I am writing this edit memo in my hermetically sealed office. (My windows don’t open; the air-conditioner blasts cold air.) If you’re reading this in a similarly artificially chilled space—your home, the doctor’s office, the salon—please put the magazine down (but only for a minute). Now look outside. See the sun shining? Notice the trees blooming? Isn’t it just spectacular out there? Can you (almost) feel the warmth?
Summer is hands-down my favorite season. The sun is brilliant. The gardens are glorious. The farmers’ markets are bursting with luscious fruits and vegetables. And moms, dads, kids are out—walking, jogging, cycling. Is it me, or does everyone seem a little (a lot?) happier come summertime?
So, why aren’t you out there? On gorgeous days like these, there’s no better time to pack a bag, jump into the car, turn off the phone, and get away. And you don’t have to go far away to feel far away.
We scoured locations within a six-and-a-half-hour drive (most are even much closer—three hours or less) to bring you 25 fabulous eco-friendly escapes. Yes, eco-friendly. But don’t worry, we’re not talking granola-bar breakfasts or rough natural wool blankets. Fourteen of our getaways are decidedly luxurious, serving gourmet food that, odds are, was grown in a nearby farm and sporting organic bed sheets that are as smooth and silky as baby skin. These wonderful escapes sincerely emphasize the need to reduce our destructive impact on the planet, and are doing what they can do to help the planet—from using geothermal heating and cooling to using biodegradable room keys. Mother Earth will be as at ease as you. And since we realize that not everybody can afford last year’s vacation with this year’s economy, we’ve included 11 getaways that are just as easy on your wallet as they are on the planet. You can be green and save some green, too.
So what are you waiting for? Throw in a few pairs of shorts, a bathing suit, and walking shoes—and go. Happy trails.