With a record-breaking number of American travelers heading abroad this summer, unprecedented passport processing delays could spell disaster for many. Fortunately, you don’t have to be passport-dependent for an amazing summer getaway. Consider exploring three amazing U.S. territories, each offering beauty and adventure without the crowds or the paperwork. From the Northern Mariana Islands to Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, these destinations offer endless outdoor adventures, a unique blend of cultures, rich history, and affordable accessibility. Explore the lush tropical jungles, hike through stunning mountains, and witness the beauty of the underwater world up close. Let’s take a closer look at what these locales have to offer.
Discover the Northern Mariana Islands
Americans are booking their summer vacations. While popular destinations like Hawaii and Florida are sure to be crowded, why not consider a lesser-known destination that offers all the beauty and adventure without the crowds? We’re talking about the Northern Mariana Islands.
Located in the western Pacific Ocean, the Northern Mariana Islands are a group of 14 islands that offer a unique and unforgettable travel experience. Here are just a few reasons why you should consider adding the Northern Mariana Islands to your summer travel itinerary:
Endless Outdoor Adventures
If you’re an adventurer at heart, you’ll find plenty to keep you occupied in the Northern Mariana Islands. The islands boast some of the world’s best diving and snorkeling sites, where you can witness the beauty of the underwater world up close. You can also explore the lush tropical jungles and hike through stunning mountains that offer breathtaking views of the islands. For those who love water sports, you can try kayaking, paddleboarding, and even windsurfing. The Northern Mariana Islands are a playground for outdoor enthusiasts.
The Unique Blend of Cultures
The Northern Mariana Islands are a melting pot of cultures, and this is reflected in the island’s cuisine, festivals, and architecture. The native Chamorro people have their own unique traditions and customs, and you can experience their culture through dance performances, music, and local cuisine. The islands are also home to a significant Filipino population, which has influenced the local cuisine, and you can find delicious dishes like chicken adobo and pancit on the islands.
World War II History
The Northern Mariana Islands played a crucial role in World War II, and you can explore the remnants of this history on the islands. You can visit sites like the American Memorial Park, which honors those who died during the Battle of Saipan. You can also visit the last command post, where Japanese soldiers made their final stand against American forces. For aviation enthusiasts, you can head to the Tinian Airfield, where the Enola Gay took off to drop the atomic bomb on Hiroshima.
Affordable and Accessible
One of the best things about the Northern Mariana Islands is that they are affordable and accessible. Flights from the mainland are usually fairly affordable, and there are plenty of budget-friendly accommodation options on the islands. Because the islands are still relatively unknown, you can explore without the crowds, and you won’t have to pay a premium to do it.
The Northern Mariana Islands offer amazing travel experiences that are unmatched by other, more popular destinations. From the endless outdoor adventures to the unique blend of cultures and rich World War II history, there’s something for everyone on these stunning islands. So why not break away from the crowds and explore the beauty and culture of the Northern Mariana Islands this summer?
Paradise in Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico is a destination that has something to offer for everyone, from family fun to adrenaline-fueled adventures. Here are a few reasons why you should visit Puerto Rico this summer:
Puerto Rico has a vibrant food scene, with a blend of Spanish, African, and indigenous influences. The island is known for its seafood, plantains, and a variety of tropical fruits. You can find everything from street food vendors to upscale restaurants offering farm-to-table cuisine. Be sure to try the mofongo, a popular dish made of mashed plantains stuffed with meat or seafood.
Puerto Rico is home to stunning natural beauty, from the lush rainforests to the turquoise waters. You can hike in the El Yunque rainforest, which boasts breathtaking waterfalls and exotic wildlife. Or you can explore the island’s bioluminescent bays, which light up at night with glowing plankton. For a more relaxed experience, visit one of the island’s many beaches.
Rich Culture and History
Puerto Rico has a unique blend of cultures, and this is reflected in its architecture, music, and art. You can explore the historic Old San Juan, which is filled with colorful buildings, cobblestone streets, and ancient forts. You can also visit the Museum of Art of Puerto Rico, which houses an extensive collection of Caribbean art.
If you’re a thrill-seeker, Puerto Rico has plenty to offer. You can try surfing, kitesurfing, or stand-up paddleboarding. If that’s not exciting enough, there’s always ziplining through the rainforest, exploring caves, or hiking to a waterfall. Whatever your preference, you’re sure to find an adventure that suits you.
Whether you’re looking for adventure, relaxation, culture, or cuisine, Puerto Rico is calling you this summer. Ready to experience all that this tropical paradise has to offer?
Explore the U.S. Virgin Islands
The U.S. Virgin Islands is a group of islands located in the Caribbean Sea that offer a unique blend of natural beauty, culture, and history. Here are some reasons why you should consider visiting the U.S. Virgin Islands this summer:
The U.S. Virgin Islands is home to some of the most unique and diverse ecosystems in the world. You can explore the mangrove forests in St. Thomas, which are home to a variety of birds, fish, and other wildlife. Or you can visit the Coral World Ocean Park in St. Thomas, which is a marine park that offers eco-tours, underwater observatories, and marine animal encounters.
Music and Festivals
The U.S. Virgin Islands has a vibrant music and festival scene, with events happening throughout the year. One of the most popular festivals is Carnival, which takes place in St. Thomas and St. John every summer. It’s a colorful celebration with parades, music, and traditional food. You can also attend concerts, jazz festivals, and other cultural events throughout the year.
The U.S. Virgin Islands has a variety of luxury accommodations, from boutique hotels to five-star resorts. Many of these properties are located on the beach and offer stunning ocean views. You can also find villas and private homes for rent if you’re looking for a more secluded or intimate getaway.
The U.S. Virgin Islands is a paradise for water sports enthusiasts, with a wide variety of activities to choose from. You can go windsurfing, kiteboarding, or wakeboarding in the calm waters of the Caribbean Sea. Or you can try your hand at deep-sea fishing, sailing, or jet skiing. Whatever your preference, you’re sure to find a water sport that suits you.
In summary, the U.S. Virgin Islands offer a wealth of experiences for travelers looking for a unique and unforgettable vacation. From ecotourism and luxury accommodations to music festivals and water sports, there’s something for everyone on these beautiful islands. So why not plan a trip to the U.S. Virgin Islands this summer and experience all that this tropical paradise has to offer?
Trip Insurance & the U.S. Territories
These three destinations are perfect for those looking for a vacation that is both adventurous and culturally rich. With all of these incredible destinations right here in the United States, there’s no need to worry about passport processing delays or international travel restrictions. So, start planning your summer escape to one of these amazing destinations, and get ready for an unforgettable experience.
But before you explore all these territories have to offer. Although your U.S. healthcare may cover you, you may run into challenges due to the infrastructure of the territories. Fortunately, trip insurance not only covers you for trip-related expenses related to trip cancellations, delays, and luggage mishaps, but it also comes with an Accident & Sickness benefit which offers coverage for urgently needed medical care. To learn more head over to VisitorsCoverage or reach out to our licensed travel insurance experts before you head out. Want more travel inspiration, visit our destinations page.