I have a deep case of wanderlust.  I’m not sure if it’s because I grew up with road trips and cross-country moves being the norm, but it’s a big part of me that I don’t want to ever give up.  Well, this summer I’ve learned that to satiate wanderlust you don’t necessarily need to jump on a plane or drive hours and hours in a car.  

My aunt, cousin and a good friend from high school have all come to visit within the span of a month.  I took them all to some of my favorite places in the tristate area (Bear mountain, Liberty State Park, and Rue B Jazz Club to name a few) but in order to not get bored, I also researched new places that we could discover together.  Many people tend to go to the same places over and over because of the comfort of already knowing you like it.  I totally go to the same places, but at the same time I LOVE going somewhere for the first time and trying new things. Here are a few resources you can use to rediscover your own city:

1.  Yelp. If you’ve never been to a place, you might be curious about whether you will like it or not. Fear not, many people have probably been to that restaurant, rooftop bar or state park and those people have opinions that are conveniently written out on Yelp to help you decide if venturing to that new place will be worth it or not. A 5 star system is used to rate, people add photos of their experience and a map shows you exactly where their location is. A place rarely gets a perfect 5 stars but a good rule of thumb is to only go to places who have 3.5 stars are more.

2.  Groupon. Who doesn’t love to save money? Nobody. That’s who. Groupon saves you money on things you are going to purchase anyway.  Groupon gives you discounts for local services (Think hair salons, yoga classes and professional photo sessions), things to do (Think the Spartan Race, kayaking, and cruises down the Hudson river) and much more.  It tells you how much you’re saving, gives you a map, and shows you reviews from people who have bought that Groupon before. There’s so many companies I may not have even considered if I hadn’t found an amazing deal with them.

3. AllTrails. A mini roadtrip to the mountains can always lift my spirit. What lifts it even more is discovering a new hiking trail I’ve never been to.  A great app for finding new trails to explore is AllTrails.  They categorize each trail as easy, moderate, or hard(which is great because some days you want a challenge but other days you’d rather a stroll in the park). AllTrails shows you the length, altitude, and whether the trail loops or not. Photos and videos taken by actual other hikers are available as well as reviews detailing their experience on the trail. Hundreds of trails you may have never known about are ready for you to find.