Looking for the perfect spot for a weekend getaway or maybe an exotic vacation destination? Check out these recommendations from members of our Smith School community. Professors, students and alumni from the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business offer up their favorite vacation spots. This article was originally published on July 28, 2014.
1. Camden, Maine
“Thinking Americana summer, Camden, Maine, is a little known gem,” says Marcus De Paula ’08, MBA ’13. “Days are perfect with crisp air, an incredibly dramatic coastline and phenomenal seafood. It’s an easy, long-weekend escape that feels much more removed than just a few hours from Washington, D.C.”
“Bermuda has beautiful beaches with calm ocean waters… and no sharks,” says Wendy Moe, Professor of Marketing and Director of MS in Marketing Analytics.
3. Orlando, Florida
“Vacation means The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios Islands of Adventure, in Orlando, Fla.,” says recent grad Sara Ali ’14. “My sister and I are the adventurous kind instead of beach lovers!”
Current student Khris ’17 couldn’t pick just one top spot. She says, “Australia, Brazil and Malaysia all have great weather, beautiful beaches and friendly people.”
5. Virgin Gorda, British Virgin Islands
“Probably my favorite vacation spot is the Bitter End Yacht Club on Virgin Gorda in the British Virgin Islands, but only when it is cold here,” says Hank Lucas, Robert H. Smith Professor of Information Systems.
6. Amalfi Coast, Italy
“We just wrapped up a trip to the Amalfi coast in Italy. It was a fabulous experience that had me glued to my camera to try to capture everything: Towns built on cliffs, crystal clear water and beautifully presented food,” says Marcus De Paula ’08, MBA ’13.
7. Sorrento, Italy
Don Kandel, MBA ’10, is also a big fan of Italy. “The people were great and friendly. The climate is warm and inviting. The food is excellent. The tourists are relaxed and open – we met several different couples on our trips to Pompeii and elsewhere, and spent part of our days with them and had a number of lunches with people from Germany, Australia, U.S., Spain and England.”
8. Outer Banks, North Carolina
One of the most popular vacation spots in the mid-Atlantic region is the Outer Banks, N.C. Paul Shulman ’07 was on vacation there earlier this month. Why is it so great? “Beaches, people, houses, town, active community and proximity to College Park,” says Shulman.
9. Bali, Indonesia
Indonesia is home to some of the most beautiful island beaches in the world. “Bali, Raja Ampat Islands, and Wakatobi all have clear water, great diving spots, water sports, and a great culture,” says current student Kristine ’15.
10. Ocean City, Maryland
It goes without saying that the top vacation spot in Maryland is Ocean City. “I’ve been going to Ocean City every year since I was a baby and when I think ‘vacation,’ I think OCMD,” says Alissa Arford ’94, MBA ’10. “The beaches, the Boardwalk, the food, the people-watching… it doesn’t get any better than goin’ down the ocean, hon!”
Thailand is a traveler's dream, whether the focus of your visit is exploring the country’s rich culture, sampling spectacular food, relaxing on stunning beaches, or shopping at street markets and towering malls. Recent grad Julia ’14 says Thailand is her favorite vacation destination because: “It has beautiful beaches, fun cities and it’s extremely cheap.”
12. Leh-Ladakh, India
Sagar Guwalani ’14 should be on the tourism board for Leh-Ladakh, India. He gives such a beautiful recommendation that we couldn’t edit it down! “By any standard and from any perspective, the Leh-Ladakh journey has epic written all over it,” says Guwalani. “With roads that open up for only a few months a year, these roads will test you, scare you, shock you and leave you spellbound. You will believe life is beautiful! The region offers some of the best landscapes on earth. The journey across the unexplored Himalayan wonderland is one of the best road trips on earth! It is hard to describe the feeling when you drive along those mountain ranges or dip your feet in a cool stream near a village. It is not a destination but truly a journey that the traveler in you must feel. This is one destination that hasn't been really discovered. Nothing prepares you for Leh-Ladakh. Majestic beauty, rugged terrains await your arrival.”
What’s your favorite vacation destination? Let us know in the comments section below.