Sometimes, you want a loud and busy vacation. You want to go to big cities, spend time in touristy attractions and feel like a member of a crowd. Other times, you want to get away from it all — and this certainly feels like one of those latter times. This year has been tough for almost everyone, and if you are feeling the weight of it all, it might be time to schedule a quick trip to a quiet town where you can sit back, relax and smoke weed. Here are the best low-key, weed-friendly towns for a summer getaway:
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Not long ago, Trinidad was an old mining town that was slowly but surely turning into a ghost town — but then Colorado legalized recreational weed. Suddenly, the vacant stores at the center of town were transformed into dispensaries, and the tax revenue helped replace the century-old water pipes, brick streets and fire stations. Today, Trinidad is a bustling little town with over 16 dispensaries, ready and eager to service whatever out-of-towners want to visit.
Arcata is one of the largest towns in California’s legendary Emerald Triangle, a region in Northern California famous for being the largest producer of cannabis in the United States. Visiting Arcata is like visiting a progressive vision of the future, with the few cars running on biodiesel and many public services provided by bike. During your trip, you might visit one of many art-and-craft markets, stroll Arcata’s beaches or take a hike through the stunning community forest full of towering redwood trees.
This sleepy town in hot Southern California became famous for its annual music festival, but when the stages are empty, it dwindles to a few thousand folks living in the far outskirts of Palm Springs — which makes it an ideal space for a quiet, contemplative cannabis vacation. Coachella is investing heavily in cannabis cultivation and manufacturing, and its proximity to both Palm Springs and Joshua Tree National Park provides plenty of natural beauty and exciting activities whether you get high or not.
Many residents of the Lower 48 forget that the great northern state of Alaska legalized recreational marijuana way back in 2015. The quirky tourist town of Talkeetna, nestled just south of Denali National Park, is one of the few more-rural settlements that boasts a handful of pot shops well worth a visit. Because Alaska is so far out of the way, you are all but guaranteed a quiet and contented trip with outrageously beautiful scenery and an interesting community culture.
Outside the Seattle Metro Area and deep in the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest is nestled Skykomish, a boomtown that has dwindled to just over 200 people in the last few decades. Even so, the historic railroad town offers a fair share of dispensaries in its quaint commercial district, where you can stock up on weed before enjoying a truly solitary and contemplative trip. There are dozens upon dozens of trails into the forest, many of which lead to dizzying waterfalls worth a picnic toke.
A miniscule town on the other side of the state from growing Portland, Huntington has just over 400 residents — but its dispensary serve over 600 customers every day. Huntington was once a railway town, and it is surrounded by a rural and conservative landscape. The choice to permit adult-use marijuana has put the little town on the map, and it is worth a visit to see just how cannabis taxes can change a town for the better.
Quad Cities, Illinois
Admittedly, half of the Quad Cities are in Iowa, which remains resistant to the idea of legalizing weed. However, if you stay in the Illinois half — Rock Island and Moline — you have safe, legal access to some of the freshest ganja in the state. Despite the newness of Illinois dispensary licenses, QC is doing great business with the green herb. As long as you book reservations at weed-friendly accommodations, you can get high and explore the unique history and culture of the region, or at least take a memorable ride on the riverboat.
Visiting big cities can be fun, but by limiting your travels to metropolises, you are missing out on so much of American culture. Trips to these small towns don’t have to be long, but they can be relaxing, educational and immensely fun.