Passport for all land border crossings (driving to Canada or Mexico) as well as all air and all sea travel.

I bring this to your attention to suggest you get a passport now, then you won't have to stay "domestic". Getting a passport is easy. First time passport applications need to be done in person. Go to Where to Apply for a US Passport (http://iafdb.travel.state.gov/) on the State Department's web site to locate the nearest Passport Office to you. There are more than 7,000 locations across the US to apply. Once you have the passport, you'll be set to go anywhere when you like, including specials. The passport will be good for 10 years.

AaronK
11-28-2005, 10:35 AM
Ned, I am planning on getting a Passport in the near future, but I don't have it today, and I don't plan on doing a rush one to get it by the end of December.

Susan, I grew up in Rhode Island, so Newport isn't a vacation to me.

Mary, I live in Mass, about an hour southwest of Boston. I'm looking more for a R+R trip than an exploration trip, especially as I will be travelling alone.

I'm keeping my eye on things. That cruise I saw for 3 nights in the Bahamas is looking real appealing, but I don't know if I want to spend that much money for just me on short notice.

joyceandrews
11-29-2005, 03:57 PM
Aaron
You might check Cancun or the Riviera Maya or Cabo or anywhere in Mexico. You do not need a passport only a State Issued Birth Certificate with Raised Seal and Government issued Photo ID.
Same for Jamaica, Nassau and most other Caribbean Destinations.
Exceptions Barbados, Costa Rica

jfrenaye
11-29-2005, 04:10 PM
I suggest that whatever is done it is done pretty quickly. It is now November 29th and space for flights anywhere is VERY tight. Prices are also very high, so even a long weekend in FL is going to be costly.

A few suggestions from me...what about heading to Ft. Lauderdale for a land stay. The Westin Diplomat in Hollywood is a great resort straddling the beach and the Intracoastal Waterway. Fantastic views and very convenient to the night life in either Ft. Lauderdale proper or South Beach in Miami. It is a short cab ride from the airport and is very convenient. The place has all you can ask for--decent restaurants, great bars, fabulous pool, and a so so beach--not sure what it looks like after Wilma though.

Another idea might be to do somethign different. Grab Amtrak and head someplace--Chicago, New York, Philly, Washington, or if yo need to get warmer go help New Orleans rebuild. Spend a few days on a train in a sleeper cabin and then a few nights whooping it up.

Sancha
12-04-2005, 08:34 PM
What are your interests? Do you want a beach, a city, history or nightlife? I enjoy hiking, so weekend trips to me are often around the Rockies or Cascases or other trail destinations. Or I get a ticket to see my favorite football team wherever they happen to be.
If you're game for a little uncertainty, you can wait until the Tuesday or Wednesday of that week and see what e-fares come out for your home city and pick whichever you like best -- Continental has last-minute air + hotel packages, too (as might other airlines). Airfares will probably be quite high for the holiday season, so this could save you some significant money as well.

silver cloud
12-09-2005, 09:57 AM
Good suggestions John, perhaps a litte beach time would help. You can always rent a little shack on the ocean for a few days, too.

Ned
12-09-2005, 05:26 PM
Originally posted by silver cloud@Dec 9 2005, 11:57 AM
Good suggestions John, perhaps a litte beach time would help.* You can always rent a little shack on the ocean for a few days, too.
15287

Ah Mary, we finally part ways a bit. No beach for me. I love the water; snorkel, swimming, boating, skiing, sailing, etc. I really dislike sitting on the beach sweating. To me its kind of like...like watching water drip from a faucet. The beach has its uses though. It's a great place to leave your towel when you go into the ocean, or a great place for some friendly volleyball.

stephen_s
12-09-2005, 11:20 PM
Well, if you decide on Los Angeles New Year's weekend, I can take you out to Universal Studios Hollywood (I've got an annual pass), Sea World, San Diego Zoo, or we can go clubbing. We can pick up some hot babes ;) :lol:.

Ned
12-10-2005, 05:56 AM
Originally posted by stephen_s@Dec 10 2005, 01:20 AM
Well, if you decide on Los Angeles New Year's weekend, I can take you out to Universal Studios Hollywood (I've got an annual pass), Sea World, San Diego Zoo, or we can go clubbing.* We can pick up some hot babes ;)* :lol:.
15328

I think my days of clubbing and hot babes are long gone, although I do think my wife of almost 34 years is still pretty hot!

2410bobtail
12-12-2005, 08:57 AM
I spent a Christmas in a small house on Martha's Vineyard, right near where the ferry docks. It was so warm that even the evenings were pleasant and jacketless. I think that was pretty normal weather for the area. I took a day trip to Nantucket, which has a lot of whaling history tucked in here and there. I grew up in the SF Bay Area, so that sort of culture and living was new to me then. It might well be "old hate" for you if you've been around the Boston/Cape area for a while.

If I really had to wind down, I'd do four days on Amtrak -- across to maybe Chicago. I live in the northwest edge of Montana, and an Amtrak ride from here to Seattle is really something.

angelmizanchan
12-12-2005, 07:52 PM
You could come visit us here in San Diego! Right now, it's December, and it's about 60-70 degrees with sunshine! There's a lot to do here, it's really pretty all decorated for Christmas, and it's right near the beach! :D

Ned
12-12-2005, 10:22 PM
Originally posted by angelmizanchan@Dec 12 2005, 09:52 PM
You could come visit us here in San Diego!* Right now, it's December, and it's about 60-70 degrees with sunshine!* There's a lot to do here, it's really pretty all decorated for Christmas, and it's right near the beach!* :D
15426

But where's the snow? There's no "White Christmas" in San Diego. Here in Philadelphia, there's plenty of snow on the ground, with more expected by week's end and it's a balmy 27F. I guess there are some days you just wish for a "Sandy Christmas".

stephen_s
12-12-2005, 11:21 PM
Originally posted by Ned@Dec 12 2005, 09:22 PM
But where's the snow?* There's no "White Christmas" in San Diego.* Here in Philadelphia, there's plenty of snow on the ground, with more expected by week's end and it's a balmy 27F.* I guess there are some days you just wish for a "Sandy Christmas".
15432


Umm, Ned, I suggest you read this:

http://www.tripso.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=4069 :D

Ned
12-13-2005, 05:03 AM
Originally posted by stephen_s@Dec 13 2005, 01:21 AM
Umm, Ned, I suggest you read this:

http://www.tripso.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=4069 :D
15435

Thanks Stephen.