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Unique Summer Vacations to Get Away From the Crowds

Looking for summer vacation ideas away from the crowds? Consider these overlooked summer vacation destinations for your next getaway.

These unexpected spots may seem like unlikely candidates for best summer destinations at first, but visiting them during the less-crowded summer can make all the difference.

California Cool

Nestled in the Coachella Valley, Palm Springs and nearby Palm Desert were once playgrounds to Hollywood’s elite, and have recently made a resurgence into the limelight. It’s a place really like no other — where both relaxed and chic California cultures come together — and summer is a great time to visit. Enjoy world-class shopping and dining at El Paseo, “The Rodeo Drive of the Desert,” or championship golf with unbeatable high-desert views before relaxing by a breezy resort pool. Cali desert life is all about kicking back, relaxing and enjoying the scenery, and Palm Springs and Palm Desert are ideal for just that.

Where to Stay:
The Westin Mission Hills Resort Villas, Palm Springs
The Westin Desert Willow Villas, Palm Desert

Hiking in Colorado

Colorful Colorado

Colorado’s beautiful alpine scenery doesn’t melt away when the snow does. In fact, summertime reveals a beautiful new side of the Centennial State perfect to explore at your leisure. Not too hot and not too cold, summer in Colorado is all about getting outside. Epic hike opportunities abound, all with expansive views. Passing aspen and pine forests, horse stables, trout ponds and more, the four-hour round-trip to Beaver Creek Lake is ideal for intermediate-level hikers. But don’t worry; whatever your skill level, there are ample options to be found. Another perk about no snow on the mountains: alpine slides. The Howler gives unique views of Mt. Werner and downtown Steamboat Springs as riders glide to the bottom of the 2,400-foot course. And when it’s time to relax, enjoy a hearty brunch at one of the many local open-air farmers markets.

Where to Stay:
Sheraton Steamboat Resort Villas
The Westin Riverfront Mountain Villas


Authentic Arizona

The Grand Canyon State offers so much more than just the Grand Canyon, although a pilgrimage there is on its share of bucket lists. Let the Phoenix/Scottsdale area serve as your centrally located home base for some truly unique daytrips. History buffs will love the Old-West towns of Tombstone and Bisbee. Once thriving mining boomtowns, today they preserve history and immerse visitors in the feel of the real “Wild West.” Or drive north to Sedona, the brilliant red-rock city that’s a must-do milestone on the way to the Grand Canyon. And returning back from your trip, exploring Old Town Scottsdale should be on everyone’s itinerary. Easygoing yet sophisticated, it’s the city’s hub of fine dining, boutique shopping and art-gallery exploring.

Where to Stay:
The Westin Kierland Villas
Sheraton Desert Oasis