Explore Locally — Day Trips Just Outside City Limits

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Day Trip Just Outside City Limits

Photo: Unsplash.com/mili_vigerova

Too often we stay inside self-imposed boundaries. This summer we’re challenging you to explore outside your limits, city limits that is. Whether you like outdoor activities or you prefer a good museum, we’re highlighting potential day trips near you. So get out and discover some local gems.

San Francisco

Explore Locally — Day Trips Just Outside City Limits

Photo: Pre-tend.com

Spend the Day Outdoors
Grab your swim suit and head to South Yuba River, located in the Sierra Nevada in Northern California.. The swimming holes are plenty, some hidden deep in the mountains and many just off the highway. Head to the State Park to participate in birdwatching tour or try your hand at gold panning and finish the day with an afternoon swimming lazily in the river. Approximately 3 hours from San Francisco.

Spend the Day Indoors
Join the stream of tourists who touchdown in Sausalito. Located near the north end of the Golden Gate Bridge, this town is home to a beautiful marina. While exploring, be sure climb to the top of Point Bonita Lighthouse. And if you’re feeling a need to be centered, Green Gulch Farm Zen Center offers Zen meditation instruction, a dharma talk and tea. Approximately 30 minutes from San Francisco.

Los Angeles

Explore Locally — Day Trips Just Outside City Limits

Photo: Ojaivisitors.com

Spend the Day Outdoors
Load up your bait and tackle and head to San Clemente. The Spanish-style village has a 1,300-foot fishing pier. If fishing isn’t your thing, take a surfing lesson at the beach. Complete your trip with a visit to Casa Romantica, a splendid estate and gardens open to the public. Approximately 1 hour and 20 minutes from Los Angeles.

Spend the Day Indoors
Book a spa visit in Ojai where the wellness scene is strong. There are countless designer boutiques and vintage shops to peruse after your treatments. Approximately 1 hours and 30 minutes from Los Angeles.

Seattle

Explore Locally — Day Trips Just Outside City Limits

Photo: Leavenworthrental.com

Spend the Day Outdoors
Borrow some camping gear before heading to this striking reservoir nestled in the North Cascade mountains of northern Washington state. Diablo Lake is a gorgeous turquoise color, a result from the glacial melt that feeds the lake. Whether or not you spend the night, a hike up to the Diablo Lake Vista is a must. Approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes from Seattle.

Spend the Day Indoors
Hey, it’s Oktoberfest somewhere. Particularly in Leavenworth, a faux-Bavarian village east of Seattle. This town packs in lots of fun with mountain biking and river rafting but you can choose to spend your time indoors drinking oversize beer pints and eating schnitzel. We would do the same. Stop by during Fourth of July weekend for their Kinderfest, a family-fun festival with lederhosen sightings. Approximately 2 hours from Seattle.

Boston

Explore Locally — Day Trips Just Outside City Limits

Photo: Vincentmounier.com

Spend the Day Outdoors
Enjoy an afternoon on a sea-worthy boat in Rockport. This charming harbor has a delightful farmer’s market, worth checking out on Saturdays. Go whale watching or bird watching, or get a workout parasailing. After a day of exertion, enjoy a fresh seafood dinner al fresco. Approximately 1 hour from Boston.

Spend the Day Indoors
Just a short drive away is Concord. Home to the homes of Ralph Waldo Emerson, Louisa May Alcott, and the Henry David Thoreau collection at the Concord Museum. This town is the start of the Revolutionary War as well as the American philosophy. Approximately 40 minutes from Boston.

Chicago

Explore Locally — Day Trips Just Outside City Limits

Photo: Visitgalena.org

Spend the Day Outdoors
Need a quick escape from the city? Head to Grand Beach, a tiny strip of beach between Michigan City and New Buffalo. Bring along a cooler as there isn’t much else to do there but be a beach bum. If you get antsy, go for a walk in search of the three Frank Lloyd Wright homes built in Grand Beach, the Ernest Vosburgh Summer House still has most of it’s original design. Approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes from Chicago.

Spend the Day Indoors
Book a Bed and Breakfast in Galena and spend a weekend exploring historic mansions in this picturesque town. Tour Illinois’ oldest operating hotel, the DeSoto House Hotel and the LeFevre Inn where General Grant used to live. Stroll along the cobblestone streets, popping in and out of little boutiques and antique shops. Even just a day of this quaint lifestyle will have you breathing easy. Approximately 3 hours and 30 minutes from Chicago.

Dallas

Explore Locally — Day Trips Just Outside City Limits

Photo: Tuisnider.com

Spend the Day Outdoors
For landlocked Dallas, Lake Tawakoni is a bit of a hidden oasis. Go swimming, fishing and boating among other outdoor activities. Approximately 1 hour and 10 minutes from Dallas.

Spend the Day Indoors
Texas is full of these odd landmarks so embrace the kookiness of it all. The town of Grand Saline sits on top of a massive lode of natural salt, estimated at 16,000 feet deep. The Salt Palace, a small one-story building in downtown Grand Saline, is made from local salt blocks. This fact usually leads to tourists licking the building’s walls. While you’re there, see salt mining artifacts and memorabilia. Approximately 1 hour from Dallas.

Philadelphia

Explore Locally — Day Trips Just Outside City Limits

Photo: Newsworks.org

Spend the Day Outdoors
Don’t forget your camera when you visit Grounds for Sculpture in Hamilton, New Jersey. This sculpture campus features art imitating art. From works by Monet to the iconic pose by Marilyn Monroe, you’re sure to get a kick out of exploring all 42-acres of this garden. Approximately 1 hour from Philly.

Spend the Day Indoors
Phoenixville is more than a suburban town of Philly. There are a number of craft breweries, including the increasing popular Sly Fox and Stable 12 Brewery. Catch live music at any of the town’s watering holes or see local art at local galleries or during the monthly art walk. Approximately 1 hour from Philly.

New York City

Explore Locally — Day Trips Just Outside City Limits

Photo: Wikimedia.org

Spend the Day Outdoors
It’s quite possible to spend a day at Storm King Art Center and not experience all of the 500-acre landscape. This park includes works by Lichtenstein among many renowned artists. We recommend renting a bicycle to cover the grounds on a sunny day. Approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes from NYC.

Spend the Day Indoors
The Planting Fields Arboretum in Oyster Bay of Long Island, consists of 409 acres of gardens, greenhouses and estate buildings. We’re most enamored with Coe Hall, the exquisite 65-room Tudor Revival style mansion filled with antique furniture, paintings and grand stained glass windows. Approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes from NYC.

Washington DC

Explore Locally — Day Trips Just Outside City Limits

Photo: 30isthenew20.com

Spend the Day Outdoors
Hike the famous grueling “Old Rag” off the Shenandoah National Park while visiting Sperryville, Virginia. When you’re done, hit up Copper Fox Distillery for a whiskey on the rocks—you’ve earned it. This small-town is a good mix of outdoorsy fun and hometown charm. Approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes from Washington DC.

Spend the Day Indoors
The best wineries of Virginia are in Charlottesville. Travel the Monticello Wine Trail, over featuring 20 wineries. You can hop on a shuttle that will transport you from vineyard to vineyard while you sample the goods. A personal favorite is Glass House Winery with it’s floating dock and greenhouse. Approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes from Washington DC.

 

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