Cool Summer Vocation

Old May 5th, 2009, 02:06 PM
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Cool Summer Vocation

Will be traveling early August with the family from Bahrain. We are four with children daughter 18 and son 16. My daughter will be starting University of Pennsylvania (UPenn) end of August. My plan is to arrive early August to a cool place in US and then the last week or 10 days of August to stay at Philadelphia where then the three of us will be returning to Bahrain.

We have been to US last summer to Boston, Chicago, Washington DC and New York. In the past I have been to US several times mostly to big cities for conferences. This August for about 2 weeks my initial plan is to visit cool places with scenery and mountains if possible.

From looking at a Travel book I am thinking of Colorado, Rocky Mountains with Denver, Boulder, Vail and Aspen . Is this plan is a good idea or do you have other suggestion and places to visit. For the above places do you suggest hiring a car.....etc., Will be traveling from London by BA. For example to Denver and then will be leaving from Philadelphia. My plan is to arrange the air travel within the next couple of days, since I have been told most flights to US are already full from Bahrain through Europe .... so have to harry.

Thanks in advance for any suggestions, comments... Ahmed.
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Old May 6th, 2009, 12:19 PM
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Just a top up.

Kindly note the title should have been Vacation. Anyhow, would appreciate any suggestion of hotels if you think Colorado area is good choice. Plus if you have any suggestion of hotels or any accommodations in Philadelphia while we will be there during the last week of August. Cheers!
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Old May 6th, 2009, 08:49 PM
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I think that would be a WONDERFUL idea. (And I'm not just saying that because I live here and know how beautiful it is!) I would definitely rent a car as getting from place to place would be very difficult otherwise. Everyone on this forum will have their own special place in Colorado that they love so you may get a lot of differing opinions on where to go; but I think you've got a great start. I'm not a big fan of Vail, mostly because I think Aspen serves that "upscale mountain resort town" feel much better and there is no sense in going to both.

If I were planning a trip though Colorado, I might start with this:

Denver to Estes Park via a quick stop in Boulder. (stay overnight or just spend the afternoon wandering through downtown and the university.)

Spend a couple of nights in Estes Park, touring Rocky Mountain National Park during the day. Amazing scenery, beautiful drives, hikes, horseback rides, etc.

Go out of the western side of the park through Grand Lake. If you want to seen another ski resort town, and take Rabbit Ears Pass (HWY 40) to Steamboat. Spend a night or two there. (It is also a ski resort town, but has a different feel from Aspen/Vail.)

Drive from Steamboat to Aspen (doubling back through Grand Lake and going through Winter Park back to I-70.) Enjoy Glenwood Canyon on your way. Spend a couple of nights in Aspen. Great for scenery, shopping, dining, relaxing, hiking, etc. (Make sure to go up to Maroon Bells!)

If you have time and want to venture farther west, Grand Junction has much different scenery (mesas vs. mountains.) A lot of people LOVE Ouray, but it's a bit of a trek.

If you decide to go back to Denver from Aspen, take Independence Pass out of Aspen, through Leadville (The highest city in North America!).

If you want to visit Vail (or Breckenridge) you can spend a night or two on your way back to Denver.

Denver is a nice city, very relaxed, but if you are used to the "great American cities" of Chicago or New York or Boston, you might be a little disappointed. That said, there is a beautiful botanical gardens, Red Rocks park, upscale shopping and dining in Cherry Creek, a wonderful art museum, etc. (And Colorado Springs would make a nice day trip, too, to see either Pikes Peak or Garden of the Gods.)

Best of luck in your planning. We'd love to have you!
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Old May 8th, 2009, 07:44 AM
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Many thanks Back2Sabi. Appreciate your time and suggestions.
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Old May 12th, 2009, 09:15 AM
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Just want to add to what my wife, Back2Sabi, said. The mountains are definitely a cooler climate place to visit in Colorado. They are beautiful and refreshing.

The plains, or edge of the plains, where Denver, Boulder and Colorado Springs are situated can be fairly warm/hot in August, with the temperature reaching from 30-32 most days to as high as 37C on some occasions. Grand Junction will be quite warm at times too. On the other end of Colorado weather in August; in the mountains on infrequent occasions you can sometimes experience snow at the elevations.

If you like to experience high altitudes I would recommend driving up to see Mt Evans (west of Denver) or Pikes Peak (west of Colorado Springs). If you would like to see some classic "Old West" towns I would suggest the Cripple Creek-Victorville or Central City areas - Be forewarned there are many gambling casinos in the area. Colorado Springs also has Garden of the Gods rock formations. Great Sandunes national Park in the south central part ofthe state has some amazing dunes right up against the mountains. Arabian Desert they are not, but still are qutie beautiful. South of the Durango area (and warmer in climate) is Mesa Verde National Park which is an area with many cliff dwellings and classic western scenery. Monument valley is relative close to here as well...but that is getting well out of the mountains and a full days drive from Denver.

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Old May 12th, 2009, 09:34 AM
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By cool - I get you don't mead "cold" cause if its "cold" you want then San Francisco is the place to be in the summer!
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