A TRIP TO RE­MEM­BER

D I S C O v E R F O U R T R a N S F O R mat I v E va C at I O N S y O U C a N Ta k E I N T h E U N I T E D S TAT E S

WKND - - Footloose -

With the busy travel sea­son com­ing up, peo­ple are comb­ing through travel web­sites and brochures look­ing to find their ideal va­ca­tion des­ti­na­tion. Some search for stun­ning ex­am­ples of wilder­ness while oth­ers seek a cul­tural ex­pe­ri­ence, a chance to taste new foods, visit his­toric sights and see a dif­fer­ent side of life. For those seek­ing to make their va­ca­tion fun as well as ed­u­ca­tional and en­rich­ing, there are a host of pho­tog­ra­phy work­shops, such as the Canon Live Learn­ing Des­ti­na­tion pro­gramme in the US, that not only of­fer a chance to see some amaz­ing places, but also pro­vide in­struc­tions on memo­ri­al­is­ing their ex­pe­ri­ences through dig­i­tal imag­ing and pho­tog­ra­phy.

Am­a­teur and pro­fes­sional pho­tog­ra­phers can travel to des­ti­na­tions around the United States and learn from mas­ter pho­tog­ra­phers at the pin­na­cle of their craft. Par­tic­i­pants can choose from a num­ber of des­ti­na­tions where they can ex­per­i­ment with dif­fer­ent cam­eras and lenses, get ex­pert feed­back on their im­ages and go home with prints that show­case their ex­pe­ri­ence and new pho­tog­ra­phy skills.

To help in­spire your next va­ca­tion, one that can be re­lax­ing, fun, ed­u­ca­tional and give you an eye- open­ing per­spec­tive on the world, here are some of the best places to dis­cover — or re­dis­cover, as the case may be — in Amer­ica.

The best place to ex­pe­ri­ence the moun­tains: The Rock Moun­tains in Aspen, Colorado. Few things are as dra­matic a the moun­tains, and few moun­tains are as iconic as the Colorad Rock­ies. In the heart of these moun­tains is the fa­mous ski- tow n of Aspen, which has be­come a vi­brant com­mu­nity filled with world- class din­ing and shop­ping. Just out­side this small but cos­mopoli­tan town are cow­boys and cow­girls, rock climbers and other devo­tees of the rugged life who have made their home in one of the most stun­ning and un­for­get­table land­scapes of North Amer­ica.

The best place to view wa­ter­falls: The Great Smoky Moun­tains in Gatlin­burg, Ten­nessee. Vis­i­tors who wake early to see the sun cut through the mist gath­ered in the val­leys know why these are called “smoky” moun­tains. Known for its en­vi­ron­men­tal diver­sity, the Great Smoky Moun­tains have an abun­dant amount of wild­flow­ers, vistas, an­i­mals and his­toric set­tle­ments. Tucked away in these moun­tains are some of the most scenic wa­ter­falls in the coun­try. While not as fa­mous as Ni­a­gara or Yosemite Falls, these won­ders re­main one of the best- kept se­crets in the United States.

The best place for stargaz­ing: Moab, Utah. Peo­ple are of­ten amazed by how bright the stars ap­pear out­side of the city. But to re­ally get the full ef­fect of the stars, you have to go far away from any hu­man set­tle­ment, such as the desert of Utah. Here, the Milky Way and its thick star clus­ters fire across the sky in a way that has to be seen to be be­lieved. It’s a sight ev­ery­one needs to see once in their lives.

The best place to be charmed: Tie be­tween the New Eng­land Sea­side and Sa­van­nah, Ge­or­gia. There’s no bet­ter way to take in a sense of Amer­ica’s past than by vis­it­ing one of these ocean­side des­ti­na­tions. Sa­van­nah’s cob­ble­stone streets, city squares and nu­mer­ous Rev­o­lu­tion­ary and Civil War era sites cre­ate a vi­brant pic­ture of the Old South. Far to the north, the fish­ing vil­lages of Mas­sachusetts, with the light­houses, ships and, of course, chowder and clam bakes, of­fer a glimpse into a way of life that was once com­mon through­out the coun­try.

The in­evitable down­side of any great va­ca­tion is that it al­ways seems too short. But with the right cam­era skills, you can take amaz­ing pic­tures that are good enough to print, share with oth­ers or hang on your wall. These phys­i­cal prints are not only mem­o­ries. As works of art you cre­ated, they are a truly mean­ing­ful way to pre­serve your ex­pe­ri­ence.

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