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7 Places to Fly South This Winter

7 Places to Fly South This Winter


Top destinations for snowbirds looking to fly the coop


Shelly Cone, November 18, 2013
One of the obvious benefits of retirement is the freedom. A chance to do what you want when you want, where you want. The opportunity to hit the open road for as long as you desire. You get to celebrate the beauty of the Midwest in summer and when winter's cold touch hits, you're flying south.

Guess what? It's that time again, so get that monster motor home packed and hit the road, because that's how you roll, in a big ol' luxurious RV or maybe a small vintage airstream trailer. However you roll, get yourself rolling. First stop, Maps.com to grab one of our Lonely Planet USA travel guides. Then hit the road to that sunny destination.
Sedona, Arizona
 

Sedona, Arizona



For a change of pace you can escape the cold snows and head to Sedona for some beautiful scenery and an artistic aesthetic. Sedona is an artist Mecca with some of the best artists in the Southwest calling the area home.

If you love the artistic scenes of the great out of doors you can explore the 1.8 million acres of national forest called Coconino. Amateur photographer? You'll capture excellent shots of the surrounding red-rock structures called Coffeepot, Cathedral and Thunder Mountain. Sedona has a mood for everyone. Whether you are into the spiritual and metaphysical, arts, outdoors or you just want to indulge in world class luxury and dining, Sedona has it all.
McAllen, Texas
 

McAllen, Texas



Everything is bigger in Texas, the sky, the scenery, the beaches, and the state's love of snowbirds. Be sure to pack your dancing shoes if you are heading to McAllen, TX, the Square Dance Capital of the World. McAllen offers much for snowbirds: 45 RV parks, low cost of living and bountiful wildlife. Get started by picking up your copy of the Texas Atlas and Gazetteer Atlas.

McAllen is located in the Rio Grande Valley and is known as a birder's paradise. There are six wildlife refuges within miles of McAllen, Texas and eight annual wildlife watching festivals. But if you aren't a nature lover you can experience theater, live music or dance, visit historic sites and museums or even take in a game. Discover why Texas is a top snowbird destination by hitting the road with some Texas Scenic Road Trips.
Outer Banks, North Carolina
 

Outer Banks, North Carolina



Rich in history, North Carolina is a great destination for snowbirds wanting more cerebral activity. Visit the 162-foot tall Currituck Beach Light in Corolla Village. Built in 1875, the functional lighthouse still serves as a navigational aid. Check out the site of the world's first powered flight by the Wright Brothers at the Wright Brothers National Memorial, located in the heart of Kill Devil Hills.

Browse the Elizabethan Gardens that commemorate the efforts of the residents of the Sir Walter Raleigh colony to establish the first English settlement or visit the North Carolina Maritime Museum for some nautical history. See artifacts from Blackbeard's Queen Anne's Revenge and photographs, information, and artifacts about the states 300-year history of whaling. Discover all that North Carolina has to offer with the Rand McNally North Carolina Travel Map.
Hilton Head, South Carolina
 

Hilton Head, South Carolina



How about exploring South Carolina? Set up base in Hilton Head, South Carolina and start to explore. Hilton Head is home to more than 250 restaurants and more than 20 championship golf courses. More than 12 miles of beaches will provide you with plenty of time to sit on the sand and relax. If you have a little difficultly getting to the sand try one of Hilton Head's wheelchair accessible beaches. Alder Lane, Coligny Beach Park, Driessen Beach Park, Folly Field Beach Park and Islanders Beach Park are all equipped with mats that make them wheelchair accessible. Though its undeniable that Hilton Head has some of the best beaches in the state, making it a top snowbird destination in South Carolina there's also plenty else to do.

Take in some tennis at one of Hilton Head's top-ranked tennis facilities, fly a kite or sit back and take in some parasailing. Looking for other top snowbird destinations in South Carolina? Then pick up the Rand McNally South Carolina Travel Map and start see enjoying South Carolina as a snowbird.
Key West and Boca Raton, Florida
 

Key West and Boca Raton, Florida



Florida is that text book warm weather destination that makes it the quintessential top snowbird destination. Find a spot near the coast, take in some rays or cruise the coast line and find your favorite Florida Lighthouse. Just take a look at a Florida Highway Wall Map and you'll discover any number of top snowbird destinations in Florida. However, let us suggest a couple to get you started.

Key West, Florida with its palm trees and Caribbean atmosphere has long attracted snowbirds. The likes of Ernest Hemingway, Tennessee Williams and Harry Truman have spent sun-filled days here. Try your hand at saltwater fishing, diving or snorkeling around coral reefs.

In Boca Raton, a city known for its affluent economic demographic you can shop to your heart's delight. Talk a walk on its white sand beaches or take in a weekly game of chess with the chess club at Regents Park or stroll through the Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens.
Latin America
 

Latin America



Latin America has long been a favorite snowbird destination. Sun, sandy beaches and all the fish tacos you can eat await you in Manzanillo, on Mexico's Pacific coast. Just five hours south of Puerto Vallarta, Manzanillo is a port town known as the Swordfish Capital of the World. Snorkel, swim, fish or just sit back and relax.

Or winter at an old favorite: Mazatlán. Also on Mexico's Pacific coast, Mazatlán has been a favorite location for snowbirds for years. Nearly 10,000 expatriates live in this affordable resort destination, which offers world-class fishing, a beautiful boardwalk for long, leisurely walks, and one of the best Carnaval parades in Mexico Afterward, keep your winter Mexican getaway near to your heart by saving that memory with our Mexico Framed Wall Map.
Caribbean
 

Caribbean



Already stayed in Mexico and looking for something new? Found out why the Caribbean is a top snowbird destination. Because it's a U.S. territory Puerto Rico makes an excellent winter destination that is both exotic and accessible. No passport or visa needed. Visit some of the more well-traveled resorts and beaches that are popular with snowbirds or summon your spirit of adventure and visit some of the less-developed areas of this tropical island; inland forests, undeveloped coastline and even mountainous terrain.

Of course there are many beautiful Caribbean islands to explore. Not sure if Puerto Rico is the right place for your winter escape? Then check out our Central America, Cuba, Porto Rico, And The Islands Of The Caribbean Sea and explore the Caribbean before the winter winds start whipping at your door. This is your time, why do the same thing year after year. This year explore some destinations you've yet to experience.



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