While organized tours and resort vacations have their place in our vacation book, getting into the heart of a new location is one of the most exciting parts of traveling. But if you don’t know anyone in a foreign place, how do you do it? We’ve rounded up a few of our favorite ways to live like a local no matter how long you’re visiting.
Rent an apartment
Instead of staying in an expensive hotel in a touristy location, try renting an apartment in an up-and-coming neighborhood to get a more local feel. From taking a morning stroll for coffee to checking out area shopping and restaurant options, you’ll get a day-to-day feel for the location that’s tough to recreate at a hotel.
No need to make reservations for the hottest new restaurant when you can eat with new friends instead. EatWith connects food lovers with hosts, people in a particular area who enjoy cooking and welcoming travelers and locals alike into their homes for a home-cooked meal. Explore more than 150 cities with each host sharing their own specialty.
Skip the big city tour bus and try a hyper-local version. Sites like Vayable, and WithLocals let you find tours led by locals and search by experiences. From biking tours to club night excursions, you’ll come away with a unique look into your adopted home. Withlocals tours are private and each activity is 100 percent customizable.
The website, known for matching local hosts with travelers seeking accommodation, is also a convenient way to connect and hang out with someone. You can search for a host willing to grab a coffee or join in on events happening in the Couchsurfing community no matter where you’re sleeping at night.
Winter in Boston is a magical experience; from a stroll across the frosted Public Gardens to holiday shopping on Newbury Street, the festive season comes alive in Boston.
From the windy tip of Malin Head in County Donegal to the colorful harbor town of Kinsale in County Cork, Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way amazes at every turn. Feel the blast of fresh sea air with a lighthouse walk. Get up close to history, grab a fireside seat at a traditional music session, experience the world-famous Irish hospitality and explore some of Ireland's most exhilarating coastal scenery. It is a place that inspired dreamers and travelers, poets and painters with a landscape filled with stone walls, thatched cottages, deserted beaches and breathtaking views. Charming towns and villages, 1,500 miles of soaring cliffs, incredible landscapes and unique experiences await.
A perfect New England holiday season awaits in Central Massachusetts. West of Boston, the state offers plenty of small-town holiday charm and events.
Spain’s capital brims with historical sites, tapas and neighborhoods to explore. Home to world-class art museums, breathtaking architecture and a spectacular dining scene, Madrid is a feast for all senses. If you only have two days to explore the city, don’t worry. We spoke with Four Seasons Hotel Madrid’s concierge team to give you the best insight for your short trip to Madrid.
Whether it's the people, the craic (fun) or the coasts, travelers always find something to love about the island of Ireland. What fills your heart?
For travelers looking for a dessert escape this holiday season, Oasis at Death Valley awaits. Ancient waters bubble up from the ground to support an entire ecosystem at Oasis at Death Valley, a secluded resort tucked into the dramatic desert setting off Death Valley National Park.