Wonderful Weekend Getaways Across the United States
Cannon Beach, Oregon
Consistently praised as one of the world’s best beaches, Cannon Beach in the beaver state does not disappoint. Nine miles of surf smoothed sand recedes into monolithic off-shore rock formations that rise out of the surf. This is Haystack Rock, a towering formation that thrusts up from the waters like some kind of primordial tooth.
There is plenty to do away from the beach, too. Clatsop Trail will have you retracing part of Lewis and Clark’s famous journey while granting you great views of the surrounding landscape. The town itself features lots of charming bistros and restaurants. Those who would like to try their hand at whipping up gourmet grub should check out EVOO Cooking School, which offers classes so engaging that they call them “dinner shows.”
Speaking of stunning, rocky sights, Arizona’s Sedona unfolds before you in an otherworldly panorama of terraced stone formations and copper-colored scree. Hikers and photographers find themselves in paradise with plenty of trails to tackle and stunning vistas to capture. It is hard to go wrong if you start with Cathedral Rock in Red Rock State Park. To get the most bang for your proverbial buck, drive the Red Rock Scenic Byway, making sure to stop at Chapel of the Holy Cross, a Catholic church that seems mysteriously melded with a rocky ridge.
For ages, Sedona has been popular with those interested in alternative religions and 1960s lifestyle. Bohemians will find lots to like here. Go shopping at The Hangin Tree, rent a room at the aptly named Dragonfly Sanctuary and motor out to ancient ruins with Pink Adventure Tours.
Kansas City, Missouri
The is the closest destination to a big city on this list. Kansas City, Missouri, is surprisingly cosmopolitan. More than one travel guide will boast that the city has a greater number of fountains than Rome and more boulevards than Paris, but no one comes here for the water or roads. Instead, visitors traditionally flock to the Heart of America for the live jazz venues clustered throughout the Vine Historic District, the city’s distinctive barbecue and the multiple gambling-centric riverboat cruises.
Kansas City also has a highly cultured side to it, one that is not immediately evident to many travelers. The Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts is home to the city’s professional symphony, opera and ballet company. You will find world-class Asian art at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, while the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art boasts pieces by Georgia O’Keeffe and Willem de Kooning. Not only will the Harry S. Truman Presidential Library Museum draw political buffs, it also offers a unique peek into wartime American history.
In fact, like many of the cities on this list, Kansas City has a wealth of sights to offer. The only thing you need is a little knowledge, a sense of adventure and an unplanned long weekend!