Face off with a fire-breathing dragon, ride a horse through maritime forests or watch dolphins frolic in the marsh – whatever your vacation fancy, Resort Travel & Xchange (RTX) has you covered.
For fall and winter travel, the global timeshare exchange company offers great rates on sunny escapes to Hilton Head Island, S.C., and Orlando, Fla. These family vacation hotspots offer a full range of options, from theme parks to history, culture, golf and the great outdoors. Thanks to their Southern locations, any time is a good time to visit these premier destinations. However, fall and early winter are especially good, when the weather is warm and the humidity low. Plus, the summer crowds are gone, and RTX members can find great deals at high-end resorts. Here’s what not to miss from the experts at RTX.
HILTON HEAD ISLAND
Close to historic Savannah and Charleston, this bike-friendly destination draws golf, tennis, beach and boating enthusiasts. Expect Southern charm and natural beauty from this unique barrier island in South Carolina’s Low Country.
Beaches: Public beaches here rank among the world’s best. Visitors enjoy boating and fishing charters. The beautiful beaches also provide a firm surface for biking, jogging and strolling.
Golf: Rave reviews for fall golf in Hilton Head Island are commonplace. The weather is glorious, and there’s not a lot of rain. This world-premier golf destination invites lovers of the greens to tee off on PGA-sanctioned courses, many of them designed by golf legends.
Outdoor Adventures: Hilton Head Island’s 50-plus miles of nature trails wind past marshes, rivers and lagoons. In addition to hiking, horseback riding through maritime forests is an exciting way to take in the region’s natural beauty.
Wildlife Viewing: The Coastal Discovery Museum offers all sorts of guided tours. Join a museum naturalist to discover the wonders and creatures that inhabit the local beaches. Or, take a tour of Pinckney Island Wildlife Refuge, located at the northern tip of Hilton Head Island and known for its history, scenery and wildlife viewing opportunities. Another favorite is the museum’s guided kayak explorations. Paddle through the salt marsh, while on the lookout for bottle-nosed dolphins, wading birds and other local wildlife.
Dining: The culinary scene thrives in Hilton Head Island. Visitors and locals choose from hundreds of amazing restaurants serving everything from fresh seafood to international cuisine.
Shopping: Fashionistas and foodies favor Harbour Town, packed with boutique shops, galleries and restaurants. Not far away in Bluffton, streets are lined with live oaks draped in Spanish moss, the perfect backdrop for this thriving artists’ community that is home to sculptors, potters, painters and art galleries.
Welcoming 62 million visitors last year, Orlando, Fla., is the nation’s No. 1 tourist destination. The City Beautiful offers so many theme parks and attractions, it is important to arrive with a fun-focused plan. Once again, the experts at RTX have done the heavy lifting, offering these highlights below.
Walt Disney World® Resort: The magic is everywhere. Explore the Magic Kingdom®, Epcot®, Hollywood Studios® and Animal Kingdom®. On select nights through Nov. 1, Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party transforms the Magic Kingdom into a haunted Halloween happening that is a treat for all members of the family.
Universal Orlando® Resort and Islands of Adventure®: Be transported to Harry Potter’s world. Visitors find it all here: Hogwarts Castle and the snow-capped roofs of Hogsmeade (in Islands of Adventure) and the narrow passageways and fire-breathing dragon of Diagon Alley (in Universal Studios). As a bonus, through Nov. 1, Universal’s not-to-be-missed Halloween Horror Nights® is frightfully fun.
SeaWorld® Orlando: Ride the pulse-pounding roller coaster Manta® or the blazing fast Kraken® coaster. Meanwhile, Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin takes visitors to the icy world of Antarctica, as seen through the eyes of a penguin named Puck. Choose the mild or wild version of this imaginative simulator experience.
The Orlando Eye: This new observation wheel serves up 360-degree views of Central Florida from 400 feet. See the downtown skyline, fireworks displays, lush landscapes, and on a clear day, Cape Canaveral.
Boat Tour: Orlando has approximately 100 lakes, many connected by narrow canals. For a change of pace, take the guided, hour-long Scenic Boat Tour past mansions and moss-laden Cypress trees. The tranquility of the waterways is mixed with the guide’s witty commentary about local history, celebrities and wildlife.
For more information about RTX Getaways, visit www.rtx.travel.com
Resort Travel & Xchange (RTX) is a timeshare and vacation ownership exchange company based in Asheville, N.C. RTX works with a number of resorts and developers throughout the world to provide the best exchange options possible to its members. In addition to exchange services, RTX offers numerous travel benefits to members, such as reservation protection, rebates, travel discounts and more. RTX has approximately 80,000 members.