Resolve to Travel Somewhere New in 2017
Crested Butte, Photo by: Trent Bona
This is the time of year when people start contemplating their New Year's resolutions, and I’ve got one for you to consider. How about resolving to travel to at least one new place in 2017?
Most of us have a favorite location that we visit again and again. It’s natural to prefer visiting places that are familiar. When I was a kid growing up in the Pacific Northwest, we traveled to the ocean a lot because it was a happy place for my entire family. So I understand comfortable destinations.
However, I challenge you to visit a new place in 2017. The caveat is that the destination must be within driving distance of your house. I’m encouraging you to explore your own backyard. There are gems out there just waiting for you to discover them, I promise.
If you live in Colorado, how about a winter weekend in Crested Butte, one of the state’s most picturesque towns? Or a spring excursion to Durango where the flowering trees start blooming in April, or a foodie adventure to the North Fork Valley during harvest season? I’d bet that at least one of these areas would be new to you.
Here in Colorado, where I write and live, there are destinations around the state that deserve a visit, and yet, on a regular basis I talk to lifelong residents of Colorado who go to Vegas twice a year or drive to Moab every spring to go mountain biking, but haven’t been to some of our state’s greatest spots, such as Mesa Verde National Park or Steamboat Springs.
While flying saves time, car trips come with many advantages that flights do not. A road trip allows you to stop and explore things along the way. For instance, on a road trip from Kansas City to Denver, we randomly stopped at the Eisenhower Presidential Library in Abilene. It was one of the most fascinating roadside stops we’ve ever made, and we certainly couldn’t have explored it had we been flying over Kansas.
Another benefit of driving instead of flying is that you don’t have to purchase a dry airplane sandwich for $12. Instead, you can stop and eat a real lunch a roadside cafe.
Best of all, driving allows you to enjoy your state’s scenery. Here in Colorado we have the corner on that market, but the entire country is beautiful. From small towns that capture the spirit of the past to trendy towns whose restaurants celebrate local food on a nightly basis, there’s surely a place that’s perfect for you. I challenge you to go out and find it in 2017.