Weekend Getaways Close to Home

Weekend Getaways Close to Home Sometimes life calls for a weekend getaway to de-stress, do something different, and have a little fun. You might think it will be difficult to find a place close enough to make it worth it for just a few days. Below is a list of some ideal spots for a weekend trip you will love.Weekend Getaways Close Home 66452893134009988292.jpeg
New York City
Visitors can reach New York City by train, plane or car, so weekend getaways are a breeze. It is great even in cold weather, as there are many indoor attractions such as Broadway shows or museums, while in summer visitors can enjoy outdoor places including the High Line and Central Park. History enthusiasts can head to Ellis Island via ferry to check out the first stop of many immigrants in days past or climb to the top of the famous Statue of Liberty.
San Francisco
There is much to appreciate about San Francisco: the iconic cable cars you can ride through local streets, the vibrant hilly neighborhoods, the dazzling Golden Gate Bridge, and of course the lovely weather. If you love sports, take in a baseball game at AT&T Park and admire its dazzling views of the San Francisco Bay.
Washington, D.C.
Not only is America's capital chock full of no-cost attractions, many of them are located on the National Mall, making it effortless to see the Lincoln Memorial, the Washington Monument and other highlights in just a matter of days. When visiting, don't miss out on the popular weekend brunch scene – just be sure to make reservations in advance.
New Orleans
You can't tackle all of the Big Easy's major sights in one weekend, but its diverse offerings make it easy to select activities based on your interests. If you are from a cold-weather place and just want to enjoy some fresh air, head over to City Park for some open-air activities; history lovers can check out The National WWII Museum. Foodies (or even non-foodies) will want to breakfast or snack on the classic beignets, then spend some time walking around the famous and picturesque French Quarter.
Nashville, NC
This small town is liked by easy-going hipsters, beer enthusiasts, as well as anyone who loves beautiful mountain scenery. The Blue Ridge Parkway and Pisgah National Forest boast jaw-dropping vistas, and the North Carolina part of the Appalachian Trail is a must for die-hard hikers. After an active day, you can head back to town to sip one of 100-plus local brews.
Chicago
Chicago's famous eats, distinct neighborhoods, and abundance of can't-miss sights make it a fantastic weekend vacation spot. On warm days, snap a selfie in front of "The Bean" and embark on an architecture river cruise. Chicago has a rich culture of distinguished museums such as the Field Museum and the Art Institute of Chicago; ideal for those frosty Chicago winter days.
Seattle
Seattle is a vibrant hipster city renowned for its coffee culture (Starbucks started here) as well as the iconic Space Needle and vibrant Pike Place Market with its great bars and restaurants. You could even fit in a hike in Discovery Park or on nearby Mount St. Helens. Just remember to bring an umbrella and a raincoat – weather in the Emerald City can be rainy.

Discover Africa: Its Sights, Sounds and Peoples

Discover Africa: Its Sights, Sounds and Peoples A voyage to Africa will take you along the same path as early explorers from countries such as Portugal, The Netherlands, England, and Germany. The diverse cultures developed by ancient tribal traditions and colonialism are fascinating to compare when you stop in places such as Senegal, Mozambique, Madagascar, and Mauritius. South Africa boasts beautiful mountainous terrain, while at the other end of the spectrum, the desert landscape of Namibia will leave you awestruck. Zanzibar, or "Spice Island", is a tropical archipelago off the coast of Tanzania regarded for its abundance of valuable spices, including cloves, cinnamon, and nutmeg, making it a fantastic place to visit for food aficionados.

10 of the Best Off-the-Beaten-Track Treks

10 Best Off-the-Beaten-Track Treks 159897853.jpg 10 of the Best Off-the-Beaten-Track Treks Do you want to really break free and head to locations where you can be completely on your own with no one else around? Remove yourself from the daily grind and get close to the outdoors on some of the world’s most unknown tracks. Visit Africa’s 3rd ultimate peak, the Australian deserts, or trek the world’s most southerly peak in Patagonia, all are amazing. Even though these hiking trails are not easy to get to, don’t let that limit you, there is a trek out there for all.
Gokyo Lakes & Renjo La in Nepal
Duration: Approximately 17 days - 13 days trekking
Level of Difficulty: Moderate to Challenging (6)
Best for travelers who want to try a trek different to Everest Base Camp
February to mid-May, End of September to December is the best time to go
How would you like to stay clear of the busier trails in Everest? You can journey though Sherpa villages to the breathtaking turquoise Gokyo Lakes and move through Renjo La (5400) on a very quiet trail. It is considered one of the greatest hiking trails in the Everest region, and its course gives you a glimpse of the grand Himalaya’s 8000 meter peaks. On the way to Gokyo Ri, you get the greatest site of Everest and the encompassing mountains, including Cho Oyu in Tibet.
Larapinta Trail End in Australia
Duration: Approx. 14 days
Level: Moderate to challenging (6)
Ideal for: Wilderness lovers and seasoned walkers looking for a challenge
Mid-April to August is the ideal time to go
An iconic walk in Australia, the complete traverse of the Larapinta follows the West MacDonnell range, over 223 kilometers in Central Australia. Hike through this desert-like area with tucked away ridges and canyons, sleep under the night sky in the Outback; ascend Mount Sonder, one of the tallest mountains in the Northern Territory and wake up to a most memorable sunrise.
Dientes Circuit on Navarino Island in Chile
Duration: Approx. 6 days - 4 days of trekking
Level: Challenging (7)
Ideal for those trekkers who want to get off the beaten track in Patagonia
Ideal time to go is December to March
Walk the world's most southerly trek to Dientes de Navarino Massif where you will get the sensation that you have come to the far reaches of the globe. You will not observe many others on this 42-kilometer trek at the tip of South America. This hike has been characterized by Lonely Planet as some of Patagonia’s greatest hiking areas and is considered the most out of the way place to visit on earth.
K2 Base camp, Concordia & Gondogora La in Pakistan
Duration is about 24 days - 16 days actual trekking
Grading is considered entry level mountaineering/ exploratory trekking (8)
Best for: Anyone looking to get into mountaineering, or who is seeking a challenging trek
Ideal to go: Months of June to August
Thought to be some of the best scenic hiking trails, it goes from the popular Baltoro Glacier, to the “Throne Room of the Mountain Gods” and to the base of the earth's second biggest mountain range. Pakistan’s famous hiking trail has grabbed the attention of hikers and mountaineers for numerous years, with a 360-degree view of 7,000 meter and 8,000-meter points, as well as the massive K2.
The Southern Alps in New Zealand
Duration is approx. 6 days
Grading: Moderate (5)
Best for: Those looking to head for heights
Best time to go: November to April
Regarded as one of the top hiking (or 'tramping', to locals) locations on Earth, New Zealand’s Southern Alps is a perfect combination of snowcapped peaks, turquoise lakes and golden hills. walking in out of the way mountain lakes with glorious vistas, this journey has been used as precursor for a walk in the Himalayas.
Mountains of the Moon in Uganda
Duration: Approximately 13 days (10 days trekking)
Grading: Entry level mountaineering/ exploratory trekking (8)
Best for anyone who has checked Mt Kilimanjaro off their list and are looking for their next summit challenge
Best time to go is from December to February and June to September
Secluded and almost never visited, the Rwenzori Mountains (or Mountains of the Moon) are Africa’s hidden treasure. Climbing Margherita Peak (5,109m), Africa’s third tallest crest, is not for the faint of heart.
West Coast Trail in Canada
Duration: Approximately 8 days (7-day full-pack trek)
Grading: Moderate to challenging (6)
Ideal for those active walkers who love coastal walks and want to combine it with an breathtaking forest trek and wildlife spotting
Best time to go: August
By ferry, cross the Orca-filled Strait of Georgia and travel to Vancouver Island where your trip begins, and you might catch a glance of more whales and sea lions, eagles, and bears all along the shore. Acknowledged as the world's top 10 hikes, if you organize it right, you will be able to walk along the shoreline on the shelf.
Snowman Trek in Bhutan
Duration: Approx. 27 days (23 days actual trekking)
Grading: Exploratory trekking (8)
Best for anyone desiring a very challenging trek that goes way off the beaten track
Ideal time to go is September to November
Travel the greatest traverse of Bhutan stretching through 11 splendid passes over 4,500 meters through the isolated Lunana terrain. This once-in-a-lifetime adventure reaches the stunning Paro Valley where you’ll see a region with tiny Buddhist monasteries and isolated villages that are hidden away most of the year.
Pamir Fann Mountains, Tajikstan
Duration: Approximately 14 days (5 days trekking)
Grading: Moderate (5)
Ideal for: Those desiring to take their bush walking adventures up a notch while incorporating historical and architectural sightseeing
Best time to go is June to September
Popular for its unique mountain landscapes and its strikingly beautiful alpine lakes this untouched area of Pamir enters deep valleys with clear lakes and flowering meadows. You could potentially spot the summer camps of the Tijiki shepherds.
Mongolia: Tavan Bogd
Duration: About 11 days (4 days trekking)
Grading: Moderate (5)
Best for anyone looking to explore untracked wilderness and authentic nomadic culture
When to go: June to August
This most remote part of Mongolia is plentiful with nature, considerable wildlife and an intriguing cultural history. You will meet local herders, bactrian camels, Kazakh eagle hunters and throat-singing Tuvan citizens, and comprehend more about the native peoples.

Leading Hikes Around the World

Leading Hikes Around the World The best walkabouts are not only about the actual walk but rather they embrace the history and culture of the destination. Still, hikes are no picnics.Leading Hikes Around World 5418318761837213.jpg They will make you challenge yourself physically and challenge your will, causing an indelible imprint of the splendor of our environment. A list of the planet's top hikes is shown below.
Peru: Inca Trail - 26.7 miles & 4 days
Awesome moments are considerable on the Inca Trail, but uncomparable to the minute you go through the Sun Gate and the moment you catch vision of the forgotten city of Machu Picchu. The best months to go are May to September
Lost City of Colombia- 27 miles - 5 days
Travel through the rich jungle through waterways before experiencing the ruins of Teyuna. Make this your first stop and you have the Lost City all to yourself. It is best to go from August to November.
Nepal's Everest Base Camp - 38.5 miles - 13 days
This journey will make you more familiar to the inhabitants of the Himalayas while giving you a glimpse from the top of the world. Once you view Everest, you will not view the world in the same way again. Perfect time to go: August to November.
Tanzania's Mount Kilimanjaro - 21.1 miles & 8 days
At 5,895m (19,340 ft), Mt Kilimanjaro is Africa's highest peak. It’s not easy, but unlike other great peaks, it allows those strong enough to conquer its many routes to the top. Ideal time to go: September to March.
Europe's Mont Blanc - 8 days and 77.7 miles
The Tour du Mont Blanc is more than one hundred miles and takes you through 3 countries: Switzerland, Italy, and France. The best months to go are June to September.
Patagonia's Torres del Paine Circuit - 82.6 miles and 10 days
Known for its natural beauty, you will be exposed to striking volcanic landscapes, impressive glaciers and expansive flatlands expanding to the horizon. The best months to go are December to March.
Mt. Roirama in Venezuela - 6 days & 21.1 miles
The splendid mountain of Roraima is almost holy to the area’s natives and may have inspired Arthur Conan Doyle to pen the novel, "The Lost World." When to go: November to April is the perfect time to walk the Roraima path but anytime of the year is good.
Spain: The Camino de Santiago - 466 miles in 30 days
The popular Camino de Santiago, also acknowledged as the St. James Trail, was a very important Christian passage during the Middle Ages, and is still viewed as a significant religious pilgrimage today. The trail can be traveled any month of the year but the optimal time is between spring and autumn, however it will be very congested.

Learn About the American Express Pay-with-Points Plan

Learn About the American Express Pay-with-Points Plan AMT Travel is proud to provide more benefits and personal satisfaction with American Express’ Pay with Points plan. though American Express Membership Rewards members could redeem their points for miles with partner airline carriers in past years, flights were not easy to come across. You now have the option of paying in full, or in part, all of your holiday packages, flights, accommodations, car rentals, or tours with your Membership Rewards Credit Card Reward points. Swapping your points is easy and clear-cut – let AMT Travel show you how. Following are just a few of the benefits you will receive:
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Learn American Express Pay-with-Points Plan 9689783465781.jpg
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And more happy news: you can use your American Express points to pay for all first and business class travel exclusively through an AMT American Express Travel Representative!
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