Courtesy of the Hawaii Nature Center

Looking to start the New Year on the right foot? Here are the trips to get you motivated.

Resolution: Help Green the Earth

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Where to Go: Maui

What to Do: Okay, so you took a giant, fuel-eating plane to get here (at least you shared it with other people), but you’re in a place where you can become a hands-on environmental steward. The Hawaii Nature Center offers “Volun-tourism” projects where you can, say, help restore wetlands (808/244-6500; hawaiinaturecenter.org), while the Sierra Club offers one “volunteer vacation,” among others, where you can help stabilize an archaeological site while also taking time to snorkel and watch whales (415/977-5500; sierraclub.org).

Where to Stay: The Fairmont Kea Lani is pretty green for a big brand hotel: it recycles most of its laundry wastewater and also participates in local programs to clean beaches, protect local turtles, and restore the island’s taro plant population. —Katrina Brown Hunt

New Year's Resolution Trips

Resolution: Help Green the Earth

Where to Go: Maui

What to Do: Okay, so you took a giant, fuel-eating plane to get here (at least you shared it with other people), but you’re in a place where you can become a hands-on environmental steward. The Hawaii Nature Center offers “Volun-tourism” projects where you can, say, help restore wetlands (808/244-6500; hawaiinaturecenter.org), while the Sierra Club offers one “volunteer vacation,” among others, where you can help stabilize an archaeological site while also taking time to snorkel and watch whales (415/977-5500; sierraclub.org).

Where to Stay: The Fairmont Kea Lani is pretty green for a big brand hotel: it recycles most of its laundry wastewater and also participates in local programs to clean beaches, protect local turtles, and restore the island’s taro plant population. —Katrina Brown Hunt

Courtesy of the Hawaii Nature Center

New Year's Resolution Trips

Of all the storied holiday-season traditions, the New Year’s resolution has long been a laughingstock, ranking somewhere between the office Secret Santa and the barking-dogs version of “Jingle Bells.”

Related: Best Places to Spend New Year's

If you’ve been down that resolution path (and who hasn’t?), you know the drill. You begin with an earnest proclamation of intent while standing by the chip bowl at a New Year’s Eve party—“I’ll lose 20 pounds! I’ll run a marathon! I’ll never order fried cheese again!” But once you get back to your usual life’s routine, those ambitions fizzle like day-old champagne. No surprise: a University of Washington study found that almost half of us have ditched our resolutions before March.

To keep a resolution from becoming more than a joke, some say you need to start with a plan of action—and what better plan of action than to plan a trip? When you take your resolution on a vacation, you can immerse yourself in your new mind-set, whether your goal is to eat better, quit smoking, or overcome a fear.

Related: America's Best Cities for New Year's Eve

One place to go: Tucson’s miracle-making spa, Miraval. Travelers come looking to lose weight, of course, but perhaps also to deal with an emotional issue or just to slow down life’s pace. If nothing else, the memories of a great trip will periodically remind you that there’s more to life than fried cheese. —Katrina Brown Hunt

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