Long Weekend Getaways within the United States

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Your employer gives you, what, ten lousy vacation days a year? No wonder we find ourselves working so insanely hard to make those precious three-day weekends really count. When warm weather finally rolls around, that urge is tripled. So, to help you make the absolute most out of summer Fridays (or Mondays), we've compiled a list of getaways that are close, quick, and a cinch to plan. All are easily reached via hub airports with loads of nonstop flights; we've even included their codes to make it faster to search for fares.
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Long Weekend Getaways within the United States

Your employer gives you, what, ten lousy vacation days a year? No wonder we find ourselves working so insanely hard to make those precious three-day weekends really count. When warm weather finally rolls around, that urge is tripled. So, to help you make the absolute most out of summer Fridays (or Mondays), we've compiled a list of getaways that are close, quick, and a cinch to plan. All are easily reached via hub airports with loads of nonstop flights; we've even included their codes to make it faster to search for fares.

Long Weekend Getaways within the United States

Location: Cape Cod, MA
Closest Airport: Logan International Airport, Boston (BOS)
Things To See: Pleasantville Beaches lined with sand dunes, bike rides through Main Street towns, and clambakes on the shore, all within a two-hour drive of the city. The ice cream shops and seafood shacks (with fried clam rolls and steamers) are all open.
Locals Know: Try candlepin bowling. Also, the Chatham Athletics play on a field just off Main Street, where you can lounge in the sun and slurp down a bowl of wicked clam chow-dah.

Long Weekend Getaways within the United States

Location: Los Angeles
Closest Airport: Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)
Things To See: L.A. is best experienced in snack-sized bites -- taking in a bit of beach and sun, a bit of Hollywood hoopla, and a dash of Angeleno "culture." L.A.'s rule is that everything takes a half hour to reach, so you can hit both Venice Beach and Santa Monica in a single afternoon. There's also window shopping on Rodeo Drive and the Getty Center's masterpieces.
Locals Know: Mann's Village Theatre and Bruin Theatre have movie premieres with stars galore.

Long Weekend Getaways within the United States

Location: The Riviera Maya, Mexico
Closest Airport: Cancun Airport International (CUN)
Things To See: White sand beaches, Mayan ruins, and fish tacos paired with fresh coconut-milk pina coladas.
Locals Know: Rent a car for a half day to explore the coastline, where fish taco stands sit next to hammock shops. You can also drop in to the bustling town of Playa del Carmen further south, which fills up after dark with the sound of mariachi music, or make for the boho surfing hamlet of Tulum.

Long Weekend Getaways within the United States

Location: Chicago
Closest Airport: O'Hare International Airport, Chicago (ORD)
Things To See: The weather is lovely, so you can walk all over the city, including the Gold Coast, the Loop, and the Magnificent Mile, window shopping or popping in to the Art Institute of Chicago. In the evening, catch a comedy show at the famed Second City, which launched the careers of icons like John Belushi and current A-listers like Tina Fey.
Locals Know: The Cubs are playing in Wrigley Field. Don't miss a Chicago-style hot dog, loaded with toppings such as chopped tomatoes, onions, and peppers.

Long Weekend Getaways within the United States

Location: Dallas and Fort Worth, TX
Closest Airport: Dallas / Fort Worth International Airport (DFW)
Places To Eat: Sonny Bryan's is a local Dallas smokehouse that serves a classic Texas-style meat-fest of brisket and sausages. Fort Worth (less than an hour's drive away) has Angelo's, where the pork ribs are legendary and beef comes chopped or diced. Traditional Tex-Mex is at Joe T. Garcia's (in the Fort Worth Stockyards), where locally prized enchiladas are served in a lovely courtyard. Savor chicken-fried steak at Ranchman's Steakhouse in Ponder, TX. (Chicken-fried steak is to Texans what pizza is to New Yorkers.)

Long Weekend Getaways within the United States

Location: Napa Valley
Closest Airport: San Francisco International Airport (SFO)
Things To See: Spend some time touring the quiet rural two-lane byways such as Silverado Trail and Spring Mountain Road. The tasting rooms at Domaine Chandon (known for its sparkling wines), Nickel & Nickel (known for its single-vineyard cabernets), and Frog's Leap (known for its sauvignon blanc and merlots) are popular, so arrive earlier in the day rather than later.
Locals Know: COPIA offers daily tastings, cooking classes and tours of its garden.

Long Weekend Getaways within the United States

Location: outside Denver, CO
Closest Airport: Denver International Airport (DIA)
Things To Do: Hiking, biking, and exploring the peaks and valleys, while basing yourself among the cosmopolitan comforts of Denver. Starting from the Colorado Trail or Mount Falcon Park, there are plenty of trails to explore. There's also rock climbing and rappelling at Rocky Mountain National Park.
Locals Know: Red Rocks Park, 15 miles west of Denver, where U2 filmed the video for "Sunday Bloody Sunday."

Long Weekend Getaways within the United States

Location: Minneapolis and Saint Paul
Closest Airport: Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport (MSP)
Things To See: Hiking, fishing, kayaking, and canoeing. You'll find a vast number of lakes, rivers, and waterfalls both inside and just outside the city. Banning State Park (an hour and a half away) has shooting rapids at Dragon's Tooth and Hell's Gate. If you want ultimate solitude, you can trek up to the Boundary Waters (five hour drive north).
Local Experience: Guthrie Theater (downtown Minneapolis) is famous for its innovative Shakespeare productions.

Long Weekend Getaways within the United States

Location: Bal Harbour, Miami Beach
Closest Airport: Miami International Airport (MIA)
Things To See: High-end designer shopping and lots and lots of spa time. This ritzy neighborhood on the north end of Miami Beach is home to gated luxury condos and a Beverly Hills-gone-east atmosphere. Don't miss the glamorous open-air mall on Collins Avenue, home of heavyweights such as Chanel and Hermes as well as smaller boutiques like Agent Provocateur and Anne Fontaine.
Locals Know: SoBe is the place for nightlife.

Long Weekend Getaways within the United States

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