Healthy Holiday Getaway Ideas

Festive trip ideas to kick-start your healthful resolutions


Think ahead to December 29th. The last week of celebrations has left your jeans tight, your liver pickled, your exercise schedule in a slump, and your energy running on empty. Time to recharge!

Start 2012 with a bang. Plan in advance to avoid the post-holiday blues and get a head start on your New Year’s resolutions with one-night, weekend, or week-long wellness-inspired jaunts designed to renew and refocus your mind, body, and spirit.

To get your creative juices flowing, we’ve assembled six healthy trip styles with destinations and suggested starting points for everyone from the adventurer to the spa enthusiast. Whether your budget is Lean Cuisine or French Laundry, there’s something for every palate: surf in Nicaragua, take a digital fast in Australia, ski between the French and Swiss Alps, satisfy your inner gourmand with a 100-mile diet getaway, assist in a development and relief project, or book a spa retreat!

Tip: Holiday travel can be pricey due to high-season surcharges, but don’t rule out traveling between December 31st and January 14th. Resorts usually experience a post-holiday exodus after New Year’s Eve and before high season, making this two-week period the ideal time to practice the art of escape.

Surf’s Up

Dude! Learn to surf or dial your skills catching a wave at surf camp. Not just for kids, surf camps let you learn and practice throughout the week, meaning you’ll actually improve and remember your

hang ten next time you hit the waves. Think of it as an intense workout involving swimming, crunches, and core strengthening — and the best part is, it’s all part of the fun.

Start here: Safari Surf School in Costa Rica for Howler monkey alarm clocks, fresh caught shellfish, salsa dancing, and sweet cocktails. Or Monty’s Beach Lodge in Nicaragua for strong Nicaraguan coffee, tropical fruits from local markets, and deep-sea fishing trips. (Photo courtesy of Monty's Beach Lodge)


And from sand to snow, your winter wonderland awaits. When selecting a cool holiday retreat, go with a destination that offers varied outdoor exercise options for the whole family. Mountain resorts are ideal for this purpose, as they don’t just serve up mogul-infested double black diamond dashes, but downhill ski runs for all levels, plus cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and skating. Half-sweet, no-whip, skim milk hot chocolate anyone?

Start here: Whistler, Canada, for hearty food with stunning views, ski-in slopeside bars, and classic Whistler après traditions like fireside cocktails and live music. Or, Portes du Soleil (a collection of 12 connected ski resorts in the French and Swiss Alps), for breakfast in France and lunch in Switzerland. Now that’s something to write home about!