ALL POSTS IN [Summer]

Photo Courtesy of the Maine Lobster Festival

You’re looking for something to do during your summer vacation, and you happen to be in the beautiful state of Maine. Well, as luck would have it, not only is the Pine Tree State absolutely stunning in the summer (and slightly warmer than in winter!), it also is home to one of the more storied festivals in the Lower 48. The theme? Lobster, obviously. Why? Because Maine plus summer equals lobster. It’s like eating a beignet on Bourbon Street or Key lime pie in the Florida Keys — it just feels right.
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Wet, hot American summer. That’s what’s expected of the Fourth of July weekend, but we’ll take 73 and sunny any day. And there are few places — our nation’s capital excluded — that are better suited for celebrating than Boston, where you can take in the brilliant Boston Pops fireworks display over the Charles River Esplanade. Whether you round out your weekend with requisite stops along the Freedom Trail or by witnessing Revolutionary War-era re-enactments at the annual Harborfest, here are some key pieces for a (not-so-subtly) patriotic weekend.

Photo by Bill Brett/The Boston Globe/Getty Images

Photo by Bill Brett/The Boston Globe/Getty Images

Clockwise from top left: A 2-pack of organic tanks for layering | Handsome navy duffle with a pocket for your shoes | Red boat shoes, because when else are you going to wear them? | Portable charger for when adding fireworks to your Snap story eats up your battery

Ah, Montauk, NY — its lighthouse, its Revenge-style manses and its gorgeous beaches beckon to city dwellers all summer long. Whether you go by plane, train or jitney, get thee to the Surf Lodge, where you can watch the sunset with a Montauk Storm in hand. But first, some essentials for your lobster-roll-filled weekend:

Photo by Oleg March Photography/The Surf Lodge

Clockwise from top left: Classic 1-piece that stays put but still looks cute | Colorful sandals for dockside fun | Gold studs that can go from the beach to drinks | Just-big-enough sturdy canvas overnight bag

It’s official — summer is finally here (well, this Sunday, to be exact)!  Now you have roughly 13 weeks or 95 days to take advantage of all the best things about summer, from food-fueled road trips to rooftop cocktails to lazy beach days. Don’t have a plan yet? Get inspired to create your own list with our 7 summer must-dos.

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Last week, Skift released a report that the majority of Americans will take little to no vacation this summer. We’d find that hard to swallow, but our friends at the US Travel Association echo the sentiment, stating that Americans failed to use 429 million vacation days in 2013. That’s 3.2 days of paid time off wasted per worker. We sympathize with the half of vacation-deprived people who say they simply can’t afford it this summer, but for the other half, we imagine the reasoning goes something like this:

Because you prefer to enjoy your coffee from the comfort of your cubicle.

Espresso in Mallorca, anyone? #LiveTravelChannel Photo by: @chubbychinesegirleats

A photo posted by @travelchannel on

And who craves more quality time with loved ones? Not you.

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Photo by Nan Zhong / Moment Open / Getty Images

Once in a blue moon (or orangey florescent sun?), the forces of nature and man come together for an amazingly beautiful and perplexing occurrence. We’re not talking about that time you walked into a rainstorm only to have it clear up as soon as you stepped outside — although that would be pretty cool. No, we’re talking about something along the lines of a full moon shining through your window so perfectly that it illuminates the whole room, or the northern lights lighting up the sky like the Fourth of July. READ MORE

#LiveTravelChannel

Here at Travel Channel, we like to say we live the brand — whether that’s flying to Stockholm, Sweden, for dinner, frequently volunteering in Haiti or making the most of a weekend in Palm Springs — and we know you do, too. That’s why we want to see your best travel photos in all of their (filtered or unfiltered) glory. Share your summer photos with us, and our favorites may be featured on TravelChannel.com, on our Instagram account or even on-air.

Here’s how to submit your photos:

1. Instagram your favorite summer travel photos. (Submit as many as you like!)

2. Use the hashtag #LiveTravelChannel in the description. (Note: See our Terms of Use here.)

3. We love emojis as much as you do, but be sure to tag your destination or mention it in the description. Please and thank you!

Get Inspired:
Tips for Shooting Summertime Photos
14 Enviable Spring Fling Photos
Your Best Photos From Last Summer

Join the Conversation #TC_Chat

We’re just over a week away from Memorial Day weekend — the unofficial beginning of summer. And there’s no better time than the present to start planning for a fun summer getaway. Join Travel Channel for a live tweet-up on Wednesday, May 20, at 2 p.m. ET. Travel + Leisure, Trip Advisor, Travel Channel host Bert Kreischer and our resident beach expert, Marianela Pereyra, are just a few of the panelists who will join in to offer their summer advice, tips and recommendations.

We’ll tweet about everything, including the best summer drives, underrated destinations, food, beachfront hotels and more. And we want you to chime in, too! Join the conversation by using the hashtag #TC_Chat, and get inspired with unique summer vacation ideas from a variety of travel experts.

PANELISTS
Travel Channel (@travelchannel)
Travel + Leisure (@TravlandLeisure)
Trip Advisor (@TripAdvisor)
Bert Kreischer, Travel Channel Host (@bertkreischer)
Marianela Pereyra, Beach Expert (@MarianelaTV)
Robb Alvey, Amusement-Park Expert (@themeparkreview)
Ryan Van Duzer, Outdoors & Adventure Expert (@duzer)
Lissa Poirot, Family Travel Expert (@lissapoirot)
Kelly Purkey, Solo Traveler/Foodie Expert (@kellypurkey)
Summer Hull, Family Travel Expert (@Mommy_Points)

Cedar Point in Sandusky, OH (Photo Courtesy of Cedar Point)

Before you plan your family trip to an amusement or water park, we thought you’d be interested to see which ones made our list of Travel’s Best Amusement and Water Parks 2015. We recruited 5 advisors — including Travel Channel TV host Bert Kreischer, theme-park reviewer Arthur Levine and family travel expert Erin Gifford — to help us choose the best family-friendly theme parks to visit this summer.

This particular Travel’s Best list is always hard to narrow down to 10, so we decided to share a few parks that didn’t make the cut but still deserve honorable mentions.
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We are a vacation-deprived nation. Americans are taking almost a full workweek less of vacation than they did just 15 years ago. It’s time to change. With temperatures rising, spring blooming, and summer around the corner, here’s why you need to plan your next vacation right now. READ MORE

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