Birthday Travel Ideas
Most Americans like to celebrate birthdays with a fun activity. Sometimes, on special birthdays, like turning thirty or fifty, people make bigger plans to travel a little further from home to do something extra special or unique. Depending on your style and sense of adventure, birthday travels can be either very exciting or slow and relaxing. No matter what you find fun, planning a special birthday trip will give you something to look forward to and provide a nice change of pace.
Take a Train
It doesn't matter where you go, getting there is all the fun on a train. Look out the window and enjoy the scenery. Amtrak is the only people carrier in the U.S. and you can book a trip directly from their website. They have an auto train available, which will allow you to take your car, or you can buy a rail pass that will allow you to make several trips over a few weeks. Train tickets often cost a little less than airline tickets. You will have to schedule these trips in advance and you may need to modify your travel dates to find a train schedule that accommodates your needs.
The king of theme parks is Walt Disney World in Orlando Florida. Disney World is actually made up of four different parks and has some fun places to stay right on the park grounds. Going to Disney and staying there can cost a couple thousand dollars for an average family. Fortunately, Disney sometimes offers packages to get into all four parks and accommodations for a discounted price. You may wish to avoid Disney during peak times, such as spring break or during the very hot and muggy summer months.
Other Theme Parks
There are hundreds of theme parks all over the country, including Universal Studios in Orlando Florida, Cedar Point in Ohio and Knott's Berry Farm in California. In addition, there are Six Flags parks scattered around the country. These are just a few of the larger theme parks, but there is probably one within a few hours drive of where you live. Most parks offer kiddy rides, roller coasters, water rides, specialty foods and other entertaining experiences. Depending on how much you want to spend and how far you want to go, you can plan a trip tailored to your desires.
Take a Cruise
A cruise is a great birthday getaway because everything is taken care of for you with just one price. cruises can be as short as three days or as long as a month. If you live near a coastline, check the local ports to see if any cruises depart from there. This may save you an airline ticket. Another idea is to travel to the closest bay, lake or river near you and take a dinner or sunset cruise. Stay in a local hotel and enjoy the rest of your trip visiting the area.
Travel to your adventure. Take a bungee jump, go rock climbing, ride a hot air balloon ride, go to auto racing school, jump out of an airplane, or go on that whitewater-rafting trip you have always wanted to take. Use your birthday as an excuse to spend the money and get your nerve and go for it. Visit Wildthings.com for more information on the kinds of extreme sports you can do for your birthday.
American Landmarks, Cities and Sites
Perhaps there is somewhere you have always wanted to go right here in the United States, such as the Mall of America, the Grand Canyon, Manhattan, Graceland or Myrtle beach. This could be a weekend or week-long trip. It could even be a day trip since some people who live near popular tourists attractions have never actually been there themselves. Go to the library and take out your state's tourist book, like Fodor's or Let's Go, and see if you've missed something in your own backyard.
Take the trip of a lifetime for you birthday. Visit the Eiffel Tower, the Alps or the Pyramids. If you're flexible on where you would like to go, search for the best deal possible online or through a travel agent and go for it. On your birthday, you may end up in the green hills of Ireland sipping Guinness or on a Gondola ride in Venice.
Melissa Lewis is a former elementary classroom teacher and media specialist. She has also written for various online publications. Lewis holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of Maryland Baltimore County.