Alternate Vacation Ideas?

I’m starting to adjust my thinking about my cruise that’s been rebooked twice and now is for this June (Princess to Alaska from Vancouver). I just don’t know that I will feel safe to fly a very long distance to a foreign country, then cruise where I’ll be with large crowds in several instances. This is supposed to be my first cruise and I don’t want to get quarantined, not allowed on the ship b/c of my test, etc. I’m thinking maybe I should come up with an alternate solo trip so that if I cancel I won’t feel so bad. (Because right now the thought of cancelling just eats me up inside after looking forward to it for soooooo long.). But, everything I’d like to do still involved plane travel. I’m not good for long drives by myself. Starting point is DC area. Any ideas? I put this under WDW, but I don’t want to go to the parks by myself at the moment. I’m thinking more like exploring a big city, but I wouldn’t want to have to be reliant on mass transit. I’m also not terribly outdoorsy, so all the “safe” covid things aren’t really for me. Will already probaby go to a beach area with the family next summer.

Are you ruling out cruises? I ask because of the RCL options out of NJ.

1 Like

Chicago is my favorite big (U.S.) city to explore. The downtown area has so much!


Yes, for now. I really want to try out cruising but if I choose something “safer” I’d rather be on land. I’m thinking of something within the US that I can fly a short flight to, or possibly drive.

FWIW - my very first solo trip of any kind was to WDW. I had no idea what to expect, but I had a blast. It wasn’t weird at all and I got to do things that I wouldn’t otherwise have done with family or friends in tow. I got to go at my pace and do what I wanted. Bonus = maneuvering through Disney as a single is so easy. I highly recommend a solo WDW trip! Think about it!

Other thoughts: NYC? What about fall foliage in the NE?


Have you spent any time in the Lancaster PA area? I’m not terribly outdoorsy myself. I’ve really enjoyed exploring different things in Hershey - the Hershey museum, Hershey’s Chocolate Word. There’s a new restaurant at Hersheypark that you don’t need tickets to the park to access called The Chocolatier. DH and I agreed that they need something like it at Disney, there are booths made out of ride seats, and a really cool app served on a ferris wheel platter thing.
In Lancaster itself, there are plenty of Amish related things to see, or you can just go to different farmer’s markets and bake shops. The Strasburg Railroad and railroad museums nearby would be an interesting visit. I like riding in the open air car in the warm weather. There’s antiques north in the Adamstown area, and plenty of cute lodging places. We’ve stayed in rooms in Kitchen Kettle Village as well as the renovated Wilbur chocolate factory, now a Hilton hotel. We go pretty often and keep discovering new things - I’d be happy to share more!


You are all suggesting things that are absolutely on my radar! I definitely want to do a Disney solo trip at some point, just not when I’m trying to avoid crowds (for covid). We have done Hershey Park and are almost certainly going back sometime soon. That’s my kids’ #1 wish for a future trip and I’ve told them that as soon as it’s safer we’ll go back (I’m hoping maybe summer?). NYC is a definite wish of mine, but I need to go with the family. We had a NYC trip planned for spring break in 2020 and it was the big thing I had to cancel when everything started with covid. There’s a wonderful train that takes you right from DC to NYC in a few hrs. I really want to do this. I’ve thought about going solo but feel like that wouldn’t sit well with the kids if I went solo before going with them, b/c it was “our” thing that we didn’t get to do yet. Honestly the thing that appeals to me most is to fly to Seattle or San Francisco, but both of those are really long plane rides away. I haven’t gotten over my fear of flying during covid, despite reading a ton about how the air is filtered. I just know I’d end up on a flight next to a sick person or where they turn the plane around due to someone getting unreasonable. I don’t fly well under the best of conditions. I could probably feel ok on a couple hour flight though. Like 2 to 3 hrs.


What about Charleston or Savannah? I feel like those are good (warmer) adult locations.


Take a sleeper on Amtrak to Chicago. :sunglasses:


Savannah was my family’s go to vacation destination when I was a kid! We lived a few hrs away. I really want to go back with my family. Charleston is on my to do list but I had sort of forgotten about it. That is much closer than the west coast. Many friends have gone there b/c I lived so long in the south.

1 Like

I like this idea b/c I really enjoyed taking the auto train in a sleeper car to WDW. Chicago has been on my list of places I want to go. I went once as a teen but I want to go back and actually see the city. I spent a day there.

Would you consider a semi staycation? You could stay at a hotel/resort near DC and visit all the monuments by yourself with a bike and train. It would be a different experience without your family and friends. If you are comfortable, you can visit a few museums.

Visiting a Disney park by yourself can be a lovely experience. I went to DLR by myself in November. I did whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. I didn’t cater to anyone but ME!


Charleston or Savannah might be close to an Amtrak station. We’re usually sleeping during this part of the trip.

1 Like

Have you already overdone Baltimore? It looks like they are being fairly aggressive on their Covid measures. I’ve only been once, but the harbor was just fabulous and seems like it would be a low-anxiety destination.

1 Like

The harbor isn’t what it used to be, sadly. There are some things to do, but the shopping and restaurant scene are a shell of what it used to be. But Covid measures are more aggressive than other areas. I believe the city requires masking indoors. If you are more Covid cautious, I would not take the suggestion above to go to Lancaster or Hershey. Most places do not require any kind of masking and most people do not mask.

Honestly, there are so many places you could go by yourself. That would be so hard to choose. :slightly_smiling_face:


The sleeper to Chicago is a great idea.

Another similar idea is a sleeper on the West Coast. I did that once and it was great. It goes from somewhere in south CA to Vancouver. Meals and a wine tasting every afternoon were included. I was on a business trip and by myself. But I became temporary friends with the people at my table. The service was amazing, although maybe I was lucky.
I’d made the plans very last minute when I realized I needed to get from San Jose to Portland, OR and I had that weekend to do it. So, I booked the train and a regular sleeper. Because all the sleepers were booked and it was within a week of the trip they gave me the disabled room, which was palatial and the price of a regular room. I arrive at the station and the employees are in a tizzy. A woman on oxygen had booked a deluxe but didn’t realize stairs were involved, so they gave her ‘my’ room. I was fine with the change and they didn’t expect that. A couple of employees mentioned that while on the train. That said, the deluxe was awesome. I had my own toilet/shower.


I’d second Chicago. It’s one of my favorite US cities to visit along with NYC.

1 Like

We are renting a beach house on Dauphin Island in May.

We stayed at Petit Jean State Park and hiked over NYE.

Echo Bluff State Park was our home over Thanksgiving. State Parks have done nice lodges and of course beautiful scenery.

We are going to Colorado (Taylor Park) in July.

Big Cedar is a nice place too. Lots of family activities.

Lots to do out there!


Oh…@Alewis678 is right about this. I was thinking in terms of not being in large, crowded cities. But the Amish don’t mask at all, and even in touristy areas of Hershey, it was 50/50 at best.

1 Like

I know you live by DC? We spent a staycation weekend in June at The Wharf area of DC (I live in MD) Lots to do right in that area (restaurants, shops) but it’s also within walking distance to the Washington Monument and the Mall area. We stayed at the Intercontinental which was lovely and a perfect location.

ETA: We take the train to NYC from Baltimore all the time. (well, before Covid :roll_eyes:) and it’s quick easy and fun. But there’s also Philly on that line which we’ve visited as well. Lots of good food and historical (and other) sights to see.

1 Like