Labors Day getaways

Sheryl Nance-Nash | 8/16/2018, 12:41 p.m.
It’s hard to say which is most true—it was the hottest or fastest summer.

It’s hard to say which is most true—it was the hottest or fastest summer. You might not have even made it to the beach or out of town. When the leaves start to change, you don’t want to have regrets that you didn’t have at least one summer fling. Vow to take a last-minute, long Labor Day weekend getaway.

If you’re looking for ideas, start right here.

San Ignacio, Belize

Go for big adventure. Belize’s rainforest awaits. Or if you like, take a 30-minute trail walk to turquoise waters. Get in your gear and gently float in a tube downstream to a cave where a guide will share Mayan history and cave features. For the ambitious, hike up to the Xunantunich and Cahal Pech Maya Temples. Horseback ride in the Mountain Ridge Forest Reserve and enjoy the spectacular falls. The San Ignacio Resort Hotel is the only property in the town with bragging rights for having jungle views. Labor Day weekend rates start at $180 a night. After a hard day of play, relax on your private balcony with a glass of bubbly and later go to the Running W Steakhouse & Restaurant for a rainforest cocktail, premium New York strip, appetizers and local singers and bands.

St. Pete/Clearwater, Fla.

You know St. Pete is beloved for its awesome beaches, but these days, it’s getting props, too, for its art and emerging food scene. There are more than 30 museums, such as The Dali Museum. For food, the buzz is about Ichicoro Ane and FarmTable Cucina by Michelin-star chef Michael Mina. During the holiday weekend, you can still take advantage of the Sunsational Summer deal at the Postcard Inn, with rates starting at $169.

Rockland, Maine

Get away from the sweltering heat and head to the Maine coast. Take a three-, four- or six-day cruise over Labor Day. The Maine Windjammer Association will take you to islands and small coastal towns on Penobscot Bay. You’ll be like a 5-year-old, excited to see whales, porpoises, eagles and more. Hike if you like and get ready to throw down at the lobster feast on a secluded island. The little towns will steal your heart. Prices vary by vessel, but on average the cost is $200 per person a day, including meals and excursions.

Hawley, Pa.

There’s something for the entire family at the all-inclusive Woodloch Resort. Between the Pocono Mountains and the lake, you’ll have a lot of nature in which to let your mind escape city woes. Make good use of trails for hiking and biking. You might want to polish your golf game or pamper yourself at the spa, too. The kids will love the bumper cars and boats, arts and crafts and more. For the hard to please teens, there’s tennis, water skiing, kayaking, stand-up paddle boarding, swimming and a zip line course. The fun doesn’t end with daylight. Every night there’s live music, a comedian or a Broadway-style theme show.

Cape Cod, Mass.

Explore the Cape Cod National Seashore. Cape Cod is full of history and Americana. Go whale watching, play miniature golf and if your legs are up for it, bike the Cape Cod Rail Trail. The Red Jacket Resorts are a great home away from home. Better still, if you stay at one of the resorts you have access to the other four properties and all their amenities. How cool is that? Take your pick: yoga on the beach, fishing or spend the day at Martha’s Vineyard or Nantucket. Rates start at $175 plus tax per night for the golf resort and $259 for the oceanfront resorts.

Puerto Escondido, Mexico

The last thing you want on your getaway is crowds. You can stay home for that. Puerto Escondido is a secret of sorts and big on surfing. You’ll love Palmarito Beach and the Sierra Madre del Sur Mountains, where you’ll find Vivo Resorts along the 12 miles of beach. Take the resort’s shuttle to mountain villages; renew your mind and body with yoga, dance classes and massages; or feed your eco-adventure spirit exploring nearby estuaries and jungles. You can have fun on a budget. Rates start at $95 a night.

Charleston, S.C.

There’s a good reason everybody seems to be talking about Charleston. It’s full of history and southern charm. Don’t even start talking about the food. It’s worth going just to eat. Be sure to take a bicycle tour of Old Charleston for a history lesson. The action is on King Street, with its shops and galleries. You know you can’t go down south without sampling some barbecue. Charleston has plenty. Favorites include Rodney Scott’s, Home Team and Lewis. If you’re feeling more stoosh, there’s Husk, with its James Beard Award-winning chef Sean Brock. The smoky bacon-infused cornbread and grill corn salad with South Carolina peaches is a winner in most folks’ books. You can find affordable accommodations, too. For example, for $174 a night, families can fit the whole crew in one room when booking a two-story townhouse suite at the historical Andrew Pinckney Inn. The Wild Dunes Resort is 25 percent off through

Labor Day Weekend.

Miami, Fla.

You know what to do in Miami. Hit the beach and the bars. If you’re looking for a long weekend of partying, book your flight to the Magic City. There are all kinds of specials to make sure you have a good time. The Agaveros Cantina at The Gates Hotel South Beach has 75-plus tequilas and mezcals and will be offering $3 grilled assorted tacos, $6 flavored Margaritas, four for $12 mixed or matched canned Mexican beer buckets and a choice of three tequila flights for $15. In the heart of Miami Beach, discover the Villa Azur Restaurant & Lounge with its open-aired courtyard. Sunday, Labor Day weekend, get 50 percent off wines and Monday, women get 50 percent off food and drink. You’ll need a place to crash. Check into The Confidante Miami Beach, a beach house-inspired resort. Labor Day weekend rates start at $229 a night, and the third night of your stay is free when you book three or more nights.