Summer in the city can be stifling, with its sticky-hot subway cars and the odor of leftovers slowly broiling behind every restaurant. For those of us who don’t have a Hamptons-home perched on a sandy stretch of beachfront, it can be hard to slip away from the city for the ultimate, sink-your-toes-in-the-sand summer escape.
Watch this video for four unexpected summer activities that keep you out of the summer heat.
1. Summer Camp for Adults
At Wisconsin’s Camp Wandawega, about 90 minutes from Chicago, “campers,” or adult travelers, can take dips in the cool, shallow lake between breezy naps on a hammock. Another favorite spot for grown ups is Camp Grounded, north of San Francisco in the shade of towering Redwoods, where there’s rock climbing and sign-alongs—and no cell phones allowed.
What's better than summer? Together with @foodandwine and a few other sister brands, we want to see how you're enjoying the season. Whether it's from this summer or your favorite throwback, share photos on Instagram and include the hashtag #howisummer for a chance to be featured on T+L’s Instagram.
This summer has seen plenty of new thrill rides (watch our Top 6 New Roller Coaster Rides video), and the openings continue. Last week New Jersey’s Six Flags Great Adventure unleashed the Zumanjaro: Drop of Doom, a three-towered attraction for up to eight adrenaline junkies who are hoisted 415 feet into the sky, hover for a handful of seconds to take in the panoramic views, and then drop at speeds of up to 90 miles per hour. The entire ride takes less than a minute, but luckily, the euphoria endures.
Still prefer real books to e-readers—but hate having to lug them in your suitcase? Shutters on the Beach, the iconic Santa Monica hotel, is introducing a new Beach Book Bag program, allowing guests to order their beach reads before stepping foot on the plane.
In a summer of new thrill rides and roller coasters, there's yet another to steal the show. Verruckt is now the world's tallest water slide—it opened last Thursday at Schlitterbahn Waterpark in Kansas City, Kansas. Before stepping into a three-person raft, all three riders must be measured and weighed (each rider must be at least 54 inches tall and together, they cannot surpass 550 lbs.). The two heart-pumping drops include one from 168 feet—or about 16 stories high—and speeds can reach as fast as 70mph. Arrive early to the base of the ride: that's where you reserve a scheduled ride time in advance, then return about 30 minutes before you're set to take the plunge. The standby line is another option, but rides aren't guaranteed.
What else will keep you busy at Schlitterbahn Waterpark? The Black Night Tube Slide, Storm Blaster water coaster, and for a relaxing break, the peaceful Boogie Bay beach lounge.
This summer’s roller coaster rides are sure to get your heart pumping. Coney Island recently introduced the Thunderbolt roller coaster—the boardwalk's first new, custom-built coaster since the opening of the wooden-track Cyclone in 1927. North of Cincinnati, you'll find Ohio’s Kings Island, and the new $24-million-dollar The Banshee ride, an inverted coaster that turns thrill seekers upside-down seven times!
Cool off with your family at one of these top affordable water parks.
Texas Schlitterbahn, on Galveston Island, Texas, opened in 1966 and calls itself the world’s first “water resort”—but don’t write it off as old fashioned. The park opens new rides almost every year, and with more than 35 water attractions, family adventures, and thrill slides, there’s something for everyone. Teenagers will love the Cliffhanger, with drops of 81 feet and speeds approaching 40 mph, while younger visitors prefer the Treasure Island kids area, a shallow pool designed to entertain the smallest Schlitterbahn guests. Tickets for the park are $46 adults, $36 kids. Stay at the nearby historic property, The Tremont House, A Wyndham Grand Hotel, where rates start at $139 on weekdays and $199 on weekends.
The discreet charms of the classic, East Coast–elite-style summer vacation: Devin Friedman finds his inner WASP on Martha’s Vineyard.
People are always going on vacation and putting on a straw sombrero and drinking a beer and feeling relaxed and saying, You know what, this is the real me. But that’s not the real you. The real you isn’t the person who is totally stress-free and good-humored and loves to make funny rum cocktails for people he barely knows, who thinks that version of herself embroiled in the careerist rat race is an impostor, who says If I just never came home and instead opened a bookstore/beach bar/sundress emporium here and bought a character-building chapeau I could spend the rest of my days being the real me. Somewhere deep inside the folds of our cortexes, we know that (1) we’re never going to move here and buy the hat and the bookstore and that (2) if we did, the old us would come and take the ferry over and hunt us down by the smell of our fear and aftershave and climb back into our bodies again and make us anxious and ambitious and money-conscious just the way we always were. Getting to not be you for two weeks is what it’s all about anyway. One of the great unsung joys of going on vacation is that you get to be a poseur. So my feeling is, pose like crazy, enjoy it, then hide the pictures of you in the hat.