Treat Yourself and Your Wallet to an Off-the-Beaten-Path Vacation

by Gina Blitstein · 0 comments

Planning a vacation can be a fun experience for the family. Once the theme parks, major cities, big adventures and popular tourist destinations have been experienced, however, you may want to experience a getaway that’s different. Perhaps you’re looking for a unique place to get some rest and relaxation or just to have an out-of-the-ordinary vacation experience. One solution is to consider small, off-the-beaten-path communities or destinations. There’s an abundance of places to go and things to see and do all across our great nation; you need only to seek them out.

Why would you look for something different for your next getaway?

Perhaps you’re looking for:

  • lighter crowds
  • a quieter, more low-key getaway
  • a less expensive vacation
  • an authentic regional experience
  • an opportunity to visit a different part of the nation
  • a chance to experience different activities, people and sights

What sorts of vacation options will you find when you look to these smaller destinations?

Think simpler pleasures than are usually the stuff of which vacation dreams are made. Simpler and less commercialized, definitely, but equally fun and restorative (which, after all, is the point of a vacation anyway). Among the options are:

Places to go:

  • Festivals – art, vehicles, music, cheese, apple, pumpkin… (plan your getaway around festival date)
  • Fairs – fun, food, music, activities, even fireworks throughout the nation (incorporate a fair into your getaway)
  • Historical sites – visit the actual places where history happened
  • Museums – you name it, there’s most likely a museum that displays and celebrates it
  • Beaches – smaller beaches (ocean or lake) have all the sun and sand with less people
  • State parks and nature preserves – the most beautiful natural areas of each state are often set aside for enjoyment and recreation
  • Points of interest – our nation is chock-full of quirky and fun attractions, from giant statues, rocking chairs and balls of twine to “ghost towns” and beer can houses.


  • Water sports
  • Skiing and cold weather sports
  • Hiking/biking
  • Sightseeing/Taking in scenery

Things to experience:

  • Old town charm there are still some, “Main Streets” out there with “mom and pop” shops
  • Unique or regional cuisine
  • Quaint inn/Bed and Breakfast lodging
  • Local lore (think Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania or Salem, Massachusetts)
  • Communities with different customs, like the Amish or Pennsylvania Dutch
  • Authentic Americana (drive-in movies, neon signs and diners…)

How do you find such out-of-the-way destinations?

Get creative! Consider your passions. Ponder your intellectual curiosity. Think about your interests. Are you a:

  • War buff?
  • Collector?
  • Reader?
  • Foodie?
  • Athlete?
  • Photographer?
  • Movie buff?
  • Architecture enthusiast?

Then ask google where to find places where you can experience those things. Whatever catches your fancy can most likely be a vacation destination!

What to expect in these out-of-the-way locations

In general, be prepared to be a bit more self-sufficient than if you were visiting in a traditional vacation destination. Since these places don’t normally cater to tourists, you may have to do a little more in the way of planning and preparation to ensure you have what you need and get where you’re going. Renting a car or finding public transportation may prove challenging. It may be necessary to pack a meal, snacks and beverages for the day since you may not be in the most populated areas where food is readily available.

Regardless of your interests, there’s a place to indulge and enjoy them. Traveling off-the-beaten path will provide endless opportunities for unique getaways, free of tourist hype, tourist traps and tourist pricing. When you travel to out-of-the-way  places, be ready for an adventure that will take you far away from your everyday existence!

Where is your favorite off-the-beaten-path vacation destination?

Bonus Tip:

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