14 Summer Trips Our Editors Are Taking

Finger Lakes Region Watkins Glen Seneca Lake pier

Seneca Lake is a five-hour drive from New York City.


Stone Harbor, New Jersey

“Near the very end of the Garden State Parkway, Stone Harbor shares a seven-mile island along with the town of Avalon; there are a handful of bridges connecting it to the ‘mainland.’ Choosing this destination, which is a 2.5 hour drive from Hoboken, where I live, felt safe to me for a few reasons, the first being that I know Stone Harbor well: I know the layout of the town, how we can get around (by bike, or walking), and our likelihood of being able to keep distance from others while doing so. But most importantly, I know that it’s quiet and uncrowded, a family town that’s a far cry from other New Jersey beach destinations. (I also know that the usual line at the ice cream place, Springer’s, which is often 50 people deep, will likely have to change in some way this year.) I’ll be staying at a motel that I’ve spent a few nights at before, the Seaward Motel, which I trust will be up to par in terms of cleanliness. Plus, the beach is gorgeous, and there’s a Lee’s Hoagies outpost. What more could you want?”—Betsy Blumenthal, affiliate editor

Cape Ann, Massachusetts

“With the various travel restrictions throughout New England, I’ve been looking for places to unwind and experience nature that are close to home. Enter Cape Ann, the locals-only alternative to Cape Cod. Sure, its beaches aren’t as sweeping and maybe there’s a bit more suburban sprawl here, but it’s close enough to most of the Boston suburbs to make a day trip or even a half-day trip within reach. Despite the proximity to the city, it’s easy to find unspoiled stretches of coastline. Its constituent towns of Manchester-by-the-Sea, Gloucester, Essex, and Rockport each have walkable historic downtowns where you can find the quintessential New England pit stops, including clam shacks and adorable owner-operated inns should you opt to spend the night. Some of my favorite stops? Rockport’s Blume, for a single-origin cold brew, Tuck’s Candy Factory for some saltwater taffy, and Feather and Wedge for the fish stew and lobster rolls.”Todd Plummer, contributor

Fire Island New York

Fire Island is only a 20-30 minute ferry experience from New York City


Fire Island, New York

“My friends and I booked a big Airbnb on Fire Island back in February. Since the COVID-19 outbreak, Fire Island had bagged its share of headlines, with stories that ranged from the community pleading with Manhattanites not to come, to irresponsible partiers crowding beaches and bars—but our house is (luckily) in the quiet section of Ocean Beach, away from the party scenes of the Pines and Cherry Grove. As a friend and long-time Fire Island vacationer said to me when I asked him for advice: “There is actually nothing to do on Ocean Beach besides cook dinner at dwelling, and head to the seashore.” It sounded perfect. So we will be staying in the area, swapping late nights for evening spent grilling lobsters from Seaview Market back at the Airbnb. Days will include biking on the neighborhood’s coastal paths, instead of laying pool side at the newly redone Fire Island Beach House. We may do drinks one evening down at Maguire’s, where we’ve heard the views across Long Island are unmissable. But we’ll be finishing up before the masses elsewhere on island have even ordered their Uber for the night out.”—Erin Florio, journey information director

New Hope, Pennsylvania

“I’m spending a week in New Hope, Pennsylvania, where my family has a house. We’ve stayed indoors for the most part, but have also sussed out some of the socially distanced outdoors activities, like hiking in High Rocks State Park and climbing up Bowman’s Hill Tower, where advance reservations are required to take in the soaring view of Bucks County. For a dose of history, the area also has Washington Crossing State Park, which commemorates the area where Washington crossed the Delaware River in 1776. I’m discovering on this trip that there are a surprising number of great craft breweries in the area—I’ve picked up four-packs from the Great Barn Brewery, a farm microbrewery, at their downtown New Hope outpost, and from Neshaminy Creek Brewing at the Ferry Market. Neshaminy’s Tropical Shape of Haze to Come, a double IPA with coconut and passionfruit, is quickly becoming my favorite beer of the summer.”—Stephanie Wu, articles director

The South

Emerald Isle, North Carolina

“It’s an easy one for people who live in the mid-Atlantic, like my family. I love this town in the Crystal Coast because it’s so family-friendly and remains under-touristed. You’ll primarily see beachfront rental houses here, which make great places to hole up for a safe, socially distanced getaway—the beaches have great water for swimming and boogie boarding, and you’ll be hard-pressed to get within 50 yards of another beach-goer. Finally? It’s a straight shot down I-95 before you cut east via the Carolina Highway, making it a drive-able destination without too much traffic.”—Corina Quinn, metropolis guides director



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