Guest blog by Julia Fisher of Tulia Travel
“If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go?” I get asked this question all the time! While I love the question, I also tend to cringe. This is like asking a mother who her favorite child is (or I presume because I don’t have children myself!) It’s a hard question and one I always hesitate to answer.
The reason I hesitate is because the way I feel about several destinations is bigger than just a quick answer to the “where would you go?” question. There are a lot of really great places to travel, and I find it really hard to pick just one! Many places are good for different times of year, varying lengths of time, unique travel objectives and special travel companions.
Recently I was asked a different question by one of my dear friends and clients, and it caught me off guard: “If you could go anywhere for five days, where would you go?” I thought I was hearing the usual question until I heard “five days.” This changes things, since when you’re only traveling for five days, there are certain parameters to consider. The destination needs to be somewhat close to home, fairly easy to travel to, and offer enough to see and do without getting bored or worse: ready to go home.
I decided to use my recent interaction to create this short list of fantastic five-day getaways I absolutely love. A few things each of these five-day getaways offer?
- Great year-round destinations
- Family friendly, yet still fun for couples or girls’ trips
- Virtuoso properties
- Not too far from Naples
In case you’ve never heard of Virtuoso, it’s the leading network of luxury travel advisors comprised of 335 travel agencies in 28 countries and over 1,700 of the world’s best travel providers and premier destinations. I am honored to be a Virtuoso Travel Advisor and work with my host agency, SmartFlyer, out of NYC.
Here are the four properties I think are best for five-day getaways from Naples:
The Ritz-Carlton Bachelor Gulch
I love Colorado any time of year—whether winter or summer, you get to enjoy such great activities with a stunning backdrop. At The Ritz-Carlton Bachelor Gulch, not only is the outdoors beautiful, but the interior of this resort is out of this world. The dining offers a generous variety and the service is always five-star.
One of my favorite parts about this ski-in, ski-out resort is the Mountainside Terrace, which overlooks the surrounding National Forest. This spot is perfect, whether après-ski or just back from a scenic summer hike. In the summer, activities such as hiking, mountain biking, back country Jeep tours and white water rafting are popular. For the winter season, skiing, snowmobiling, snowshoeing and more are all the rage. Or if you decide the snow is not your thing, the spa is divine, and so are the après-ski drinks! Finally, this resort is not far from the heart of Beaver Creek, which offers additional shopping, dining and entertainment.
Grand Velas Riviera Maya
Mexico is often overlooked as a travel destination. This is unfortunate, as many areas of Mexico are extremely safe for tourists and I believe offer some of the best value to be had. One part of Mexico I book often for clients, as well as visit regularly myself, is Riviera Maya, an area outside of Cancun. Grand Velas Riviera Maya is a five-star all-inclusive—by far the nicest all-inclusive in the area—and is one of those resorts you have to see to believe. Their beachfront location without the crowds plus the multiple infinity pools leave little to be desired. Swim up to the bar and enjoy!
Everything is supersized—in the best way possible—and provides a destination where, once you step foot on property, you never have to leave—nor would you want to! As a major bonus, in case you get antsy, only 15 minutes away is Playa del Carmen, where fun restaurants, bars and small shops await.
The Ranch at Rock Creek
There are few places I go that literally take my breath away, and this is one of them. The Ranch at Rock Creek is located in Phillipsburg, Montana, a two-hour drive from the Missoula airport. Every minute of the drive is worth it. Not only is the Montana air some of the freshest I’ve ever inhaled, the epic 6,600 acres of ranchland surrounding the resort provide vistas you don’t want to take your eyes off of.
Here, they provide an authentic yet luxurious ranch experience. Horseback riding, fly fishing, shooting sports, wildlife viewing, hiking—and that only scratches the surface of the summer activities. In the winter, sleigh rides, ice skating, cross-country skiing and sledding abound. They host rodeos once a week throughout the summer when guests can watch skilled cowboys perform and also participate in the fun.
Here, the all-inclusive rates provide not only food and beverage, but also equipment and activities. Did I mention it’s a to-die-for wedding spot?
Four Seasons Nevis
Located a short 40-minute boat ride from the island of St. Kitts, Nevis is one of the secret gems of the Caribbean. Nevis is also accessible by air; varying flight schedules apply.
With its unique location on a non-touristy island the vibe is more relaxed and comfortable than most. The Nevisian people are so kind, generous and welcoming—I really enjoyed getting to know several amazing staff members over my stay. In particular, I was very happy to meet Llewellyn, who works on the kitchen staff at the resort and has created his own personal world-famous hot sauce. Trust me; it’s good!
There are so many things to do: paddleboard, visit the spa, sunbath under a cabana or snorkel off the beach. Four Seasons Nevis has the only swimmable beach on the island, which offers crystal clear waters and smooth sand. In Nevis, locals refer to relaxing as “liming”—and it is pure bliss!
That’s my wrap up of five-day getaways! Each offers something different, unique and exciting. I have personally been to all four destinations and have so much more to say about each. I hope you can get some time off work or away from everyday life to enjoy a little R&R and visit them!
Julia Fisher is a Naples native and a local travel advisor. She is part of the Virtuoso travel consortia, which provides exclusive amenities to clients. You can email her at email@example.com.