New Orleans is a city filled with rich cultural history, and incredible tourist locations. However, aside from the voodoo shops and beignets, NOLA has a lot more to offer than delicious deserts and Mardi Gras once a year. Any trip to NOLA should begin at the French Truck Coffee on Magazine Street. Three other locations around the city exist, however the tiny charm of this one, and its separation from the main drag makes it a perfect spot to warm up to the atmosphere as you make your way to the French Quarter. After your coffee you’ll likely be feeling the mood of the city and dying to join in on some of the local fashion. For this I suggest heading to the Goorin Bros Hat Shop on French Street. As one of the oldest hat manufacturers in the US with many styles to choose from and accessories to pair, you’ll be heading out on the rest of your adventure looking like a true local—or at least enough to blend in for the week. As you work your way down French Street, you’ll come across The Gumbo Shop. Tucked away in an ally off the main drag, this restaurant features some wonderful authentic gumbo and a secluded spot to rest up from the chaos surrounding you on Bourbon Street. From here you can make your way up to decanter street walking along the Mississippi River to Cane & Table, a bar specializing in historic rum cocktails. This then puts you in the area to experience Café Du Monde, the famous café that invented one of NOLA’s most famous confections the beignet. These are just a few of the incredible places to visit on a trip to New Orleans, with hundreds more waiting to be discovered as you wander the vast city.
Making the long haul to the Pacific Northwest is a fantastic and beautiful trip you won’t forget. Dublin, Ohio shares the nickname the Emerald City, but it certainly pales in comparison to the mountains and hills you’ll find here in Seattle. For the casual outdoorsman, Gasworks Park offers a beautiful view of the skyline from atop a green hill in North Seattle. Nearby you’ll find Miir’s flagship café, replete with supreme craft coffee, and down the road, Sea Wolf Bakers serves up fresh and locally sourced breads. Boujee foodies will want to hit up the Walrus and the Carpenter for some cocktails and fresh caught, raw oysters. Venturing into downtown, a few iconic stops, however touristy they may feel, are still worth the stop. Pike Place Market as well as the recently added MarketFront is a beautiful and historic shopping center. The hallways of the market are saturated with flowers, produce, and what seems like an infinite amount of fresh seafood while MarketFront offers eateries and breweries like Old Stove Brewing Company. Just outside the market you can stop by the original Starbucks, but be careful not to miss it because it looks just like every other Starbucks you’ve seen. Coffee purists (or snobs) will want to visit Elm Coffee Roasters and Slate Coffee Roasters. These two coffee shops stand out amongst the rest for holding their coffee to an incredibly high standard, and your caffeine addiction will certainly thank you. For more outdoor adventures, you’re never too far from Mt. Rainier and Olympic National Park for some stellar hiking trails. Whether you’re here to hike, eat, or enjoy the particular freedoms available to you in the state of Washington, Seattle is well worth the voyage this summer.
No one ever thinks to go to Boston. No mountains. No celebrities roaming around. No amusement parks. But you can keep yourself busy for days, and learn some super smart history stuff to bring up at a cocktail hour when you need a conversation starter. So why Boston? Let’s start with it’s a cheap flight. You can get there and back on about $100 on an hour and a half trip each way. Better than driving 24 hours total. Second, if your a sports fan, it’s the city of champions for sports. You can never go wrong going to a Red Sox game at Fenway Park and checking out the Green Monster. And you can get a picture with their mascot thing. And try to not let it be in your nightmares. Also, there’s a bar on every corner in Boston. And they are all themed for whatever you’re in the mood for. Irish bars! Baseball bars inside the stadium! Baseball bars outside of the stadium! Bars literally named Baseball! So maybe they have a bar for whatever your mood is—as long as that mood is baseball. It only feels right to grab some pizza when you are grubbin’ in a sports town and Santarpios Pizza is the big name you can’t miss. The pizza isn’t gourmet, but it’s cheap and every bit worth the few bucks you shell out. Boston is also great because you can casually stumble on incredibly historic landmarks. Get a little too drunk and take a wrong turn? Oops, now you’re at the Boston Massacre Site. Keep strolling down aways and you’ll find the Paul Revere Statue, and a pick-up basketball court where you can lace ‘em up one time for Paul. Boston also holds a little known fact in that it has the first ever public beach. You probably didn’t even think Boston had one. But Revere Beach stands proudly and has been since 1896. If all else fails, you can always pop over to Harvard’s campus and try to find your future spouse. Just don’t tell them your name is Mark. Bad lead-in.
Money not on your side? These quick getaways in Ohio are affordable, close to home, and did we mention affordable? The Great Escape: Staying Close To Home.
Want more getaway destinations? Check out our second tier of getaways for places that are definitely worth the drive: The Great Escape: Worth The Trip.