Your next hot getaway awaits.
by Reem Khaleel Feb 21, 2023
Forget about getting fit for vacation when you can get fit during vacation! What was coined “fitcation” by trend platform Trend Hunter, is a health-focused vacation where some or even all of your getaway plans revolve around fun physical activities. Over the years, they’ve gained enough popularity that entire companies, like Body Synergy FitCation, were founded to offer people travel destinations with active itineraries.
One of the goals of a fitcation is to avoid the feeling of overindulgence some might experience when they temporarily leave behind their health and fitness goals to enjoy time off. Subsequently, this can trigger feelings of guilt in some individuals once they return home from their trip. By incorporating activities that are both enjoyable and fitness-focused, travelers can instead bask in guilt-free trips that focus on the mind and body.
To discover the best fitcation destinations, especially during the frigid winter months, MyProtein analyzed 100 United States cities, and narrowed down their top choices by weather (average temperature and precipitation), the number of outdoor activities available (hiking, biking, and kayaking), and relaxation opportunities (spas, meditations, and wineries). These hot spots even zero in on thrilling winter activities (including skiing and snowboarding), breathtaking views (we’re talking frozen waterfalls and ponds), hiking trails of varying intensities, and much more.
Visit one of these U.S. cities for your next fitcation.
1. Albany, New York
As the city with the most outdoor activities to pursue, from kayaking through the Hudson River to hiking one of its 15 trails with breathtaking sceneries, MyProtein rates Albany, New York as its top travel destination for a fitcation. One of the best hiking spots during this time of year is the Pine Hollow Arboretum (open 365 days a year). With its snow-covered trails and a dozen frozen ponds, it is exceptionally beautiful to visit in the winter. Even if walking in the great outdoors isn’t your thing, you can still enjoy Albany’s snowy days. The Albany Pine Bush Preserve has huge rolling sand dunes that create slopes perfect for cross-country skiing. If you’re in need of an activity to escape from the cold, you can always challenge a friend to hit a bullseye indoors at Far Shot Axe Throwing.
2. Greenville, South Carolina
Set among the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains is Greenville, South Carolina, home to 29 hiking trails. Table Rock State Park offers six different paths, ranging in intensity from easy to strenuous. Each trek ends in incredible views of streams and waterfalls and even the chance to stumble across local wildlife along the way, including black bears, white-tailed deer, raccoons, gray foxes, bobcats, and wild turkeys. Need something more low-key? Snow tubing at one of the city’s many locations is a relaxing way to sneak in some cardio, fun, and rest at the same time.
3. Poughkeepsie, New York
History buffs will love a getaway to Poughkeepsie, New York for the chance to bike on the WRS Dutchess Rail Trail, where you will travel through an abandoned railway station (once part of the Maybrook Line, it first opened and operated in 1892) and pass by serene wooded areas and lively local parks. This path will even lead you across the historic railroad bridge above the Hudson River (first opened in 1889 and re-built in 2009) for a breathtaking view of the surrounding snow-covered terrain. Seeking something more daring? Sign up for the town’s two-week archery lessons for the chance to become the next Katniss Everdeen or Green Arrow. Classes are offered at varying intensity levels (from beginner to advanced) and can teach you how to properly stand, perfect your posture and archery equipment, and acutely aim an arrow at your target.
4. Daytona Beach, Florida
There’s nothing like a warm weather destination in the middle of winter to enjoy water-based activities like kayaking, canoeing, and paddleboarding. One of Daytona, Florida’s most exciting activities to book is The Dolphin and Manatee Adventure Tour of Daytona Beach, a stand-up paddleboard tour with local wildlife sightings of dolphins, conch, bald eagles, and the endangered West Indian manatee. If paddleboarding isn’t your thing, kayaks (fit for one to three people, depending on the size) are also available on the tour. Not into the adventure of outdoor watersports? Head to one of Daytona Beach’s 23 gyms to get in a workout before hitting the sand for beach volleyball.
5. Scranton, Pennsylvania
Get your adrenaline pumping by riding all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) in Scranton, Pennsylvania, with 10 ATV rental and tour places to choose from. The Lost Trail ATV Adventures teaches you the basics of riding an ATV, then offers a guided tour to explore the woods and mountainside. Your heart-rate will climb as you travel through rugged trails with scenic ridges, rock crawls, mud runs, and creek crossings, making this ATV tour anything but a trip down an even terrain. If you prefer a physical activity on the calmer side, hit the green at The Country Club of Scranton for a 27-hole round of golf. This historic course was first founded in 1896 (although it has since undergone many renovations) and remains challenging with fantastic views of rolling hills and plenty of greenery.