Now that the April showers have finally (we hope!) given way to May flowers, New Yorkers who procrastinated on making plans for Memorial Day Weekend are suddenly starting to experience FOMO kicked into overdrive as the leaves get greener and the air gets warmer. With only a few weeks to go before the unofficial kickoff of summer, the clock is ticking to make the plans that will thaw your cold heart following a long, dark winter. Of course, sometimes no plans are the best plans of all. Below, we’ve outlined some of our favorite options for a great MDW.
Head for the Beach (or The Shore, if you’re from Jersey)
Sure, the great, wide Atlantic waters will still be just a bit too chilly to take a good dip, but nothing screams SUMMER more than kicking back on the sand. Luckily, NYC is in close range of dozens of beaches from the Jersey Shore to the Hamptons, offering an almost overwhelming variety of activities for every personality.
Looking to let loose and drop it like it’s hot? Check out Montauk, Seaside Heights or Belmar. Feeling stressed and looking for a peaceful beachside getaway? Long Beach Island might just be the place for you. No matter what kind of beach calls to you, you’ll find it nearby.
Head for the Hills
Sometimes a little trip to the country is all we need to set our troubled minds at ease, and with the Poconos, Catskills, Adirondacks and Berkshires just a few hours away, a relaxing mountain retreat – complete with excellent hiking trails – is well within reach.
Check out Mayfest in the Poconos, or hit up Lake Wallenpaupack for some boating, fishing, camping and grilling. The Hudson Valley is a great destination any time of year, and the Catskills offer no shortage of fun activities, including lakes, boating and a number of wineries and breweries. If a vineyard is up your alley this year, the Shawangunk Wine Trail wineries might be just what the doctor ordered.
If you’re up for a trip to the Adirondacks, Lake George is a favorite of vacationers throughout the region, and it offers Memorial Day parades and a special service saluting the armed forces at Fort Ticonderoga.
Head Nowhere: Dream Staycation
Let’s face it: Most of us have never seen a quiet New York City, but if you stick around for MDW, you might just get to experience a rare moment of peace in this vast concrete jungle. Not to mention, staying gives you the golden opportunity to skip out on the intense traffic heading every which way out of the city. Being Memorial Day, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to get out and have fun at any of the various BBQs, sample sales and parties happening across the city, and of course honor the troops (and rub elbows with sailors in town for Fleet Week) at a number of parades throughout the boroughs.
No matter what you do for Memorial Day, be sure to take a moment and thank our troops – past, present and future – who defend our freedom every day.