As international travel stays limited, you may want to consider vacationing near a military base. Not only are local hotels more likely to have military discounts, but you can opt to stay in a Navy Lodge, in Space-A Lodging, or other military lodging options. Note: Most of these are top places for outdoor activities specifically, since these are the activities most likely to be open.
Virginia Beach, VA
Home to NAS Oceana and several other military bases and annexes, Virginia Beach is a great place to vacation in the fall or winter. In fall, temperatures often stay warm even through November, and the beaches are mostly empty. There are fireworks on the beach on New Years, and during the Christmas season, the Boardwalk is decorated with Holiday Lights at the Beach – a spectacular light show that you drive through.
San Diego, CA
Home to Naval Base San Diego and a number of other bases, San Diego often sees 70-degree weather into December. Don’t miss the San Diego Zoo, and for a romantic getaway, spend a day at the famous and luxurious Hotel Coronado on Coronado Island – the tour is well worth the time, and you can indulge in the spa, restaurants, shopping and other amenities.
Borders may be closed to a lot of topical destinations, but Hawaii is still open, and its beaches and trails are its most popular attractions. Naval Station Pearl Harbor is adjacent to Honolulu. Note: Visitors to Hawaii from other states must show proof of a negative test. Also check out the beautiful island of O’ahu, home to Marine Corps Base Hawaii.
Fort Buchanan is located in San Juan, and the island is home to other Army bases as well. This is your best bet if you’re looking for a Caribbean getaway this winter. Old San Juan is famous for its colorful Spanish colonial buildings, massive fortresses with sweeping ocean views. Get a dose of history along with some beach time.
Colorado Springs, CO
Fort Carson is located in the southern part of Colorado Springs, and you’ll find plenty of fall and winter activities to do here – from mountain climbing to hiking to waterfalls. Check out the Air Force Academy Planetarium and the Rock Ledge Ranch Historic Site.
Key West, FL
You’ll want to check on COVID cases in Key West before you plan travel, but if things are looking up, this is an amazing place to visit this fall. Bike down Duval Street; see Hemingway’s house and the descendents of his many cats; eat Key Lime pie; take a sunset sail; and visit the Keys Eco-Discovery Center.
There are a number of military bases in Alaska: Eielson Air Force Base – southeast of Fairbanks; Elmendorf Air Force Base – Anchorage; Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson – Anchorage; Fort Greely – Delta Junction; Fort Richardson – Anchorage; Fort Wainwright – Fairbanks; Seward Military Resort – Seward. For winter enthusiasts, you can’t get much better than Alaska. Tour a glacier; see the Alaska Zoo; go whale watching; go snowshoeing; ride a dogsled; and climb the many spectacular mountain trails.