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Written by:  Danielle Cushing
Date: March 1, 2010

Warmer weather is just around the corner, and the whole family is anxious to take a vacation. Whether you're looking for a getaway filled with history, adventure or lazy afternoons, we've found the some of the best places around. Pack up the car (and don't forget the kids) — these destinations are just a drive away.

Charleston, S.C.

Charleston offers a vacation rich in history. Museum Mile boasts six museums, five nationally important historic houses, and four scenic parks, plus many more historic sites. The dungeon in the Exchange and Provost once held various signers of the Declaration of Independence, and the building is where the U.S. Constitution was ratified. Prime places to stay include historic inns and bed and breakfasts. Visit www.charlestoncvb.com/visitors.

Kiawah Island Golf Resort, Kiawah, S.C.

This golf and tennis resort, located just outside Charleston, has a variety of recreational activities for all ages. Heron Park Nature Center offers wildlife tours, on foot and by kayak or canoe. Families can enjoy arts and crafts and pick-up sports, rent bicycles and explore the island, or spend days at the beach or pool. Visit www.kiawahresort.com.

Hilton Head, S.C.

With more than 50 miles of hard-packed beaches, paved pathways and nature trails, this island is easy to explore on bike or by foot. Guided nature tours offer glimpses of island wildlife like endangered loggerhead sea turtles and bottlenose dolphins. Activities in town include shopping, waterfront dining and museum visits. Several resorts offer camps for children to visit the beach, play games, engage in crafts or learn about Hilton Head history. Visit www.hiltonheadisland.org.

Outer Banks, N.C.

The Graveyard of the Atlantic, so nicknamed for the large number of shipwrecks off the shoreline, offers 200 miles of wildlife, recreational activities and historical and cultural sites. Stop in Kitty Hawk, where the Wright brothers took their first flight, and roll down the sand dunes at nearby Kill Devil Hills. Climb to the top of Cape Hatteras, the country's tallest brick lighthouse. And spend a day on the beach. Visit www.outerbanks.org.

The Greenbrier, White Sulphur Springs, W.V.

The Greenbrier is a resort and a National Historic Landmark. Tour an underground bunker beneath the resort that was meant to serve as an emergency shelter for Congress during the Cold War. Watch artisans ply their crafts, or search for the lost Greenbrier Treasure on a guided historical tour. Children can spend a day at the Adventure Zone, enjoying crafts, puppet shows, outdoor games and more. Visit www.greenbrier.com.

Danielle Cushing is an intern at Carolina Parent and a senior at UNC-Chapel Hill majoring in journalism and mass communications.



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