Summer may seem like the ideal time to head off on vacation, but there’s something equally as nice as cozying up for a weekend in chilly weather, too. This fall and winter, take advantage of the temperatures by heading off for a weekend getaway. All you have to do is find the perfect destination and vacation rental to give your trip that warmth you seek.
Here are five tips to make that process a whole lot easier.
Choose the Perfect Destination
The first step in planning the perfect vacation? Deciding exactly where you’ll go. Choosing the ideal destination is a bit different in cooler temperatures, of course: renting a beach house might not be a foolproof choice if you can’t actually swim, sunbathe and build sandcastles.
That’s why you have to thoughtfully choose the location for your weekend trip. There are some tried-and-true romantic destinations, if that’s the vibe you’re going for. Of course, other cozy backdrops include mountains — especially during leaves’ color-changing season — and quaint coastal towns where you sightsee, relax and eat great food regardless of whether you can go to the beach or not.
Think Outside of the Box
Once you’ve decided where you want to go, you could begin your search for traditional hotel… but you’re looking for something a little bit more homey and cozy. A home or apartment rental will give you those vibes — and you’re sure to have plenty of options, even in places where there are only one or two hotels.
Think outside of the box as you prepare to search for properties. The best thing to do is consider the landscape and see if you can think of a type of property that would make the experience even more unique and special. For example, a weekend getaway to the mountains is already a peaceful getaway, but spending your nights in a log cabin will make the experience even more authentic. Don’t worry, either: you can find a middle ground in log cabins that are outfitted with all of the modern amenities you want without sacrificing the authenticity of your trip.
If you’re having a hard time dreaming up a fairytale accommodation, let a property-finding website do the work. Sites like ArrangeYourVacation connect you with local property owners who rent out authentic homes, apartments and even dreamier places — Tree houses! Castles! Ranches! — to hang your hats.
Make Sure the Property Has Everything You Need
We mentioned how today’s log cabins are much more modern than the ones in your mind. But that doesn’t mean every single rental will give you all of the comforts of home that you want — or even the ones you expect.
That’s why it’s vital to read and re-read the specs of every rental property you consider before you send in your deposit. Once you arrive and find, for example, there’s no Wi-Fi, there’s not much you can do if you simply failed to check if there would be Internet access. If you foresee yourself wanting to cook, wash clothes, park your car, etc., make sure you find a property with the features you need.
Always double-check the bedding available in the place your renting, too. You probably narrowed down your vacation rentals search to include the number of rooms or beds you needed; however, you might find once you arrive that some beds include couch beds, rollaway cots or provided inflatable beds, which some guess might not want to sleep on. Expand on the bedding detail so you’re fully aware of what to expect when you arrive.
Search For Nearby Activities
Once you’ve found the property you think is perfect, see what there is to do nearby. Your best bet is to look it up on Google Maps, zoom in and look around. You’ll be able to spot restaurants, shops and even entertainment venues in close proximity.
If you come to find the place you want is in the middle of nowhere, don’t panic. Instead, you can rent a car or bring your own so you can access all of the nearby activities. Or, you can resign yourself to an unplugged weekend, which has been shown to have a wealth of benefits including strengthened relationship ties and boosted productivity.
Plan For At-Home Fun, Too
Finally, if you want a completely cozy experience, you can plan to hole up in your rental and entertain yourself all weekend long. The house may have some fun amenities, like a fireplace or extra-large television, but you can bring some of your own entertainment, too. Things like board games, puzzles and decks of cards are easy to toss into your car and will lead to hours of fun once you and your loved ones start playing.
With these tips in mind, you’re well on your way to the weekend getaway you dream of. So, start your research, choose the perfect spot and get going: your cozy destination awaits.
Kacey is a lifestyle blogger for The Drifter Collective, an eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture and the world around us. Kacey graduated with a degree in Communications while working for a lifestyle magazine. She has been able to fully embrace herself with the knowledge of nature, the power of exploring other locations and cultures, all while portraying her love for the world around her through her visually pleasing, culturally embracing and inspiring posts.