You don’t need a week in the Bahamas to get that “vacation feeling.” Short getaways, even just a day, do wonders for renewing your spirit and making you think about other things besides work and projects. Go ahead — stuff that “to do” list in a drawer and head out for some fun.
Be adventurous by yourself or make it a romantic trip, a family excursion or fun with friends.
“Every fall, I go on an annual girls’ golf weekend at a course in northern Michigan,” says Candy Lynch of Oakwood. “My husband plans a guys’ weekend golfing at Hueston Woods State Park or Deer Creek every year. The guys used to camp but now they rent cabins. They plan out their meals, too, and cook themselves gourmet dinners on the campfire after 18 holes!”
For many people, going out-of-state makes a trip seem more like an adventure. Fall is an ideal time to see the splendor of autumn foliage. Destinations such as Brown County, Indiana and the Smoky Mountains are popular for good reason.
But the Buckeye State has plenty to enjoy, and often you spend less time behind the wheel when you choose someplace closer to home. Ohio’s Office of Tourism offers itinerary ideas just for fall at consumer.discoverohio.com/autumnadventures/
Start your getaway by selecting one of these paths to go down:
Activity. Many people decide they want to go antiquing, sightseeing or shopping or enjoy the spa life or a round of golf. Pick an activity or two and then select a destination that offers what you want.
Attraction. Want to see the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater house in Pennsylvania, the Henry Ford Museum or the Kentucky Horse Park? Pick a must-see and build a trip around it.
Location. Perhaps you’ve wanted to explore Indianapolis, Amish country or show your kids (or grands) your alma mater. Selecting a specific location can open up possibilities.
Some people like to just “go east on 35” and see where the road takes them, with no plans, no reservations, no expectations. Other travelers like to have at least some plans figured out before slamming the house door behind them.
“I always research the daylights out of a trip and try to find at least one item that isn’t on the typical tourist list,” says Elaine Smith of Franklin. “I like a getaway that is stimulating to the mind and senses.”
Web sites are chockfull of ideas. For instance, distilleries along the “bourbon trail” in Kentucky make a good one-day or three-day trip. But did you know bus tours are available? Details are on www.kybourbontrail.com
How far to travel? Depends on how long you have and who’s along.
Last month Joan and Ward Allen of Springboro spent their anniversary weekend traveling to LeClaire, Iowa. “That’s where the American Picker store, Antique Archeology, is located,” reports Joan Allen, a fan of the History Channel’s show. “We were thrilled to meet Mike Wolfe! We had so much fun that weekend that we declared we would do it more often.”
Boarding a plane for a weekend getaway is certainly not out of the question. But most people only do so when they have a three-day weekend, reports Pat Buckholt of TravelPlex travel agency in Beavercreek. “Las Vegas and places in Florida are popular weekend getaway destinations,” she says.
Buckholt says having a travel agent plan is a big help. “Going online can be overwhelming, especially if you wait until the last minute to plan,” she says.
“Planning ahead saves time, money, frustration — and relationships!” says Micki Dudas of the regional office of AAA. “A travel agent can help you avoid problems and seek out the activities and events you want.”
Dayton mom April Mescher says that planning ahead is part of the enjoyment. “It’s fun for the family to set the destination together,” she says. “Each person finds things they’d like to do so the planning isn’t all on one person.”