Southwest American Solo Travel Destinations, From Relaxing Spas to Hiking National Parks

One of the great features of the U.S. Southwest is that there really is something for everyone. One end of November, I booked a stylish / spa / 5 star hotel in the Scottsdale area, Arizona. There were a wide range of options available from lounging to hiking. Coming from the East Coast, a surprise to me was that the desert at that time of year was not always warm. The outside patents had heat lamps making it comfortable even after sunset to sit outside for dinner.

Apparently, I wasn't the only one thinking of the ardent sun and cowboys riding the horizon. I booked a full day excursion to the Grand Canyon. When my mini van got there, the snow had started to fall. One of our small group, a woman from Europe, dressed in "desert" clothing, light clothing and street shoes, walked into the gift shop. She came back to admire the Canyon look adorned in layers of sweatshirts, a baseball cap that provides only a marginal improvement from the cold!

Another surprise: As a kid, I had joined my schoolmates by crooning "House on the string … where the fir roam". This was more legend than reality since it seems that there are only American "bison".

Extra day trips from the Scottsdale area include a large colony of artists, Sedona, which ranges from 20th-century Frank Lloyd Wright architecture to the unforgettable natural red rock landscapes. One hiking opportunity is the Apache Trail with nearby Goldfield Ghost Town, eventually ending at Roosevelt Dam.

In any case, it was a fun trip I would recommend. The only downside? When traveling, I prefer to be away from a variety of sights.

A very different, but equally good, Christmas-themed trip to Santa Fe, New Mexico. There was a lot of snow that was very seasonal but better still was the historic city itself. There were numerous restaurants, shops and local monuments, such as the Basilica of St. Francis Cathedral. The latter was recently built in the late 1800s but serves a 400 year old parish. Native Americans offered jewelry and other items, the most popular of which were turquoise and silver necklaces, earrings and even belt bundles. (Earlier in November Santa Fe hosts the SWAIA Indian Winter Market.)

Santa Fe day trips include:

• Taos

• Abiquiú

• Turquoise footprint

• Bandelier National Monument with 70 miles of hiking trails

• Georgia House O & # 39; Keefe

• Pecos National Park

• For a change of pace, Las Vegas is also within limits.

Taos in addition to its views, the route is famous for its somewhat challenging ski slopes. Although an Intermediate Skiing Ski, I carefully drove my skis to Santa Fe anticipating a day ski trip to Taos. Unfortunately though I arrived on time for practically daily snowfall, my trip coincided with Christmas week. As a result, the minivan passenger services I contacted were all unavailable. The locals discouraged me to rent a car to make an unfamiliar mountain drive only during heavy snowfall. A creative solution was to stroll the mountain and hope to find one in return. I dismissed the possibility of being stuck at night looking for one day accommodation while enjoying the region around Santa Fe.

I have found throughout the year both Arizona and New Mexico good choices for travelers only. However, for side trips to national parks check ahead for winter closures.