IIT WAS A SURREAL SIGHT. A couple of giant snorkellers amid a school of fish floating in the sky. The tableau was actually a group of large kites, hovering in the wind over Delray Beach in Florida’s Palm Beaches region. Canadian Geographic Travel’s creative director Javier Frutos snapped the photo of the scene ( above) as he and I toured the area this past April (see “From polo to paddleboarding” on page 11 for more highlights from our trip). We wouldn’t have seen the dreamlike display, as well as a few other notable spots, had we not decided to take advantage of a morning off in our itinerary to go exploring on our own. Rather than lounge poolside at the beautiful PGA National Resort and Spa, Frutos and I decided to leave early for our lateafternoon Flamingo Quest Tour and head in its general starting direction. We pulled up Google Maps and drove south on South Ocean Boulevard, which runs along the Atlantic Coast, from West Palm Beach to Boca Raton, figuring it was sure, if nothing else, to offer impressive coastal vistas. The drive didn’t disappoint. We stopped briefly at legendary hotel The Breakers, the opulent resort modelled after the Villa Medici in Rome. Built by American industrialist Henry M. Flagler in 1896, the property is considered to have established the area as a luxurious getaway destination. South of the resort, we passed dozens of seaside mansions, each seemingly more impressive than the last, including U.S. President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-lago estate. And we unofficially concluded our surprise side trip with a fantastic lunch at the recommended-by-a-local Waterstone Bar & Grill (fish tacos!), which overlooks the confluence of Boca Raton Inlet and Lake Boca Raton. We’d have missed it all if we hadn’t gone off script. I’m certain you’ll enjoy the stories we’ve gathered in this issue on foreign destinations, many of which are Canadian favourites. And if you visit any of them, or on any of your future travels, don’t forget to set aside some time to just follow your instincts. You never know what you might discover.