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Cool in Red Rock Country: Sedona, Arizona

When I was a senior in high school, my family took an Arizona vacation. It was the height of summer, and my parents were able to get an amazing deal on a fancy resort in Phoenix, since it was 114-degrees outside and no one in their right mind would want to vacation in an oven. So we spent our entire time in Phoenix in the hotel swimming pool. And, after that, we went to visit the red-rock town of Sedona, which was a relief at about 20 degrees cooler, and which leaves an impression on me to this day.

Discover Florida’s Emerald Coast: Panama City Vacation Deals

I just got back from a weeklong visit to my hometown. You’re probably conjuring up idyllic scenes of Main Street, U.S.A., but I hail from the Panhandle of Florida. Instead, I was treated to stretches of sugar-white beaches, boiled peanuts, and crystal-clear waters.

As gorgeous as my old stomping grounds are, they’re still pretty quiet in terms of tourism. Here’s my Local’s Guide to the Emerald Coast, including stops in Panama City Beach, Rosemary Beach, Destin, and more. Shop our Florida vacation deals now and keep reading to plan your trip.

Road Trip: Cooling Off at Carlsbad Caverns

Please join us in welcoming guest author Joel Frey, one of the Travelocity Roaming Gnome’s most trusted publicists.

As my wife, Heather, and I entered Carlsbad Caverns, my mind immediately hearkened back to elementary school.

“What’s the difference between a stalactite and a stalagmite?” I asked with my inside voice to prevent any echoes from revealing my lack of knowledge in the geosciences.

“Stalactites hang tight from the ceiling and stalagmites grow mighty from the ground,” Heather said. I paused for a moment, waiting to see if she’d follow up with a “duh,” but she resisted. I think.

(photo of Carlsbad Caverns courtesy of Heather Frey)

Summer Travel Coupon Codes: Get Something for Nothing

Working for Travelocity, I necessarily spend a great deal of time on our web site hunting down the very best hotel deals. Time and time again, I come across promotional — or coupon — codes in our top destinations. Here’s the gist: enter a code at checkout, get X dollars off your trip (typically between $50 – $100). The trick is, however, to actually know about the promo codes and apply them to your booking. And frankly — sorry Travelocity but it’s true — these codes are often buried and not at all easy to find.