This summer, IgoUgo travelers are letting the fun come to them—almost. (We knew our travel addicts wouldn’t give in to the idea of a staycation so easily.) From Philly to San Diego, we’ve gleaned some helpful tips from the members setting out on great American trips with budget and ease in mind.
Earlier this month, with her granddaughter in tow, New Englander zabelle saw the sometimes-ignored youthful side of Philadelphia. “If you think Philadelphia is only about Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell, think again,” she says, and goes on to give us a couple of key recommendations, including a “beautifully restored” hotel at a great price and a museum for those who like “the bizarre, the unusual, the truly weird.”
Where to Stay: Courtyard by Marriott Philadelphia Downtown
What to Do: Mutter Museum
Both Carmen and MilwVon headed to Williamsburg, Virginia, in May. Carmen lives just 40 minutes from the historic attraction, and because she saved on transportation dollars by staying close to home, she was able to include an outlet-mall stop that had her doing a “dance of joy.” MilwVon and family, meanwhile, immersed themselves in colonial times day and night—and may have had even more fun than on their 2007 trip to CW.
What to Do:: Colonial Williamsburg Evening Programming
Where to Eat: Seasons Restaurant
See if you can guess where pbpd81 headed from her home in Missouri based on this emotional review: “I don’t believe I can put into words my feelings about our visit here. I have dreamed of visiting this park for as long as I can remember, so my excitement upon actually arriving is indescribable.” No guesses? Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, inspired her to write so beautifully about her trip south. The Dolly fan even figured out how to get the most park time for her money, the mark of a true devotee.
What to Do: Dollywood
Where to Eat: Blue Moose Burgers & Wings
Joy S continues her string of time-stamped journals (“5 Days in Helsinki,” “3 Days in the National Forest”) with Two Weeks in Orlando. Disney World isn’t exactly a short hop from Joy S’s UK homestead, but the theme park (or it’s West Coast sister) is close to many American travelers, and her long stay revealed heaps of tips to make even a couple of days at Disney go smoothly. For one thing, she says, “schedule an indoor show in an air-conditioned theater 2-3 times daily and arrive early.” Sounds like an essential step to a sane summer trip to Orlando.
Where to Stay: Windsor Palms
What to Do: Animal Kingdom
Wisconsinite cmeekins03 and her young family spent their summer vacation in Wisconsin Dells, the self-proclaimed “Waterpark Capital of the World.” She sticks to her MO of reviewing things through the eyes of her kids, and based on her picks—and the looks of sheer happiness on her daughters’ faces—she knows how to plan a family vacation everyone will remember for years to come. Choosing a hotel that features a campfire and marshmallow roast is surely a good way to start.
Where to Stay: Peppertree at Tamarack
What to Do: Wisconsin Deer Park
MikeInTown has been writing about his first visit to San Diego: a “leisurely weekend” in a “lovely city.” His tips include where to find the best dessert in town, how to get a discount at the city’s top attraction, and which hotel is a must-see—even if you don’t have a reservation.
What to Do: San Diego Zoo
Where to Eat: Prado