Why celebrate Valentine’s Day when there’s something so much better out there? Fans of the hit television comedy series Park and Rec know that the day prior to everybody’s most loved (or hated) red-and-pink-infused annual event is Galentine's Day, which was created by the almighty Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler) as a holiday strictly for women to celebrate friendship and girl power. It’s a day for inspiration, described simply as “only the best day of the year!”
Come February 13th, you’ll likely find Knope and all her lady friends leaving their “husbands and boyfriends at home and just kick[ing] it breakfast style.” So why not join in on the fun by celebrating ladies all around the world?! Reminisce, relax, and reconnect with a nice collection of girls-only outings that’ll make you even prouder to be a gal.
Here are six fantastic places to go for a ladies’ Valentines weekend away
1. San Diego
Who doesn’t love endless sunshine, long seaside strolls, and the best fish tacos to be found in the world? If that sounds like an amazing way to spend time with the girls, lather on that SPF 45 and head on over to San Diego, where you’ll find everything from Mission Beach and Pacific Beach Boardwalk (a three-mile esplanade where you can bicycle, rollerblade, or just people-watch), to the San Diego Zoo (where you can gush over cute baby pandas), La Jolla (where you can see sea lions swim), or other beautiful spots like Balboa Park and the Gaslamp district.
Plus, no trip to Southern California is truly SoCal until you stuff up with the nation’s best Mexican food. Find taco shacks, trucks, and huts around practically every street corner. You and the ladies will also love the fact that you can stay at a pink hotel—yes, PINK. Get away to La Valencia, a 1920s-era hotel that once regularly hosted Cary Grant. Swoon.
2. Northern California
Further up north in the Golden State are other opportunities for fun with the girls. Do some wine tasting in Napa Valley or let your senses go bonkers by designing your very own perfume in Ojai at Ojai Resort, where you can book an aromatherapy class to create a smell that’s totally unique to you. Ladies will love blending together an array of aromas to make signature perfumes that are truly one-of-a-kind!
Over in San Jose, there’s even a spot that officially lets you celebrate Galentine’s Day with a special hotel package that’s to die for. Don’t miss out on Hotel Valencia’s “Girlfriend’s Guide to Getaway” that’s sure to be a divine way to spend any Valentine’s weekend.
Do some good without having to think even a second about a man, your man, or men in general by getting charitable in your undies. Sound raunchy? Well, it’s not as horrible as it seems, because come every February, plenty of ladies participate in Cupid’s Undie Run, a totally cool and refreshing way to celebrate Valentine’s Day with the rest of the gals. No boys allowed. Sure, you might be freezing your bums off, but it’ll be for a super great cause, as the annual charity fundraiser helps raise money for the Children’s Tumor Foundation.
Run through the streets of the Mile High City in your under garments with pure pride and your head held high—after, make sure to cool off with the gals with some highly ranked microbrews at the Great Divide’s cool downtown tasting room, or by heading on over to the Cherry Creek neighborhood, where you’ll find an eclectic array of indie shops and even a wine bar where you can “self-sample” from a giant row of taps. What’s more is that if your girlfriends want to bring their pooches along, it’s nice to know that Denver has been ranked near the top for pet friendliness!
If you and the gals love horses and are looking for an authentic cowgirl experience, head on over to Big Sky Country where you’ll get the opportunity to run free at The Ranch at Rock Creek, the world’s only Forbes Travel five-star guest ranch.
It’s a luxurious getaway spot nestled within one of Montana’s most pristine valleys that offers one-of-a-kind vacations on an authentic nineteenth-century homestead. Mix Western adventures with utterly luxurious amenities – better yet, try dozing off inside a nice little glamping tent under the starry night sky. Over six thousand acres of rugged wilderness awaits, so go on and get wild.
5. Las Vegas
Get sinful in Vegas by gambling, dancing, or heading to a show with the gal pals. You all will be having way too much fun to even think about boys-- or perhaps even remember anything at all. These days, ladies seem to dominate on the Strip, as the classic packs of wild-weekend bachelors have been outnumbered by either bride-to-be groups or single girls hoping to let loose and just have some fun.
Sin City ranks near the top for its singles scene, so from gawking over the lovely gardens, fountains, and art at the Bellagio, to sipping on expensive cocktails inside the three-story Chandelier bar at The Cosmopolitan, mosey on down to Vegas to get your Galentine’s party on.
6. Puerto Rico
The area’s definitely more than just white sand beaches, endless rum drinks, and never-ending island sun—but those so sure help! Over the years, the bright and airy city has gotten increasingly rave reviews for its fantastic foodie scene as well as its conventional resort fares.
Dig in with the girls on fresh empanadillas or alcapurrias (stuffed fritters), or try out the local favorite comida criolla at spots such as Santaella, which gets all its seafood and produce from the acclaimed Santurce Market nearby. Once you’ve stuffed yourself up with enough energy, take your best ladies to paradise by dancing the night away at a DJ-staffed rooftop pool, or by finding your inner Zen with a trip to Playa Flamenco, a popular beach in Culebra.
This article was written by Pamela Chan.