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Old 04-11-2011, 10:06 AM   #61
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DW and my honeymoon to Maui. Kanapaali Beach. Best time of my life, most relaxed I've ever been.
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Old 04-11-2011, 11:27 AM   #62
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None of my best vacations have involved traveling.
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Old 04-11-2011, 01:23 PM   #63
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Has anyone been to MostTraveledPeople.com? It helps you realize how tough it is to choose.
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Old 04-11-2011, 01:44 PM   #64
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Originally Posted by Gone4Good View Post
My best vacation so far was our rafting trip down the Colorado through the Grand Canyon. The experience was beyond words.
For a pure vacation, I would agree. We had such a wonderful time doing this in 2002 that we did it again in 2009. The first time we didn't know anyone else in the group, but the second time we went with some friends and that made it just that much greater. Absolutely the most relaxing, refreshing week ever.

When you're down in the Canyon, there are no cell phone signals, no internet, no distractions at all. We might even do it again one of these years.
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Old 04-11-2011, 04:16 PM   #65
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Italy or Greece
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Old 04-11-2011, 04:27 PM   #66
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The ER part 1993-2005 where I opened the back door and went out on the back deck/run over Lake Ponchartrain - year round.

heh heh heh - post Katrina bought a house on a hill above the wide Missouri - way above. . Vacations when I worked always seemed too short.
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Old 04-11-2011, 05:07 PM   #67
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Rome, Italy with my two college age daughters.
Beautiful country. Fantastic trip. Great father-daughter memories.
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Wink Re Best Vacation
Old 04-11-2011, 08:58 PM   #68
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Wink Re Best Vacation

When I was released by my former employer I put back part of the severance package for a family vacation. My youngest son graduated last year and so to celebrate raising 4 kids and our empty nest we rented a house in South Carolina by the beach. So we set up a family vacation for the crew, their spouses, and kids. Had a good time with everyone. I think it is something we all will remember.
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Old 04-11-2011, 09:10 PM   #69
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Wow, tough to decide. There have been so many great ones -- Rafting through the Grand Canyon; canoeing in Canyonlands; hiking in Switzerland; travelling by mule to the 5 High Sierra camps in Yosemite; cross country skiing in Yellowstone, storm chasing in Tornado Alley. They all rank amongst my best.
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Old 04-11-2011, 09:13 PM   #70
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If it's a time constraint, then I understand. Otherwise, don't wait till retirement to travel, if that is truly your desire and on your "bucket list".

DW/I have traveled around the world for the last 15+ years, much of it before retirement (at least me - retired for four years; DW still employed).

Time is finite. If travel is your "dream", don't wait till you retire to do so.

Just my $.02...
Totally agree!
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Old 04-11-2011, 09:24 PM   #71
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Hard to say; we have had many memorable vacations. If I had to pick one, I would have to say our trip to Peru in 2003. We set up a private trip, through R. Crusoe & Son, that was truly fantastic. They took care of us from the moment we landed until the moment we left. We had a private van for the young wife and me, with a guide/interpreter and a driver just for the two of us. We went to Lima, Cusco and Machu Picchu, staying in the best hotels and seeing all there was to see along the way.

I would rate our 2007 trip to Italy as number 2. We spent two days in Milan and then joined a hiking trip put on by Country Walkers around the lakes on the border of Switzerland. It was a group of 9 Americans and 2 Italian guides, We hiked several miles every day, while our bags were transferred from inn to inn along the way We stayed in Orta San Giulio, the Isole Borromei and Bellagio. It was truly a special trip.

Luxury travel, unusual journeys | R. Crusoe & Son

Country Walkers | Walking and Hiking Tours and Vacations, Adventure Travel
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Old 05-09-2011, 12:38 PM   #72
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Maui= 2 weeks in Paradise. Whale watching, (first time to ever see one) snorkeling, and the road to Hana...Priceless.

Glacier N. Park= Hiking the back (Bear) country...Felt like I stepped back in time 100 years +.

Acadia N. Park= Kayaking the coast and eating lobster. Great Adventure.

Just to name a few and yes, we feel very blessed....(Ditto on don't wait until you retire.)
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Old 05-09-2011, 01:33 PM   #73
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It would be hard to pick just one. Climbing Mt. Rainer was a life revealing trip. 2+ weeks in Alaska kayaking, backpacking, sightseeing was an amazing trip. 3 weeks in Tanzania and Kenya on my own was an incredible adventure. Safari and climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro are 2 experiences I'll never forget. Trips to Tailand, Tahiti, cruise through the lower Caribbean were also fantastic. A week long canoe trip in the Boundary Waters of Minnesota can't be beat. Nor can a week plus in Isle Royale National park. Been there 4 times.

SanFrancisco / Yosemite are on tap for this year.
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Old 05-09-2011, 02:14 PM   #74
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Are we talking scenery or fun? Cuz I got stories if we define "best" as "fun".........
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Old 05-09-2011, 05:09 PM   #75
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Just got back (yesterday) from a caving tour in Mammoth Cave National Park where we donned miner's helmets and coveralls and crawled around off the main trails; through 'keyholes' barely the size of my chest, 'canyon walking' over precipices, shimmying under giant rock formations, and scrambling over boulder strewn inclines. Pretty neat.
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Old 05-09-2011, 08:43 PM   #76
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Another one where it's tough to choose just one.

Tens days backpacking around Mt. Robson in the Canadian Rockies

Ten days canoeing from Atikokan, Ontario to Ely, MN

Combo rainforest highlands/beach trip in Costa Rica

Chartered catamaran sailing the British Virgin Islands for a week

One week liveaboard dive trip to the Turks & Caicos

Week backpacking through Glacier National Park

Week backpacking through Teton National Park

Heli-hiking the Canadian Rockies (would have been a clear winner had my DW been with me on this one)
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Old 05-09-2011, 10:39 PM   #77
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We are fortunate to be able to take some long vacations every time DH changes duty locations. Most of our trips overseas have been 3+ weeks.

1. Backpacking around India for 1 month

2. Bicycling Angkor Wat

3. Original Route 66 road trip - Chicago to Santa Monica on as much of the original highway as possible (there are internet guides). Visiting small towns, staying in classic motels, eating in diners, abandoned road signs and drive-ins, etc.

4. Andalusia, Spain by car and train for 3 weeks (with a side trip to Morocco).

I would love to do more backpacking and wilderness trips but after 13 years (and counting) in the infantry, my husband doesn't feel that sleeping on the ground is much of a vacation
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Old 05-10-2011, 07:57 AM   #78
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Just got back (yesterday) from a caving tour in Mammoth Cave National Park.......
I did their "Wild Cave Tour" in 1971 and I think I'm still recovering from claustrophobia. It was awesome, though.
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Old 05-10-2011, 08:23 AM   #79
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Fantastic idea. I used to do quite a bit of spelunking when I was younger. Can you point me to where I could find more information about this kind of tour?

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Originally Posted by Gone4Good View Post
Just got back (yesterday) from a caving tour in Mammoth Cave National Park where we donned miner's helmets and coveralls and crawled around off the main trails; through 'keyholes' barely the size of my chest, 'canyon walking' over precipices, shimmying under giant rock formations, and scrambling over boulder strewn inclines. Pretty neat.
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Old 05-10-2011, 08:25 AM   #80
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Wow - great question - it depends. There are memories of even so-so vacations that stand out.

One of the most beautiful places in the world is Lauterbrunnen/Grindelwald, Switzerland. My husband proposed to me on a hike we did there.

We also hiked half of the Tour du Mont Blanc - we hit all three countries. Coming from Switzerland into Italy and then up to the Refugio Bonnati was amazing - and the food at the huts - wow - especially in Italy.

We hiked the via Ferrata in the Dolomitis - you wear a harness and creep along cliffs hanging onto a cable - amazing views and mentally and physically challenging. Very relaxing for me as my mind tends to be cranking constantly - when you really have to focus, it can be mentally relaxing.

We just got back from Athens and loved the Temple of Poseidon - we managed to get there before it opened and had the ruin to ourselves - it was beautiful and amazing to be standing alone there with so much history. We also loved Santorini on one of our cruise stops - we hiked the atoll from Fira to Oia and when we got to Oia and sat down to eat we realized the post cards were not airbrushed!

We loved Algarve, Portugal - great food and wine. We also liked Andalucia, Spain. We walked through a Roman ruin of what was once a fish sauce factory - and then just outside was an amazing beach and restaurants with fresh grilled fish and vegetables and a nice crisp white wine. On that same Andalucian trip we visited the Alhambra and drove down through the original Sierra Madres - we stopped and bought some of the best olive oil I've ever had.

We hiked the Cinque Terre in Italy - gorgeous and yet again awesome food!

We liked Orvieto, Italy - a nice hill town just outside of Rome.

We loved Iceland - the free 'hot pots' - basically hot tubs filled with geothermally warmed water and dramatic scenery with volcanos and glaciers.

We liked Chile - the skiing and the Andes - plus the wine country.

Oh, and in Hawaii, we loved snorkeling in Shark's cove - I couldn't get my husband out of the water - he loved floating around looking at all of the really cool fish -that was amazing that in such a small area there were so many different fish and sea turtles - we loved it.

Alaska - we loved Sitka - there is a park there with the Totem poles near a stream - very nice.

Loved hiking Zion and Bryce - met mostly Europeans in the Bryce Canyon!!!

The most common element seems to be some physical effort (usually hiking) and mountains and then good food and wine. We've also had some awesome skiing experiences - being on top of a mountain again :-)
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