4 Great East Coast Dog Friendly Beaches

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The Outer Banks' Jockey's Ridge State Park is a dog-friendly attraction that's free to visit. It's also a great East Coast dog friendly beach.

The beach is a wonderland from a dog’s perspective. On dog friendly beaches, there are all of those great scents, you can run around a bit, there’s sand to dig in, and there are birds to keep an eye on. The ocean also tends to be a bit of a novelty: Do you chase it? Do you swim in it? Do you just splash in it? And you certainly never turn your back to it, that’s for sure! It’s a dog’s life, indeed. But sometimes finding beaches that allow dogs can be a challenge. Not to worry, I’ve got four great East Coast dog friendly beaches that you’ll love.

While many beaches don’t allow dogs during the summer, the offseason is prime season for a beach vacation with Man’s Best Friend! But there are many beaches that allow dogs even during the peak season.

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Your Guide to a Fun Summer in Philadelphia

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Celebrate summer in Philadelphia with a visit to LOVE Park.

Let’s not mince words: Summer in Philadelphia is hot and humid. While many Philadelphians will spend the hot summer months going “down the shore,” the city still has a lot going on. There are countless activities, events, and festivals you can enjoy outside in the City of Brotherly Love while temperatures slowly cool off and the sunset takes a leisurely pace. You can certainly expect the historic sites and museums to be full of tourists, but don’t let it put you off. Summer in Philly can be so rewarding!

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Dublin Airport US Preclearance Guide

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Heading to the plane after Dublin Airport US Preclearance.

One of the worst parts of international air travel is coming back home. And by that, I don’t even mean the fact that your international adventure is over. (Although, let’s be real. That isn’t easy, either.) No, what I mean is that you arrive back in the United States only to stand in line for who knows how long, reeling from jetlag, in order to clear customs and immigration.

But international travelers flying into the United States from Dublin are required to complete Dublin Airport US Preclearance. You read that right: air travelers pass through United States customs and immigration before even leaving Ireland…or even Europe! While Dublin preclearance still requires you to wait in line, it gets the immigration check out of the way early.

This is especially relevant to travelers taking advantage of direct flights to Dublin with Aer Lingus. Let me tell you, there is no better feeling than arriving at your home airport after hours on an international flight and being able to simply go home without any extra checks. While this guide is generally for those with US citizenship, it also applies to international visitors, too.

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Cherry Blossoms to Baseball : Spring in Philadelphia

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The western side of the Philadelphia Museum of Art is framed in Philadelphia cherry blossoms.

“April showers bring May flowers,” as the old saying goes. And any visitor wanting to experience spring in Philadelphia will take heed from the proverb. But don’t let a little rain scare you off, there is so much on offer!

After months bundled up inside, worrying about the possibility of snow and ice, Philadelphia awakens in spring. Warming weather brings gardens across the region to life. Philadelphia in spring means lots of festivals taking advantage of the outdoor weather, including a Philadelphia cherry blossom festival.

Oh, yes, there is so much to enjoy in the City of Brotherly Love come spring!

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Philadelphia Flower Show 2020 Is Best in Years

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Riviera backyard hangout inspiration at the Philadelphia Flower Show 2020.

There is no surer sign that spring is approaching than the arrival of the Philadelphia Flower Show. For nearly two centuries, the world’s largest indoor flower show, and the country’s oldest, has acted as a bit of an oasis for those suffering from the winter doldrums. And this year is certainly no different. The 2020 Philadelphia Flower Show celebrates a Riviera Holiday theme that inspires with visions of luxurious Mediterranean vacations spent relaxing by the pool or along the waterfront while enjoying the sweet smell of nearby fresh plants and flowers.

In 2019, it was Flower Power. 2018 was Wonders of Water. 2017 was Holland: Flowering the World. The themes of the Flower Show are wide-ranging and exciting. But Riviera Holiday provides more ideas that you can take home and utilize to rejuvenate your backyard into a European getaway. (Not to mention that this is the first year in recent memory where there wasn’t snow on the ground for the show!)

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Fun Things to Do in Corolla, NC

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Currituck Beach Lighthouse peeks out above the trees. A visit to the lighthouse is one of many fun things to do in Corolla, NC.

Each summer, visitors flock to North Carolina’s Outer Banks for vacation. But many won’t make the trip to the northern part of the barrier island. In comparison to Kill Devil Hills or Nags Head, the village of Corolla, North Carolina, is a more quiet destination. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t happening and fun. There are plenty of activities and things to do in Corolla, from places to eat and shop. And there are special activities that you can not do just anywhere, like lighthouse climbing!

As a child, each year for our family vacation we loaded up in the minivan and traveled the nearly eight hours in order to spend a week in Corolla’s Whalehead area. It is a spot that is special and nostalgic for me. Even after all this time, the heart of the area remains.

When you compare Corolla to its other North Carolina’s Outer Banks counterparts, it is almost a world away. With somewhat less commercial development, Corolla maintains a feel that is closer to that of a Southern village. That isn’t to say it isn’t busy in the summer, but Corolla certainly embodies a more laid back feel.

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Things to Do in Philadelphia in Winter

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Snow lines the Benjamin Franklin Parkway ahead of the Art Museum in Philadelphia.

There is never any shortage of things to do in Philadelphia, and that includes during the colder times of the year. If you aren’t afraid of bundling up, crowds are less at historic sites within the City of Brotherly Love. Add to that some of the city’s biggest and most popular events and festivals. Needless to say, winter isn’t much of an “off-season” in Philadelphia. Here are what you can expect and the best things to do in Philadelphia in winter!

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Outer Banks in the Fall Off-Season

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Visitors walking on the sand dunes at Jockey's RIdge State Park.

If the thought of having the Outer Banks beaches all to yourself without waking up at dawn appeals to you, you may want to consider visiting in the off-season. Visiting the Outer Banks in the fall is about enjoying the last gaps of pleasant weather and less about peeping colorful leaves. While the North Carolina beach region continues to become more popular year-round, you can still find some serenity and fewer crowds at the Outer Banks in the fall. But there are some compromises you may need to make with seasonal closures and weather.

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24 Hours in Boston for Art & History Lovers

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Experience art and history in just 24 hours in Boston.

Even in a city that is unfamiliar, it is pretty amazing how much you can experience in only a day if you really try. But only 24 hours in Boston? The city may not be a big city like New York or London, but you can still get a real taste of the city in only a single day. Indeed, for lovers of art and history, Boston is rewarding and a lot of fun. You can indulge in remarkably fresh seafood, gaze at spectacular artwork, and experience firsthand a bit of the history that helped form the United States, here’s how to spend 24 hours in Boston!

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Outer Banks Dog-Friendly Vacation Guide

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The Outer Banks' Jockey's Ridge State Park is a dog-friendly attraction that's free to visit.

With miles of unspoiled beaches, historic sites, and parks, North Carolina’s Outer Banks is fun for the whole family — and that includes the ones with four legs! If your dog is anything like mine, he or she will love watching the sanderlings on the beach and getting a good sniff of those famously strong winds that lured the Wright Brothers a century ago. But there is more than just the beach as the Outer Banks is extremely dog-friendly! From the Outer Banks’ most dog-friendly restaurant to plenty of activities, here’s your guide for a vacation that is truly for the whole family!

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Post by . Originally published December 30, 2019. Last updated July 6, 2020.

Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s Glasgow Style Comes to USA

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Posters at Designing the New: Charles Rennie Mackintosh and the Glasgow Style exhibit at Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, Maryland.

At the turn of the 20th century, Glasgow, Scotland was undergoing a change. The economic boom of the United Kingdom’s second most important city afforded them a chance to indulge in the arts. Designing the New: Charles Rennie Mackintosh and the Glasgow Style is a new exhibition touring the United States that explores this innovative time in the city’s history.

The exhibit puts a focus on Charles Rennie Mackintosh, the movement’s most important contributor (and perhaps the city’s most well known). But there are also much deserved bright lights on Mackintosh’s colleagues. The exhibition is making the rounds and will be on display in the United States through 2021.

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Swept Away: Jockey’s Ridge State Park in Outer Banks

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Plants growing through the dunes at Jockey's Ridge State Park in the Outer Banks, North Carolina.

While not technically a desert, the more than 400 acres of sand dunes at Jockey’s Ridge State Park in North Carolina’s Outer Banks inspire awe. Nestled a few blocks from the Atlantic Ocean and just next to the Roanoke Sound in Nags Head, these are the tallest living sand dunes on the eastern coast. But there is more to Jockey’s Ridge than just sand that makes it an important Outer Banks attraction. With multiple ecosystems, it is a fascinating exploration of nature that many don’t frequently experience that’s an Outer Banks adventure.

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Post by . Originally published December 12, 2019. Last updated December 31, 2019.