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Weekend Getaways

What are weekend getaways?

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If you’re feeling burdened by the pressure of a job and mundane routines, a weekend getaway can help you recharge and start afresh. Typically lasting from Friday evening to Sunday evening, these trips can be taken with loved ones or even just by yourself. Their short duration is a boon for those bound by work or family commitments or even those not willing to break the bank on an extended holiday. Plus, depending on your preferences, weekend getaways can provide much-needed flexibility in your itinerary.

Types of weekend getaways

  • Nature retreats

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You can plan your weekend getaway around outdoor activities if the great outdoors call to you. For instance, you could plan waterfall hikes and treks. If you want to cover a larger distance, perhaps a cycling adventure would suit your plans more. On the other hand, those fond of water-based activities might enjoy kayaking or diving. For a more laid-back activity, you can head to a beach or a park for a lovely stroll while basking in nature. A nature retreat can help you feel more connected to your surroundings while also not draining your finances. Simply feeling the wind rush through your hair while you gaze at astonishing views could do wonders for an overwhelmed mind.

  • Wellness retreats

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For those who want to reconnect with themselves or need a little pampering, wellness getaways are the answer. This could involve a stint in a spa hotel or visiting a yoga retreat for a blend of relaxation and fitness. You could even opt for a digital detox by heading to a remote location. The accommodation options in this category usually have a bevvy of amenities meant to help you ground yourself, such as wellness plans that include nourishing food, a fitness plan, private sessions with professionals, and a serene environment to round everything up.

  • Romantic getaways

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If you and your partner feel like work has gotten in the way of your relationship, a quick romantic getaway might be just what you need to revive that spark. Whether it’s a cozy trip to the countryside or a road trip for two, the possibilities are endless. You can even visit museums and have romantic dinners at hotels or restaurants, among other things to do to treat your significant other.

  • Family trips

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What could be better than being surrounded by your loved ones while you plan a fun itinerary to help you forget your troubles? If you’d like to bond, you can spend the weekend visiting relatives. For families with kids, a trip to an amusement park or a stay in a hotel with a water park might be the answer. Alternatively, you can combine fun and education by booking a safari tour.

  • City explorations

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If there’s a city you’ve been longing to lose yourself in, what better occasion than a weekend getaway? Since it’ll be a short excursion, be sure to research before you go so you fit the best of everything into your itinerary. Or if you want a spontaneous trip, that would also be possible. While in the city, you could look up the best shopping malls in the area to get a little retail therapy. If history is more your thing, you might enjoy exploring the city’s best museums.

  • Cultural retreats

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Cultural getaways are meant to soothe your soul and help you get back to your roots. Options for this include doing some soul-searching on a pilgrimage or, for those with a passion for words, using a writers’ retreat to boost creativity. This type of weekend getaway could also be a great opportunity for newbies to immerse themselves in the world of colors with an art workshop or two.

  • Events and festivals

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Engage with your most beloved pastimes during the weekend by attending events centered around your interests. While some of these events can be watched from the comfort of your home, there’s nothing like the energy of a live show to reinvigorate a tired mind. For sports fans, this could mean hunting for the best seats to their favorite team’s showdown, while music lovers can watch their idols perform their songs live.

  • Culinary experiences

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There truly is no better way to anyone’s heart than with their favorite food. Treat your loved ones and yourself to new kinds of cuisine or gain a new perspective on your usual haunts with a guided food or wine tour. Alternatively, learn how to make restaurant-quality food at home with a cooking workshop. Though you might have to plan a little in advance for these tours and workshops, the extra effort will definitely be worth the experience.

  • Seasonal getaways

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Although weekend getaways usually last from late Friday to late Sunday, there are some occasions in the year when you might be able to get a little more out of it. For instance, December has multiple public holidays that you could possibly club with your weekend if they happen to be on a Friday or Monday. Keeping this in mind, you can plan to visit the various winter carnivals that pop up around this time for delicious food, discounted products, and holiday cheer. If you’re more fond of summer, you can ditch the snow and escape to a warmer climate by the beach!

Advantages of booking a weekend getaway instead of a long-term stay

  • Cost-effective

Due to their short duration, weekend getaways are not too heavy on the pocket and make for a great option for those who want to enjoy the benefits of a holiday on a budget.

  • Easy to plan

Since weekend trips are usually more on the spontaneous side, you won’t have to spend months in advance worrying about itineraries and bookings!

  • Less travel time

One of the best aspects of weekend getaways is that adventurers will be setting off to nearby cities or destinations, which means less time spent on the road and more on adventures.

  • No need to apply for leaves

Most workplaces already offer their employees weekly time-offs on Saturday and Sunday, so your trip can begin after you leave work on Friday and end before office hours on Monday. This offers flexibility and won’t eat up your allotted leaves for the year!

  • Serves as an impromptu escape

People who like to stay on the go will particularly enjoy the opportunity to simply pack their bags and go.

  • Lets you discover hidden gems close to home

There's no better way to rediscover old favorites or acquaint yourself with new ones than setting off on a short exploratory journey to nearby destinations.

Physical and mental health benefits of a weekend getaway

  • Taking a quick break from day-to-day

A weekend getaway makes for a much-needed break from your day-to-day life. A couple of days away from home and commitments, and you can rejuvenate your mind and body. It also makes for a perfect opportunity for a digital detox.

  • Reducing work-related stress and avoiding burn-outs

Whether you are a working professional or a business owner, work-related stress can get you all the same. If you are feeling burned out at work, it would be best to pack a small bag and take a refreshing weekend getaway. It acts as a perfect mental health check, allowing you to put work-related stress at bay.

  • Exploring your hobbies and interests

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A weekend break offers a stunning opportunity to catch up on your hobbies and interests. If you are an outdoorsy person, you can check out any nearby tourist hotspot and make the most of the place by engaging in outdoor activities.

  • Boosting productivity and creativity

Apart from boosting your mental and physical health, a weekend getaway also allows you to maximize your productivity, especially when you are back at work. Moreover, traveling works wonders for a creative mind, making a weekend getaway perfect for creative souls.

  • Reconnecting with loved ones

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Considering how busy life can get with work and other day-to-day commitments, it can definitely get difficult to catch up with your loved ones. By taking a weekend getaway with your partner, family, or friends, you can have a much-needed break to strengthen your relationships. Regular weekend getaways also allow you to make new memories that you can cherish.

How to plan a weekend getaway

  • Plan your budget

Depending on your budget, you can make your weekend getaway modest or a spendthrift. Even though a weekend getaway usually only spans a couple of nights, you can still make it extravagant if you have the budget. From the proximity of your destination to the type of accommodation, it would be best to plan your weekend getaway according to your budget.

  • Choose a destination

Even though most people plan weekend getaways to nearby drivable places, you can also choose a destination that is a few hours away by flight. Additionally, consider the kind of vacation you want, whether adventurous and outdoorsy or urban, before finalizing your getaway.

  • Choose a restful accommodation

When it comes to accommodations, travelers today have more options than ever. However, carefully going through all the options, especially if you are planning a staycation, is a must. While hotels can make for a hassle-free stay, many vacation rentals offer amenities such as barbecue and outdoor dining, which make a fun stay with friends and family.

  • Plan an itinerary

Planning a weekend getaway even within a couple of nights in hand is still possible. However, it would be best to depart for your journey on Friday evening as soon as you get free from work to make the most of your getaway. If you plan to check out attractions, it would be best to book tickets in advance to save time. Also, make sure to factor in the additional traffic and travel time on account of the weekend.

  • Pack essentials

To make the most of your weekend getaway, it would be best to pack the right items. By making sure that you are booking accommodation with bedding and toiletries, you can save space on packing linens and essentials. Apart from a few sets of clothing, packing chargers and the necessary documents are a must. It would also be ideal to check the weather forecast and pack accordingly. If you plan to go to a remote location, you can keep some snacks, groceries, and non-perishable food items.

  • Pack outdoor sports equipment

If you are planning an adventurous getaway and engaging in outdoor sports, packing the required equipment and necessities is a must. A few adventurous getaways you can take include a skiing trip, a hiking trip, and a fishing getaway.

  • Keep emergency contacts handy

In case of an emergency, it would be best to remember or keep a copy of your trusted contacts. While you can easily access your contacts on your phone, keeping them handy would be much more helpful.

Destinations for weekend getaways

The best destinations for weekend getaways in the United States

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  • California

Blessed with diverse landscapes, the state of California offers plenty for the avid hiker. But that's not all. The state also has excellent wineries, such as those in Sonoma or Napa Valley, easily accessible from San Jose. Meanwhile, you can head down to Southern California for adventures in Las Vegas. If you’re looking into nature retreats and happen to live in the state’s capital, you’ll be pleased to know that there are a range of getaways near Sacramento, including Tahoe National Forest and Mount Shasta. Those in San Francisco Bay Area can enjoy coastal adventures in and around San Francisco and San Diego.

  • Texas

Known as the “Lone Star State,” Texas stands as a stalwart of the famed Southern culture and hospitality—something you’ll surely feel no matter the duration of your stay. From Austin’s enticing urban glamor and abundance of nearby spa retreats to San Antonio’s many outdoor attractions, it has a lot to offer as a weekend destination. If you have time, be sure to explore the many cities and towns near Dallas, which include Oklahoma City, where you can visit various museums and art galleries.

  • Florida

Florida is home to the Florida Keys, making it one of the best places to visit in the United States. White sands, blue waters, and coral reefs—who could resist? If you’re here for a romantic getaway, you can rent a boat to explore the waters of these islands. But this isn’t the only destination worth exploring in Florida. There are also plenty of gorgeous beaches close to major cities, including Tampa. Meanwhile, history lovers will enjoy visiting the intriguing Saint Augustine, the oldest city in the country, about a one-hour drive from Orlando and a four-hour drive from Miami.

  • Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania combines a storied past with lush landscapes for a truly unique experience. One of the state’s most picturesque sites is the Pocono Mountains, where you’ll find many opportunities for activities such as hiking and horseback riding. For a closer look at the country’s past, visit Philadelphia and Gettysburg, to explore sites such as Independence Hall and Gettysburg National Military Park. If you enjoy cultural stimulation, Lancaster is an intriguing city known for its Amish culture that warrants a visit.

  • North Carolina

If you’ve ever read up on the history of the Wright brothers, you’ve certainly heard of North Carolina, where they launched their first successful flight. Its Roanoke Island is also famous, albeit for slightly darker reasons, as this happens to be the site where the “lost colony” once resided. Needless to say, you’ll find much to keep you entertained here if you’re a history buff. Luckily, there are plenty of scenic destinations near its capital, Raleigh, such as the oceanfront city of Wilmington, known for its breathtaking boardwalk. Charlotte is another city worth adding to your list thanks to its water-based adventure opportunities and proximity to Hendersonville, known for its extensive collection of minerals and dinosaur remains.

  • Ohio

From charming road trips to scenic train rides, Ohio is perfect for backpackers and weekend travelers. A couple of the best destinations where you can plan a weekend getaway include Columbus and Cincinnati. These places are excellent base points to explore the stunning Cleveland and Indianapolis. While in the state, you can try fun rides at Cedar Point or head to Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden.

The best destinations for weekend getaways in Canada

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  • Ontario

Apart from the national capital, Ottawa, and the bustling metropolis of Toronto, Ontario boasts a range of natural attractions. Along with four of the five great lakes, Ontario is also home to the lush Algonquin Provincial Park. You can even find a range of accommodations, including yurts and cabin rentals in the vicinity of the park. From Toronto, you can also explore the charming wineries and other things to do in Niagara-on-the-Lake.

  • Quebec

You can find several weekend trips from Montreal if you are planning to explore the Canadian province of Quebec. While planning a weekend trip, you can also stay in one of the yoga retreats across the province, which make for the most rejuvenating experience. While nature lovers and skiing enthusiasts can check out the exciting things to do in Mont Tremblant, culture enthusiasts can check out the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Old Quebec.

  • British Columbia

From several wellness retreats to plenty of fishing lodges on its coast, British Columbia boasts a range of getaways. If you are in its largest city, Vancouver, you can take the scenic drive for the best ski trip in Whistler or a ferry to the charming city of Victoria. When in British Columbia, you can also check out the magnificent coast and other exciting things to do in Vancouver Island, which is set on the shore of the Pacific Ocean.

The best destinations for weekend getaways in India

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  • Western India

Western India boasts bustling metropolises and charming destinations on the shore of the Arabian Sea. For a traditional experience and savoring a unique Gujarati cuisine, you can take a weekend getaway from Ahmedabad or Vadodara. For some magical destinations in the lush Western Ghats, you can plan a weekend getaway from Mumbai or Pune. From Pune, you can also take a pleasant drive to Mumbai to explore its bustling beaches and attend its exciting art festivals. Moreover, you can take stunning weekend trips in Goa to witness lush greenery and magnificent sandy beaches.

  • Southern India

One of the most stunning destinations you can find in South India is the state of Kerala, which boasts several yoga retreats for a rejuvenating break. To make the most of it, you can travel to Kochi and take weekend getaways from there. You can also take weekend getaways from the modern and bustling metropolises of Bangalore and Hyderabad, with the former also allowing you to explore the beautiful places in Kerala.

  • Northern India

A weekend trip in Northern India makes for one of the best opportunities to explore the sky-high Himalayas, including amazing monasteries and lush wildlife sanctuaries in Himachal Pradesh. For a lavish getaway in the region, you can also stay at some of the most luxurious hotels in Delhi. To explore a range of diverse destinations, you can take a weekend trip from New Delhi or a weekend getaway in Gurgaon. You can also explore various historic cities and forts by taking a weekend trip from Jaipur.

  • Eastern India

The East Indian state of West Bengal boasts a range of lush wildlife sanctuaries, which you can make the most of by taking weekend getaways around Kolkata. Another destination from where you can take a weekend in the region is Guwahati, which allows you to explore some of the best places to visit in Northeast India, such as Cherrapunji and Mawlynnong.

Other destinations for weekend getaways around the world

  • Australia

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The vast and expansive Australia boasts endless attractions, making it perfect for all kinds of travelers. From several dive resorts to plenty of ranches to stay, Australia makes for diverse getaways. For some of the best coastal getaways, you can take weekend trips from Sydney or Gold Coast. You can also check out scenic national parks, among a range of other things to do in Queensland, by taking a weekend trip in this northeastern state.

  • London, England

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England boasts several historical cities, such as York and Cambridge, which make for a magical getaway. To make the most of your UK visit, you can make London the base and take several weekend trips from there. By taking weekend trips from London, you can explore some of the most beautiful beaches in England and stay in charming yurts across the country.

  • Tokyo, Japan

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The next time you visit the magnificent Japanese capital, you can take a weekend getaway in the nearby Yokohama, where you can check out various things to do, or Kamakura, where you can have a photo session at some of the most photogenic spots. To turn your weekend trips from Tokyo into a traditional experience, you can stay at one of the traditional Japanese accommodations, such as ryokans, minshukus, and shukubos.

  • Barcelona, Spain

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Make the most of the coastal Mediterranean life by taking a weekend trip from Barcelona. If you are an outdoorsy traveler, you can check out some great adventure tours in the Pyrenees. It also allows you to explore historic attractions and check out other exciting things to do in Girona.

  • Johannesburg, South Africa

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Johannesburg, the largest city in South Africa, offers its residents a range of weekend getaways. These getaways make for a charming time for nature lovers, as you can find plenty of safari lodges and fishing lodges in Limpopo, the northernmost South African province. Moreover, Johannesburg is an excellent city to visit if you want to explore Gandhi Square Precinct and Gold Reef City Theme Park.

Have a refreshing break from your day-to-day life

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Whether planning a rejuvenating break from your day-to-day life or embarking on a trip with your loved ones, a weekend getaway makes for the most charming and refreshing time.

So, on your upcoming weekend break, visit a nearby destination and recharge your mind and body. Use this comprehensive guide to help you plan your getaway no matter what part of the world you are in.

Weekend getaways in the USA

Weekend getaways in Canada

Weekend getaways in Asia

Weekend getaways in Other Destinations

FAQ's about Weekend Getaways

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