It’s hard to believe, but summer is already halfway over. While it makes us sad to start thinking about the end of the season, it’s time to start planning for one last summer trip.
For those who take cannabis as medicine, the thought of going on vacation or out for an event can be stressful. If you’re traveling out of state, it’s illegal to cross state lines with marijuana products. Plus, there can be serious consequences for trying to fly with it. Airspace—even between two states where adult-use cannabis is legal—is technically controlled by the federal government. It’s therefore against the law to fly out of state with cannabis.
But thanks to the wave of adult-use and medical marijuana legalization that’s sweeping the nation, many options for vacationing and relaxing while also having access to the cannabis you need are popping up across the U.S. Here are our top picks for vacation destinations and outings where you can access the cannabis you need in the state you travel to without worry.
1. Keep it Cool in Pro-Marijuana Palm Springs, CA
Photo credit: Desert Hot Springs Inn
Palm Springs is a stop on every jetsetter’s list. The desert town is full of boutique hotels, stylish restaurants and modern architecture. There’s something for everyone in Palm Springs whether you’re into outdoor adventures like hiking and rock climbing in the early morning hours before temperatures start to climb, or you like more of a chilled-out relaxing vacation vibe with shopping, museum visits and spa time.
While Palm Springs attracts a ton of visitors, especially during festivals like Coachella, Stagecoach and Modernism Week, on a typical weekend the town is quiet and peaceful.
Palm Springs bills itself as the first Southern California city to legalize medical marijuana production on a large scale, so it definitely doesn’t turn its back on canna-tourists. There are plenty of accommodating and friendly dispensaries to choose from once you get to Palm Springs, so you don’t have to worry about bringing your medicine with you.
As far as accommodations go, Palm Springs is full of hotels, condos and homes for rent. If you’re hoping for a cannabis-friendly place to stay, you’re in luck. Desert Hot Springs Inn is a modern hotel that’s 420-friendly and happy to host your dog as well.
The property allows cannabis consumption on its grounds, just as long as you don’t bother non-consumers. You can even order a cannabidiol (CBD) massage from the spa. Plus, there’s a pool, a dog park and everything else you need to relax.
2. Spend a Weekend at a Cannabis-Friendly Ranch in Northern California
Photo credit: Eagle Creek Ranch
If you’re looking for a restorative weekend in nature, Trinity Center, CA, is an incredibly beautiful place to do it. Trinity Center is close to the Oregon border and the scenery features mountains, dense redwood forests and unbelievably beautiful views. It also happens to be part of an area known for its high-quality, naturally grown, outdoor cannabis.
The best way to enjoy this part of California is to spend some time on a ranch—specifically, a cannabis-friendly ranch. If you’re looking for a cannabis-friendly experience in a beautifully crafted guest home, set in a serene 116-acre ranch surrounded by California’s largest national park, then Eagle Creek Ranch has your name written all over it.
Eagle Creek Ranch allows marijuana smoking outdoors, but not in guest rooms. After a home-cooked breakfast and morning cannabis session, enjoy yoga, a horseback ride, a massage, fishing, hiking or relaxing by the pool. At 4:20 every day, there’s a 420 colored sheep walk and a 4:20 happy hour. Definitely a cannabis-friendly way to enjoy the beauty and quirkiness of Northern California.
3. See Great Live Music & Build Community at Colorado’s Arise Festival
Photo credit: Arise Festival
People of all ages love a good music festival. Popular summer festivals have grown to be about much more than just music. Now these events incorporate everything from art to exercise to meditation.
The Arise Festival takes place in Loveland, CO, every August. It’s a musically diverse festival set on more than 100 acres of stunning mountain valley where festivalgoers can camp for the entire weekend. Besides music, the Arise Festival incorporates yoga, camping, workshops, art galleries, a farmers market and environmental activism.
Though it’s not explicitly a pro-cannabis event, the industry is represented at the festival with the inclusion of the NoCo Hemp Village. This space is set aside for roughly 10–12 northern Colorado hemp companies to sell their products, which range from oils to textiles to foods to building materials. They also educate festivalgoers on the therapeutic, medicinal and environmentally friendly applications that hemp has to offer.
As it is, Colorado is very cannabis-friendly. And this event is known for its freedom to consume the now-legal plant.
If you plan to consume marijuana while at the festival, it’s important to know that much of Colorado is undergoing strict fire policies due to the state’s dry conditions. To avoid a run-in with Smokey Bear, it may be best to bring a vaporizer, edibles or tincture to the festival rather than a smokable form of marijuana.
4. Trade Out Vineyards for Gorgeous Greenyards in Maine
Photo credit: Maine Greenyards
Maine’s saga of legalizing recreational marijuana is looking like it may come to an end soon. Though voters approved adult-use cannabis in 2016, the state’s conservative governor, Paul LePage, vetoed legalization.
Recently, the state’s legislator overrode his veto in an effort to move legalization forward. While marijuana stores aren’t expected to open until 2019, currently small amounts of cannabis are legal to possess, share and grow. And like most legal states, public cannabis consumption and smoking laws can limit visitors from truly enjoying cannabis during their stay.
Luckily, there are places like Maine Greenyards where you can have a green getaway.
Located in Auburn, ME, this cannabis-centric take on a vineyard is truly one of a kind. The property hosts a private marijuana garden, which guests are encouraged to visit to see the cultivation process up close and personal. Guests can even trim their own buds during harvest season.
Each guest, who must be over 21 years old, is gifted with homegrown cannabis flower from the garden that can they can enjoy anywhere on the property. Beyond marijuana, guests can enjoy fresh eggs from free-range chickens, quiet sunsets, and the indoor pool and hot tub that’s open 24/7.
What once was an area of abandoned storefronts, Auburn and its neighboring town, Lewiston, have seen a ton of growth over the past few years. Now this area of Maine is a very quaint and relaxing place to visit. And what used to be one of the most polluted rivers in America, the Androscoggin River, was lovingly rehabilitated into a safe and beautiful recreational area in the heart of Auburn.
After enjoying a continental breakfast and morning dose of cannabis, head to the Auburn River Walk to enjoy a stroll by the water. Then make your way to Lewiston’s Lisbon Street for local shopping, dining and drinking.
5. Explore the 420-Friendly, Picturesque Pacific Northwest
Photo credit: The Winston House
Summer in the Pacific Northwest is one of the best-kept secrets in the country. Rainy and gray winters give way to fabulously sunny days, clear views of Mount Rainier and tons of gorgeous water. Plus, Washington was the very first state to legalize recreational cannabis, making it a great 420-friendly vacation destination.
Seattle is home to a wonderful, cannabis-friendly bed and breakfast called The Winston House. The host, Sebastian, is a long-time, medicinal cannabis enthusiast and actively encourages guests to consume freely in the home. For those who are canna-curious but may be too intimidated to go to a dispensary, Sebastian teaches a cannabis 101 course to help beginners get comfortable with the plant.
If you’re already a marijuana expert, he provides each room with all of the supplies you’ll need (a bong, pipe, lighter and more). The master suite comes equipped with a private, salt-water hot tub and porch, perfect for winding down on a Seattle summer night.
Located in the southeast corner of the city, The Winston House makes it easy to access all parts of Seattle. The house is just minutes away from gorgeous Lake Washington where you can swim, kayak or just watch the floatplanes and sailboats cruise by.
A short drive away is the beautifully quaint Mercer Island and all of the Seattle classics like the Space Needle, Chihuly Garden and Glass, Pike Place Market and Olympic Sculpture Park.
If you want to venture further out into the Pacific Northwest, pack your vaporizer in a waterproof bag and hop a clipper boat to the San Juan Islands. Once there, you can rent a kayak and maybe even run into a pod of peaceful orca whales in their natural migratory habitat.
Or if kayaking mere feet away from some of the largest mammals on the planet isn’t for you, you can eat your way through the beautiful fishing village. Stop by Friday Harbor House Restaurant for a gorgeous view of the water and fantastic dining experience.
Thanks to the growing legal cannabis industry throughout the country, finding vacation spots with lawful access to marijuana is becoming easier than ever. Whether you want to spend time in nature, have a cool vacation in the desert, enjoy great music or stay at a cannabis greenyard, there’s something for everyone. End your summer the right way: with the 420-friendly vacation you deserve.
Main photo credit: Raining Huang