Not only does laid-back Honolulu make the list
of the top three U.S. cities with the cleanest air,
according to the American Lung Association, you also
can combine your trip to the Hawaiian hotspot with sunning
and surfing opportunities at a trio of Blue Flag
winning beaches on the Big Island: Keauhou Landing and
Halape Shelter in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, and
Ka' aha Beach in Hawaii Volcanoes National Seashore.
Delicious, new, upscale boutique haven Hotel Renew (129
Paokalani Ave.; 808-687-7700; from $185) is quite a
departure from the clichéd Waikiki tiki touches
and torches that usually feature this close to the
beach. Renew is a refreshingly chic, understated designer
2. SANTA FE
In the top three cities for cleanest air in the U.S.,
the progressive, gay-friendly beacon of Santa Fe lures
creative, spiritual and outdoorsy types.
Cool off at Ten Thousand Waves (3451 Hyde Park Rd;
505-982-9304), a Japanese-inspired spa retreat with
serene hot tubs. To continue the indulgence, Inn of
the Anasazi (113 Washington Ave; 505-988-3030; from
$459) is a gorgeous, intimate adobe hotel just steps away
from the Santa Fe Plaza.
The Spa Capital of the World is a fantastic
health-conscious choice for a vacation. Not only do
you have some of the world's most decadent spas from
which to choose, but the humidity-free desert air and
300-plus days of sunshine are sure to help you relax
Spend the entire day at Spa Avania at Hyatt Regency
Scottsdale Gainey Ranch (7500 E. Doubletree Ranch Rd.;
480-483-5558). Avania guests progress through 16
carefully chosen moods and tempos of music en route to
the changing facilities. Massages are also synchronized to
the energy of the time of day, with music to match.
Spa visitors can take restorative dips in the co-ed
French mineral pool, sip iced mint ginger water under
palm trees and enjoy separate women's and men's eucalyptus
rooms, rain and relaxation lounges.
Head north and join those fitness-conscious
Vancouverites as they pelt the trails round Stanley
Park, trek up the infamous Ground Grind up Grouse
Mountain and hop into kayaks in False Creek. This fit city
is always on the go.
As glitteringly beautiful as Vancouver itself,
the Opus Hotel (322 Davie St; 604-642-6787; from $239)
adds boutique hotel chic to already hip Yaletown, mere
steps from downtown shopping and the gay West End. The
97-room hotel is just feet from the Seawall and has mountain
bikes for guests to use.
5. FIRE ISLAND
Feel healthy as you splash at the two Fire
Island National Seashore beaches that can proudly wave
blue flags this summer (Sunken Forest Beach and Watch
Cherry Grove Beach Hotel (631-597-6600; from
$75) is a bit more respectable than some of its
competition, though it is part of the Ice Palace, the
Grove's entertainment complex -- and therefore also party