August vacation ideas include relaxing on the beach, cultural trips to Europe, romantic weekends and family reunions. Whether you are looking for a brand new hotel or an old classic, summer time is a great time to try something new. Our list includes perfect couples' escapes and family getaways. Single travelers will find many ideas as well. If you are looking for short trips from a major city, browse weekend ideas from New York City, San Francisco, Seattle, Atlanta, San Diego, Los Angeles, Chicago and other cities.
Remember to look for last minute packages to save on your holiday. Summers are for relaxing, unwinding and getting away from it all. Resorts across the country offer travelers a great selection of activities, stylish accommodations and gourmet dining options. Whether your want to spend your trip on the beach or in the mountains, there are many options to choose from. Even if you don't have time to get away for a whole week, browse our selection of quick trips that will help you unwind and rejuvenate.
Best August Vacations for Couples
Relax on a sandy beach in the Caribbean, plan a cultural trip to Europe, a yoga trip or an inexpensive getaway to a national park.
- Caribbean for Couples: Cotton Tree on Grand Cayman offers individually designed cottages right on the water. Enjoy romantic Caribbean sunset and delicious cuisine. August is low season in the Caribbean, so look for deals and specials. Hotel Carl Gustaf in St. Barts is an all-suite getaway where guests can indulge in private plunge pools, Spa by Carita and a beautiful sandy bay. Hotels here are off season in August, so look for deals. Best places to travel in August in the Caribbean.
- Romantic Europe: Villa Marie in Saint Tropez, France, offers rooms with ocean views, a European spa, outdoor pool and beautiful gardens. Byblos Saint-Tropez is another excellent option. If you want to spend some time touring the French wine country, book a room at Abbaye de la Bussiere which has a gourmet restaurant and unique guest rooms. A great way to visit many destinations in a short time is to take a summer cruise. Popular itineraries include Mediterranean, Alaska and New England cruises.
- Affordable National Parks: America's National Parks are filled with unique wildlife, scenic hiking trails and accommodations for a range of budgets. Grand Teton National Park are very popular in August, so be sure to book early if you are planning to stay in one of the park lodges. Best places to visit in August: 23 Stunning Inns & Lodges in the U.S. Rocky Mountains.
- Yoga Trips for Couples: Get in touch with your inner yogi while hiking in one of the most scenic spots in the United States. Pack your bag and join one of these awesome summer retreats, many of which offer affordable rates. Back to Earth (backtoearth.com) is offering several three to five-day retreats in Yosemite National Park in June, July and August featuring different styles of practice, priced from $465 per person. Join Kaf Adventures (www.kafadventures.com) on a backpacking and yoga trip to Mt. Rainier National Park in Washington. From $795 per participant. If you only have time for a quick day trip, take a look at one-day retreats by Colleen Lila Yoga (www.colleenlilayoga.com) in the Shawangunk Mountains in New York which combine a guided beginner or intermediate climb with scenic cliff top practice ($150). Eco Yoga Adventures (www.ecoyoga.ca) offers several weekend and week-long retreats in British Columbia, Canada, which let you enjoy scenic hikes as well as daily practice surrounded by pristine nature. Priced from $750 per person. The Outdoor Yoga & Rock Climbing Workshop by Power Adventures (www.poweradventures.org) includes two days and two nights of rock climbing, yoga, meditation, Makko Ho, hiking & camping in Devil's Lake State Park in southern Wisconsin. From $285 per person.
- Vermont: Combine relaxation and active rest by taking a spa trip. The Woodstock Inn in Vermont features a 41,000-square-foot Health & Fitness Center with daily fitness classes, racquetball, squash and tennis. In addition to the spa, there is golf in the summer, and several restaurants featuring fresh, seasonal ingredients. Families enjoy long summer days at the Basin Harbor Club on Lake Champlain, Vermont. The resort offers a children's a program, hiking, fishing and golf.
- The Grenadines: Amrita Spa at Canouan Island Resort features over-water treatment suites with glass bottoms that lets you look into the ocean while getting a spa treatment. They are very popular with couples celebrating a special occasion.
- Romantic Resorts in Hawaii: Couples looking for romantic trips can head to Hawaii and stay at one of the beautiful beachfront resorts such as the newly renovated Grand Wailea Resort in Maui, or the famous Mauna Kea Beach Hotel on the Big Island of Hawaii.
- U.S. Resorts: Other great resorts include: Mohonk Mountain House in New York and Tenaya Lodge in Yosemite National Park, California. More August vacation ideas: Wisconsin, New York and Florida.
Summer Vacation Ideas for Families
Families have a great selection of options, from island trips to New England beaches and city tours.
The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman has an environmental program for kids, sandy beaches and many activities, such as fishing, diving and golf. Ambassadors of the Environment by Jean-Michel Cousteau is a program that lets kids explore the natural treasures of the Cayman Islands. The program changes daily and offers avtivities for different age groups. Adults can participate as well, allowing you to plan activities that let you spend more time together.
For those who want to spend a good part of their summer time in a boat, Bitter End Yacht Club offers the perfect solution. This all-inclusive resorts puts its impressive fleet at your disposal. The resort's casually elegant atmosphere appeals to many travelers, as does their extensive menu of water activities. Whether you like to snorkel, fish, sail, or windsurf, this kid-friendly destination has it all. If you are new to watersports, there is a sailing and windsurfing school, as well as a dive place. Choose from a Club fleet of over 100 boats, or join one of the excursions to nearby islands and reefs. British Virgin Islands are famous for their white sandy beaches and at the Bitter End Yacht Club you'll have access to three. There is a fresh water pool and a full service spa.
Summer in Hawaii is on everyone's dream list. The ocean provides an unlimited playground for watersports enthusiasts, and sandy beaches inspire everyone to relax. Turtle Bay Resort on Oahu has a spa, golf and offers an array for activities for the whole group. Oahu has many cultural attractions, sightseeing tours and shops. Find more trips in Hawaii.
The Resort at Squaw Creek is a year-round destination. In the winter, both kids and grow-up enjoy the sledding hill and a private ice rink. Children ages 4 to 12 can participate in the Mountain Buddies year-round, fully supervised children's program. In the winter, kids can go sledding, snow shoeing and ice skating. In the summer, supervised activities include swimming, hiking, biking, tennis, arts & crafts and games. Each day's activities feature a theme, such as adventure or learning about animals. Educational activities include stargazing, natural history lessons, kid friendly cooking demonstrations and computer workshops in the Buddy Learning Center, a computer lab for kids.
If you are wondering where to vacation in August on the East Coast, Chatham Bars Inn, an oceanfront resort on Cape Cod, offers a great selection of things to do. You can take everybody to the beach, relax by the kiddie pool while your kids play in the water, or try one of the beach games at the Activities Centre. Depending on the age group of your child, the following programs are available Chatham Bars Inn from mid-June through early September:
For children ages 4 to 6, the resort offers the complimentary Beach Buddie program where kids learn about cooking, music, gardening, local plants and animals. In the evening there are pajama parties, safaris and treasure hunts. Children must be toilet-trained and able to swim to participate. Children ages 7 to 9 can participate in the complimentary Clam Diggers program where they learn about animal tracking and participate in beach Olympics. Children must be able to swim to participate. Older kids, ages 10 and up, can join the Wash-a-Shores program, also complimentary. The program includes boat excursions, lighthouse tour, photography, tennis, golf, soccer and croquet. In the evening, there are pool parties, scavenger hunts and a survival challenge.
England: Cooking school for Kids
The cooking school Le Manoir aux Quat' Saisons will introduce your kids to healthy cooking. This is one of those investments that will help your kids lead a more healthy life and, who knows, perhaps even reduce your workload in the kitchen once you return home from your family vacation. Le Manoir is an English country estate located in the village of Great Milton near Oxford. La Petite Ecole de Cuisine is designed to inspire and educated kids through diverse hands-on activities in the kitchen and in the organic herb garden.
While your kids are being turned into master chefs, you can unwind and relax at Le Manoir aux Quat' Saisons and its beautiful gardens. At the end of the day, you are invited to join your kids for a tea party and a presentation of course certificates.
Get away with the family to the Painted Boat Resort in British Columbia where you can spend time outdoors in nature hiking, fishing and kayaking.
Relax at a luxury resort in Mexico while your kids participate in a children's program. The Ritz Carlton, Cancun has a sandy beach and two outdoor swimming pools. Take a cooking class at the Culinary Center, swim in the ocean, relax at the spa and work out in the fitness center. Visit Cancun, 20 minutes away, for a bit of sightseeing. During the summer, participate in the Turtle Camp program that supports turtles. Kanan-Ak, meaning “turtle guardian” in the Mayan language, protects nests and helps baby turtles after they hatch.
Historic Edmonton, Canada
Explore the historic city of Edmonton, Canada on your summer family vacation. Edmonton offers an array of family-friendly activities and attractions such as the TELUS World of Science-Edmonton, Fort Edmonton Park, the River Valley and West Edmonton Mall. The Fairmont Hotel Macdonald has a health spa, 40-foot saline swimming pool, and a whirlpool. For younger guests, there is a separate children's wading pool. Choose from rooms with views of the North Saskatchewan River Valley or the city skyline.
IMAX Movies in Vegas
Located on the Pharaoh's Pavilion Attraction level of the Luxor Hotel, IMAX theatre offers a multitude of films that are suitable for all ages. IMAX films are projected on a screen measuring nearly seven stories high. Feature films are shot in exotic locations around the world, as well as places few individuals ever get to venture. Examples include the International Space Station, the Titanic deep down on the ocean floor, Fantasia II, Beauty and the Beast, and Mysteries of Egypt.
The theater at Luxor Las Vegas seats 312 viewers and features a 15,000-watt sound system, eight channel, multi-dimensional, digital surround sound system incorporated into the IMAX Personal Sound Environment headset, headsets with Liquid Crystal Display 3D viewing technology.