An all-inclusive trip can be a vacation wonderland under one umbrella—activities all around, pampering treatments at a spa, eclectic evening entertainment and restaurant options for every taste. But what do you do when your travel budget can’t swing that kind of expense? Don’t worry! These six destinations give you the ability to turn your trip into an affordable all-inclusive vacation.
A Beach Day With All the Perks in Clearwater, Florida
You can stay at an affordable Clearwater hotel and still re-create a sun-baked beach day like you’d get at an all-inclusive resort. Head to Caddy’s on the Beach, in nearby Treasure Island—it's a Florida favorite. Caddy’s sits directly on Sunset Beach, and regulars come for seafood baskets, live music, complimentary lounge chairs and a tropically inspired drink menu that’s heavy on tequila. More private cabana options are available for rent (with a minimum food and beverage purchase) if you’re in the mood to splurge, and for the family crowd, there are breakfast and kids’ meal options.
On-the-Water Activities at Smith Mountain Lake in Roanoke, Virginia
Resorts greet you with activity manuals packed with ideas for on-property entertainment, local cultural excursions and full-day trips. But independent travelers can organize unique outings, too—without the resort markup. One beautiful option? Combine city time in Roanoke with an escape to nature at Smith Mountain Lake, just an hour’s drive south of many Roanoke hotels. Here, more than 500 miles of shoreline sit in the shadow of the Blue Ridge Mountains, and it’s all primed for watersports, lakeside walks and boat trips. One of the most popular options is a half-day cruise aboard the Virginia Dare (from $20 per person).
Entertainment Crawl on the Myrtle Beach Boardwalk in South Carolina
You can have an all-inclusive experience at Broadway on the Beach in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Photo Credit: broadwayatthebeach.com
If your goal is to re-create an all-inclusive’s easy access to seemingly endless entertainment options, book a hotel in Myrtle Beach near Broadway at the Beach. It's your go-to spot for all-day recreation. Here you’ll find more than 70 stores, dozens of dining options (including Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen and Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville) and evening entertainment. Whether you’re into the Legends in Concert tribute show or the evening fireworks that light the sky, this spot has you covered.
Best Flavors Under One Roof at NYC's Coney Island
Coney Island is known for its boardwalk culture, fairground attractions and countless hot dog vendors. But when you stay in this Brooklyn neighborhood, you'll see that the culinary scene here is also making a name for itself thanks to the launch of the full-service food hall, Kitchen 21. Perfect for groups, picky eaters or anyone looking for an all-day eat-a-thon under one roof, it’s a multi-restaurant destination with options that include seafood, farm-to-table fare and a rooftop bar with ocean views. The Community Clam Bar’s signature Raw-Bar-in-a-Box is a splurge-worthy feast of oysters, clams, shrimp and lobster, but there are also quick-bite options like sandwiches, empanadas and salads throughout the food hall. After-dinner entertainment can be found next door at the new Ford Amphitheater, an outdoor venue for live music, fairs, dance parties and kids shows.
New Waves of Relaxation Along the Pacific Coast of Portland, Oregon
If you don’t have access to an in-house spa or a rooftop pool, you’ll need to look elsewhere for your vacation relaxation fix. A stay in Portland offers a unique and intriguing option: Float On, a floatation therapy center that focuses on sensory deprivation and gravity-free environments. Devotees claim floatation therapy helps with a range of maladies, such as chronic pain and depression. (Or maybe it just helps you channel that vacation state of mind a little bit faster.) Float On has six tanks and is open 24 hours a day; sessions run from 90 minutes to two and a half hours of floating bliss, and start at $65.
Yoga on 3rd Street Beach in Miami, Florida
Find your balance—affordably—at public yoga studios like Miami’s 3rd Street Beach Yoga.
An on-site yoga studio is a pampering perk found at many all-inclusive resorts, but yogis visiting Miami can get their practice in and meet the locals at a public class like the ones at Miami Beach’s 3rd Street Beach Yoga. Classes have a simple formula: Meet on the beach at either 7 a.m. or 6 p.m., bring your own towel—no one likes a sandy yoga mat—and pay what you want. There are also monthly full-moon meditation sessions at the same spot.