Here’s How You Should Spend Your First Getaway of the Year

PHOTO: LeStudio / Shutterstock

Welcome to the Puddle Jumper, our new guide to the best things to do, see, and pack for the best weekend every weekend.

Start your year off with a nice, refreshing vortex. But, first…

What’s Going On

At Home…

San Diego’s brewery scene is unlike any other city in the U.S., making the San Diego Beer Festival (January 11, 12 to 4 p.m.) the ideal place to get your Oktoberfest fix in January. There, you’ll find craft beer from a myriad of local and international breweries (plus plenty of food trucks and live music to keep you entertained between pints).

And Abroad…

Cartagena Festival Internacional de Música is currently in full swing across multiple venues in the Colombian port city. The theme this year is “Lo Bello & Lo Sublime” (“The Beautiful and the Sublime”)—an exploration of the transition of classical music into a more romantic period a la Schubert. January 12 marks the last day of this unique classical music festival.

Where We Want to Go This Weekend

In a perfect world, we would close out the new year with our spirit nourished from quality time spent with our friends and family, ready to emerge into the still pale dawn of a new year and seize upon all the opportunities 2020 has to offer. In reality, many of us don’t so much emerge as we stagger, bleary-eyed and squinting, through our hangovers (literal and emotional) from the holiday season’s harried pace.

So a spa-oriented getaway is warranted. But we’re not talking about just any destination known for its spas and peaceful outdoors spaces—we’re talkin’ Sedona. That’s right, it’s time for the big guns. Because what this Arizonan town has that other retreats don’t is its abundant vortices—points where the earth’s energy is especially concentrated, giving those places special healing qualities. Even if you’re not the type to believe in the mystical, think of it as a New Age update on Pascal’s wager.

Stay: Enchantment Resort’s Mii amo Spa represents the ideal Sedona spa experience. Yes, it offers every type of massage you could hope for, but it also offers a myriad of healing treatments including reiki, past life regression, and interactive aura photography.

 

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Do: For stunning views of Sedona’s signature red rock formations, head to Cathedral Rock. With a wide array of features–from more challenging scrambles to creekside strolls–these trails provide both experienced hikers as well as novices a chance to connect with the natural world.

Eat: For when you get tired of egg whites, head to Dahl & Di Luca Ristorante Italiano. Because what could be better than getting back to town after a day of hiking, completely ravenous, and then indulging in some tortellini alla nonna? Not much!

What We’re Reading on the Plane

Even those in Southern California have been forced to don if-not-actual coats then definitely their heaviest jackets. So, now is exactly the time to pick up Kristen Arnett’s debut novel Mostly Dead Things and find yourself transported to the sticky, soupy Floridian heat. The novel follows Jessa as she tries to keep her family’s taxidermy business (and her family itself) on the straight and narrow in the wake of her father’s suicide. It’s an eccentric, sad, darkly funny novel exploration of complicated familial dynamics.

What We’re Downloading to Watch on the Plane

The Last Black Man in San Francisco, a film based partially on star Jimmie Fails’ own life, follows a young man as he tries to reclaim his childhood home, an ornate Victorian built by his grandfather back in the 1940s. It’s a bittersweet, elegiac lens through which to view a city that has become very complicated to love as all the communities that made it special are sidelined in favor of soulless tech giants. It also has one of the most remarkable scores you’re likely to hear, imbuing every scene with a lush and Romantic glow.

What’s in Our Carry-On

LEXON’s Tykho 3 FM Radio & Bluetooth Speaker isn’t waterproof but it is the perfect level of water-resistant for setting next to your hotel’s soaking tub. Plus, sleek and minimal design means it’ll take up a minimal amount of space in your carry-on.