If you are like me, an active adventure baby boomer, you’re always planning your next trip. While I have many adventures on my bucket list, my primary goal is to be adequately funded the rest of my life to enjoy travel indefinitely. I don’t have any grandchildren yet – my husband and I are just now empty nest parents – but with good retirement planning we hope to incorporate travel into our lives forever, finances and good health willing. Below, I’ve put together a list of my top five travel destinations, both national and international, for active adventure baby boomers, with an emphasis on multi-generational travel.
As many readers know, I’m based in the San Francisco Bay Area. It is very easy to get to Loreto, Mexico for an out of country vacation without spending too much time or money and most businesses accept American money. There are many things to see and do in Loreto, Mexico, from visiting Misión de Nuestra Señora de Loreto Conchó to kayaking with whales (they come here to give birth in February), enjoying a wellness retreat or simply swinging in a hammock while looking out to Danzante Island at an all inclusive resort.
Willamette Valley & Portland, Oregon road trip
If you’ve ever watched the television show Portlandia, you know that Portland, Oregon is the place to go for the best coffee, an abundance of food pods and food trucks and is home to Powell’s Books, the largest independent “English speaking” bookstore in the world. Our daughter recently moved to Portland, which means only one thing – road trip! Whether you fly or drive, I highly recommend a visit to the Willamette Valley, as well as Portland. My husband and I are both University of Oregon Ducks, he’s a local boy, born and bred, so we do have a bias towards the Pacific Northwest and the Willamette Valley in particular. You’ll find plenty of suggestions on things to see and do in the Willamette Valley, as well as numerous upscale hotel reviews on the blog, so replicating this epic road trip should be very easy. Make sure to allocate a couple of days for Portland and take time for an Epicurean Walking Tour; it is well worth the calories and hey, walking the streets of Portland is healthy exercise!
Alaska small ship sailing
Have you traveled to Alaska? I’m a huge fan of the 49th and largest state in the union. I’ve traveled to Anchorage and wrote an article for the Chicago Tribune on How to Watch the Iditarod and I’ve witnessed the Northern Lights in Fairbanks, Alaska in the dead of winter. I’ve also had the pleasure of cruising Alaska on a large ship and sailing Glacier Bay on a small ship. If you are tired of large ship cruising and seeking something different or you can’t picture yourself on any type of cruise ship, have I got a secret for you. The secret for reluctant or non-cruisers is called UnCruise Adventures. The Seattle, Washington-based company sails its ship in locations from the Galapagos to Hawaii and Mexico, but I recommend sailing with UnCruise Adventures in Glacier Bay National Park Alaska.
Multi-generational dude ranch vacations
While cruising is an ideal opportunity for multi-generational travel, dude ranch vacations lend themselves well to active adventure baby boomers, as well as families with teenagers or young children. My equestrian blog Writing Horseback is all about locating horseback riding vacations. Through my own experience, I feel confident that you’ll have a wonderful dude ranch vacation at Lone Mountain Ranch in Montana; they have an excellent kid’s program at this Big Sky resort. I’ve heard wonderful things about Averill’s Flathead Lake Lodge and I joined High Lonesome Ranch in western Colorado where I rode with grandparents, parents and grandchildren out on the trail. If you are looking for a dude ranch vacation that is family-friendly and offers golf and a spa experience along with horseback riding, you’ll want to check out Rancho de los Caballeros in Wickenburg, Arizona.
European river cruising
Finally, river cruising is rapidly growing in popularity for those seeking a deeper European travel experience. For the past two years I’ve explored the Christmas Markets of Europe with Viking River Cruises. While I loved wondering each unique Christmas Market and enjoying the regional cuisine both in country and on the Viking Longship, my favorite part of any river cruise is not having to pack and unpack my suitcase. I am able to sit back, relax and watch the scenery come to me. What a trip!
What are your top travel destinations for the year? Article and photography by travel writer Nancy D. Brown. This post is sponsored by Fisher Investments, however all opinions are my own.