Travel Suggestions (1 Viewer)

brockmeaux

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So, my parents' 40th anniversary is this summer, and my sister and I are looking to send them on a trip. We're both public school teachers, so salaries aren't crazy high, but ideally, we'd like to keep the cost around a $2,000 cap, and I was hoping for some input from those that are more well-traveled than I. Some time in June would be ideal to avoid hurricane season as best we can; summer is also the only time frame available because my dad, while retired from his career, is still a school bus driver and coaches softball for the school.

Here's a little bit about my parents. My dad is incredibly social, but my mom is a homebody. When they go on vacation, they don't like it to be jam-packed with activities. Vacation is pretty much the one time my dad allows himself to "do nothing." They don't like travelling for long periods of time; 7 days is probably the max, and one of their favorite places is Gulf Shores, AL; they love sitting on a balcony looking out at the beach and listening. They are definitely not overly fancy; my dad would wear shorts and Crocs every day if possible. Some of their favorite meals are at places like Ninfa's, Lambert's Cafe, etc., and they aren't uber adventurous when it comes to culinary matters. They're amazing people with simple tastes that love being in each other's company.

So far, my sister and I have a couple options: send them to Branson, MO (we went a few years ago and they loved it) for a few nights. Another is to send them on a cruise. Again, we went on a cruise years ago to Cozumel/Progreso and they loved it. This is probably the direction we're (or at least I am) leaning. Ideally, if we went this route, we'd like to send them on a cruise that includes places they haven't been. Everything leaving out of New Orleans/Galveston/Mobile includes Cozumel, so that's fine, but they have various cruises that also include stops in Costa Maya, Mahogany Bay, Belize, Grand Cayman, and the Bahamas.

Basically, what I'm asking is: might anyone have some suggestions that would make a good getaway for a couple? If you've been to one of those other cruise destinations, did any stand out (good or bad)? If it's a domestic destination, it'd have to be within a day's drive unless you know of some crazy good deal on flights. One thing I briefly looked into was possibly a trip to the Dominican Republic, but we've never been and I have no experience with the cost involved. But I know they'd love the scenery, being in a place that's different yet still safely-familiar enough to not be totally uncomfortable would be a plus, and something of the all-inclusive variety would alleviate a lot of issues.
 

lades

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Panama Canal cruise.
 

saintmdterps

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When are you looking to do the vacation? If it's during the summer and they enjoy being outside then send them up our way to the beach.

Bethany Beach - Visit Delaware - Beach, Boardwalk, Vacation Rentals

Bethany has everything within walking distance, upscale restaurants as well as pizza places. Lodging can be pricey in season which is late-June to Labor Day, but there are still deals to be had if you book now.

And congratulations to them on 40 years :)
 

sinner mike

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I liked St. Mary's lodge, at the east gate of Glacier National Park. Second most beautiful place I have ever been. Hawaii being the most beautiful.
 

superchuck500

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Cruises are a good call because they're pretty easy to customize. You can be busy (excursions, on-ship scheduled activities, etc.) or go at your own pace. You can see several destinations on one trip . . . and you don't ever have to plan your meals, they're always ready and waiting for you.

If you do a cruise though, getting a room with a veranda/balcony makes a huge difference. At minimum, get a full-sized window that you can open (not simply a port-hole).

I have friends that do all-inclusive in the Dominican every year. They like it a lot - seems like a good value compared to other all-inclusive destinations.
 

FleurDeRys

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The Yucatan Peninsula, south of Cancun, is beautiful and affordable. And it's very safe.

Soliman Bay is a great spot to get a private beach bungalow right on the water. It's a bit off the beaten path, but it's a great spot for privacy.

If you think they'd want to have more activities closeby, Akumal is a nice little town with plenty of restaurants and shops within walking distance. It's fairly easy to get a collectivo taxi into Tulum, tour the nearby ruins, or visit a cenote.

Check out i-Akumal.com for rentals. Marcia is very nice.
 

Yatman

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Some people aren't travelbodies, NTTAWWT.

If, as you mention, Gulf Shores beach-watching is one of their favorite things, why not set them up with a nice spot on the sand for a week?

If your dad just wants to "do nothing", might he not feel obligated to "do something" during an action-packed cruise?

Use remaining funds for limo/shuttle to GS so they don't have to drive, prepaid meals at restaurants in GS, new Crocs, etc.

Also, if your folks live in a small enough town, write up a nice bio blurb, get a pic of them early in their marriage, and submit to the local paper for an article on their successful 40 years. Lifestyle editors love stuff like that.
 

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