Skip the overrun Caribbean beaches and head for the Bay Islands (more than 60 in total) off the coast of Honduras. They're ringed by one of the world's largest barrier reefs and home to outstanding diving and fishing. Set up camp at Anthony's Key Resort for the best, and most affordable, weekly diving packages, based out of the resort's beachfront cabanas. (Doubles, including dive packages, from $600 a week; 800-227-3483; www.anthonyskey.com)
No one does romance better than the French. Surprise your honey with a Valentine's Day retreat to the sultry island of St. Barts. The winter crowds have left the sunny beaches open for canoodling. Nest at the Guanahani (doubles from $290; 011-590-590-27-66-60; www.leguanahani.com) or rent your own villa hideaway (800-449-1553; www.wimco.com).
Hit the slopes when the snow is powdery and the chances of freezing en route to the ski lift are slim. As spectacular as the Rockies themselves, the Amangani resort is a short hop from Jackson Hole, Wyo., and at the gateway of Yellowstone and Grand Teton national parks. (Doubles from $700; 877-734-7333; www.amangani.com)
The Orient-Express, which has long conjured up images of white-gloved luxury in Europe, comes to Latin America in partnership with PeruRail and will wind its way from Cusco to Machu Picchu. (www.perurail.com)
Experience the land of the gods (and beat the hordes descending on Athens for the Olympics) with a trip to Mykonos, which is enjoying its own Greek revival. The Belvedere perches above the Aegean--eating, sunbathing, and sleeping will be your own personal triathlon. (Doubles from $295; 011-30-2-2890-25122; www.belvederehotel.com) P.S. Don't miss dinner at seductive Eurasian restaurant Interni. (011-30-2-2890-26333)
Destination golfers have hauled their clubs to Scotland's rarefied Gleneagles resort in Perthshire since the 1930s. After 18 holes on the Jack Nicklaus-designed PGA Centenary course, relax in a historic suite or enjoy afternoon tea in the main drawing room. Nonduffers can distract themselves at the spa or with a lesson in falconry. (Doubles from $475; 866-881-9525; www.gleneagles.com)
Think the Kentucky Derby has history? The century-old Palio in Siena, Italy, takes pageantry to another level on July 2 when bareback riders take to the cobblestoned streets of this exquisite medieval town. Book early at the newly renovated Gran Hotel Continental, a 17th-century palazzo in the historic center. (Doubles from $285; 011-39-0577-56011; www.royaldemeure.com)
Take the kids to the great outdoors before school starts and visit the vast canyonlands of southeastern Utah. Mountain biking, horseback riding, and river rafting are only a few of the activities available, but don't expect television or telephones at Pack Creek Ranch, where cabins sleep up to six people. (Cabins from $95; 435-259-5505; www.packcreekranch.com)
Enjoy long hikes on trails and bluffs overlooking the Pacific Ocean on the Point Reyes National Seashore, two hours north of San Francisco. At Manka's Inverness Lodge in Inverness, a turn-of-the-century hunting lodge turned secret hideaway, the vibe is luxe-rustic with sumptuous beds, huge fireplaces, and clawfoot bathtubs. (Doubles $185 to $515; 415-669-1034; www.mankas.com)
At the secluded Lake Manyara Tree Lodge (the only lodge in Lake Manyara National Park in northern Tanzania), tours with Masai guides ensure sightings of giraffes, elephants, and lions. The 1,000-square-foot suites on stilts have wraparound terraces that hover above verdant forest and bush. (Doubles from $550, all inclusive; 011-27-11-809-4300; www.ccafrica.com)
Can't face another Thanksgiving loading your screaming family into the SUV? Surprise the whole brood with a trip to London when city streets and shop windows are festooned with lights. Set up base at the Knightsbridge Hotel, a chic hotel cum bed-and-breakfast right around the corner from shopping meccas Harvey Nichols and Harrods. (Doubles from $265; 011-44-20-7584-6300; www.firmdale.com) Or rent a flat for a roomy holiday. (www.vrbo.com)
At Hawaii's Turtle Bay Resort, surfing pro and famed instructor Hans Hedemann has just opened an outpost of his school on Oahu's north shore. Ask for one of the 42 beach cottages with 24-hour valets and 15-foot floor-to-ceiling windows, where you'll really be able to tell when surf's up. (Doubles from $295, cottages from $550, surf lessons from $50 an hour; 800-203-3650; www.turtlebayresort.com)
Continue Reading The Good Life
- "I have one life and it must come together."
- "I need to be able to go anywhere and do anything."
- "My focus is my children."
- "Material things aren't about money, but lifestyle."