Nathan Lump, Vice President, Expedia  

Recently relocated from Brooklyn, this Expedia marketing executive and former Editor-in-Chief of Travel + Leisure gave us his thoughts on where to go if (when) you’re thinking about getting out of the PNW. Particularly now, with many of the hotels and Airbnbs within driving distance of Seattle are pretty well booked up for the rest of the summer. Of the places he wants to go this summer, he says, “Cities are where you’ll find especially good availability, and usually mean you won’t need to rent a car — a current challenge in many markets where cars are hard to come by.” Here are five places he’s looking forward to flying off to. 

Portland

Portland is an easy drive, of course, but if you don’t have wheels or want to avoid the traffic, it’s also a super quick flight (or train ride) from Seattle. The food cart scene is hotter than ever — check out newcomers Moore Food & Co., Poppyseed, and the stellar pod Collective Oregon Eateries. I’m also a big fan of the furniture shopping and Portland’s got an amazing selection vintage furniture and décor places like Look Modern, Legacy Modern, 20th Century Interiors, Midnight Sunlight, and Red Snapper.

Honolulu

I’ve always been a fan of Honolulu as a destination in and of itself — you get the sun and sand we all love, but also a healthy dose of urban fun and culture. And you can get around without a car. There’s so much do to: The farmer’s market at Diamond Head is a gem; on a walk around Chinatown you’ll find great food, bars, art, and shopping (make a night of it with cocktails at Bar Leather Apron and dinner at Senia); there’s a Shakespeare Festival in August; and one of my favorite museums, Doris Duke’s Shangri La, is reopening to visitors this summer (be sure to reserve your tour in advance).

Pacific Mexico

Before and even during the pandemic, a number of new resorts opened in Los Cabos, including a number of stylish high-end properties, so if you’re looking to splurge on some R&R, there are few better spots. You really are spoiled for choice: check out the Nobu, the Montage, the Zadún and the new Four Seasons. If you’re looking for something really new, the gorgeous and luxe eco-resort One&Only Mandarina just opened in Riviera Nayarit, an easy hop from Puerta Vallarta.

New York

My former hometown has come roaring back, perhaps more than any other city in the U.S., so if you’ve been missing urban energy, it’s a great bet this summer. I want to check out the city’s newest park, Little Island, try a few new restaurants (top of my list: Daniel Boulud’s Le Pavillon and Gabriel Stulman’s Jolene), and see the Frick Collection‘s fantastic collection, which has been transplanted (for a time) from its usual Beaux Arts mansion to Marcel Breuer’s stark modernist building on Madison Avenue.

Iceland

Iceland is open to vaccinated travelers and Icelandair operates easy (and quick!) direct flights to Reykjavik from Seattle. Normally you’ve got to plan a trip here well in advance, but this year it’s still possible to find places to stay if you act now — and it will likely be a less crowded summer to visit. Plus, who doesn’t love an erupting volcano? A pretty spectacular one, Fagradalsfjall, recently came back to life after 800 years of dormancy. I’m interested in checking out the new geothermal spa, Sky Lagoon, near Reykjavik, as well as settling in for a few days at a luxurious new spa, Deplar Farm, on the Troll Peninsula.