Summer Vacation Spots for Those Who Hate the Heat

The summer is heating up, but your vacation will be nothing but cool

80- and 90-degree temps aren't for everyone. While most folks can't wait for summer to sizzle, there are those who prefer feeling cool and comfortable year-round. If you are not into frying at the beach or your "bikini body" isn't something for public consumption, check out these summer vacation spots for those who can't stand the heat.

Seattle, Washington

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Head to the West Coast for mild weather even in the middle of summer. As per Smarter Travel, "Seattle's moderate temperature and cloudy days make it one of the best cool temperature vacation spots for those who want to avoid the sun (and heat)." What to do? There's plenty. Visitacity shares, "A view of Seattle from the sky is what you get at the Space Needle. From there, go and check the exhibits at Chihuly Garden and Glass and Olympic Sculpture Park. Get down to some shopping at Pike Place Market or take in Seattle's history at the Asian Art Museum. End the tour with a visit to Kubota Garden."

Manchester, VT

Manchesternorthcountryreflections.com

Relax and unwind in temperate Vermont, where the summer months are comfortable, and the attractions are plentiful. According to Smarter Travel, "The nearby Bromley and Stratton mountains translates into cool, shady days in Manchester, Vermont—perfect for alpine slides and Bromley fun zone zip lines in the summer. Plus, there are plenty of shady hikes at Equinox Mountain." If you are into the arts, "Southern Vermont is home to some of the state's most popular cultural attractions," notes Manchester Vermont's website. And "foodies" will enjoy the fresh farmer's markets too.

Cannon Beach, Oregon

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"With an average high of 53 degrees year round, the perpetually cool weather at Cannon Beach is perfect for those who prefer to wear jeans and long sleeves year round," according to Smarter Travel. As per Trip Savvy, "Anyone who loves wild nature will be thrilled with the great beach access, hiking trails, and rugged scenery. Cannon Beach's quality art galleries, high-end hotels, and superb restaurants will appeal to couples looking for a romantic getaway. Families will enjoy the sandy beaches, picnic spots, and fun shops." National Geographic Magazine named Cannon Beach one of The World's 100 Most Beautiful Places, so no matter your temperature preference, it's a spot worth seeing.

Victoria, B.C., Canada

Victoriavictoriarealestate.ca

Our neighbors up north welcome visitors seeking a summer getaway that's not too hot but full of fun. According to The Street, "There are a lot of great things to do in Victoria and on the ocean. Victoria is teeming with architecture dating back to the 1800s and strong floral scents emanating from Beacon Hill Park, Butchart Gardens, and other plots in the 'City of Gardens'. The inner harbor has sweeping views of the Olympic Mountains, but the best street scenes belong to the city's Chinatown, the second oldest in North America behind San Francisco's." Some additional things to do in Victoria? U.S News & World Report recommends, "Hike through Goldstream Provincial Park or enjoy a ferry ride to nearby Sooke (and keep your eyes peeled for whales). Just make sure you save an afternoon for the Cowichan Valley, where dozens of small vineyards offer tours and tastings."

Reykjavík, IcelandReykjavík

Reykjavíkbest-served.co.uk

If you are willing and able to take a long journey for a cooler vacation spot, consider Reykjavík, Iceland for an adventure you won't soon forget. While the sun is out 20 hours per day in July, the average temperature remains at 56 degrees. The Street suggests to, "stroll the city's harbor or pop into one of the coffee houses or bars along the city's Laugavegur main drag and (tour) Iceland's "Golden Circle" of waterfalls, geysers, glaciers, tectonic plate divides, volcanoes and the Thingvellier valley." And bring your appetite. According to Guide to Iceland, "Reykjavík has some truly outstanding local and international cuisine. You can find restaurants that specialize in seafood or grilled meats and besides Icelandic restaurants, there are also great Thai, Italian, Indian, Mexican, Japanese or even Ethiopian restaurants to be found within the city."

The summer is heating up, but your vacation will be nothing but cool.

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If you've googled one thing during this pandemic, it is definitely: "Thai food near me."

Thai food has remained one of the most delicious and sought after takeout gems; and in New York City, specifically, there are so many delicious options that it can be overwhelming. Often unlike Chinese food, Thai food offers fresher ingredients and versatile cuisine options. Whether you want some Pad Thai or Pad See Ew, or some coconut milk-infused curry or even just some soup, Thai food is good for any occasion. But with so many options, how do you know you're getting the freshest ingredients at the best price? Here are the best spots to order take-out from, and we even broke it up by borough for you.


Manhattan: Fish Cheeks

Fish Cheeks

Reviewed by The Times as "fresh, vivid and intense," Fish Cheeks offers solid takes on traditional Thai Cuisine. Their speciality remains seafood, so their Crab Friend Rice and Coconut Crab Curry are delicious highlights. Their Tum Yum is also to die for, made with fresh galanagal, lime leaves and lemongrass.

The version [of tum yum] here hums with fresh galangal, lime leaves and lemongrass. Shrimp and knobby mushrooms simmer in a broth that gets extra body from milk, a twist I've never seen before but one I approve of. It could be spicier, but the use of bird's-eye chiles is far from shy.

Manhattan: Lan Larb

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Arguably some of the best Pad Thai in the city, Lan Larb is focused mainly on the food of Thailand's northeast region. As a result, there is often a combo of meat and seafood involved in most dishes, such as the Lao Chicken Soup, which combines fresh chicken with pickled fish and a steamy brown broth. The menu will make your tastebuds whirl if you're one for experimentation, if not, their Pad Thai is iconic and filling enough on its own.

Brooklyn: Ugly Baby

Brooklyn has always been teeming with amazing Thai food joints, but Ugly Baby is the borough's most established success story. The Carrol Gardens sensation was preceded by two long gone Red Hook restaurants known for their authentic Northern Thai cuisine. With Ugly Baby, a name which comes from an ancient belief in Thailand that ugly children bring good fortune, chef Sirichai Sreparplarn had mastered his craft. The restaurant quickly gained glowing praise throughout Brooklyn and New York, and their take on Khao Soi Nuer and Kao Tod Nam Klook remain the stuff of legends.

Queens: Ayada

ayada thai

Ayada's cuisine is so good that it made a New York Times journalist cry at his table. Not out of emotion though, but out of spice. For those looking for a truly bold eating experience, this Queens Thai restaurant holds nothing back when crafting their drunken noodles or Pad Thai, but that spice is what makes it one of the best spots in the city.

Bronx: Ceetay

​While the Bronx isn't necessarily a buzzing Thai food borough, Ceetay's asian fusion cuisine is of the highest quality and will appeal to anyone desperately needing to nom on some noodles. Their sushi is amazing but their Pad Thai is packed with amazing flavor. Seasoned with onions, peppers, cabbage, carrots, mushrooms, peanuts, scallions and cilantro, this Pad Thai is packed with flavors and will slam your taste buds in the best possible way.

Travel

5 Countries to Visit This Fall

As the weather starts to chill out, we're just getting warmed up to travel

It's not winter yet!

So that means, we're all about that fall travel. It's a beautiful time of year to be outside in many countries, soaking up the colorful landscapes and fresh air. Here are our picks for the top places to visit this fall.

1. Germany

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Burg Eltz Castle is a magical step back into the Middle Ages that's been here for more than 850 years.

2. Switzerland

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The red leaves in Bern are absolutely striking.

3. Italy

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Nothing like the sheer beauty of the formidable Italian alps.

4. Peru

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Machu Picchu beckons visitors from near and far this fall.

5. Mexico

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It's not too cold to skip the beach!

Everyone has heard of the murder-hotel where dark shadows creep at the edge of your vision, or the abandoned house where the furniture moves each time you leave the room.

But sometimes the places set up to capture the fun and fright of the Halloween season for paying customers can be far more horrifying than any ghost stories. These "fake" haunted houses will leave you genuinely haunted.



Pennhurst Haunted Asylum

So spoooky!

Thomas James Caldwell

Pennhurst Asylum was in operation from 1908-1987 in the small town of Spring City, Pennsylvania. While we don't have all the records of the residents' experiences there, it doesn't take much imagination to realize that this building was home to true horrors. In many ways, 1908 wasn't that long ago, but in terms of mental health treatment—especially in small-town Pennsylvania—it was absolutely the dark ages. This was the time of lobotomies, straight jackets, and shock therapy. Whatever the jump scares and fake blood contribute to the fear you will feel walking through Pennhurst Asylum's aging, echoing halls, they can't come close to the deep, sinking feeling caused by the deep history of torment that has left its imprint on the very fabric of the place. Four spooky skulls out of five.

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Haunted Trap House

Like this, but less 90s

In Centreville, Maryand, in the year 1989, a group of visionaries were struck by a bolt of inspiration. What if—instead of zombies and werewolves and demons, and all the stuff out of children's nightmares—what if they filled their haunted house with the real-world nightmares that were actually infesting their city, killing their residents, and generally afflicting every corner of the entire nation. Thus, the Haunted Crack House was born. Since renamed the Haunted Trap House, it's ostensibly an educational experience on the dangers of drug use, it features simulations of overdoses, arrests, and shootings, as well as actual former convicts who are paid to draw on their real experiences to make your visit as terrifying as possible. This kind of fetishizing of human misery to capitalize on the Halloween season is as despicable as it is spooky. Four-and-a-half skulls out of five.

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McKamey Manor

He technically consented to this

A $20,000 reward? A 40-page waiver? These figures have garnered a lot of attention in recent headlines. Supposedly this is the "scariest" haunted house experience in the country. Who could resist the temptation of that once-in-a-lifetime experience, combined with the chance to win a big cash prize? Unfortunately, that is exactly what Russ McKay wants. There's a reason he's put so much work into the legal side of his operation. Rather than gassing up neutered chainsaws and chasing you around in a hockey mask, McKay has opted for producing actual, real, straight-up torture. You may not find the decorations and costumes that scary, but you will absolutely fear for your life when you consent to be water-boarded with fake blood. For being operated by a man who is clearly an unhinged psychopath, McKamey Manor ties the Haunted Traphouse, with four-and-a-half spooky skulls.

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Donald Vann's House of Horrors

Donald Vann murdered eleven people. Happens to the best of us, but it does present a problem. How do you dispose of all those bodies? Donald's solution was to open a haunted house and put his victims' decaying remains on display as props. Props to him. For eight months he prepared his fetid, malodorous horrors, before debuting on October 1st. Unfortunately, you won't be able to visit his house of horrors, because he has since landed in some legal trouble—board of health, maybe?—but I'm sure for the lucky few who were able to visit during its brief tenure, and witness Vann's "psychotic smirk," I'm sure the nightmares they're left with keep on spooking.

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Every Hell House in America

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In the same vein as the Haunted Traphouse, Hell Houses are church presentations intended as educational experiences that warn kids and teens away from the path of sin. Their methods for achieving this obviously vary, but according to The Washington Post, you can generally expect the following: "A devil ushers a gay man dying of AIDS into the fiery pit. A teenager who is raped at a drug-filled rave commits suicide and also goes to hell. A young girl hemorrhaging from an abortion repents at the last minute." Awful. Truly sickening. What kind of trauma are they inflicting on these children to prop up their outdated ideologies? Six spooky skulls. Where'd that extra skull come from?? Nobody knows…

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