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Summer might be coming to an end, but Californians are excited because September equals wine, and lots of it. September is California Wine Month, celebrating wineries, vineyards, and growers of all types of vino.

California Wine Month was created to recognize how much the state of California benefits from the wine industry in terms of economy and lifestyle. California produces 90% of the wine in the United States and is the fourth-largest wine producer in the entire world.

There is plenty to do all month, according to VisitCalifornia.com:

“During this statewide celebration of the Golden State’s rich wine history, you can participate in events from picking and crushing grapes to VIP tours to tastings, concerts, and so much more.”

According to our Travel Insights, the two most popular locations to visit in the California Wine Country are both on the North Coast: Napa, with 26.4% of all travelers heading that way, and Sonoma, with 24.4%. Most travelers go for a romantic weekend getaway, with the most common party size being two and the most common reservation requests made for just one or two days.

Sunset Magazine describes the most-visited location, Napa Valley, as

“the best wine region in the New World. Period. Back when our neighbors to the west were taking the prune market by storm, Napa was uncorking our national appetite for fermented grape juice, giving it a seat at the table alongside the great wines of Europe.“

There are so many different types of California wine to choose from, including: Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Merlot, Pinot noir, Sauvignon blanc, Syrah, and Zinfandel. Over 700 miles of winegrowing areas include more than 100 American Viticultural Regions full of different types of wine and people.

In Bon Appetit Magazine, renowned Napa chef, vintner, and TV host Michael Chiarello explains how to choose which winery to go to:

“Wine tasting shouldn’t be a crapshoot where you’re just stopping at every shop that you see. Prioritize the wineries you want to hit on your journey. Even if you’re a neophyte, if you’re going to wine tasting, there’s a good chance you’ve had wine before—start by researching a varietal you like, agnostic of brand. Then, when you get to the tasting room, let your preferences be known (‘Hi! I’m here for the pinot noir!’), and let the staff guide you from there.”

Wine is not just something you drink with dinner: it has a history, a culture, and it brings people together. So what are you waiting for? Grab that special someone and take a weekend adventure to the California Wine Region.

If you are worried about not knowing how to properly taste the wine, check out Wine Enthusiast Magazine’s article on How to Taste Wine.

Happy Travels!

Traveling as a family, particularly with young children, might seem to be a stress-inducing experience, but not according to the experts. In a recent survey, FlipKey raised this topic among dozens of seasoned family travel writers — veterans of traveling with kids in tow — to find out what they find to be the most stressful factors of traveling with kids. Surprisingly, we found that over 60% believe that traveling with children is not a stressful experience. Here, they share their expert tips and tricks on how to avoid what they rank as the most common concerns about family travel.

1. The price tag of the trip
For a lower-cost vacation, live like a local and stay in an apartment in a residential neighborhood for at least one week. You’ll have more space, your own affordable groceries, and fond memories of your “home” abroad. Often owners will throw in helpful extras like bicycles, boogie boards, or a crib, depending on your needs and where you’ll be. – Shelly Rivoli, Travels With Baby

2. Your child getting sick/hurt while on vacation
We make sure to bring along our baby monitor and sound machine. Even though our kids are 7 & 6 it gives me piece of mind to have the monitor handset by my side whether lounging on the hotel balcony or in the vacation home. It eases any fears of the kids waking up disoriented and opening the wrong door or helps us hear them if they wake up from a bad dream. – Tésa Nicolanti, 2 Wired 2 Tired

3. Coordinating eating arrangements, catering to picky eaters, allergies, etc.
Dining out can cause stress (either due to expense or entertaining kids during meals), so plan to dine in-room for breakfasts and lunches. This is easy to do with just a cooler: pack foods like bagels, cream cheese spreads, fruit, granola, and trail mix that can be eaten at either meal and on-the-go. – Amy Whitley, Pit Stops For Kids

4. Packing and transporting all of the gear
Take the hassle out of schlepping baby gear by renting what you need at your destination. – Shelly Rivoli, Travels With Baby

5. Kids crying, screaming, or fighting in public
Keep a positive attitude; if you’re calm, the kids will stay calm. Cut your itinerary in half so you don’t pressure the kids to do too much. – Kyle McCarthy, My Family Travels
And after all is said and done, just roll with the punches. Be sure to be flexible with your vacation plans – don’t be afraid to stay longer or leave sooner based on what’s happening on the road. – Mara Gorman, Mother of All Trips

6. Airports and flying
Buy a day pass to airline lounges, especially if you have a layover. There are snacks, TVs, WiFi, wine for mommy and some even have playrooms. – Elizabeth Thorp, Poshbrood
Since we travel internationally a lot, we try to make sure that the kids have plenty to do on the long flights and that we are prepared with lots of games, iPads, and snacks. – Kaamna Bhojwani-Dhawan, Momaboard

7. Making sleeping arrangements
By renting an apartment, everyone can have separate bedrooms and living like locals is infinitely less stressful, more enjoyable and more affordable. – Bethaney Davies, Flashpacker Family

8. The length of travel and the age-old question: “Are we there yet?”
Prepare your kids in advance – let them know what to expect and what is expected of them. The same applies to letting them know what they can expect for length of travel. – Corinne McDermott, Have Baby Will Travel
Don’t forget to pack books, crayons, paper and devices. iPads, iPods and Smartphones can allow bored kids to play games, watch movies or listen to music. – Elizabeth Thorp, Poshbrood

9. Finding kid-friendly activities and entertainment at your destination
I don’t stress about what to do with kids – being in a new place and learning about the new culture is more important than them having something to do all day, every day. – Kaamna Bhojwani-Dhawan, Momaboard
Involve the kids in the planning and choosing activities to ensure they are doing and seeing things that they find interesting. – Eileen Ogointz, Taking the Kids

10. Enjoying adults-only time
We always make sure our hotel room has a balcony. This way after the kids go to sleep we can relax on the balcony and chat without disturbing them. – Tésa Nicolanti, 2 Wired 2 Tired

For inspiration for your next family vacation, check out FlipKey’s Trip Ideas, showcasing our picks of the best destinations around the globe, https://www.flipkey.com/trip-ideas/family-travel/

Here are five tours you can book on TripAdvisor that will guide you deeper into some of the world’s most famous markets, for a delicious taste of the homegrown way of life. And if you’re planning a trip to one of these cities, consider staying in an apartment rental from FlipKey as your home base! You’ll no doubt make use of the full kitchen after visiting these world-class markets.

The vivid colors, the mouth-watering aromas, the sounds of good-natured bargaining…. In any corner of the world, a local food market is a multi-sensory snapshot of that region’s culture. Here are five tours and popular foodie attractions that are worth the trip.

Pike Place Market, Seattle

Savor Seattle Food Tours

Just about every tourist who comes through Seattle stops to watch the fishmongers throwing their catch around. Few get to actually try their hand at throwing a fish, but that’s what you’ll get to do on Savor Seattle’s special-access tour of the Pike Place Market. You’ll arrive just as the market opens, before the crowds descend, and sample at least 17 delicacies from nine different vendors during the two-hour tour. Leave with a discount card that gives you 10-15% off at more than 40 of the city’s restaurants and attractions.

Find a great place to stay in Seattle!

Tsukiji Fish Market, Tokyo

The Tsukiji Market

Speaking of fish, Tokyo is home to the world’s largest seafood market, and this four-hour tour combines an exploration of Tsukiji’s inner workings (where tuna are auctioned off to restaurants and retailers from around the globe) with a sushi-making workshop led by a sushi master—capped off with lunch to taste your creations. You’ll return home knowing how to choose the freshest fish in your neighborhood grocery store.

Find a great place to stay in Tokyo!

Testaccio Market, Rome

Nuovo Mercato di Testaccio

Do you love Italian food? Enjoy bites of pastry, buffalo mozzarella, suppli (fried rice balls), pasta, wine, cheese, and gelato from Rome’s oldest gelateria during this four-hour walking tour of the historic Testaccio market and neighborhood. You’ll also see Rome’s only pyramid and the oft-overlooked Protestant Cemetery, where poet John Keats is buried.

Find a great place to stay in Rome!

Marché d’Aligre, Paris

The French Way – Paris Gourmet Market Tour

France’s capital is full of food markets, but the Marché d’Aligre, in the 12th Arrondissement’s Bastille district, is one of the most authentic and traditional. Book an apartment with a kitchen so that you can load up on produce and other gourmet ingredients during this three-hour market tour by The French Way, which includes food, wine, and olive oil tastings. The tour ends in an elevated garden built atop abandoned train tracks, a spot known to locals but few tourists.

Find a great place to stay in Paris!

San Juan Market, Mexico City

Mercato de San Juan

If Mexican food means little more than tacos to you, prepare to be surprised by the breadth and depth of the country’s culinary history during a food tour on Mexico City’s street food. Taste grasshoppers, edible flowers, organic coffee, and gourmet cheese at the San Juan Market, then head to the nearby Artisan Market to browse through handmade pottery, silver, leatherwork, and more from around the country. At both markets, your guide will lead you to the booths with the finest goods, where you can speak directly to the people who prepared the snacks or produced the crafts.

Find a great place to stay in Mexico City!

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Best-Vacations-Oregon-Coast-Cannon-Beach

From trendy surfing hotspots to quiet villages by the sea, choosing the best Oregon Coast vacation spot isn’t easy. But this beautiful region is begging to be explored, with activities and scenery galore. Find yourself hiking through old-growth forests in the morning, popping into shops and museums in the afternoon, and watching sunsets at the beach in the evening—all before coming home to your perfect vacation rental, with room to stretch out and relax, plus amenities like a full kitchen, laundry, private outdoor patio, BBQ grill, or even a pool or hot tub.

Best Oregon Coast Vacations: Where To Stay

When it comes to the best places to stay on the Oregon Coast, your destination is only half the battle. Your accommodation is equally as important. Curl up in a cozy beachfront cottage or find a home large enough to comfortably host the whole gang. Whatever you prefer, FlipKey has you covered. The 15 Oregon Coast destinations in our list have some of the highest-rated rental properties in the whole state, according thousands of traveler reviews who have stayed in them. The vacation rentals in these spots boast an average lifetime rating of at least 4.5 out of 5 stars—the cream of the crop—and the destinations themselves have plenty to do so you can make the most of every moment of your Oregon coast vacation.

Brookings

best-places-to-vacation-oregon-coast-brookings

This sleepy town near the California border was once the winter getaway for Lewis and Clarke. Brookings’ warm weather lasts year-round, but is best appreciated in the springtime, when the 33-acre Azalea Park bursts into bloom with colorful plants and flowers. Time your trip for the Azalea Festival and Parade, the Southern Oregon Kite Festival, or any weekend with nice weather for hikes through Harris Beach State Park, the Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor, or Thunder Rock Cove.

Find a great place to stay in Brookings

Gold Beach

gold-beach-best-oregon-vacation

The river meets the ocean at Gold Beach, one of the best places to vacation on the Oregon Coast. This cute town is located at the convergence of the Pacific Ocean and the Rogue River, where visitors can rent jet skis or grab a kayak and travel through brackish waters that lead to the ocean. Or stay on land to enjoy long walks along miles of empty beaches and old-growth forests, tossing  fishing line with the hopes of hooking salmon, cod, or a giant tuna. Be sure to snap a photo of the art-deco Rogue River Bridge, a local landmark that creates a scenic backdrop for your Oregon beach vacation. And when evening strikes, utilize the full kitchen in your rental to cook up a flavorful meal—maybe even the fish you catch earlier in the day!

Find a great place to stay in Gold Beach

Bandon

bandon-oregon-best-beach-vacations

Bandon is one of the best places to stay on the Oregon coast for photographers, with its unobstructed view of Oregon’s classic rocky coastline from Face Rock State Scenic Viewpoint. Drive right up to the point, or choose to ride horseback or rent a bike for the climb. Bullard Beach State Park and the Coquille River Lighthouse also make for fun outings that showcase Bandon’s history. Many of the top-rated rentals here have outdoor patios with stellar water views, providing the ultimate tranquil retreat during your Oregon beach vacation.

Find a great place to stay in Bandon

Gearhart

gearhart-best-places-to-vacation-on-the-oregon-coast

Blink and you might miss Gearhart, a no-stoplight town on the Oregon Coast that washes your worries away. Spend lazy days playing golf at the Gearhart Golf Links or hitting the net at public tennis courts, then cool off with a dip in the Pacific before returning to your cozy vacation rental. A big selection of rentals—both waterfront homes or apartments in town—make this a top destination for an Oregon Coast vacation.

Find a great place to stay in Gearhart

Coos Bay

Coos-Bay-Oregon-Beach-Vacations

If you’re wondering where to stay on the Oregon Coast for a group vacation, consider Coos Bay. Everyone in your squad will find something that suits their fancy in this busy coastal town with quintessential Oregon character. Zoom across massive sand dunes at the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area, hike along coastal trails at Shore Acres State Park or Cape Arago State Park, visit museums with art and history exhibits, or take advantage of the variety of bars and restaurants in the biggest town on the Oregon coast. Look for vacation rentals that accommodate up to 14 people for a fun group getaway.

Find a great place to stay in Coos Bay

Arch Cape

arch-cape-oregon-best-beach-vacations

Arch Cape is considered one of the best places to vacation on the Oregon Coast for surfers, located just minutes from the big waves at Oswald West State Park. Even if you don’t surf, this tranquil beach town makes a great Oregon Coast getaway, offering a quiet retreat and fun outdoor attractions like tide pools and hiking trails. Be sure to visit Hug Point State Recreation Site at low tide, when you can walk along the beach to a waterfall.

Find a great place to stay in Arch Cape

Cannon Beach

Though it’s only an 1.5-hour drive from Portland, Cannon Beach feels far removed from the city. Plenty of public access points make it easy to stroll down miles of quiet coastline punctuated by the iconic 235-foot tall Haystack Rock—a favorite background for photoshoots. Or, visit Oswald West State Park to hit the Oregon Coast Trail, which winds through redwood forests and past scenic vista points. If you need a break from the beach, visit one of the many art galleries, cafes, and small shops in town. Coaster Theatre is a favorite among families for entertaining plays and performances. Rentals ranging from quirky dog-friendly cottages to breathtaking beachfront homes easily make Cannon Beach one of the best vacations on the Oregon Coast, no matter what type of traveler you are.

Find a great place to stay in Cannon Beach

Port Orford

downtown-port-orford-oregon

Port Orford is a beautiful seaside getaway with fun outdoor activities, historical attractions, and a quiet coastline, all easily accessed from Highway 101. The town’s friendly and funky character is on display throughout the downtown, which is studded with small markets and locally owned shops, but can also be appreciated through its attractions. Hiking trails around Port Oxford Heads State Park take you to scenic viewpoints over the Pacific Ocean, while a short drive takes you the historic Cape Blanco lighthouse. Get out on the water, too, with kayak rentals, kite boarding, and stand up paddle boarding all popular options at nearby Flora Lake.

Find a great place to stay in Port Orford

Seaside

Seaside-Oregon-Summer-Steal

Your chance of finding a waterfront vacation rental double in Seaside, which borders both the Pacific Ocean and Garrison Lake. Visitors love taking a kayak out on the water, hiking through the Tillamook Head rainforest, and tucking into restaurants with plates of fresh seafood. An old beached shipwreck, Lewis and Clarke monument, and World War II bombing site add a touch of historic interest, while a busy events calendar make no two visits the same. Look out for big events like the Seaside Beach Volleyball Tournament or the New England Live Lobster Fest to get an extra dose of local character in this great Oregon Coast vacation spot.

Find a great place to stay in Seaside

Pacific City

pacific-city-oregon-beer-tasting-on-the-beach

Grab a fishing pole, beach cruiser, or paddle for a full day of activity in Pacific City, a busy town that visitors love for its size and variety. Though it still feels small-town, Pacific City is packed with things to do, from the trails at Bob Straub State Park to the beachfront dining at Pelican Pub and Brewery. The live music performances, boutique shopping, and good selection of art galleries might even make you forget that you’re vacationing by a great surf spot right on the beach.

Find a great place to stay in Pacific City

Rockaway Beach

Rockaway-Beach-Oregon-Home

Rockaway Beach is a sleepy Oregon Coast getaway perfect for a relaxing vacation. Cruise down miles of empty coast, stopping into quirky attractions like the International Police Museum, and then come home to your highly-rated vacation rental for a sunset drink on the porch or a movie night. If you want more action, drive a few minutes down the road to Cannon Beach to hang out at the trendy shops and restaurants there.

Find a great place to stay in Rockaway Beach

Waldport

alsea-bay-bridge-waldport-oregon

Seafood tastes extra fresh in Waldport, one of the best places to vacation on the Oregon Coast for fishing, crabbing, and clamming. Spend a perfect day swinging by the Alsea Bay Bridge Interpretive Center to learn about Oregon history before packing a picnic to eat at Governor Patterson Memorial State Recreation Site. Then, relax by the quiet shore and watch the sunset from a beachfront vacation rental from FlipKey.

Find a great place to stay in Waldport

Florence

best-places-to-vacation-on-the-oregon-coast-florence-riverside

At the mouth of the Siuslaw River (pictured: Siuslaw River Bridge) and just an hour from Eugene, Florence is a top Oregon beach vacation destination for a playful city-meets-sand getaway. Whether you rent a dune buggy for a day of ripping down the John Dellenback Dunes Trail or hit the moderately difficult Hobbit Trail for a short hike down to the beach, a Florence vacation offers lots of ways to enjoy the great outdoors. Visitors are also smitten with the active sea lion colonies at the Sea Lion Caves and the picturesque Heceta Head Lighthouse—a necessary stop for any photographers.

Find a great place to stay in Florence

Newport

Newport-Oregon-Rent-Beach-House

The city of Newport is a top Oregon Coast vacation for its huge variety of family-friendly activities, like the Oregon Coast Aquarium, historic Yaquina Bay Bridge, and two beautiful lighthouses. Plus, Newport is home to the popular Rogue River Brewing Company, a fun option for the grown-ups in your group. Unlike other great Oregon beach towns, Newport also boasts a large selection of museums, including the highly-rated Hatfield Marine Science Center, Ripley’s Believe It or Not!, and the Pacific Maritime and Heritage Center.

Find a great place to stay in Newport


Ranking Methodology, Best Places To Vacation On The Oregon Coast: We analyzed the lifetime average vacation rental review scores on TripAdvisor (FlipKey is a TripAdvisor company) for all Oregon destinations, identifying which spots were the best places to stay on the Oregon Coast according to reviewer rental scores. Cities and towns needed at least 15 bookable properties, 100 total reviews, and at least a 4.5 out of 5 average score.

Top-rated Southern cities for a vacation

With countless places to choose from in the region, we’re highlighting the best Southern vacation spots for renting a summer house. Travelers have spoken, and these destinations have the top-rated review scores for their rental accommodations on FlipKey.

Top-Rated Southern Vacations This Summer

Summer is a fabulous time to visit the South. Warm temperatures linger long into the evenings, allowing plenty of time for exploration, and the region’s cities buzz with activity. Not to mention, the area exudes Southern hospitality, making it a popular place to visit—any time of year.

Whether summer is just beginning or inching to a close, it’s never a bad time to plan that getaway down South! To help you choose your destination, we looked at the average vacation rental review scores for summer stays. The result? Nine of the best vacation spots down South receiving top praise from fellow FlipKey rental guests. From Tennessee to Texas, these Southern vacations (and their top attraction!) come highly recommended by travelers like you.

Consider booking a vacation home for your trip and you’ll be right in the middle of all the action. Not only do rentals provide an affordable home base during your stay, they let you experience the city like a local!

Ratings are based on the lifetime average vacation rental review score for that destination (for stays during summer months), according to reviewers on TripAdvisor. FlipKey is a TripAdvisor company. 

9. Decatur, Georgia

Retreat to Decatur, Georgia

Average Vacation Rental Rating: 4.50/5.00

“Lots of heart and soul went into preserving this very special home—if you appreciate craftsmanship and cool old houses, it is worth a visit for that alone!” – FlipKey Traveler

A trip to Decatur reveals what makes this destination so special: beautiful historic homes, a range of unique attractions, and a friendly, small-town atmosphere that is truly one-of-a-kind. At just six miles east of Atlanta, getting to this city—which offers a variety of attractions for foodies, fashionistas, fun-lovers and beyond—is a breeze. Grab a bite to eat on-the-go at Your Dekalb Farmers Market, take a walking tour of the area, or perch yourself on a park bench in Decatur Square. Described as “four square miles of hometown hippiness,” this vibrant city is a hot spot for Southern vacations that can’t be missed.

Our Top Activity Pick: Michael C. Carlos Museum

See all Decatur vacation rentals on FlipKey!

8. Chattanooga, Tennessee

Find your hideaway in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Average Vacation Rental Rating: 4.56/5.00

“We spent the majority of our time on one of the two decks when we weren’t out hiking. We watched birds fly, the clouds float by, and the hang gliders soar. What a wonderful, relaxing place to enjoy!” – FlipKey Traveler

Nicknamed the Scenic City, Chattanooga lives up to that claim with soaring mountains, extraordinary rock formations, roaring waterfalls, and lots of outdoor activities that let you enjoy it all. Explore the mysterious caverns of Ruby Falls, hike Lookout Mountain for jaw-dropping views, or familiarize yourself with the area on a train ride through the countryside. For an even more memorable stay, rent a cabin amidst towering trees or a private vacation home just steps from the river and make Chattanooga your home, if only for a weekend getaway.

Our Top Activity Pick: Hunter Museum of American Art

See all Chattanooga vacation rentals on FlipKey!

7. New Orleans, Louisiana

Discover New Orleans, Louisiana.

Average Vacation Rental Rating: 4.60/5.00

“Perfect spot in the Marigny!! We could walk easily everywhere we wanted to go and experienced lots of great music and restaurants.” – FlipKey Traveler

Whether your plan is to soak up the local history or dance your way down Bourbon Street, New Orleans is no doubt one of the best vacation spots in the South. It’sa hub of activity from sunrise to sundown. Tour the Garden District—an elegant neighborhood full of Southern charm—where you’ll find pristine gardens and opulent, antebellum mansions. When you’re ready to party, head to Bourbon Street. You’ll find this carnival of sights and sounds in the historic French Quarter. Add to your New Orleans experience by booking a traditional, shotgun-style vacation home just blocks from your favorite attractions.

Our Top Activity Pick: New Orleans Museum of Art

See all New Orleans vacation rentals on FlipKey!

6. Nashville, Tennessee

Nashville, Tennessee

Average Vacation Rental Rating: 4.60/5.00

“Absolutely LOVED this home away from home!! We actually stayed in Friday night instead of going to downtown Nashville just because we loved the house so much!!” – FlipKey Traveler

If you’re looking for world-class music venues, hearty Southern fare, and the chance to spot celebrities both on the stage and in the street, then Nashville is the Southern vacation for you. Take a stroll along the Music City Walk of Fame, check out the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, or attend a show at the iconic Grand Ole Opry. At the end of a music-filled day, retreat to the quiet of your beautiful Victorian home rental in Germantown, Nashville’s oldest neighborhood.

Our Top Activity Pick: Adventure Science Center

See all Nashville vacation rentals on FlipKey!

5. Fredericksburg, Texas

Fredericksburg, TX is a hot spot for Southern vacations.

Average Vacation Rental Rating: 4.63/5.00

“This was a great location right in the middle of everything in historic Fredericksburg. A wonderful place to stay with hosts that make you feel like friends.” – FlipKey Traveler

Southern charm will sweep you off your feet in Fredericksburg. It’s located deep in the heart of Texas and is known for its hospitality, rich history, and thriving German traditions. A visit during August lends itself to lazy afternoons watching the grape harvest at a vineyard and warm evenings strolling at the county fair. If you can’t squeeze a trip to Fredericksburg in this summer, don’t fret! With bluebonnets blooming in the spring and Oktoberfest celebrations during the fall, this city is one of the best Southern vacations to take, no matter what time of year it is.

Our Top Activity Pick: National Museum of the Pacific War

See all Fredericksburg vacation rentals on FlipKey!

4. Louisville, Kentucky

Rent a vacation home in Louisville, Kentucky.

Average Vacation Rental Rating: 4.74/5.00

“All the comforts of home. This was much better than a hotel. It was great to have easy access to our events, then drive back into a quiet neighborhood (with deer) in the evenings.” – FlipKey Traveler

With the annual Kentucky Derby spectacle, tasty mint juleps, and a variety of exciting attractions, it’s no surprise that Louisville makes our list of top-rated Southern vacations. Follow the city-wide “Urban Bourbon Trail” to award-winning micro-distilleries, each with its own unique offering of the city’s signature spirit. If you’re a baseball fan, check out the Louisville Slugger Museum, a celebration of the sport’s legends. Choose an historic home within walking distance of downtown, and you’ll never want to leave Louisville!

Our Top Activity Pick: KMAC Museum

See all Louisville vacation rentals on FlipKey!

3. St. Petersburg, Florida

Hit the beach in St. Petersburg, FL.

Average Vacation Rental Rating: 4.84/5.00

“Paradise. This is the first time I ever stayed in a vacation rental—and I think I’ll never go back to hotels again. I felt the most not like a tourist on this vacation compared to others in the past.” – FlipKey Traveler

Known as the “Sunshine City,” St. Petersburg boasts an average of 361 days of sunny skies a year, making it a safe choice if you’re looking to spend your vacation days outdoors. Walk the waterfront for stunning views of Tampa Bay (and even a leaping dolphin or two!) or explore the century-old Sunken Gardens in the midst of this bustling city. One walk along the sugary-sand beaches, one dip in the crystal-clear waters, one stop at the Saturday Morning Market—that’s all it will take to fall in love with St. Petersburg.

Our Top Activity Pick: Great Explorations Children’s Museum

See all St. Petersburg vacation rentals on FlipKey!

2. Hot Springs, Arkansas

Hot Springs, Arkansas Southern Vacations

Average Vacation Rental Rating: 4.85/5.00

“It was the most gorgeous scenic retreat I could’ve asked for. A beautiful hidden gem, just like Arkansas itself!” – FlipKey Traveler

Set among an array of naturally heated springs, Hot Springs bubbles with adventure. From hiking and biking to fishing and kayaking, this Southern city speaks to outdoor enthusiasts. Climb to the top of Hot Springs Mountain to take in the majestic views, discover the beauty of Lake Catherine State Park, or spend a relaxing day at the lake. Book a Hot Springs vacation rental as your base to make exploring even easier during your stay.

Our Top Activity Pick: A Narrow Escape

See all Hot Springs vacation rentals on FlipKey!

1. Greenville, South Carolina

Greenville-South-Carolina-best-Southern-vacations

Average Vacation Rental Rating: 5.00/5.00

“Cozy place, perfect for two. Perfect for peace and quiet and restful relaxation.” – FlipKey Traveler

When it comes to Southern charm, Greenville offers an unforgettable dose. From outdoor concerts to annual street festivals, the city hosts more than 300 events annually, guaranteeing a good time is had by all. Saunter around downtown Greenville—ranked among “America’s Ten Best” by Forbes magazine—taking in the sights and tasting a variety of palate-pleasing cuisines from the more than 600 restaurants in town. This charming destination gets FlipKey travelers’ vote as one of the best vacation spots in the South to rent a summer house. Book a vacation rental here and enjoy all the city has to offer with the picturesque Blue Ridge Mountains as your backdrop.

Our Top Activity Pick: Roper Mountain Science Center

See all Greenville vacation rentals on FlipKey!

If you’ve been daydreaming about your next vacation—and let’s face it, who hasn’t with winter outstaying its welcome—then we’re about to make your day. Our friends at TripAdvisor just announced the Travelers’ Choice Rentals; a list of the 30 best vacation homes in the world as chosen by the TripAdvisor community! (FlipKey is a TripAdvisor company).

The 30 homes are split into three categories—Affordable, Mid-Range, and High-End—with 10 properties in each. There’s remarkable variety within each category and across all the winning properties, from a villa with a breathtaking view over Lake Como to a cute and cosy Shepherd’s hut in the quaint UK countryside.

Here, we’ll showcase two of our favorite properties from each category. But, trust us—deciding which to include wasn’t easy. Fortunately, you can view the full list here on TripAdvisor.

And if you want to experience a stay at one of these incredible places yourself—they’re all bookable on FlipKey! Just click the links below. Here are the highlights we chose. Enjoy!

HIGH-END CATEGORY

Villa La Ruga, Lake Como, Italy

The high-end category in this year’s round-up is a luxury traveler’s dream come true. It includes a sophisticated villa on the shores of Lake Como, the destination of choice for many a celebrity couple (including power duo George and Amal Clooney). Guests can enjoy incredible views from both the clifftop terrace and bedroom balconies.

Lake_Como

“It’s an unforgettable spot down on the waterfront – I particularly encourage breakfast on the promenade! 100% recommend.”

See all Lake Como vacation homes on FlipKey!

Zante Palazzo Villa, Zakynthos, Greece

Another of our favorites from the high-end properties is this spectacular villa on the Greek island of Zakynthos in the Ionian Islands. Complete with a private heated swimming pool surrounded by a lush Mediterranean garden, it provides guests with all they could wish for on their dream vacation.

Zakynthos

“By far the best villa I have ever stayed at! Great indoor interior, awesome outdoor and barbecue area, perfect location and a lot of space.”

View all rentals in the Ionian Islands!

MID-RANGE CATEGORY

Cambalala Lodge, Hazyview, South Africa

The mid-range category is no less impressive, with stand-out properties including a quaint Shepherd’s hut in the UK’s first National Park and a chalet called Cambalala—the Zulu word for “relax”—in South Africa’s famed Kruger Park Lodge resort.

South_Africa

“The staff were really friendly and helpful. I would highly recommend this lodge to the people who wants to have an affordable and luxury holiday home.”

The Hoblet Cabin, Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada

Another hit in the mid-range category is the charming “Hoblet”—an Ontario rental under 15 minutes’ drive to the brink of Niagara Falls. From the outside, it looks like a typical woodsy cabin. But step through the front door and you’ll discover a modern, spacious den perfect for a getaway.

Ontario

“The moment you walk into The Hoblet, you get an immediate sense of pressure and stress being lifted off your shoulders as you take in the sights and sounds.”

See all FlipKey rentals near Niagara Falls!

AFFORDABLE CATEGORY

Last, but not least, is the affordable category. Rentals often present travelers with incredible value for money, with more room and private amenities than a traditional hotel stay. And nowhere else is this more evident than in the brilliant budget homes featured in the 2018 Travelers’ Choice Rentals round-up.

Residences Le Beau Manguier, Mauritius, Africa

Among the winners is a condo on the tropical island of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean. With spa facilities onsite, access to a pool set in tropical gardens and just a couple minutes’ walk to the beach, it’s no surprise visitors rave about this one.

Mauritius

“The stay was even better because of the caring hosts who made sure I was comfortable. Was very lucky to stay here!”

Alfie’s Apartment, Island of Malta, Europe

From an island in the Indian Ocean to one in the Mediterranean, you’ll find another of the stand-out properties in this year’s affordable category in Malta. Alfie’s place is a rustic hideaway on a stepped street in the protected Medieval city of Birgu.

Malta

“If you want to soak up the history of Malta and meet the locals this is the place to be…We had a great holiday made even more enjoyable by our host.”

TRAVELERS’ CHOICE AWARDS FOR RENTALS

We’ve picked out just two properties from each category here…but there are more to discover! The rest of the winners await over in our property gallery. So, what are you waiting for? Browse all of this year’s winners and see what the world’s largest (and wisest!) community of travelers has to say about them.

View the full list of Travelers’ Choice winners here

Please note: Average nightly rates of properties are based on TripAdvisor Rentals pricing data between April 2017 and April 2018

ABOUT TRIPADVISOR RENTALS

TripAdvisor Rentals is a leading platform where thousands of travellers find their perfect rental. Whether you’re looking for a stylish city apartment, spacious poolside villa or cozy cabin, we have the rental for you, no matter what your budget or where you want to be in the world.

Using the power of TripAdvisor’s global travel community, TripAdvisor Rentals pairs the insider knowledge of our homeowners with the collective wisdom of millions of reviews.

You’ll discover not only the best vacation rentals, but the best attractions, the best restaurants, and the best things to do.

TripAdvisor Rentals travellers always stay the smarter way, thanks to Payment Protection and a wealth of insider recommendations. With over 300 new reviews and opinions added every minute, TripAdvisor is an ever-growing resource where you can plan and book every part of your trip in one place.

You can know better, book better, and go better. And rest assured that your vacation and your money is in safe hands with our Payment Protection.


This post was originally published on the TripAdvisor Rentals blog. FlipKey is a TripAdvisor company.

If you’d like a change from the usual vacation accommodation, why not get back to nature with an Insta-worthy cave rental? All of these unique vacation homes are available to rent on FlipKey.

Ranging from a stunning Santorini property with a Jacuzzi and panoramic views, to a luxurious home in Arkansas with natural cavern walls throughout, these stunning cave rentals from TripAdvisor are the ultimate way to feel at one with nature—without giving up your modern comforts!

Beckham Cave Home

Parthenon, Arkansas, USA

See the Beckham Cave Home on FlipKey!

Nestled in a natural cavern, high within a bluff overlooking the valley, Beckham Cave is unlike any other place on earth. Each of the 4 bedrooms is unique, offering queen-sized beds, exposed cavern walls, and lavish bathrooms. Surrounding rock walls and overhead rain showers offer a waterfall-like experience. This stunning home provides guests with 6,000 square feet of space and can accommodate up to 16 people—perfect for a family or group getaway!

See all rentals in Parthenon

Lava Cave

Santorini, Greece

See the Greek Lava Cave home on FlipKey!

This former sailor’s home dates back to 1875 and has since been upgraded to a luxury rental. The home kept its traditional cave-curved Aegean island style with pearl white walls, while adding a number of modern amenities. The suite comprises of a cosy bedroom, an adjoining living area, and a luxe kitchenette. Its stunning private veranda has an exquisite indoor-outdoor Jacuzzi with panoramic views of the ocean and Caldera’s rugged volcanic beauty.

See all rentals in Santorini

Anitya Cave House

Cappadocia, Turkey

See the Anitya Cave House on FlipKey!

In the heart of Cappadocia, this cave house is more than 600 years old and boasts a spacious terrace with panoramic views across Urgup. With a saloon and fully equipped kitchen, Anitya is a perfect cavehouse for couples and families. The home is a one-bedroom, but with flexible sleeping arrangements, the home accommodates up to six guests. Turkish coffee, teas and spices are on hand to make Anitya as homely as possible.

See all rentals in Cappadocia

Azalea Cave Houses

Oia, Greece

See the Azalea Cave Houses on FlipKey!

This one-bedroom cave rental is the great spot for a cozy retreat. The property is a traditional winemaker’s house that’s been transformed into a luxury residence, while respecting the old architectural style. The cave home has two floors with a large terrace overlooking the village, the vineyards of Oia, and the Aegean Sea.

See all rentals in Oia

The Rockhouse Retreat

Worcester, UK

See the Rockhouse Retreat on FlipKey!

The Rockhouse Retreat is a unique luxury cave, hand-sculpted from a Triassic sandstone escarpment near the Wyre Forest in rural Worcestershire. Set in 3-acres of woodland on the banks of Honey Brook, the site has been used as a dwelling for over 700 years. This cosy one-bedroom home is stylishly decorated and features home comforts such as underfloor heating and ambient lighting for a natural atmosphere. This authentic cave home is a secluded retreat, offering a peaceful haven where guests feel miles away from civilisation.

See all rentals in Worcester

Sea View Cave Loft

Guia, Gran Canaria

See the Cave Loft on FlipKey!

This comfortable loft cave sits in a beautiful rural area with panoramic sea views as well as the surrounding mountains. The property features a garden, terrace and swimming pool where you can spend lazy days chilling out and soaking up the ocean views. The loft cave has two-bedrooms and a fully equipped kitchen, as well as a homely living area enclosed in rock formations.

See all rentals in Gran Canaria

Casa Santantonio

Santorini, Greece

See the Casa Santantonio cave rental on FlipKey!

Casa Santantonio is a redesigned 18th century mansion, retaining much of its traditional architectural heritage and style. The property boasts three private luxury apartments, with the Senior Cave apartment located on the first floor of the building. Senior Cave has two bedrooms sleeping up to five guests, and boasts its own pergola with a Jacuzzi—ideal for spending long evenings watching the sunset.

See all rentals in Santorini

White Dream

Puglia, Italy

See the White Dream cave villa on FlipKey!

Amongst the striking white Flagstone chianche lanes in the heart of the historical centre of Ostuni is White Dream. The apartment offers an elegant and refined decor in shades of white, to mirror the natural rock that forms the structure. This rental is brilliantly located—only seven miles from white sand beaches, crystal clear sea and the beautiful nature reserve of Torre Guaceto—and boasts a lovely big bed, kitchenette and dining area.

See all rentals in Puglia

Cohabitat Sassi

Matera, Italy

See the Cohabitat Sassi cave home on FlipKey!

This quaint cave apartment for two is a classic Italian property that’s been carefully restored with modern adaptions. There is an intimate dining area and a kitchenette for cosy dinners in, and the property is tastefully decorated with unique artwork throughout. The cave is in a central location just a short distance from Piazza Vittorio Veneto and other attractions in Matera, making it a great place to base yourself for a getaway.

Check out all rentals in Matera


This post was originally published on the TripAdvisor Rentals blog. FlipKey is a TripAdvisor company.

Romantic-Summer-Beach-House-Featured-FlipKey

Nothing screams summer romance like spending a week (or long weekend!) in a cozy waterfront vacation rental in one of America’s charming seaside destinations. Renting a lake house or beach home with your significant other is a surefire way to earn some brownie points, whether you’re drawn to salty seas or freshwater shores. At FlipKey, we can help you find your perfect couples’ retreat away from it all.

Romantic Lake House & Beach House Vacations

Reviews tell us a lot about the kind of vacations a destination is good for. So when we were looking for some of the best places to rent a romantic summer lake house or beach house, we checked what travelers had to say. At FlipKey (part of the TripAdvisor family), we used a special algorithm to analyze every single TripAdvisor review, identifying which lakeside and beachfront locations across America had the highest percentage of reviews mentioning romance. What’s left are some of the top romantic summer getaways for renting a lake house or beach home.

Little Torch Key, Florida

little-torch-key-florida-romantic-beach-house

Just about every property is waterfront on the tiny island of Little Torch Key, a part of the Florida Keys archipelago located just 30 miles from the famous Key West. Spend long hot days diving among the corals at Looe Key National Marine Sanctuary, catching snook on a fishing charter, or relaxing at the well-regarded Little Palm Island Resort, located just off-shore. Your perfect summer beach house provides the ultimate pit stop during action-packed days.

See all FlipKey rentals in Little Torch Key!

Lake Geneva, Wisconsin

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Though small compared to neighboring Lake Michigan, the 10.5-square-mile Lake Geneva offers plenty to keep you busy while renting a summer lake house. Take to the water on a kayak or stand-up paddle board, lay out on the beach, or hit the 21-mile hiking loop around the water’s edge. The location is every bit as stunning as its larger neighbor but without the crowds, making for a quieter getaway with your loved one.

See all FlipKey rentals in Lake Geneva!

Brewster, Massachusetts

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Brewster’s scenic location along the hook of the Cape Cod Peninsula has drawn visitors since its original inhabitants founded the town in 1659—a huge perk for history buffs who don’t want to sacrifice cultural attractions for waterfront views. Rent a historic beach house here to make the most of the area’s famous low-tide, when water levels dip low enough to walk out along the beach for a mile.

See all FlipKey rentals in Brewster!

Poipu, Hawaii

Hawaii-Romantic-Beach-House

White sand beaches, coconut-heavy palm trees, and volcanic backdrops make for easy romance on Poipu, a quiet stretch of beach on Kauai’s South Shore. Complete the ambiance with your pick of romantic summer beach houses, from high-rise condos with killer views to waterfront cabanas with just enough room for two.

See all FlipKey rentals in Poipu!

Gig Harbor, Washington

Gig-Harbor-Washington-Romantic-Beach-House

Nestled in the middle of Washington’s gorgeous Puget Sound, Gig Harbor offers access to a little bit of everything. Olympic National Park, Seattle, and Olympia are all easy day trips for those willing to leave their lake house rental, though the wide selection of properties with waterfront locations, spacious balconies, and sunset views justifies every moment you stay in.

See all FlipKey rentals in Gig Harbor!

Ogunquit, Maine

Ogunquit-Beach-Maine-Romantic

Ogunquit’s translation as “beautiful place by the sea” does not disappoint. This small town on the coast of Maine boasts easy access to maritime estuary reserves, a historical drawbridge, and beaches dotted with rocky coves, each as beautiful as the next. Take a sunset stroll along the Marginal Way pedestrian path before heading home to your spacious vacation rental—complete with a full kitchen ideal for romantic home-cooked dinners.

See all FlipKey rentals in Ogunquit!

Half Moon Bay, California

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It doesn’t get more romantic than a waterfront picnic on California’s Half Moon Bay, a picturesque crescent bay just 45 minutes south of San Francisco that’s as beautiful as its evocative name implies. Add in horseback rides along the sand and cozy evenings cuddled up in your beach rental, and your unforgettable summer vacation is just waiting to unfold.

See all FlipKey rentals in Half Moon Bay!

Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin

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On the narrow isthmus between Green Bay and Lake Michigan, Sturgeon Bay boasts summer lake house rentals with endless tranquility and top-notch waterfront views. The small town is best known for its parks, museums, and wineries, in addition to the array of water sports on offer for active travelers.

See all FlipKey rentals in Sturgeon Bay!

Cape May, New Jersey

A mixture of grand historical homes and cozy beachfront cottages ensure the perfect romantic getaway on the Jersey Shore. This quaint and quiet town is a far cry from the televised, party-hard reputation of Seaside Heights (Cape May is nearly 100 miles south), but still offers plenty in the way of entertainment. You’ll find live music, craft breweries, and boutique shopping, in addition to the warm water and gentle waves of the Atlantic—best appreciated when you rent a beach house right on the water.

See all FlipKey rentals in Cape May!

Kennebunkport, Maine

Kennebunkport-Maine-East-Coast-Beach-Towns

Located just off the highway on the southern tip of Maine, Kennebunkport is one of the most accessible beach getaways from major metropolitan areas along the crowded Eastern seaboard. Leave behind the urban bustle when you rent a beach house on the shore, from spacious luxury homes to simple modern apartments, all within minutes of the area’s picturesque beach and rocky shoreline.

See all FlipKey rentals in Kennebunkport!

Cambria, California

Cambria-Coastal-California-Town

Break up a classic road trip down the California coast when you rent a beach house in Cambria, located on a quiet bit of coastline halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles. Bookend dips in the Pacific with fine dining, antique shopping, and scenic strolls along wooden walkways on the beach.

See all FlipKey rentals in Cambria!

Newport, Oregon

Newport-Oregon-Rent-Beach-House

Rent a beach house along the quiet coast of Newport for days spent combing the shore for wildlife and evenings relaxing beside coastal bluffs. Newport strikes the perfect balance with a blend of state parks, historical monuments, museums, and nightlife, while still feeling like a secluded getaway.

See all FlipKey rentals in Newport!

Dana Point, California

Dana-Point-Beach-House

Dana Point sits pretty between Los Angeles and San Diego, offering up the best of Southern California surf and sunshine. Though the city has a large number of high-rise resorts catering to visitors who come for whale watching, swimming, and sunset strolls, we suggest renting a beach house or condo with panoramic views to get the most romance out of your trip.

See all FlipKey rentals in Dana Point!

Lake Placid, New York

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Don’t make the mistake of limiting Lake Placid to just its wintertime attractions. Lake Placid’s fresh alpine air, water recreation, and close access to Adirondack State Park make this Upstate New York city downright dreamy in the summertime. Rent a summer lake house to take in views of green mountain ranges rolling into the distance—a postcard-perfect view that creates the ideal setting for romance.

See all FlipKey rentals in Lake Placid!

Traverse City, Michigan

Traverse-City-Michigan-Rent-Lake-House-Summer

Though well-known for its vineyards, theaters, and cultural landmarks, nothing detracts from the natural beauty of Traverse City, which is bordered by the East and West Arm of Grand Traverse Bay and Boardman Lake. Add in close proximity to Lake Michigan and endless options for waterfront rentals, and it’s no wonder Traverse City remains a popular choice for romantic summer getaways.

See all FlipKey rentals in Traverse City!