Late Summer Escape | Jackson Hole, Wyoming

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Spend the last days of summer in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. After Labor Day, the summer attractions wind down as the city prepares for the winter season. Experience the beauty of Jackson Hole before the snow hits and the crowds arrive. Stay in Teton Village with a vacation package full of summer adventures and visit Bridger-Teton National Forest for a day of hiking through stunning wilderness landscapes.

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Wild West Package at Teton Village

Teton Village offers gorgeous mountain views from cozy lodging. It’s within walking distance to local shops and restaurants, making it the ideal place to stay during your Jackson Hole getaway. Take in the area’s natural beauty with the Wild West Package. Stay for four nights in a 2 bedroom condo in Teton Village and take part in number of outdoor activities. You’ll enjoy a scenic tram ride, a rafting trip through Snake River in Grand Teton National Park, and a 4-hour sunrise or sunset wildlife tour.

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Il Villaggio Osteria

Located right at the foot of Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, Il Villaggio Osteria has a cozy atmosphere and excellent food. Their handmade pasta and wood stone pizza oven offer an authentic taste of Italy. Order the Carne pizza, topped with prosciutto, soppresata, roasted garlic, mozzarella, and beef and pork ragu. If you have room for dessert, try one of their Gelato Sandwiches, a serving of vanilla, coffee, or mint chocolate chip gelato between two chocolate chip cookies.

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National Museum of Wildlife Art

Visit the National Museum of Wildlife Art to see over 5,000 works by more than 550 artists reflecting the wildlife and landscapes of North America. Their collections include pieces that span from 2,500 B.C. to present. Be sure to walk the new Sculpture Trail, a ¾ mile long route that showcases artwork integrated directly into the beautiful landscape of Jackson Hole. From now until September 5th, 2016, you can catch the Grand Teton National Park in Art exhibit. Created to coincide with the National Park Service’s Centennial, it’s a collection of art depicting the Teton mountains over 100 years.

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Grand Adventure Park

Head to Teton Village’s Grand Adventure Park for an afternoon of adventure. You can take on the Aerial Adventure Course, featuring a ropes course and zip lines, or jump off the adrenaline-inducing Drop Tower, which lets you experience a thrilling free-fall. Purchase a Grand Adventure Pass for only $79 per person and get unlimited access to the entire park, including mountain biking, hiking, disc golf, and a climbing wall.

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Bridger-Teton National Forest

Take a day trip to the Bridger-Teton National Forest, home to three unique wilderness areas. Bridger Wilderness has 7 of the world’s 10 largest glaciers and offers incredible views of alpine lakes and beautiful valleys. The Teton Wilderness features scenic rivers perfect for hunting and fishing. The Gros Ventre Wilderness is known for its wildlife and breathtaking geography, in particular the stunning red, purple, and yellow-sloped mountains. Together, these wilderness areas offer over 1,000 miles of trails to explore. We recommend the Grizzly Lake Trail in Gros Ventre, a route that treats you to views of the Red Hills and the Tetons.

August Outdoor Escapes | Lake Tahoe, California

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Mark Twain once said that Lake Tahoe was “the fairest picture the whole earth affords.” Stunning blue water and lush forests take your breath away at every turn. Whether your ideal vacation is made up of adventure or relaxation, Lake Tahoe’s 71 miles of shoreline has something for everyone. Stay at an elegant hotel and kayak through North Lake Tahoe, then head east and south to see the area’s most beautiful spots.

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The Ritz-Carlton Lake Tahoe

The Ritz-Carlton Lake Tahoe is an award-winning luxury hotel in North Lake Tahoe. The hotel affords an elegant wilderness stay, reflecting its mountainous surroundings with features like in-room fireplaces, floor-to-ceiling windows, and complimentary s’mores at nighttime fire-pit gatherings. Make your Lake Tahoe getaway extra special with the Discover With You package. It includes deluxe accommodations, breakfast each morning, a s’mores welcome gift, and a $100 hotel credit per night of your stay, which you can use at the hotel’s restaurants, lounges, spa, and more.

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North Shore Kayak Tour

Tahoe Adventure Company offers both land and water adventures all around Lake Tahoe. We recommend their North Shore Kayak Tour, a 3-6 mile trip through the pristine waters of North Lake Tahoe. Highlights include King’s Beach, Crystal Bay, and the deli spread lunch and snacks that are included with the tour. If you’re still feeling adventurous after you return to land, sign up for a different adventure or one of Tahoe Adventure Company’s multisport excursions.

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Lone Eagle Grille

Styled to resemble a Tahoe lodge and boasting a beautiful lakefront view, the Lone Eagle Grille is a perfect lunch spot. Take a seat next to one of their many panoramic windows and enjoy seasonally inspired dishes. For a starter we recommend sharing the California Asparagus Salad, tossed with soft-boiled egg, manchego cheese, pine nuts, and lemon vinaigrette. Lone Eagle Grille also serves some of Lake Tahoe’s best burgers and sandwiches, like the Slow Roasted Pork Shoulder Sandwich, a mouth-watering combination of tender meat, pickled carrots, onions, and baby spinach, and spicy aioli.

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Sand Harbor

Cross into Nevada and spend a day at Sand Harbor, a 55-acre stretch of Lake Tahoe featuring serene beaches, coves, and forest. Go for a swim or a scuba dive in the lake, or relax in the sun on shore. Be sure to pack a lunch to enjoy in the shady picnic area, and then explore Sand Harbor’s short trails. The Sand Harbor to Memorial Point Trail is a half-mile route that takes you to peaceful beaches and vistas, and the Sand Point Nature Trail ends in incredible views of the lake.

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Emerald Bay

Take a day trip to South Lake Tahoe to see the famed Emerald Bay, one of Lake Tahoe’s most celebrated spots. Enjoy sweeping views of the bright blue bay and surrounding forest from 600 feet up at Inspiration Point, or from the six miles of shoreline at D.L. Bliss State Park. You can even venture out by boat to Fannette Island, a small outcropping in the middle of the bay that affords 360-degree views of Emerald Bay.

August Outdoor Escapes | Mammoth Lakes, California

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Though Mammoth is well known as a skiing and snowboarding destination, it’s also a great place to visit in the summer. The views of the John Muir Wilderness make an impressive backdrop for a number of outdoor activities such as hiking or mountain biking. Plan a visit during Mammoth Wine Weekend and take part in a three-day food and wine extravaganza.

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Juniper Springs Resort

Book a condo at Juniper Springs Resort, located just outside of The Village. Their condos are decorated in a chic mountain style and feature full kitchens, outdoor balconies, and amazing views. Throughout the resort, you’ll find heated pools, hot tub spas, a fitness center, a game room, and a coffee shop. With the Stay & Play Package, each person receives 50% off of a fun outdoor activity. Choose from a ticket to Mammoth Bike Park, an Intro to Trail Riding Lesson, a round of golf at Sierra Star Golf Course, a scenic gondola ride, or a Kids Adventure Pass.

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Mammoth Wine Weekend

August 19-21, 2016 is Mammoth Wine Weekend, an event that celebrates both wine and food. The Village Wine Walk is a festival where you can enjoy live music while sampling wines from over 20 different wineries. You can also attend a champagne brunch on Sunday at local restaurant Campo Mammoth, featuring a crepe station, wood-fired breakfast pizzas, frittatas, and a bellini bar.

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Hiking | Convict Lake and Duck Pass

With breathtaking views and endless trails, Mammoth is one of the best hiking spots in California. Start out at Convict Lake, a gorgeous lake surrounded by mountains that tower over 5,000 feet above you. An easy trail circles the lake, which has beaches, a campground, a picnic area, and boat rentals. For more of a challenge, find the connecting Convict Canyon trail that heads into the John Muir Wilderness. We also love Duck Pass Trail, a 5.5-mile route through the Coldwater Creek to Duck Pass. It meanders through multiple alpine lakes and meadows in the John Muir Wilderness, where you’ll see Barney Lake, Blue Crag, and the Mammoth Crest. Every turn will give you a new incredible view.

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Mammoth Brewing Company

Mammoth Brewing Company has been crafting beer for over 20 years. Stop by and try one of their featured beers that rotate on tap in their tasting room. We love the Papi Cherry White Stout, with flavors of Rainier cherries and Black Velvet Coffee. Mammoth Brewing Company also hosts fun events, like Trivia Tuesdays every week from 7-9 pm and a summer music series. See event schedule.

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Mammoth Bike Park

Looking for an adventure? Try mountain biking. Mammoth Bike Park is one of the best in the country. They have 39 open trails that range in difficulty. First time bikers can start in the “Discovery Zone,” which has a practice loop and some great beginner trails, and Skills Park, which allows new bikers to hone their skills and try out small drops and bridges. For more expert riders, some of their iconic trails will give you views of the Mammoth Crest, Minarets, Mt. Ritter, and Banner Peak.

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Manzanar

An hour and a half south of Mammoth you’ll find Manzanar, one of the ten internment camps that held over 110,000 Japanese-Americans during World War II. Today, it’s a National Historic Site. Stop by the Visitor’s Center to view a short film about the camp’s history and see exhibits and artifacts from the 1940s. You can also visit Block 14, a reconstructed barracks and mess hall, and see gardens and ponds that have been excavated throughout the site.

August Outdoor Escapes | Big Bear Lake, California

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With fresh mountain air, breathtaking scenery, and a seven-mile long lake, Big Bear is ideal for a summer getaway. The quaint town offers beautiful views of the surrounding San Bernardino National Forest, excellent local craft beers, and delicious restaurants. Experience some outdoor fun with Alpine slides, water sports, and a parasailing adventure over the lake.

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Holiday Inn Resort Big Bear Lake

Located in downtown Big Bear, the Holiday Inn Resort Big Bear Lake is steps away from great restaurants, shops, and the Lake Boardwalk. The hotel has comfortable rooms, a health and fitness center, and an outdoor pool and whirlpool. Onsite eatery Stillwells serves up delicious California cuisine. Make your time in Big Bear extra special with the Romantic Escape Package. It includes a bottle of sparkling white wine, a beautiful bouquet of flowers, and a box of chocolates.

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Sweet Basil Bistro

Enjoy a romantic night out at Sweet Basil Bistro, an intimate Italian restaurant just a short walk from the hotel. The family-owned restaurant is one of the town’s newest. Their menu is full of authentic Italian specialties and fresh sauces. We recommend the Braccilone, a flank steak breaded and stuffed with tomatoes and Gorgonzola and served over linguine with tomato basil sauce. For dessert, indulge in their decadent vanilla crème brulee. 

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Alpine Slides

The Magic Mountain Recreation Area is home to the Alpine Slide, one of our favorite activities in Big Bear. Take a chairlift up the mountain and then coast down a quarter-mile long cement track in an individual sled. During your ride, you’ll feel the fresh mountain air rushing past you and take in amazing views of the lake and surrounding forest. The recreation area also features a water slide, go-karts, and mini-golf.

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Big Bear Lake Brewing Company

Big Bear Lake Brewing Company offers their own house brews, well-known craft beers, a long list of homemade cocktails, and excellent food options. Try the Sidewinder Red Ale, which features pineapple, citrus, and pine aromas, or the Strawberry Lavender Martini, made with Reyka vodka, Lillet Rouge, Monin lavender, lemon juice, and fresh muddled strawberries. We recommend an Avocado Bomb to go with your drinks. It’s their signature dish made with honey ale tempura battered avocados, spicy sashimi ahi, crab and shrimp cake, and chipotle aioli.

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A Day on the Lake

Big Bear Lake is calling. Pine Knot Marina is the starting point for a variety of exciting water sports. Take a lake tour and learn about Big Bear’s history, spend the afternoon fishing, or rent kayaks, boats, or jet skis. If you’re feeling extra adventurous, try parasailing. You’ll soar through the air and experience unparalleled views of the glistening Big Bear Lake and surrounding mountains from over 500 feet up.

Off to the Races in Del Mar | San Diego, California

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Enjoy a seaside escape in San Diego’s North County. From July to September, racing season is on at the famous Del Mar Racetrack. Spend a day at the track cheering on your favorite horses and placing wagers. You’ll also want to explore the coastal towns of Del Mar, Solana Beach, and Encinitas. From boutique shops to mouth-watering restaurants to serene beaches, you’ll experience just the right mix of adventure and relaxation.

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Fairmont Grand Del Mar

Inspired by the palaces and resorts in Spain, France, and Italy, the luxurious Fairmont Grand Del Mar combines European and Southern Californian style. It features an 18-hole championship golf course, tennis courts, a spa, and over 37 miles of trails in the surrounding Los Penasquitos Canyon Preserve. Fairmont Grand Del Mar is the ideal place to stay for a relaxing vacation. They provide free transportation to the nearby towns of Del Mar, La Jolla, and Solana Beach, and host fun summer events such as outdoor movie nights and beach escapes. With their A Day at the Races package, enjoy two nights in a guestroom or suite, breakfast for two each morning, reserved seats at the Del Mar Racetrack, and transportation to and from the track.

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Off to the Races

The Del Mar Racetrack was built by a partnership of actors that included Bing Crosby, who was there to welcome fans when the track first opened in 1937. In its early years the racetrack was a popular spot for Hollywood stars, and going to the races remains a fashionable summer activity today. During racing season, which runs from July to September, spectators can spend the day making wagers, watching the races, and socializing at the track. Racing season incorporates other events such as a summer concert series, a Pizza & Beer Festival, and a Spirits & Sliders event.

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Tony’s Jacal

After a day at the racetrack, head to Tony’s Jacal for dinner. Tony’s serves some of San Diego’s most authentic Mexican food. It opened in 1946, and many locals have been loyal customers for over 50 years. They’re known for their extensive menu that offers endless combinations of traditional Mexican dishes. Order a pitcher of margaritas and the Tostada Suprema, a mountain of beans, meat, lettuce, tomato, sour cream, and guacamole atop a crisp flour tortilla.

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Solana Beach

Explore Solana Beach, a seaside community just north of Del Mar. Stroll down Cedros Avenue, a two and a half block stretch with over 85 independent shops that reflect the area’s cool and contemporary vibe. You can browse antiques, furniture, jewelry, clothing, and more. Spend the afternoon window-shopping and be sure to stop at Lockwood Table Café for an organic tea or fresh juice. If you’re in town for the weekend, visit Cedros Avenue on Sunday afternoon for the Solana Beach Farmers Market.

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Moonlight Beach, Encinitas

Drive a little further up the coast to Encinitas, another lovely coastal town in North County. Head to Moonlight Beach, a beach named for the midnight picnics locals had there in the early 1900’s. Whether your ideal beach day includes relaxing on the sand, swimming in the ocean, or playing sports on the shore, Moonlight Beach has something for everyone. You’ll find picnic tables, volleyball courts, a snack bar, and fire pits. Plan to get there in the afternoon and stay for a bonfire when the sun goes down.