Hot Spots

Camping Hot Spots

Find great places to camp and gain insights into activities to make the most of the top camping hot spots. Get the scoop on where to go next. Discover destinations that offer unique opportunities for you to experience the great outdoors through recreation activities, wildlife viewing, and unforgettable vistas.

Camping and RVing in Red Rock Country

Red Rock Country

Red Rock Country is the stunningly beautiful area surrounding Sedona, Arizona. Known for the colorful red rock that give the area its name. The country is filled with beautiful red rock vistas, buttes, pinnacles, mesas and canyons. Visitors to Red Rock Country will find many amazing places to explore, activities to enjoy and more.

Visitors to Red Rock Country can explore both Sedona and the Coconino National Forest. Together, these two destinations will provide visitors with more things to do and see than they could imagine. To get the trip started, travelers should stop at one of the three visitor centers in the region. These visitor centers are an amazing source of comprehensive information about the region. The three visitor centers are the Gateway Visitor Centers, including the South Gateway Visitor Center in southern Sedona, the Uptown Gateway Visitor Center in the Sedona-Oak Creek Canyon Chamber of Commerce, and the North Gateway Visitor Center at the Oak Creek Vista Overlook located at the north end of Oak Creek Canyon.

The Red Rock County has a wide variety of recreational activities for visitor and residents to enjoy. This area is an excellent destination to enjoy hiking, horseback riding, scenic drives, fishing in Oak Creek, backpacking and more. There are over 200 miles of trail to be enjoyed. For shorter trips there are urban trails. Visitors looking for longer excursions can try the remote backcountry trails, which cater to the more adventurous hikers and backpackers.

Visitors can also explore the three federal wilderness areas, which cover over 124,000 acres of the area. These wilderness areas include Red Rock-Secret Mountain Wilderness Area, Sycamore Canyon Wilderness Area, and Munds Mountain Wilderness Area. Within these wilderness areas visitors can find cliffs, pinnacles, desert and pinon-juniper forests.

Red Rock Country also has some beautiful scenic drives. All of the scenic drives in the region provide amazing opportunities to view the stunning beauty of the region. The drives from Highway 89A from Flagstaff to Oak Creek Canyon, and from Cottonwood to Sedona are both great ways to see the country. For a little more adventurous drive, the Schnebly Hill Road into Sedona from the east is a fun winding narrow road that allows visitors to truly enjoy the amazing scenery of the region.

Visitors to Red Rock Country can also explore Oak Creek, one of the beautiful features of the region. The creek can be explored on foot. Visitors can also enjoy fishing in the region. Oak Creek is a vital part of the region's ecosystem, and visitors should be careful not to disturb or contaminate the water while exploring the area.

Red Rock Country has been inhabited by many different people and cultures for many generations. Visitors to the region will enjoy the recreation, the culture, the history and much more that the region offers. There is wilderness, incomparable beauty, and lots of recreation to enjoy.

The Grand Canyon

The Grand Canyon

The Grand Canyon is one of the most spectacular natural wonders in the world. No one should miss the chance to see and explore its amazing geological and archaeological features. Each visitor can create a different experience, unique to what they enjoy most. The Grand Canyon has lodges, camping, tours, hiking, donkey rides, wildlife viewing, and much more.

Grand Canyon National Park is one of the gems of our national park system. At its widest, this Grand Canyon is 18 miles wide and, at its deepest, a mile deep. This stunning landscape was forged by the powerful Colorado River.  Today, the Grand Canyon has 277 miles of river winding through it.

Most visitors to the Grand Canyon stop at the South Rim, which is open all year and has more lodging and visitor options. The South Rim has plenty of amazing sights and adventure options for all visitors. For visitors looking for a more rural and remote experience, a visit to the North Rim is a fabulous option. The North Rim is closed during the winter months due to the amount of snow it receives.

If you have time for a longer vacation, a visit to both the North and South Rims is ideal.  Keep in mind, though, that the trip between the two rims is over two hundred miles by car.

Whenever you visit, bear in mind that the Canyon is a very popular destination.  Advanced planning is very important, especially if you want to stay in the lodges or take one of the popular tours.

For travelers short on time, perhaps the easiest way to enjoy the amazing vistas is to take a car trip along the Canyon. You can take the Desert View Drive, which travels east along the Canyon for 26 miles between the Grand Canyon Village and the park’s east entrance. Along this drive, be sure to stop at the Desert View Watchtower, which is a replica of an Indian tower. This tower is the highest point along the South Rim and provides some of the most awe-inspiring vistas you will ever see.

At the Grand Canyon Village, you will find lodging, dining, and much more. You can learn about the area’s ecology and history at the Verkamp's Visitor Center, a great spot to get souvenirs and gifts for everyone you couldn't take with you on your trip. Canyon View Plaza is the South Rim's Visitor Center. Another great spot to stop is the Yavapai Observation Station. These different points are accessible from the free shuttle buses that travel around the South Rim. If you are looking for a scenic bus tour, the Hermits Rest Route is a great option.

For even more adventure, make advanced reservations for a mule trip. These guided trips by mule are a great option for visitors wanting to see more of the Canyon; however, these trips are extremely popular, so you will want to make reservations well in advance.  You can sign up for North or South Rim mule trips and there are both short and long options.

The Grand Canyon is also a great place to go backpacking and hiking. There are many trails throughout the Canyon, both on the North and South Rims, and the trails range in difficulty and length. You can take a short day hike or plan a longer overnight backpacking trip. It is important to come well prepared for the experience if you decide to hike the Grand Canyon -- the temperatures vary greatly and many of the hikes go into the extreme back-country. Know what you are capable before you embark on a Grand Canyon hike.

Of course, the ultimate Grand Canyon experience is a river trip. You can choose between a day trip or trips that last up to 25 days. However, these trips are so popular that there is a lottery system for the noncommercial river trips. Be sure to research this lottery system and plan your trip well in advance.

The Grand Canyon has plenty of options for adventure outside of the national park, too. If you have time, be sure to visit is the glass-bottomed Skywalk. This Skywalk is a U shaped structure that stretches out over the Canyon, offering breathtaking views.

Jackson Hole, Wyoming

Jackson Hole, Wyoming

Jackson Hole, Wyoming is a fabulous town to serve as a base location for a visit to the Grand Teton National Park and Yellowstone National Park. Its proximity to these parks helps the town attract millions of visitors each year. Jackson Hole is also near to world-class ski resorts. A vacation in Jackson Hole will offer you opportunities to enjoy recreation, dining and even culture and fine art.

Art and recreation lovers will have a fantastic time in the wonderful town of Jackson Hole. The National Museum of Wildlife Art is an attraction you won't want to miss. This amazing museum features American artists and their depictions of the area's wildlife.

Summer in Jackson Hole is unbeatable. You can enjoy fishing, boating, hiking, horseback riding, rafting, hot air balloon rides and even rodeos. The rafting opportunities in the area are particularly superb, especially on the stunning Snake River. From Jackson Hole you can choose from a variety of rafting guides that will help you decide the grade of rafting trip that's right for you.  However you choose to enjoy the river, you are sure to get a great view of the stunning Grand Tetons and the Snake River.

If you visit during the winter, you can choose from three world-class ski resorts: Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, the Grand Targhee Resort and the Snow King Resort. All of these resorts have amazing skiing and snowboarding. Of course there are other winter activities for those who want to expand their winter recreation activities. You can enjoy ice-skating, dog sledding, cross-country skiing, and even snowshoeing.

Find campgrounds near Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

Vancouver, Canada

Vancouver, Canada

Vancouver has many desirable qualities for a vacation spot. The weather is mild, making it a great year-round destination. The city is full of parks and outdoor destinations, so for the traveler seeking both a metropolitan experience and a beautiful outdoor experience, it's the perfect destination. In addition, Vancouver is a wonderfully diverse city and visitors to the city will enjoy an internationally flavored vacation.

There are many wonderful things to do in the city. Food, art, and shopping lovers will find lots of fun in Vancouver. The Vancouver Art Gallery has an amazing collection of art, including a great deal of British Columbian Art. If you can visit at any time through the beginning of May, 2010, you can visit the Leonardo Da Vinci exhibit: The Mechanics of Man. Vancouver also has a thriving performing arts community.

For the shoppers in your group, Vancouver will hold many delights. The Metropolis at Metrotown is a great shopping destination. This is the largest mall in British Columbia, and it has 450 stores. If you are looking for a more diverse shopping experience, the Punjabi Market is a great stop. At this market you will find a wide range of fabric and jewelry shops.

One of the best experiences you will in Vancouver is dining. In Vancouver you can enjoy plenty of Pacific Northwest seafood. If you like Japanese cuisine, Vancouver is the place to go. The international flavor of this city is demonstrated in its wide range of dining options, with cuisine of all nationalities as well as fusion and other types of food.

Vancouver has over 200 parks and gardens. These parks and gardens are some of the most amazing in the Pacific Northwest. If you are looking for some excitement while admiring the natural beauty, try a visit to the Capilano Suspension Bridge. This amazing bridge is located a short 10 minutes from downtown Vancouver. You can have an adventure in the treetops while enjoying the swaying of the bridge.

Nearby Grouse Mountain is a great getaway for winter visitors. At this beautiful mountain you can enjoy a variety of winter sports, including snowshoeing and sleigh rides. Visitors can also enjoy the views from the chairlift and the wildlife refuge.

One of the most popular destinations in Vancouver is the Bloedel Floral Conservatory and Queen Elizabeth Park. The Bloedel Floral Conservatory is a huge dome, one of the largest greenhouse domes in the world, filled with exotic plants and birds. The park also has an amazing Arboretum with a wide range of stunning trees.

Stanley Park is probably Vancouver's most popular destination. This park is a truly magnificent destination.  It has everything to entertain visitors on its 1000 acres. Stanley Park has a visitor center, beaches, restaurants, carriage rides, forests, a children's farmyard, and even an aquarium. You could spend multiple days exploring all of the attractions within the Park, set right on the edge of downtown Vancouver.

Discover this great Vancouver campground:

Whistler RV Park

San Francisco's Chinese New Year

San Francisco's Chinese New Year

If you have always wanted to take a trip to San Francisco, consider visiting the city during the Chinese New Year. The city's Chinese New Year festivities are a great addition to the year-round sites and activities that delight visitors to the city. San Francisco has one of the absolutely best and largest Chinese New Year celebrations outside of China.

The Chinese New Year falls on February 14 in 2010, so if you're able to travel to the city then, you're in for not only a great New Years festival, but you can enjoy a romantic Valentine's Day vacation as well. As the clock strikes twelve on February 13th, the year of the ox will come to an end and it will usher in the year of the tiger.  Throughout the month of February, visitors to San Francisco can enjoy some of the most unique and interesting festivities the city has to offer.

This year's celebrations start on February 6 with the Southwest Airlines Mini-Procession and Ribbon Cutting. The Mini-Procession features lion dancers, stilt walkers and more. At the end of the processions route is the Chinese New Year Flower Fair which lasts for the weekend. The Ribbon Cutting at the end of the procession marks the official start of the New Years festivities.

At the Flower Fair, visitors can purchase a variety of symbolic flowering plants such as oranges and tangerines. The event also features auspicious foods for sale and live Traditional Chinese entertainment, including lion dancing, on stage both days of the fair.

After the Mini-Procession and the Flower Fair come a few more fun and interesting New Years events. On February 20th visitors can buy tickets to the Miss Chinatown U.S.A. Pageant, which brings together young women from all over the United States to compete for scholarships and become the goodwill ambassador for the Chinese Community for the year. The Harrah's Miss Chinatown U.S.A. Coronation Ball is held on February 26th, featuring the crowning of the 2010 Miss Chinatown U.S.A and her court. If you are looking for exercise instead of evening events, register for the Chinese Chamber of Commerce/Chinatown Run, held on February 21. Runners can register through the Chinatown YMCA for the 10K/5K Run/Walk, and there are even gifts and random prizes for participants.

One great event that visitors to San Francisco won't want to miss is the Chinese New Year Community Street Fair.  There will be music and dance as well as a variety of modern to ancient Chinese traditions and art.

All of these events lead to the grand finale of the San Francisco Chinese New Years Celebration: the Southwest Airlines Chinese New Year Parade. The Chinese New Year Parade in San Francisco has a very long history spanning all the way back to the 1800s. It is considered to be one of the worlds best parades, and it is even more spectacular since it is an illuminated night parade. Today the parade has dancers, floats, acrobats, children and of course, the magnificent Golden Dragon, which is carried by over 100 people.

Beyond the Chinese New Year celebration, San Francisco has plenty to offer its visitors. The Golden Gate Bridge is one of the most iconic images of California and the west. The cable cars are also worth a ride, climbing up the steep Nob Hill and back down to Fisherman's Wharf.

Fisherman's Wharf is a great place to spend some time during a visit to San Francisco. The wharf is near the Aquarium of the Bay and the marketplace and restaurants of Pier 39. From Fisherman's Wharf, visitors to the city can also catch cruises to Alcatraz Island. Of course, what trip to San Francisco would be complete without the harrowing drive down the amazingly crooked Lombard Street?

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