A short two hour flight from Boston you’ll find the lush pink sand beaches of Bermuda. Making the island the ideal destination for New Englanders.
After getting engaged in December my fiancé and I knew we wanted to do an engagement moon but didn’t know where. After researching and budgeting we found Bermuda was the perfect location for an affordable tropical getaway close to home!
After lots of research we decided to stay at The Hamilton Princess located in the town of Hamilton which is one of my favorite areas on the island as its a hub for eating, drinking, and shopping.
We spent most of our time at the Hamilton Princess relaxing by the pool & spa and the resorts private beach club. Adam and I also enjoyed eating at the resorts two restaurants Marcus’ and 1609.
Two of the days we spent exploring the 22 mile Island. Some of our favorites were the Crystal Caves, Navy Yard, and trying rum swizzles at the famous Swizzle Inn. I recommend renting a twizy (safer than scooters) or taking the bus as its more affordable than taxis.
Situated two hours north of Boston you’ll find Alton, New Hampshire. Home to Lake Winnipesaukee and the popular mountain – Mount Major.
If you’re looking to escape the city, get in a great workout and take in the stellar views than the dive up is 100 percent worth it!
I recommend leaving as early as the lot at the mountain fills up fast! The hike up takes roughly two hours up and two down depending on your skill set. We took the blue trail, which was a moderate hike that had some large boulders to climb towards the top of the mountain.
After completing your hike stop by one of the local ice cream shops on the lake or fuel up with a fish dinner at Pop’s Clam shack.
Pro tip: If you’re new to hiking take the yellow trail. It may take you longer but there are fewer boulders to climb.
Summer home to several past presidents, Martha’s Vineyard makes you feel a world away with its whimsical charm and simplistic beach lifestyle. From its gingerbread neighborhood to the cliffs of Aquinnah to the famous Black Dog Tavern. I love Martha’s Vineyard!
Each summer I love taking a day to enjoy and explore the Vineyard. I usually rent a moped, as it’s the easiest way to get around and always end my day with a mudslide from Nancy’s before hopping back on the ferry to Cape. But what do I do with the rest of the day? As the Vineyard can be overwhelming for first-time visitors I’ve rounded up some of my favorite must-see attractions and restaurants for your vineyard adventure.
Rent a moped or bike: With the island being small and congested with traffic during peek season, why no see the island on bike or moped? Allowing you to see more without having to take the time to find parking. Making it more convenient rentals are less than a five-minute walk from the ferry.
Take the first ferry out of Falmouth: Don’t wait until mid morning. Hop on the first ferry. After you park on Palmer Ave. in Falmouth a bus shuttles you down to Woods Hole where the ferry leaves. The drive to Woods Hole can take an additional 30 min on top of the 45-minute ferry – be sure to leave early. Although you may feel you arrived early there are some great breakfast choices once on the Vineyard. I’ve recommended a few below!
Espresso Love: From sandwiches to bagels to salads, to coffee and more Espresso Love will not disappoint.
Biscuits: Looking for a sit-down breakfast joint? This is the place to go. Don’t be surprised if you wait 40 minutes to an hour – but trust me it’s worth it!
The Black Dog Tavern: A popular tourist destination with a beautiful view. Don’t forget to grab some Black Dog merchandise on the way out!
Nancy’s: Best mudslides and seafood. Grab a drink and watch the sunset on the dock.
The Flying Horse: Test your luck on The Flying Horse. Maybe even have a friendly competition to see who can grab the most rings!
The Gingerbread houses: A whimsical, quite neighborhood. Makes you feel like you’re in a children’s book. Don’t forget to snap an Instagram picture.
The Cliffs of Aquinnah: The Cliffs of Aquinnah is a must see on the Vineyard. Take some time to observe the view, another great photo opportunity.
Spring break kicks off in two short weeks, but before you flock to paradise check out these must-have items that will help anyone in your crew make it through a week of sunshine, fruity drinks, and relaxation.
First-Aid Kit: Someone in your group is bound to get sick, stung, sunburnt or just not feel well. Be the “mom” in your group and bring a first-aid kit. Buy a travel size kit at your local Wal-Mart or CVS before the trip. This way you’ll have all the necessities for any emergency.
Snacks: Whether road tripping or flying snacks are always a great idea! Pro Tip: If you’re staying in a condo, house or hotel with kitchen amenities go to a local grocery store and buy food for a few days. This will reduce cost from eating out, in addition to being a healthier option.
Sunglasses: Hitting the slopes or sailing through the Caribbean, sunglasses are a must have item! Check out Nordstrom for the hottest styles of the season.
Cash: You may be thinking who carries cash these days? However, it’s a great idea to always carry cash with you while traveling! Great for souvenirs, farmers markets, cabs or even tipping your bartender.
Floppy Hat: Floppy hats are very in for tropical vacation! Pro Tip: Buy while on vacation (treat yourself)!
Sun Screen: Honestly this is probably the most important on the list. With skin cancer on the rise, skip out on the tanning oil and invest in a high SPF sunscreen. You will still gain your bronze color, but limit the sunburns and wrinkles in the future.
Book or Magazines: If you’re headed to the beach this spring break I recommend bringing along a few books or magazines! I recommend Sweet Bitter by Stephanie Danler or The Girls by Emma Cline.
Swimsuit + Cover up: Don’t just bring one suit, bring a few! Looking to grab the years must have swimsuit? Check out these stores for the latest in swim fashion. Nordstrom, Anything But Water, Triangle
With spring break right around the corner now is the time to get the best deals on spring travel. Below are some reasonably priced destinations that will allow you to budget for another vacation in 2017! Pro tip: try and book on a Tuesday or Wednesday for cheaper prices.
If you love nature, hiking, and outdoor activities then this is the perfect spring break getaway! Currently, JetBlue is offering deals to Liberia, Costa Rica for as low as $1475 per person if you travel between now and May 7, 2017. (Packages include hotel and air fair ) Book your flight today!
Cancun- a college student’s spring break right of passage to let loose and soak up the Caribbean sun. But traveling to Cancun can be pricey, so if you’re worried about traveling on a strict budget, look no further to Cheap Caribbean a travel website offering cheap all-inclusive vacations to Cancun as low as $450 per person for three nights including flight. Here’s a great four-night deal at the Iberostar Cancun. This great deal allows you to spend extra on excursions or a night out on the town.
Whether you’re looking to explore Old San Juan or just relax poolside, everyone in your crew will enjoy the beauty of Puerto Rico. With all-inclusive packages starting around $1,100 per person on Kayak. Book now and get your money worth in Puerto Rico.
Looking to experience a once in a lifetime spring break experience? Then try heading to Iceland to explore Reykjavik for as low as $559 per person with Icelandair’s build your own vacation package. This package allows travelers to select add-on excursions and a variety of three to five-star hotels! Flight and hotel included in the package.
If you’re not escaping the city for the holiday weekend, here are a few things to check-out in the city this weekend.
Red Sox Games
What better way to spend the Fourth of July weekend than at the ball park watching America’s oldest sport. The Red Sox are slated to play the LA Angeles in this weekend’s home game series. With the Sox set for first pitch at 1:35 p.m. on July 4 against the Rangers. Below is a list of dates and times of this weekend’s Sox’s games.
July 1, Red Sox vs. Angeles @ 7:10 p.m.
July 2, Red Sox vs. Angeles @ 7:15 p.m.
July 3, Red Sox vs. Angeles @ 1:35 p.m.
July 4, Red Sox vs. Rangers @ 1:35 p.m.
While spending the weekend in one of America’s historic cities take time out of the day to go on the Freedom Trail Tour. The Freedom Trail is a 2.5 mile, red –line that leads guest to 16 historical sites in Boston. Enjoy the sites and people of Boston as you step back in time with a local colonial Bostonian. For more information about tickets, and tours clickhere.
Boston Common/Public Garden
This weather is looking perfect for the holiday weekend! What better way to not spend a dime and enjoy the Common and the Public Garden. Whether its people watching, lying out on the Common, taking photos or feeding the ducks it’s going to be a great weekend to take advantage of Boston’s free parks.
Located in Boston Public Garden, the Swan Boats are a Boston attraction you can’t miss. Whether it’s your first time visiting the city or a local, the Swan Boats are enjoyable to young and old alike. The Swan Boats are open daily during the summer from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., with ticket prices set at $3.50 for adults and $2 for kids. I would suggest arriving early as the line gets long fast!
Sea Port Bar Scene
Looking to celebrate America’s Birthday? My top pick to celebrate is in Boston’s Seaport! Below is a list of bars located in the Seaport:
The Atlantic Beer Garden
Lookout Rooftop & Bar
Lawn on D
The Envoy Hotel
The Boston Pop’s will be taking pace on July 3 & 4 at The Hatch Shell with guest appearances from Little Big Town, Demi Lovato and Nick Jonas. On July 3, enjoy entertainment from the Boston Pop’s with a concert beginning at 8:30p.m. (no fireworks). On July 4, gates open at 9 a.m. and the entertainment begins at 8:30 p.m. with a Boston Pop’s performance. Fireworks beginning at 10:30 p.m., I recommend getting to The Hatch Shell early as the lawn fills up fast!
Being from Florida I know some great places to go but I haven’t seen it all, so I like to explore and try new things each time I go. Here is my Florida in 48 hour guide to Tampa and Sarasota.
*Tip: Fly in on a Thursday night and get settled into your room and enjoy a late dinner and sunset or check out the newly painted Tampa sign.
Sarasota & St. Armand Circle: Growing up in the area I have a lot of experience with where to eat and the perfect time to head to the beach. Here is what you need to know!
Eating: Here is a list of my top places I recommend to try while in the area.
Owen’s Fish Camps
Dry Dock Waterfront Grill
The Met: When I was little my mum always uses to go The Met for pedicures and manicures. With The Met being known for its luxury fashion and high end spa services I figured I would surprise my sister and take her for her 21st birthday. Not only does The Met offer luxury fashion, but also their high end spa services starting at $50. Each package includes snacks, fudge and mimosas (21+). Great for an afternoon relaxing, couple’s message or girl’s day at the spa.
* Tip: Be sure to book in advance as the services fill up fast.
Siesta Keys: A short 20 minute drive from the circle will bring you to Siesta Keys Beach ranked best beach in Florida in 2015, according to Orlando Sentinel and personally my favorite beach as my parents would take me there after school or for an evening to watch the sunset and grab ice cream.
This beach is like no other beach I’ve ever been too it maybe because it holds a special place in my heart or that the sand feels like baby powder and the water is crystal blue. On a busy day or peak season be sure to arrive early as the beach gets crowded. The parking is free and includes changing stations, grilling/picnic areas as well as a concession stand.
*Note looking to spend all day at the beach? Siesta Village is a short five minute drive where they have a variety of restaurants and bars allowing you to extending your beach day.
Evening in Tampa: After spending a full day in the Sarasota area you may be a little hungry. My recommendation would be to eat back in Tampa and explore what the city has to offer. The drive from Sarasota to Tampa is around an hour giving you plenty of time to decide what you want to do/eat. My recommendation would be to head over to International Mall located at 2223 N West Shore Blvd., here you have the option to try several dining options including: Bar Louie, Blue Martini, Brio Tuscan Grille, Capital Grille, The Pub and more.
*I recommend The Pub or Brio Tuscan Grille.
Breakfast in Tampa:
Oxford Exchange: My personal favorite Oxford Exchange is located at 420 W Kennedy Blvd., directly across from The University of Tampa. Oxford Exchange offers breakfast, brunch, lunch and afternoon tea with an extensive menu for each. The restaurant not only offers food, but a café, study rooms and a gift shop.
*Tip: Be sure to book ahead as tables fill up fast. This is a popular destination for locals and tourist. Be prepared to spend a little extra money as eating here comes at a price, but worth it!
*I recommend the Lemon Poppy Seed Pancakes (AMAZING!), also be sure to try one of the many teas on their extensive tea menu, which you can also get to-go.
First Watch: Located at 520 Tampa St., First Watch offers a variety of Breakfast and Lunch options for families, tourist and locals looking for a casual and affordable dining experience. First Watch is open from 7a.m. to 2:30p.m. every day except Thanksgiving and Christmas.
*I recommend the Avocado Toast or Fresh Fruit Crepes.
Bayshore Boulevard: Looking to unwind after breakfast? Bayshore Blvd. is the perfect place! Looking over the water Bayshore is the perfect place to rent a bike and ride along the water, go for a run or just admire the beautiful homes. Simply park downtown, rent a bike or walk over!
Lowry Park Zoo – Tampa: I first went to Lowry Park Zoo when I was in Kindergarten for a field trip and I have to say it’s one of my favorite zoos. I recommend the zoo for anyone looking for a nice relaxing day as the zoo is shaded and the park isn’t crowded like your typical parks in the area. The zoo offers shows throughout the day, a safari ride and the opportunity to feed stingrays and giraffes. Parking at the zoo is free and the cost to enter is $13 (very affordable).
Evening at Clearwater Beach: After a packed day what better way to unwind than watch the sunset. Make sure you leave early as parking fills up fast. When you arrive enjoy the sunset from the beach or one of the many restaurants located along Clearwater beach. Note be prepared to wait where ever you choose to eat. Typical wait for a table at any of the restaurants is around 45 minutes to an hour. *See below for recommendations.