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Help us pick the perfect destination

Old Feb 14th, 2007, 07:05 AM
  #1  
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Help us pick the perfect destination

My wife and I are planning a last-minute, much-needed, 5- or 6-day vacation during the week of March 4 (spring break at the university where we teach). I'm soliciting your suggestions about where we should go.

Here are our must-haves:
- In the U.S. (or territories).
- Warm.
- Reasonably inexpensive: preferably <$1500 for 5 nights of lodging, food, and incidentals. (Airfare excluded.)
- If it's a beach place, we prefer snorkeling-type beaches to tanning-type beaches. (We'd rather be in the water than on the sand.)
- Quiet and secluded rather than noisy and active.
- Either beautiful lodging (where we can relax at the hotel/resort/villa/condo and not feel like leaving) or beautiful but relaxing things to do nearby (beaches, parks, etc. where we won't need to spend much time at the hotel.).
- Essential: Few, if any, college-spring-break visitors! (This is what we're trying to avoid. Worst-case-scenario = seeing own students in their bathing suits, or them seeing us in ours.)
- Still some possibility of getting lodging reservations this close to the travel dates. If there's an easy way to find last-minute lodging deals, that's even better.

These are preferable but not essential:
- Within 6 hours of flying (including layovers) from Philadelphia or Newark.
- Getting there from the airport is not too much of a hassle, so we don't burn 2 of our 5 or 6 days traveling.
- Served by United so we can use frequent flyer miles rather than paying for airfare.

The person with the winning suggestion gets a postcard.
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Old Feb 14th, 2007, 07:33 AM
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Moab, UT. It's not too expensive. It will be warm, but cooler in the evening. There are a few nice hotels, good food, and good beer. The scenery in Arches Nat'l Park is incredible and there are several easy hikes as well as some moderate to difficult hikes.

The downside is that you'd probably have to rent a car in Salt Lake and drive to Moab.
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Old Feb 14th, 2007, 07:39 AM
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Sedona,Arizona.
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Old Feb 14th, 2007, 08:28 AM
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Santa Barbara ca.Paul
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Old Feb 14th, 2007, 09:01 AM
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How about El San Juan in Puerto Rico? There are other locations in PR and the Virgin Islands that have much less nightlife than spring breakers would want or need. Try the Caribbean board?
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Old Feb 14th, 2007, 09:43 AM
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cd
 
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Read your post earlier. Just received this in my email and thought you might be interested in San Juan. You could both go for a total of $1000 and save your air miles. http://www.eleisurelink.com/ProductD...x?unit_id=4034
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Old Feb 14th, 2007, 09:50 AM
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Monterey, Carmel, and the drive along the California Ocean...it will take your breath away!
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Old Feb 14th, 2007, 10:27 AM
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Warm and a snokeling destination, doesn't quite describe Carmel, CA. Don't get me wrong, I love it. I'm there a few times a year and my daughter was married there in 05 (same chapel my folks were married at 64 years earlier).
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Old Feb 14th, 2007, 10:40 AM
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larry - it might be extremely tough to get FF at this late of a date for any kind of popular destination.

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Old Feb 14th, 2007, 10:51 AM
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The O.P. specified "quiet and secluded". Doesn't that exclude San Juan?
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Old Feb 14th, 2007, 11:07 AM
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Larry,
Not sure how warm you want it, but what about a stay in the Garden District in New Orleans? Your Spring Break sounds early compared to what we have in Texas, so I am not sure how many Spring Breakers would be out but if they are in NOLA they will probably be on Bourban St. anyway. The garden district is quaint and beautiful, but I don't have hotel suggestions. Sorry! ANd I heard Commander's Palace has opened up again.
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Old Feb 14th, 2007, 11:08 AM
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I meant to say Bourbon St!
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Old Feb 14th, 2007, 11:34 AM
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Thank you all for your replies. Let me provide a little feedback (with the intention of refining, rather than shutting down, future suggestions).

We like the western U.S. suggestions made by kureiff, logandog, tovarich, and garyt22. Most intriguing of these is maybe a combo Monterey/Carmel/Santa Barbara trip.

trippinkpj: Snorkeling is not required. And "warm" means "warmer than Pennsylvania." This is not a particularly difficult constraint. Just to set the stage: It's now 21 degrees here, with snow, sleet, and ice all last night and this morning.

As for the Caribbean suggestions: This is tempting, but (and here comes the big sheepish admission) we have a trip planned for St. John in the summer, so we might want something other than the Caribbean for our pre-St.-John-have-to-get-out-of-here trip.

ilovetulips: New Orleans is a good suggestion too. We've been there several times (not post-Katrina) and like it a lot.

karens: Your warning about FF miles is well taken. If we can't make it work, we're willing to pay for the tickets.

Thanks for the suggestions -- keep 'em coming!

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Old Feb 14th, 2007, 01:52 PM
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A condo at Turtle Bay on Oahu or a small cottage at Waimea Plantation Cottages on Kauai.
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Old Feb 14th, 2007, 05:29 PM
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<<Within 6 hours of flying (including layovers) from Philadelphia or Newark.>>

That certainly rules out Hawaii entirely.
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Old Feb 14th, 2007, 05:39 PM
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Might want to look into some of the areas in FL, especially the Gulf Coast. Just beware that anywhere on the Gulf (west) Coast of FL there is always the risk of Red Tide or Red Drift Algae.
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Old Feb 15th, 2007, 07:28 PM
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Some ideas: New Orleans, San Antonio, Austin. They don't have beaches, but should meet your warm weather requirements with plenty of nice hotels and reasonable lodging prices.

If you absolutely need snorkeling, perhaps a trip to Key West would be in order.
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Old Feb 20th, 2007, 09:13 PM
  #18  
dgg
 
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Santa Fe/Taos
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Old Feb 20th, 2007, 10:53 PM
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I checked seat availability for 2 adults at united.com I might see more availability because of my FF status but this is only a United search. You will also be able to use USAir. I think your chances are good for flying free to California.

On United, you could fly:
to LAX on 3rd, 4th, ...
to Monterey (MRY) on the 2nd
from LAX on the 8th
from Santa Barbara (SBA) on the 8th
to SFO on the 2nd-5th
from SFO 8-10th
to FAT on 3rd-5th FAT=Fresno, Yosemite

Plus you should find some available seats on USAir.
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Old Feb 21st, 2007, 12:17 AM
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How about Savannah ? When we were there in last Sept. we went to Tybee island.Went up the lighthouse.Then you have the beach and the historic town all in one.Dont know about the weather butit will certainly be a lot warmer than Pen.Paul
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