Summer Secrets We Learned in 2015

Photo Director Amy Lundeen: Cape Cod, MassachusettsPhoto Editor Whitney Tressel: Northern Territory, AustraliaSenior Editor Jamie Beckman: Paris, FranceDigital Editor Kaeli Conforti: Montauk, NYDirector, Business Development Michelle Craig: Lake Muskegon, MichiganLead Developer Chad Harter: Niagara Falls, CanadaEditor In Chief Robert Firpo-Cappiello: Rye, NYMarketing Manager Jennifer O'Brien: Miami, FloridaMarketing Associate Rosalie Tinelli: Willemstad, CuracaoDigital Project Manager Ruthie Kaposi: Seven President’s Beach, New JerseySoutheast Advertising Manager Jeannea Spence: Cozumel, MexicoAdvertising Manager Maureen Kelley Stewart: New York, NYMedia Relations Amy Mironov: Lucerne, Switzerland
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Cape Cod, Massachusetts. "A perfect summer afternoon at Lighthouse Beach in Chatham, MA. There is no place at the beach to get a cold drink, but a few blocks toward town is Cape Abilities. (It's the bright green house; you can't miss it!) They have cold drinks, snacks, and sand toys. If you stop on your way home you can also pick up local veggies, fresh pies, local artists' work, Chatham hats and T-shirts, homemade jams, and local souvenirs galore! Don't miss Wednesday afternoon pie-eating contests in the summer, too! —Amy Lundeen, Photo Director
Amy Lundeen
Northern Territory, Australia. "Don't go all the way to Australia without experiencing the Outback! This image is from my favorite hike in the Northern Territory: the Ghost Gum Walk of Ormiston Gorge. Though winter (our northern hemisphere's summer) comes with some cold nights, it's worth exploring during its mild, sunny days without as many creepy crawly creatures at your feet!" —Whitney Tressel, Photo Editor
Whitney Tressel
Paris, France. "Stock up for your Parisian picnic at patisserie/boulangerie Gérard Mulot. The pastries and petits fours taste as good as they look. When ordering, be polite and use French phrases—the young women behind the busy counter appreciate it (baguettes from about $1.25)." —Jamie Beckman, Senior Editor
Jamie Beckman
Montauk, NY. "Two words: shoulder season. My mother, sister, and I did a girls’ trip to Montauk, Long Island, in early June, right before the start of high season, and found fewer crowds on the beach, decent weather, and rates almost half of what they would be in the next few weeks. Another great time to visit (for the same reasons) is in September when everything is still open but the kids have gone back to school. Translation: more beaches—and lobster—for you!" —Kaeli Conforti, Digital Editor
Kaeli Conforti
Lake Muskegon in Muskegon, MI (harbor to Lake Michigan). "Stay at a nice hotel room with a beautiful view off Lake Michigan, and drive to P.J. Hoffmaster State Park to spend a day at the beach of Lake Michigan for free." —Michelle Craig, Director, Business Development
Michelle Craig
Niagara Falls, Canada. "Visiting the falls from the Canadian side is notably cheaper, has more attractions, and is safer for families as opposed to the U.S. side. When I went, the traffic seemed less crowded on the Canadian side as well—just remember to bring a passport if you need to cross the border!" —Chad Harter, Lead Developer
Chad Harter
Rye, NY. "My family and I loved summer Fridays at Rye Playland on Long Island Sound, with its iconic Ferris wheel, terrifying Dragon Coaster, and spectacular fireworks show. Although the park closed for the season on Labor Day, it'll be open again for the Scared by the Sound haunted attractions in October!" —Robert Firpo-Cappiello, Editor-In-Chief
Robert Firpo-Cappiello
Miami, Florida. "I love the retro style of Miami. Sign up for a bar crawl to save money and meet people." —Jennifer O'Brien, Marketing Manager
Jennifer O'Brien
Willemstad, Curacao. "Be sure to explore the island! If you don't have a car, many rental companies will accommodate a 1-day rental. This way, you can get off the beach and see things like the Curacao Ostrich Farm, Hato Caves, and the SEAquarium, great activities for Sundays when much of Willemstad is closed." —Rosalie Tinelli, Marketing Associate
Rosalie Tinelli
Seven President’s Beach, New Jersey. "Here’s Isaac at Seven President’s Beach in New Jersey. It has nearby parking and bathrooms, which are key when going with small kids!" — Ruthie Kaposi, Digital Project Manager
Ruthie Kaposi
Cozumel, Mexico. "I went on a cruise with my high school friends. I've been on quite a few cruises and I've done the cruise-sponsored excursions as well as adventures that I booked on my own. My tip is to choose something where you're not part of a huge group of people off the cruise ship, like a jeep excursion or a scooter ride where a small group of you can get off the beaten path together. Fun, fun, fun!" —Jeannea Spence, Southeast Advertising Manager
Jeannea Spence
New York, NY. "The view from the new One World Trade Center is truly panoramic and stunning—even on a somewhat cloudy afternoon. The photo was taken on the 100th floor and is focused on my neighborhood—Brooklyn Heights—from high above. My only tip is to book in advance for the precise time you will go. The elevator ride up to the top is incredible with animations featuring Manhattan as it was when the first settlers arrived to the present day. You view this as you ascend. There is another "movie" before you actually see the view from this state-of-the-art observation center, with terrific, friendly guides articulating what you are seeing. Well worth the $30 ticket price. And by booking even just a a few hours in advance, you beat the horrors of standing in long lines. We loved it." —Maureen Kelley Stewart, Advertising Manager
Maureen Kelley Stewart
Lucerne, Switzerland. "In Lucerne, head to the top of the Alps. Bring a boxed lunch instead of eating on the summit of Mount Pilatus where the food is mediocre and priced for tourists. Better yet, enjoy that boxed lunch during the second part of the descent in the smaller cable car where you often have the cabin to yourself and it takes some time to return to the base." —Amy Mironov, Media Relations
Amy Mironov

Whether you want to squeeze one more trip out of summer 2015 or start planning next year's fun, the Budget Travel editors are sharing the top tips we picked up on our own vacations. Enjoy!

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