Looking to get out of town? You’re in luck: May brings with its some terrific shoulder-season fares, whether you’re looking to keep it regional (under $100 to Vegas) or really get out of town (how’s Iceland for under $300 sound?). All fares double-checked for May flights and still available, at least at press time.
You’re going to: Portland
Roundtrip: $101 on Alaska
Briefly: Portlandia may be over, but Portland is still terrific (and we know you’ll be looking for cheaper real estate there).
You’re going to: Vegas
Roundtrip: $97 on United
Briefly: Skip the slots; head for the hills.
Stay in: A tent. (Or maybe just a bug shelter, depending on the temps.)
Head for: Atlatl Rock Campground—for a chance to explore red-rock formations, petroglyphs, and petrified wood (so basically the opposite of the ferns-and-redwoods of the state parks closer to home.)
You’re going to: Minneapolis
Roundtrip: $160 on Frontier
Briefly: An under-considered arts and design destination.
Stop by: The Walker’s Allen Ruppersberg show (your Instagram feed demands it), the American Swedish Institute, and the Gehry-designed Weisman Art Museum, with its “Prince from Minneapolis” photography show.
You’re going to: Honolulu
Roundtrip: $331 on Delta
Briefly: A good fare on a perpetually expensive route
Stay at: If you’re so desperate to get away from the chain-corporate vibe, head to the Modern—but know that you’ll be giving up easy beach access. Otherwise, just give in and go to the nearly century-old Royal Hawaiian.
Iceland (2 images)
You’re going to: Reykjavik
Roundtrip: $268 on Wow
Briefly: Everyone you know has been there, but it’s still great—especially if you head to the island’s less-explored north.
Stay at: An Airbnb, since the Akureyri boutique hotel scene is still TBD. Maybe this one?
Head for: The under-visited Mývatn region, not forgetting Sigurgeirs Bird Museum—truly a must-stop if you have any interest (and we certainly do) in the birding possibilities (“Nowhere in the world can so many species of duck be found in one place”.) Also: volcano hiking, flightseeing, and everything else.
Dublin (2 images)
You’re going to: Dublin
Roundtrip: $375 on Wow (stop off in Iceland for free, BTW)
Briefly: No better place in the world to drink—a Guinness or anything else.
Stay at: The fun, clubby Dean
Head for: Kilmainham Gaol (it’s the Dublin version of Alcatraz, only with a deeper history), the Book of Kells, because you must, and a drinking experience that begins, but does not finish, at Mulligans.
Hanoi (2 images)
You’re going to: Hanoi
Roundtrip: $651 on Korean Air
Briefly: Explore the city for a couple days, and then head out to the surrounding, spectacular mountain towns near the Chinese border.
Stay at: The Chi—a boutique vibe and super style-y bar at around $50 a night
Head for: Sapa, a mountain village that’s the setting-off point for hiking this exceptionally scenic part of Vietnam.