As a traveler seeks to evaluate the merits of various ski destinations in the West, Telluride, Colorado, has some special appeals--namely outstanding skiing and a top-notch spa facility.
Crater Lake National Park might be called the tour-de -orce national park. It is Oregon's great one-act play, a volcanic crater left over from a major eruption.
Washington State's Olympic National Park appeals to travelers because of its majestic mountain Mt. Olympus, its rain forests including the Hoh Queets and Quinalt , its rugged coastline with beaches such as Rialto Beach, and over 600 miles of hiking trails. Circle Mt. Olympus and Hurricane Ridge and visit Sequim, Winslow, the Scandinavian towns of Poulsbo, the historic lumber community of Port Gamble, the lovely Victorian legacy of Port Townsend, and the Makah Indian Museum at Neah Bay, Diversions to consider include the Kemper Brewery, an example of micro breweries, and the Olympic Game Farm in Sequim, as well as the state capital in Olympia.
Colorado's Denver, the Mile High City, intrigues with its western history, Denver Art Museum, Red Rock Park, International Airport, LoDo downtown, Brown Palace Hotel, Buckhorn Exchange Restaurant, and Larimer Square shopping.
Striking salmon-colored rock formations, including the greatest density of natural stone arches in the world, draw appreciators of erosive desert beauty to Arches National Park in eastern Utah.
Colorado skiing boasts an extraordinary number of virtues, starting with the snow. There's plenty of the white stuff, almost 400 inches a year at Loveland, for example.
A week of small-ship cruising from Juneau, Alaska, through the wilderness waterways of the Alaska Southeast can get you close to humpback whales, orcas, glaciers, bears, and hundreds of islands covered with rain forests. You may see Endicott Arm, Tracy Arms, Sawyer Glacier, Keku Channel, the Tlingit Indian village of Kake, Bay of Pillars, Sitka, and Glacier Bay. In Juneau, see the Mendenhall Glacier, Mount Roberts Tram, the Lynne Canal, Alaska State Museum, and Gastineau Fish Hatchery.
If you plan to take your teenager on a vacation trip, Hawaii offers many attractions, beginning with how to surf, sailing on a catamaran, and snorkeling to see tropical fish.
The Bohart Ranch (seven rooms) and the Lone Mountain Ranch (20 cabins), both near Bozeman in southern Montana, do a booming winter business for cross-country skiers.
What do the Hawaiian Islands offer beyond beaches and sun? Well, there's plenty of history and culture.
The northern New Mexico high-desert town of Taos ranks as an alluring place for the traveler who delights in contemporary art, historic culture, and desert alpine beauty.
Dependable sunshine, spare desert images, and ethnic diversity make Tucson both a resort destination and a special place.
A kind of travel, which might be called "comfortable soft adventure" or "luxury adventure," has become the style of choice for an increasing number of travelers. Hawaii's island of Kauai is one of the better places on earth to experience this phenomenon.
Salt Lake City attracts visitors because of its Mormon culture, started by Brigham Young, and its resulting cultural achievements, especially in Temple Square. There a visitor can hear the Mormon Tabernacle Choice and learn about the long Mormon trek west. Mormons were a major force in settlement of the Western U.S.
A two-week Alaska Grand Tour could take a visitor to Anchorage, Denali, Fairbanks, Juneau, Glacier Bay, Skagway, and Sitka. Part of the trip would be by cruise ship and part by bus tour.
A trip to Fairbanks takes you to the interior of Alaska, a landscape far more severe than the temperate coastal areas of Anchorage or Juneau-Skagway-Sitka. In Fairbanks, be sure to see dog mushing and the Musher's Museum, the Riverboat Discovery, the Athabaskan Indian Village, Log Cabin Information Center, the oil pipeline from Prudoe Bay to Valdez, and the Alaska Museum at the University of Alaska.
If you like to imagine cross-country skiing (or alpine skiing) at different areas around the nation, sooner or later you'll focus on Colorado.
The beguiling play on sunlight on the red rocks of undulating Kanarra Creek Canyon in Utah intrigues many visitors who come to this nature-rich state
The Phoenix/Scottsdale and Flagstaff regions, so rich in mountains and natural beauty, might be seen as "islands in the sky."
Beauty of nature in a high-desert setting and diverse outdoor sports attract visitors to the Bend region of Central Oregon.
The "dude" or guest ranch vacation continues to flourish in several western states despite the visible threat of urbanization and the invisible threat of skyrocketing liability insurance costs.
The southeast panhandle of Alaska, including Juneau, Skagway, and Sitka, differs sharply from the more northerly sections of the state. Precipitation here is high, comparing with Washington state, so the trees, such as Sitka spruce, grow to great heights and can be harvested for lumber or pulp.
A traveler who has begun to explore the U.S. Southwest, with excursions into the California deserts and Arizona, will eventually wonder: what lies beyond, in New Mexico?
Majestic canyon vistas of the Colorado and Green Rivers are the visual reward of Canyonlands National Park in Utah. The rivers amount to ribbons of fluid sandpaper cutting through the sandstone landscape.
On Hawaii's Big Island a traveler can see ongoing volcanic eruption of the Kilauea Volcano. The sight occurs from a ledge adjacent to the Jaggar Museum. Few places on earth offer the traveler such a presentation of this major geological phenomenon.