Summer Travel Destinations
APRIL 12, 2019 | CHICAGO, IL—
There’s nothing better than escaping the humidity of the summer and heading to a cooler destination up north. This month, we’re sharing two of our top picks for summer travel if you’re looking to stay stateside.
Mackinac Island, Michigan
If you’re looking for a taste of quintessential summer charm in the Midwest, Mackinac Island is the place for you! Only four square miles, the island is car-free, taking you back to a time without the fumes of transportation and instead, offering the fresh smell of… horse manure. Jokes aside, the chance to travel only by walking, biking, or a horse-drawn carriage is what makes this destination so idyllic and laid back.
If you love the outdoors, Mackinac is 82% parkland and the perfect place to spend the day bike riding, hiking, or horseback riding through the beautiful state park and along the waterfront pathways. To see the island from afar, visitors can head to the water for some stand-up paddle boarding and kayaking. Food lovers can indulge on the island’s famous fudge or take a horse-drawn carriage to the Woods restaurant for some local specialties. If you love to sail, you’re in for a treat and should plan to head to Mackinac during the Chicago Yacht Club’s “Race to Mackinac” and spend your days watching the boats arrive while celebrating sailor-style.
The island offers a variety of lodging options, but there’s nothing better than the quaint Iroquois Hotel, located on the water just off the edge of town. To travel back in time, stay at the iconic Grand Hotel and spend your days enjoying views of the lake from the 660 ft-long front porch. No matter where you choose to stay, you’re in for a one-of-a-kind experience.
Portland, Maine may be known as a lobster lover’s paradise, but the small city in the Northeast has so much more to offer than just shellfish. Hordes of people will head to Maine every fall for a taste of the autumn colors, but the state has just as much to offer in the summertime.
We’ll start with the most obvious - food. With a quickly growing dining scene, there is a never-ending list of restaurants and cafes to check out during your stay. Work on your summer body at Holy Donut for artisanal treats made from potatoes… yes you heard that right, a potato donut. For a more casual vibe, you’ll be licking your fingers after trying the brown butter lobster rolls at Eventide Oyster Co. If you’re ready for a cool, refreshing beverage, you’re in the right place - even with the city’s smaller size, Portland is home to over 20 breweries, including classics like Allagash and Bissell Brothers, as well as local favorites like Austin Street and Lone Pine.
The city has a thriving art scene, so be sure to check out the amazing galleries at the Portland Museum of Art as well as work from regional artists displayed along Congress Street. There’s even an art walk every Friday, where hundreds of galleries, museums, and shops come together on the sidewalks to show their work.
If you want to get active, Portland has nearly 70 miles of trails available for hiking or walking, while surfers can check out neighboring cities like Kennebunk. You can spend the entire day swimming and walking along the beach at Cape Elizabeth’s Crescent Beach State Park.
Staying in town gives you access to many of the city's main attractions, but for a special treat you should check into the Inn by the Sea. Just ten minutes outside of downtown, the luxury oceanside resort will immediately put you into a “zen” state of mind - trust us.
Photo: Visit Maine